Narrogin May 2014

It was new beginnings for some people who attend the May 18th Vintage Moto Cross (VMXWA) race meeting at Dandaloo Park Narrogin, along with 47 riders families and friends.

I’ll start the race report with comments from a few folk I chatted with in the pits on the day, then finish off with some race results.

Let’s begin with Ted Smeschkal who has made a welcome return to Dandaloo Park after a 15 year break. Ted has ridden with the Trial & Enduro club of WA since its beginnings and he spent some time in the north west of WA. Ted has built up a lovely KTM 250 and a SPH Sachs (couldn’t remember what the ‘P’ stood for) in a Honda frame, with support from Macca.

He continued to race in all grades except for ‘A’, at last count his wife said he’d completed 8 races. That’s a comeback. I caught up Ted later and asked how his day was going and his reply was “Perfect”.

Rebecca Watson was down from Shark Bay with her partner and enjoyed the day with her 4 legged Red Kelpie and her 2 wheeled Husky family. While on the subject of Watsons, it was superb to hear from Bill & Mary that the Goldfields Motor Cycle Club had recently put on an excellent 100 year club celebration. Well done Goldfields, let’s hope VMXWA is still going strong in 2095.

Relative new comer Ralph Miller ex Brisbane, now Perth was on board a 74 400 Husqvarna. Ralph has been riding on and off since the age of 16, he told me he had just ran out of having plain fun and now is back. Ted likes how the tracks are prepped for the bikes of this era and how the club members are very helpful and friendly. As an added bonus, the VMXWA club also has found another photographer in Ralph’s wife Debra, who has shared her talents across social media. As with Ted, I watched Ralph peddling the 400 out in A Grade and it was superb to see him doing well at the pointy end of the field and see him having found that fun factor again; while he chased Gary Johnson on fullnoise.

The newest kid on the block is Bianka Berry from Wandering. Bianka is more used to riding the hills and paddocks on a four wheeler with the Dan Fergusson family offspring. Bianka enjoyed watching VMX at Wandering and thought that since the guys are having a go, then she may as well too. On a lovely tidy 125 Honda Elsinore, Bianka enjoyed her first event and won’t be going up to a 250 in a rush. She did ask the guys how to get good starts and of course they told her to “give it more throttle”, forgetting to mention that one needs to sit and lean forward more. So Bianka did a stylish lady flip on the start and unfortunately retired for the rest of the day with a broken clutch perch. We all hope you come back soon Bianka and if you need any good female advice ask the “veteran” lady young Asry Bizar.

The 2014 National Championships (Port Augusta in August) were discussed and all eyes are on Asry for a women’s podium. She was flying around the Dandaloo Park track on Sunday and enjoying the differences of a Maico and a Husqvarna on this unscheduled test day. Asry has been brought up riding the heavier four stroke bikes which has kept her in good stead for the lighter bikes come National Titles day.

It was also nice to see a few local spectators from Narrogin starting to build mid-morning, along with a group of interested road racing sidecar competitors. We were privileged to have the company of Dot Squire and several family members/friends of Pete #59 and Dot Squire. Two of Pete’s wishes were to have his ashes spread at Dandaloo Park and to have Dot riding on a sidecar outfit. During a break in the race program, President Gary wheeled out an outfit and Dot climbed aboard, fully dressed in Motocross gear, boots and all. A guard of honour lined the start straight with Dot in the chair, doing the last two laps with Pete and spreading his ashes around the Dandaloo circuit; a fitting farewell amongst loved ones. RIP Pete and all the very best in your new journey’s Dot.

Race Report

With practice running on time the second group consisted mainly of Japanese bikes, with one Montesa, a Maico and a BSA. Kawasakis are low in numbers these days and didn’t have any representation in the solo ranks – anyone keen for green?

Riders were out to get some fine tuning of bike and body for the upcoming Dandaloo Classic two day meeting on the June long weekend.

High rider numbers turned up in the over 55 years group, with 14 on the start line. It was great to see Graham Taylor back on his CCM wearing a bright Bultaco jersey, being easy on the eye to watch from the spectator fence.

Eleven riders in C grade saw some fierce battles through the field.

The sidecar class saw 6 machines in their field, with a few familiar faces back to play in the dirt. Good to see the return of MB Racing’s brothers Ken and Steven Melvin who were running a strong third position until passenger Steven’s knee gave way. However Hayes Forsythe stepped into the swinger role for the rest of the day and the pair took first place in the staggered start in the last round. This last race also saw a couple of different teams taking to the track and having a grand old time to finish off the day.

Sarah/Robert Dillon on the Kawasaki rocket ship H2 750 or was that a H1 500??? were on fire and wouldn’t let those Fanderlinden’s in for a top placing and took the lead after the first lap. Back in fine form after a year’s absence, the Dangerous Dillon Sidecar pair have now taken up sidecar road racing as an added extra. Younger sister Hanna had a close look at the track surface during the afternoon, as brother Jason decided to step off the sidecar on the last turn and let Hanna take control on her own, leaving her with a sore head.

The solo ‘all in’ consisted of up to 10 riders contesting a 5 lap journey. After a hard fought battle, Ralph Miller took 1st, Russell George on the hard to start Husqvarna 2nd,3rd place went to Jayden(sponsored rider)Barron,4th Brian Watson. Giving Brian a G up was Lew White 5th on his Maico and Jason Dillon bringing home 6th. Superb racing by these riders. Place your bets for the Dandaloo Classic June long weekend, on these guys.

Cheers for now. Alison Melvin