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Nostalgia - 70's Enduros

Members of a facebook group, Enduro/Hare Scrambles Riders fom the 70's/80's have been posting results from old enduros, two of which caught my attention.

The first was the Over The Hill Enduro Riders (O.T.H.E.R.) enduro from 1979, the last year I rode as a "B" rider before being advanced to the "A" class, something I never dreamed was possible when I first started riding! Unlike a lot of my friends who had mini bikes or motorcycles when they were young, I didn't own a motorcycle or dirt bike until I graduated from college and could purchase one myself.

Third place in the B-Medium Light (175cc-200cc) class. I don't remember anything about the event and neither did the friend who posted the results to facebook except to say the scores seemed pretty high, implying a hard enduro. Still, a fun rememberance although I don't remember anything special!

OTHER Enduro - Page 1
OTHER Enduro - Page 2
OTHER Enduro - Page 3
OTHER Enduro - Page 4
OTHER Enduro - Page 5

The second results posting in contrast brings back very vivid memories ...

This was the 1977 Southern Pensylvania Enduro Riders (SPER) National Enduro. It was, I think, the first national enduro I ever rode, national enduros being the premier championship event for enduro riders and always had the best riders competing. I did not want to ride a national until I became a "B" rider because I didn't feel I was good enough to enter.

This was also the first event I entered on the 400cc Penton GS6. When I advanced to the "B" class I thought it would be cool to reward myself with buying my dream dirt bike at the time, a 400cc Penton. To actually afford the Penton however, I traded in my streetbike, a Norton 850cc Commando. This was made easier because the motorcycle shop where I purchased the Penton, The Sports Spot in Haledon NJ was a dealer for both brands and a great multi-brand motorcycle shop unlike the shops of today. When I picked the Penton up, Barry Higgins, who they sponsored in MX and also worked there as a mechanic (I think) was visiting and took my new motorcyle for a spin around the lot! I felt as though my machine was blessed.

I did a quick set-up of the motorcycle when I got it home, and that same Wednesday I also was lucky that a friend was able to join me for a break-in ride in Sterling Forest, my closest riding area and a great place it was...

Then Sunday came and I was entered in the SPER National on the same minute #27 with my friend Al. First National, First ride on the 400 ... I was nervous and excited! Unfortunately, while it might have been a very difficult enduro as can be seen from all of the DNF's (Did Not Finish) scores, i had the misfortune of breaking my foot in the first section, not a crash I just hit something really hard with my boot, rode to the end of the section which exited onto blacktop, glanced down and saw my boot had been torn open and had exposed some bloody toes, and seeing that then almost ran off the road!

Luckily, my friend's wife who was driving the van with our gas cans to the next gas stop just at that moment, saw me, saw my problem, and after finding someone willing to deliver my bike back to the start (thank you good samaritan), took me to the local hospital and waited for me while they cleaned out my wound and bandaged me up.

That is the story of my first national, my first ride on the 400 Penton, and my first broken bones while riding dirt bikes! While I may wish it had been a different result I have few regrets of my days racing dirt bikes with friends. And it is probably an experience most true enduro riders can relate to!

SPER Enduro - Page 1
SPER Enduro - Page 2
SPER Enduro - Page 3
SPER Enduro - Page 4
SPER Enduro - Page 5
SPER Enduro - Page 6

Sandy Lane Enduro / missed opportunities

Tomorrow is the 82nd Sandy Lane Enduro. I would have liked to ride it on my vintage bike but will miss it and hopefully ride again next year. I did ride the 75th edition of the event on my 1980 PE175 and finished 2nd out of 13 entries with 8 vintage class finishers. I never did well at this event, but of course it was always memorable!

ISDE 2019 Vintage Event

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Photo by © Nuno Laranjeira

The 2019 ISDE, sometimes called "the Olympics of motorcycling", was held this year in Portugal. The American teams did extremely well in the premier categories but what is more interesting is that there was an opportunity for vintage bikes to be ridden. Here are some 2019 photos from the FIM website of the bikes and (lucky!) riders.


Who watched the MXoN?

Final Standings

The crash that sealed the fate of Team USA.

It was a good race in spite of the weather. Many teams had problems but none worse than USA and France. All competed with a lot of heart! Better luck next year.

A Podcast: "The Case For Team USA"

Zack Osborne
Jason Anderson
Justin Cooper

Is it too early to start thinking about the MX des Nations?

I don't think so.

It looks like a better team than last year when they sent Tomac, Plessinger, and Barcia. Plessinger was a bad choice as he had a good season at that time but he still was unpredictable. Tomac is fast but also has "off" days where he underperforms. And especially when he gets a bad start and has to eat dirt, IMO.

This years team seems more of a team. Sure it would be great if Adam Cianciarulo replaced Cooper and were racing but it's not bad having a new hungry rider like Justin Cooper who has performed really well. It should be a better result than last year even with the more difficult conditions for the team in a foreign country.

Listen to this podcast about the MX des Nations. Interesting points made by Jason Weigand.

And try and forget the last time Jason Anderson won the moto!

My 2019 ISDT Reunion Ride

Finger Lakes
Last weekend in the finger lakes region.

This weekend I attended the ISDT Reunion Ride in King Ferry, NY. I invited Mom & Sis for a short vacation, where they could sightsee while I raced. We have stayed in Auburn, NY in past years, which is an interesting town with several nice historical sites to visit. This year for Mom & particularly Sis, we stayed at the Packwood house in Skaneateles NY in a very nice room located in the center of town. It was chosen so they would have more options for dining, walking, and sightseeing while I was out at the event.

Unexpected vintage NETRA results

1977 Snow Run

as found on FaceBook

A post about identifying some riders/bikes in old photos led to an interesting and unexpected post of results from 1977.

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