While slightly overcast, the day was perfect for racing as dozens of riders kicked up a storm in the Monster Energy Motocross Championships Round 5 and Round 2 of the ATV championships all day Sunday at the Guam International Raceway in Yigo.
The track was definitely mucky after a week of rains, organizer Robert Bucek said, describing the six hours he spent filling in holes and pulling in fresh dirt to create an awesome course for race day.
“We … brought in some fresh dirt, got it all fluffed up and ready for the race and ready for action,” he said. “It looks pretty good.”
Looking around the course and seeing new racers was a welcome sight, Bucek said, adding that the sight of first-time riders definitely triggered some nostalgia.
“It definitely brings back some memories when my kids came out and raced – the excitement and the joy that we both shared together as a family,” he said.
For several first-time racers, the need for speed was too great to ignore.
“I went straight to the ramps,” said 6-year-old Troy LaRance. “It’s fun.”
Prepping for the second heat, he described his strategy, “I’m just going to go faster.”
Six-year-old Heston Fires echoed LaRance, adding “It was fun and I like going up the big hills.”
Fearless, Fires attacked the hills, eager to go higher and faster, leaving the fear to his father, Matthew.
“That first hill scared me to death … I didn’t think he was going to make it. I’m proud of him” the elder Fires said. “I was a little nervous … it’s his first bike, but he handled himself well out there.”
Matthew Fires said Heston Fires has always been into going fast and having fun outdoors, and seems to have found his niche in motocross.
“He loves it,” Matthew Fires said, adding that the family is always willing to support Heston.
For Heston Fires, racing again was definitely on his mind.
“It’s so, so, so much fun,” he said, saying people should try it out.
While not new to the sport, the Aikens said they were glad to be out and competing after returning from a family vacation in uninhabited Pagan.
“Been doing this since the '70s … just not in real good racing shape right now,” said Kim Aiken, adding he fully expects the cardio to pick up as the season progresses. Racing against the “young guys,” Aiken said it’s just for fun, and the opportunity to do something with his son, Blaze, is a plus.
The younger Aiken, Blaze, took a hard fall in one of his heats. Chasing after two of the top island racers – JR Cepeda and Lil Jon Aguon, Blaze Aiken said he got tangled up with two other riders.
“Pulled the front brake too hard and ate the ground … got the wind knocked out,” he said, while icing a sore wrist. Refusing to limp in for the finish, he picked up and roared back on the course to meet the checkered flag.
“It was important to finish strong,” he said.
Lil Jon Aguon continued his reign atop the series, holding on to first in overall points, the Open and 450cc divisions. After five rounds, JR Cepeda held second in overall points and the Open Class, while holding onto first in the 250cc Class. Blaze Aiken sits in the bronze spot in overall points and second in the 250cc. The results for all races were unavailable as of press time.