On the road… again. Only sixteen thousand miles, 46 race days, 14 weeks, and 12 Pro National events lie between us and the end. We take a deep breath and plunge head first into it, starting with round 1 at Glen Helen.
It’s last year all over again, but totally different because now we’re living in style. With a 40’ Renegade and a 22’ stacker trailer behind us, fully wrapped, people stare and point as we pull onto the freeway. ‘Started from the bottom now we here.’ We sing and do a little jig as we head out.
Some things remain the same though: The night before we leave, we’re still scrambling to pull it all together, packing, running to Home Depot, finalizing things at home to get us on the road. All of our plans to be ‘dialed’ have gone down the drain. By early morning we’re just hucking our stuff into the rig, telling ourselves we’ll get organized later.
Moto Buddy is still in tow, eager as ever (especially when we approach Glen Helen. His nose perks at the scent which he knows too well by now). But this time we’ve added Gatita–“little kitty”–or as she’s come to be known “Moto Kitty.” We’re like a traveling freakin’ circus alright. We never can make things easy on ourselves.
Glen Helen is everything it’s cracked up to be: one can’t help but feel awe-inspired by its gnarly hills. What’s more is the speed at which the pro riders attack them. With all the momentum of that Talladega, they’re sucked through the turn like a whirlpool and slingshotted toward the base of the great Mt. St. Helens, then it’s up and down and up again, with no hesitation over the precipice, they just dive bomb the damn thing like a horde of lunatics–but very skilled, precise lunatics.
When Josh Grant emerges from that horde with the speed of a torpedo, the crowd goes absolutely nuts. All speculation gets thrown out the window. Of all the people favored to shine at Glen Helen, Josh Grant was not the expected candidate.
For the first time that day my seat hits a chair and I breathe it all in: the brrraaaaaaaaap of the 450s, the warm sun on my face, the constant static of a cheering crowd, the impassioned fans throwing their bodies into the fences along the track. Because no matter who their favorite rider, the great thing about moto fans, is they love a good upset. What better way to kick off 2014 Pro Motocross than the hometown hero, the #33 bike of Josh Grant, leading the entire moto and sailing over the finish line with hardly a challenger.
As the sun sets over Glen Helen that day, the mess of our booth and our hospitality and our rig all around us, we pull up a chair, crack a much-earned ice cold beer, and soak it all in. The Great Outdoors is back. And the journey has just begun…