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This point of the year I’m 20-25 weekends spent at the motocross track. I’m not sure if that’s good or bad but it is what I do. I ran into some old boys from days gone by in the moto scene and they shared what they do nowadays and I admit I was a tad jealous. Big boats, cottages, parties, relaxing, no stress (it looked like) and just all around moments of pleasure. Then, here I am standing in the sun announcing, dealing with angry parents, making schedules, organizing on radios, setting up awards, staff, tracks, medics, and doing all this for short time periods, trying to find time for my own family and the toughest part f it all: paying the bills. I question my path every day now. I’m not sure if that’s an age thing or just a thing but I do it regularly. There are parts of this sport that are unbelievably frustrating and then there are times where my heart melts and my emotions take over pulling me right back to the reason I stick with it: passion. I continually say “passion over paycheck” and I believe that to be true because it’s been that way for 35 years now.
This weekend was the biggest role of my promoting career since joining up with the amazing family over at MMRS. With all the drama, uncertainty and confusion in the sport right now AMO/MMRS has given a real good vibe (that’s not just me saying this because I own it. Just read Facebook or ask our members) in this time of strange vibes. The 2017 Madoc National was a solid success. I would rate us a B+ or A- for the event. Just over 700 entries, 3 moto format, 174 camper trailers, 28 classes, 28 champions, $5000 in awards, $15,000 purse, 15 cases of water on podium, GPF Award, DMX Total Devotion Award, 2 Different Breed Awards, Honda Parts Credits, KTM Parts Credits, 25 staff members a day, tents, banners, flags, garbage removal, and nearly perfect weather. It is a crazy shit ton of work trying to put on great races that are worth the dollar you spend. I won’t go on much more here about this but I’m proud to say we achieved what we were shooting for and want to thank all our staff, volunteers, family members, my wife, my parents and all the amazing sponsors. We’ll have video and photos coming from a memorable weekend.
I need to share this story with my readers from the weekend. I won’t share names but I will share word for word how this went down at the AMO/MMRS Madoc National. The world is a wild place nowadays with how situations work themselves out. I will also share, before I get into this there has never been or will never be a part of me that enjoys enforcing rules or make it a personal reason why rules are enforced. Rules are there to keep us in check and make us understand we are not above structure during competition. The story goes like this; A medic flag was out during a class race and the front two racers were a little over aggressive passing the accident. The rule clearly states and we clearly shared every morning not to get on the gas till you pass the accident. Two racers did not obey and therefore they had to be DQ’d. It sucks, like sucks big-time to see a young racer cry in front of you when you explain they have to be DQ’d because of a rule infraction. I can’t lie, I was sad for this racer but I had to make the call and as unfortunate as it was for this racer it had to be done. The parents would also upset but the Father understood but the Mom couldn’t understand it. It then became some sort of battle with her because she thought this was personal and the event staff had it in for them. I was taken back with this theory from a family that has been welcomed with open arms every time they have come. The same treatment every Canadian event welcomes outsiders from another province or country. I thought it was a joke at first but she was serious. It settled down after I explained the entire situation and the other racer that her racer wasn’t the only one DQ’d. Then, about 10-15 minutes later the same Mother approached me with a very serious look on her face and I asked, “Is there something on your mind?” She replied, “Yes, I wanted to say how amazing this event is, how great of a job you guys are doing, and how much fun we have had, but I will have to write a negative Facebook post about it all now because of this bad call on my son.” I stood quietly for a few seconds but felt like 15 minutes. I thought for a second how this woman just praised us like Gods and then in the same sentence stole that from us and threatened a Facebook post. It was hard for me not to chuckle at first but in my new role of professionalism, I just shared “I can’t control your personal Facebook, but I do control the event and when rules aren’t followed it’s my job to enforce them. I’m sorry you feel the need to do this but that’s up to you and your choice.” She stared at me with this blank look like she thought I wouldn’t answer that way. I guess I was supposed to fly off the handle but I couldn’t even muster up anger at this. I just got threatened by a Facebook post. I feel like that like a bank robber with a banana. At what point to us as racers take responsibility for our decisions? Like what in the hell makes people think that we just made this rule up and picked this one person to put it on? In the real world when you break the rules you get fines, you go to court, and maybe even go to Jail. We just take points away from you. It doesn’t make you a bad person, a hurtful person, a scum, a shitty racer, or put you down the path of wrong doing because of this. The lack of respect the rule book at the grassroots level get is lower than the stuff on the bottom of your shoe. I just don’t get it and maybe I never will but one thing for sure as long as I’m involved in this port I will uphold rules to make the most respected series of racing around. This new attitude of “just race, you’re all winners” crap don’t fly. Without rules there is chaos!
I am so looking forward to this weekend off. I have a bachelor party planned with some of my best buds doing some Go Karting, dinner, and out in Toronto. I’m out and going ghost this weekend!