Rd 1 CCFG Full Race Report
TD Photo Imaging : Well the season has officially started and as we all anticipated it rocked the Mill outta Ville. Throughout the weekend Foreigners song, Juke Box Hero, kept playing in my head…..”Heard the roar of the crowd, he could picture the scene, Put his ear to the wall, then like a distant scream, He heard one guitar, just blew him away, Saw stars in his eyes”……I felt exactly like those words, just all consumed and in awe of the power and energy this event was giving off. I don’t know, maybe it’s just me but how can you not feel it in your bones when all those bikes fire up at the same time with all the screams and sounds of excitement from everyone. Helen Keller would describe it the same way I think because it’s not something you see or hear but an emotion you feel deep inside caused by the connected electricity of energy between man and machine. We have been at this for a while but that feeling will move me every time. Its true loves first kiss……you will never forget it.
Leading up to this race weekend we had dark clouds, rain, sleet and snow but Saturday gave us sunshine and warmth and so did Sunday. Our first round of season 6 at the Cumberland County Fairgrounds was dedicated to our friend Marshall Smith who went to a place where he could watch over all of us. This was his favorite event and he never missed one with us and that included this past weekend. He kept everyone safe and sent tranquility and peace to us all. This was the biggest event we have ever had, yet it was the smoothest and easy going one to date…..I credit that to him. You didn’t have to know him to understand what I am saying. Everyone has lost someone they love. Love doesn’t go away when the body does, it stays and comforts and gives you peace…..Marshall filled the fairgrounds with his love and gave us all the beautiful gift of friendship.
Dan the Man was at the gate by 9am Saturday to start his Tutor Time sign up. He, Scooter, Rich and the boys kicked the season opener off like it never stopped. Empty tablets were filling their pages with knowledge and utilizing every bit. We are so proud of this program. We see the results that very day from the students.
Noon is our favorite event of the weekend. Tikes on Bikes. It is the purest you will ever be in your offroad journey. It is where we all started and envy the innocence in their eyes. They are the reason we are here. Your children are the future of this sport. Completely blank slate that we get to fill with our knowledge we have learned through a life time of riding. It is a true honor for all of us. If you have never been to our events on a Saturday to see the little guys then you are missing something greater than the main event. This is the main event for us.
1pm our Oil Injected heard the first 10 second count and threw the first roost of the season. Leading the whole race was 7-8 OI #102 Eddy Colby with #952 Kyle Grenewicz taking second by running almost the same lap times. What a great battle between these two kids. Fighting hard for third place was #972 James Robbins over #991 Remington Platt. 4-6 OI #987 Ranger Emmons took the win and third overall on the lap five over #221 Cole Truster who fought hard to keep it. Third went to #128 Ayden Howell by a millasecond over #985 Jayden Burt for, I think, his best race ever. This class was 2 riders shy of breaking our record. Most were Tikes from last year that moved up to start their racing career. We are so proud of these young kids for showing such strength and determination.
A record 95 PWs filled the starting lines at 3pm. One of the battles of the day went to 7-9 65 #348 Bryce Shelly and #89 Wayne “Bubby” Cox who were never more than seconds apart until the very end when a mud puddle claimed them for its own. Had that not happen we would have all been holding our breath at the checkered flag. Incredibly cool race boys. Third place went to a farm boy from the Hollenbeck Mountain #930 Ian Potter. So glad you guys made the trip south and we will see you very soon. Thumper king for this event was another farm boy who loves to ride his steed #999 Mr. Sam Barry. The battle here belonged to second place #340 Jacob Roscoe and #912 Jarod Pierce. Taking a commanding lead from Jump Street in the 4-8 50 was #37 Joseph Rainone. Securing second and the last 7th lap was #958 Nathan Dulaney over third #640 Justin Adkins, the middle of the Bernie Babies. 10-12 EL win went to #83 Dylan Leary but the battle was for second and third with #85 William Holmes taking the flag before #72 CJ Sidoli. 4-9 EL win and the sixth lap was taken by #333 Jammin Jimmy Lambert over #18 Mark Cimino who just missed the extra lap to continue the battle for top dog today. #104 Joseph Lindell settled in for third after holding second place for three laps. This was great racing guys. Our new and proven much needed girls class was stacked with great competition. The win went to a young lady who I have watched grow as a rider from her very first event to now so I am proud to say that a very sweet girl #703 Shyann Phelps took her first win after an epic battle with big sister #601 Brenna Cabegin. Taking third place on the last lap at the last second was #809 Samantha Johnson over #264 Dana Coulter…whew those two girls both rode their fastest lap times to the checkered flag! Many of the racers today were newbies but many were returning from last year and you can tell that they have been preparing for this first event of the season. These young kids are so hungry for the throttle and to compete with each other. I am so excited for this season because a lot of the faces in this division started out in the tikes six years ago so we have the honor to watch them progress from infancy to where ever their journey takes them. So Excited!
Well our Pitbike herd never missed a beat with puttin on a show for us. Right out of the gate our Mega Bucks had us screaming. #85 Noodle and #910 Huff Daddy were right back at it for the crown with #21 I-Beam right there with third if they made a mistake. First Young Buck and fourth overall was #614 Ben Miller. The Big Slam Daddy’s top two, #986 Brice Lloyd and #393 Factory Phil, were scrapin and pawin to the checkered. Seventh overall was YB #90 The Highflier followed by Mega buck #983 Josh Pittman. Closing out the top ten were from the 12 Pointer Pro breed, #72 Carmen Simonetti and #982 Brian Richards led their pack. #498 Matthew Cropper took the Ruttin Buck crown while #63 Brandy Peterson took her first big win, nice ride girl! Youth Pits were small but mighty, Spikes was taken by #38 Brandon Gahm and the Buttons win went to #55 Tyler Massie. Once the Pits were complete our vintage men lined the starts with nostalgia and dreams of yesteryears. #72 Tony Folk and #209 Kevin Adams won their classes but every one of them were the winners. The sounds, feel and smells of those bike from that era are so different then todays machines.
Saturday evening rolled in with a chill around the camp fires. Once I settled in and chatted about the day’s events and thoughts on what Sunday would bring with my campin partner Barb Steele, sleep came quick. I dreamt about motorcycles and unknown faces coming through the gates.
By 5am I had my Water Gap Coffee Brewing but refused to get out of my bunk until 5:30 just to defy father time because of the change. When I did come out of hiding I found, not to my surprise, that I was not the early bird I so arrogantly thought I was because Jay, Shag, Wendy, Phil, and the rest of the workers bees were already up and half way through their morning routines. 7am sounds of bikes, doors, tailgates dropping and gates opening were filling the air. Good Morning greetings were coming from every direction and they were all heading to registration. The long winter wait was over for our Sunday racers. Dreams and wonder of where they will be at the end of the day were about to be found out. All the preparations and hard work was going to play out. 8:30am another record number of 175 youth lined the starting area with a thousand eyes waiting to see the flag drop and roost fly. Last year’s 14-15 85 champion #215 Jacob Johnson was this events AA Youth winner. I am proud of this teenager not just for his increased skill level but for standing proud in his beliefs on the podium and giving thanks to his parents and Jesus Christ for his victory. In a world of judgment and ridicule he didn’t waver. Second place and the youngest to grace the AA youth was #26 Kyle Tino with my boy #198 Siggy for third. Way to rock the A boys. 12-15 100 winner and second overall is a boy that no one saw coming, #64 Neil “Epic” Enman worked hard all winter and it paid off tenfold. Great ride kid! #197 Nick Layton took second on the third lap over a new name in the game #184 Michael Braunius. Following his last years trend, #50 Brandon Cronin took the win for the 14-15 85 class leaving #165 Nico Marts to secure second and #97 Anthony Lloyd third. 12-13 85 winner #214 Cameron Pettit is staying on his winning streak from last year while #714 Jacob Biggs made a great recovery from a bad break last year by taking second. #78 Nathan Bell rode an incredible race and took third on his forth lap. #185 “The Viper” Johnny Manera took the win with a commanding lead in the 10-11 85. #41 “Mr. Determined” Jason Tino secured second and the last fifth lap. A solid third place went to #53 Michael Nirdlinger. These boys just moved up from the 65s which we all know an 85 is a whole other animal so Kudos to all of you for steppin up your game. 13-15 150 win and only fifth lap was taken by #499 Bobby McCafferty. #47 Eric Kubicz, the son of a Polish beast of a man, secured second place from the start. #931 Samuel Oquendo, a new name in the game, took third. Our 10-11 65 win was taken by the mad jumper #21 Forrest McCarthney. Another son of the beast #331 Brian Kubicz took a solid second for his first time competing in the youth. #216 Christopher Crowe closed out the top three. The lady’s man #66 Alec Cileone took a solid win in the 10-12 125 for his first race in the youth event leaving second #929 Xavier Bogan to battle it out with #99 Michael Resch for the remaining podium spots. In every division our girls numbers are soaring through the roof and so is the competition level. #717 Lexi Donaghy took the lead on lap three over #111 “Gillie Buck” Nardelli. What an incredible battle these two had with each other. Straight out of the peewees #811 Leah Raines took third out of 34 girls, WOW! This is going to be a very interesting year again for the girls. Our offroad youth riders can no longer be compared to any others in the country, you guys have set the bar high for everyone else. I am humbled and in awe of the spirit that has risen from these kids.
11am a record breaking massive amount of C guys flooded the staging area and took over the starting lines, 300 to be exact. Remember earlier in my story when I mentioned the song playing in my mind, well this is where it just blew the speakers outta of my ears. I was standing on the other side of the flat track videotaping the start and from the first kick to finish of the starts it was a nonstop powerful all-consuming feeling. I felt it vibrate through the ground, up my dickie boots and right out the top of my head through all eight lines. True Loves first kiss….. The first line is the Ind & Mech class, we made some changes from last year to ensure it stays the way it was designed for, fun and seat time for guys that can’t ride the main any longer, and now it is non-points paying. The first one to have the most fun was Mr. Smiles himself #12 Frank Messina. B Super Senior win went to a new name in the game #666 Joe Pluck. This was a record turnout with 11 guys on the line. The Women also had their biggest turnout with 13 girls but returning champion #231 Nicole Hiles was not going to let that get in her way of keeping her title, FYI, her little girl Logan had her first official race in the 4-6 OI so it won’t be long before she is competing with mom. C Heavy win went to a fella from the Pit bike herd, #172 Carmen Simonetti, and from the looks of it he had no problem going from his little bike to the big bike. C 4 Stroke was taken by #770 Daniel Clark from the start with #113 Dylan Oliver grabbing second on lap four. C Light win went to a boy straight out of the youth, #460 Beau Hickman fought hard to keep it over second #832 Daniel Sudol and #67 Austin Smith. C Vet had a new name for the win #866 Dillon Cava with my friend #996 Alberto Ribeiro taking second on the last lap over #750 Scott Smith, who by the looks of the lap time might have run into some trouble. Our biggest and most competitive class of the weekend was C Senior woooweee was it ever. Top three played out like this, #842 Peter Hicks, #765 Thomas Owens and then #569 Tom Cure and you didn’t know what it was going to be until the very end. Great racing by the whole class. This C event was the largest we ever had but it was the easiest we’ve ever handled…go figure.
1:30 was time for our main event and its numbers rivaled any C event from last year. So many youth moved up and lots of new names were added to the results page. We knew it would build in time but over the winter our main event had a growth spurt like a 13 year old boy. Crazy good and crazy fast. The craziest and fastest always come the AA guys. A Great battle ensued right out of the gate between the top dogs and in the end this is how it played out, #504 Tanner “Wildman” Thomas took the lead on lap 4 over #306 Kyle “the Bomber” McDonal who ran lead on lap 3. #10 Billy Schoeneberg was a knobby behind in Third with #8 Tegan “the Tiger” Temple for forth after he ran lead for the first two laps when his foot peg broke and he could no longer stand. These top four young men are names to start watching if you haven’t been already. They have been champions throughout their racing careers and don’t plan on stopping anytime soon. I’m very proud to have them all on our podium. AA 35+ is a class designed for our more experienced and mature AA caliber riders, so having #4 Rich Lafferty, one of our Tutor Time instructors, it was not a surprise to see his name at the top today. A Heavy right out of the box was taken by #906 Jeremy “Fuzzball” Williams with #703 Troy Desimone for a close second. The A Light win was taken by last season’s youth champion #109 Thorn “Slappy” Devlin but man o man it was not handed to him on a platter because this was one of the best battles of the day with #40 Nick “Thumper” McCollough running lead 4 out of the 7 laps to take second by a thread. I was the proudest when they pulled off and immediately started congratulating each other and bench racing and the parents too. That is what true champions do…. Our A Vet class winner was one of our home boys #737 Joey Super Sonic Sumpter, way to ride Joe. #16 Hank Knabe took the win for A Senior with #711 Chris Puff taking the reins of our A Super Senior class like he never left the saddle, awesome Ride Chris. #112 Zachary Sockwell had one of his best races I’ve seen for the win over #762 Mark Terpak in B Heavy. A solid first place in B Light was taken by #356 Dean Bush. Our School Boy winner rode the best I’ve seen him ride in a long time and it paid off for #36 Chris “Flash” Gordon, nice solid ride kid. We had a battle for the win in B Vet between #684 Pat Barry, #604 Shane Dickinson and #914 Eric Gross, with one mistake the win could have went to any one of those three. B Senior win went to #912 Big Bad Bob Holt, nice to see you back out there, we missed your number.
Well at the closure of this event and race report I want to thank everyone that came and made this a memorable weekend for the whole NEOC Family. I can only speculate on what this season is going to bring but whatever it might be, I’m glad you guys are right there with us enjoying the ride. Glad to see all the returning faces and we welcome all the many new ones.
Special thanks to our sponsors who helped us hook up our riders with lots of goodies for this event. HUSQVARNA, KTM, HONDA, TD PHOTO IMAGING, RRP CYCLE STUFF, FAIRWAY CYCLE, DHY MOTORSPORTS, SEAVILLE MOTORSPORTS, HANOVER HONDA, CENTRAL JERSEY CYCLE, RACERS EDGE, SPECTRO, ABS GRAPHICS, BILLY D’s BURGERS, HICKMANS WELDING, RIDERS CHOICE & Texas Roadhouse. Special thanks sent out to the NJ State Police Racing Control Unit, Millville PD, CCFG Association, White Horse RV Center, and The City of Millville.
To all of our Registration girls, Scoring Crew, Officials, Sweepers, Course workers, Gate Keepers and all those that showed up with tractors and a strong back to help with the breakdown of this mega tron event……we again, humbly and graciously thank you for helping to make this a wonderful weekend. Anything is possible with the power of people working together. All of you are an example of that because there is no way a man standing alone could climb this mount Everest that stands before us.
See everyone at round 2 The Whitetail on April 6th & 7th Have a wonderful Easter and don’t eat any chocolate eggs you might find in the yard!
got shots pics of everyone……Season 6 started with a record breaking turnout……It is just overwhelming to think that every first round since season 1 we have broken a season turnout record. Every year we say, it can’t get any bigger and then it does. Where do they come from? How are we going to fit everyone? How are we going to handle the crowd? The answers always come in time through unexpected blessings. The new people come in family units with a family that raced the prior season, a new land owner will come forward and share it with us, new faces join the help force……there are many obstacles, fears and frustrations that come with this offroad journey but to every one of those negative things come three positives to counter act the effects like the smiles on little faces, the volunteers that give their time to the organization, a friend standing next you to in the face of adversity, someone telling you that we made a difference in their child…..there is no price tag on those things that can be measured by anything than by how it makes you feel inside. Those are the things that make everything worth while and keep us pushing through the hard terrain. 1000+ riders, from Tikes on Bikes to the Main event, came to open the season with a bang. The train has started rolling, so…….. WHOOT WHOOT ALL ABOARD!!!
Thank you to all of our registration girls(new and experienced one), our gate keepers, scoring crew, sweepers, course workers, officials, sponsors, riders, pit crews and all that helped make this a successful first event of the year. BTW: the 300+ pre-registrations helped keep the line moving along smoothly so thank you for using that service we provide.
We are still in breakdown and clean up mode so like always, give us a few days to get the full race report, pictures, videos and other goodies posted. Thanks and until then….get workin on your bikes so they are ready to rock and roll for round 2!