Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Thursday, April 19, 2018

project half liter skeeter eater

Believe it or not, I have put more into this bike than any other build I have done.
Customer brought a 2007 KX450F into my shop with stuck kick start. He let friends borrow it. The piston cam off with the head and the rod was in the transmission. I was about to take what you see in this picture to the scrapper when I had a light bulb go off in my head. Why not put a KX500 engine in this thing...

The most series mod was moving the font frame 'Y' up several inches to allow the two stroke header pipe to fit. I cut and re welded a CR500 pipe in several places to fit. And yes, I know I will crush this pipe....

I spent some coin on some wheels. I even went far more bling than I have ever dared with green nipples.

The pipe and water pipe fittings were tough.

Just waiting on some custom radiators and some cool guy stickers that Scott next door is doing up.  I am pretty stocked.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Feeling the potential

Something I have not written about much is riding the Bott. It was a very special bike to ride with a big potential at Pikes Peak. Perhaps I have not written about it because I have found dismay in the potential of both the bike and myself getting along. I am able to find fault in me not riding the bike closer to it's intended limit. I also have respect for the builder of the bike. The builder's mechanics however, I have not.  I walked away form the ordeal with a respectable class win and 4th overall bike but I also walked away from countless mechanical failures. Maybe I am content to find it best to just leave it at that, an intact ass body and soul and all. Onward.
However, there was one brief early practice morning run made on the bike that was 2nd fastest of the day behind Chis Fillmore. The single run beckoned my holy feelings of touching potential. Speaking to the gods of speed. Maybe, it was just another near death experience. But on the top section of the mountain on the Thursday practice, the same day and section that we lost our dear beloved and much missed Hot Carl, I flogged the Bott. Of course that was one of the only runs that nobody turned on the GoPro. Other wise a pant shitting video of pushing the limits of man and machine would follow. The bike had been running like complete shit, popping, miss-firing and stuttering in the complete power band up until then. On more than a few occasions I have set people's Pikes Peak problems straight with the simple elixir of pump gas. Good old 91 octane straight out of the 7-11 all night fuel station. The high altitude will make even the most high compression engine find high octane race fuel more worthless than a limp dick at the gang bang party. (Sorry.)
The proud spanish mechanic finally let me try some fuel from the generator jug that usually feeds my lawn mower. The bike came alive. I think I only got 3 runs that morning and that was the run I remember. The bike launched, lifting the front wheel as I grabbed the first couple of gears I held it open as I approached the first blind sweeping corner with only sky beyond and below the outer edge. The motor kept pulling 5th as I swooped into The Bottomless Pit. I found a new respect in the bike if only briefly as I was able to feel smooth power delivery through the flawed throttle. The new crisp response was enough to break the back end loose more than a few times, usually exiting a corner with only doom as a fail safe. The speeds were unlike anything I had felt on the Ronin or my little 450. I came within inches of the edge of the tarmac. I remember cresting the summit at the finish line and then taking a big breath... And another.... and then swearing at the top of my lungs. When I came to a stop I was shaking too much to even hold the bike up. My muscles were quivering, my lungs gasping and my mind going completely frazled. That was the only time I ever came close to feeling the potential of such a bike.
There is no way I could put myself through that again. I am stoked to be on my trusty old 450cc machine this year. I imagine the Bott team will have a sorted effort this year and I actually hope to see them king of the hill. For me, I hope see some Lone Duck Campgound fun like we had back in 2008.
After all potential is only what we make it. Peace!

Friday, April 6, 2018

Life, Death, and the In-between.

How did I get here. Where have I been. Where am I going?
Onward and upward. Progressing Never stagnant.
Growing. Learning. Living.

Tomorrow I will go to a memorial service for a person who was very much responsible for my way of life. I Met Chris Johns when I was maybe 3 years old. My first memories of the then US Ski team mega athlete were of what he gave me. First generation black and white Oakley goggles and some day glow ski racing stickers. The gifts since have been many. From my treasured copy of  Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance to teaching me how to stick my foot into the front wheel of my BMX resulting in a "Polish wheelie". He built many bicycles for me, some I still own. He would trials ride his bicycle over a car, Wheelie for miles and miles with a huge charismatic smile infecting everyone around him with feel good go get it done attitude. He was the first to teach me how to go fast on a DIRTBIKE and ride a proper trail ride. A master mentor of shredding the gnar. My first job off of the family ranch was assembling new bicycles at his shop (WHEEELS) and with this came my attention to detail and proper set up when working on anything mechanical. After I graduated motorcycle mechanics school I got a job back at my local Honda dealership. Years passed and the dealership was bought out by a Texas multi car dealership owner who instilled my first distaste for corporate giant mega shops. Though I was the top producing tech I was unfairly laid off due to my out spoken opinions. That very day Chris Johns made room in his crowded bicycle shop for my tools and told me I could just fix motorcycles for people there; Easy as that! I could not imagine being able to make a living for myself but he kept telling me I could make it happen and by the end of that summer I realized he was right. He taught me the value in customer relations and the simple quality of a small shop with simple ways. I ended up going to work for a few more dealerships in order to focus on racing and 8 years later I made the jump to open up Newbold's Motorbike Shop. Despite everybody telling me I couldn't with what little I had, I knew I could. Thanks to Chris.
A few days before he succumbed to a sudden epileptic seizure at home alone, Johnsie made a surprise visit to my shop. The 51 year old mega athlete still in top physical form. I called him "Fast Guy" and he said he was grey and old and that he passed that torch to me a long time ago. He said that he had just enjoyed his first winter vacation in many years and his now super successful bicycle shop was finally on the winning end of all he had invested for so many years. He was just now finally able to not work 7 days a week and he could start to ride his XR650R on some long adventure rides. Time to enjoy life. That was our last conversation.

Since his passing this last month I have done a lot of deep searching. I realize that I am one of the most fortunate  assholes on this planet. I realize that I have near full control over piloting this ship. So many red blooded Americans in my shoes would capitalize on my overly busy shop. I could easily hire several mechanics and keep them busy with the amount of work I am turning away every day. I could stock the store front with expensive leather and overpriced outfits, coffee, trinkets, do-hickies, thing-mobobbers and such. I could probably make a bunch of money and then maybe someday pay off and live fat. I can't stay stagnant so I feel I must. The billboards at the bank tell me so. The city of Denver is exploding with economy. The traffic is jammed up like yesterday's cheddar cheese colon log. Huge billboards as far as the eye can see telling me to relish the life of such slavery. Buy, spend, inflate, consume, overpopulate, eat more, sleep less, work harder,  after all being a hard worker is something to aspire to right! Right? Is it really? Since when? Says who? Really....
There is the past to learn form.
The futur is uncertain, prepare if possible, or better yet just live it as it becomes the Now. 
The Now is the only thing that really matters or even truly exists.
Right Now.

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Hey kids, remember supermoto?!

Right after the turn of the century it was supposed to be the next big thing. It was actually pretty big here in the states for a few years before the AMA worked it's failing film flam ways of running a race series with it. Combining road racing, dirt sliding, and moto-battling; I like it a lot. I don't get to do it as much as I would like to but two years ago I did an AMA national and battled with the best in our land. (I came in near last place in the main but hey, I just having fun on my old pikes peak bike eh!) Later in 2016 I won the overall in the pro main at our local series finale race.
Any hoo, I have rebuilt my old 2005 CRFX framed 08 CRF450R engine Pikes Peak bike for a 450cc Come Back Attack on the hill. Yes, they accepted my entry this year! it must have been like swallowing a mouth of rotten earth worms for them to let me race my 10th race on the mountain in 11 years. This really may be my last race on the hill... I mean it, seriously! Well, I keep wandering off topic like a lost little puppy in the big scary city of shitty titty. Supermoto, ah yes, I went to a supremo race to test the new pikes engine build and new custom built Lectron carburetor. And it ripped. Lots of fun. I raced it to 2nd place in the asphalt class. Then, after lunch they ran the dirt supremo classes. The dust was as thick and intense as being buried in an avalanche. Having just re-welded my aluminum framed motor mounts I was not thrilled at how harshly I was bottoming out my 5" lowered suspension on both the jump landings and take-offs. As I was complaining about the thrashing my fresh pikes peak build was receiving a friendly near total stranger to me who helped build the original Ronin motorcycle project offered me his recently purchased proper supremo bike. It was a true former AMA pro bike from the glory days of American sumo. A near pristine 2004 CRF450 raced to 4th in the X games and then sat out many a day just sitting in a shed. I am always apprehensive to borrow other's rides and the law of borrowing bikes clearly states that something bad will happpen to bike when it is lent out. So the first thing I did was charge into the first corner and dump it. Luckily I absorbed most of the bike's fall with my head. It is good for something after all! I remounted and somehow won the moto. The fast guys were gentleman and gave them selves a handicap start. They would not do this in the 2 moto and I cam in 3rd. Well enough for some pay-out and a smile. I offered to bring the borrowed bike back to my shop for a little TLC and the pikes peak bike is ready to rip another trip up the hill. In the mean time I plan on testing another set of suspension on it in the next and final supremoto before June 25th, the day of the race to the clouds!
Damn, I look good!
The crash pic was found on facebook and sent to me, Wallace took the others.

I may have won the race but that helmet and suit will never be anywhere near new again.

I need to get a roost boost on

Jumping slick tires on dirt is a thrill. I dig it.

She aint no show pony. She aint no jacked up 4x4 mall crawler. She is my do-all and she makes me "Pink to Purple" every time!

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Sideburn lives

Sideburn has retired the blogspot but their website is full of action. Check out the stories section here.  I am super stoked to share some of my writings and blog posts there plus there are some more great pics from Wallace. While you are there pick up a copy of the new issue #32 that has a feature article I wrote about good old dirt hill climb racing. It was probably one of my most fun stories to write ever.

Baja supervises as I test a big bore top end. Because 500cc is not enough?

Backing it into the first turn of 6 miles of twisty dirt. Read about it in the new Sideburn mag.

Jon Brapp_Snapps Wallace captures some essence.

Monday, March 26, 2018

"It is not about the bike". - Lance

Whenit came out, I enjoyed reading Lance Armstrong's book: It Is Not About The Bike. I think He went and later proved that point very well. Now I am not advocating dope or maybe I am but I am quickly wandering from what point I want to make. My red headed 2009 CRF450X is not a motocross purpose built bike but rather a toned down fat old man version of its fire breathing 'ARRGH' brother complete with electric start and lights. I like to race motocross on it and I really like to beat Monster Energy 'Bro's' with their brand new super tricked out over priced bike and fancy matching power ranger outfits. This bike is now ten years old and when I thought about upgrading to a new bike like before this one I would do every single season religiously, I thought not. We have grown a bond that is strong. This bike has won the over all in enduros and cross country hair scrambles, moto, and even been on the podium at pikes peak and flat tracked the Stockton half mile. Maybe it is about the bike. I love this bike. Much.

Monday, March 12, 2018

The year I drove a BMW

It was a $600 20 year old four door 317I with over 340k on the clock. I wanted to escape the small town trouble I was getting into and follow the national off road WORCS series. I found that my bike fit quit nice into the back seat after I removed the wheels, forks and handlebars. At 40 mpg the I wonder why I don’t still travel to races in such a fashion. I would arrive to a race pit swarmed with giant semi trucks and grey hound bus sized RV campers and easily find room for my bike stand. While I would assemble my bike with a special pride. Some people would strike up a conversation about how I was keeping the soul of the sport while most people would just stare. At round 3 of 12 such a conversation was struck with the Maxxis tire support truck and before I knew it I had a job spooning on 50-100 tires at every round of the series. At $10 a tire I was now paying my entry fee and some of the travel expense. By the halfway point of the season I was a known face at the WORCS races. The races were spread across the western USA; SoCal, Utah, Arizona and up to Washington state. Washougal MX was the first destination of many for my then 6 week old Border Collie pup Baja. I remember showing up to the locked front gate in the middles of the night and like always I slept out beside my car in my old mummy bag. I tied some nylon chord around my pup and held it in my hand but when I awoke to the procession of big rigs entering the gates my pup was gone. As soon as crawled out of my fart sack to the laughs of passer bys my little black and white buddy came leaping out of the dense forest to lick my face with the pungent stink only puppy kisses hold. I ended up taking a job in Seattle for a month and a half followed by two weeks working in Vegas on a big trade show while being put up in the now demolished Sahara casino. I returned home to Colorado a man that the boy I was could never have become but from following a dream. That summer I stuck that little Beemer axle deep in Pismo beach as the tide came in and filled my floor boards as the local Cali bros filled my pockets with hashish in admiration for my mode of travel. On a lonesome blistering hot stretch in Nevada I punched out my broken sunroof in a desperate rage to get cool air. Within a mile the pulsing wind made me turn around to retrieve my sunroof and duck tape it back into place. I would often pull off into truck stops, driveways, and vacant fields and dump out onto the ground to sleep only to awaken to a bustling California fruit stand or a lot lizard in a crack come down frenzy. Many a midnight songs were cranked through that CD player. Many friends were made at the races. Even a pit tootsie or two snuck some naughty in that little car. My hard sweating work on the tire truck changing tires between my races helped my push myself. My racing results were on par with some of the top racers. I was invited to eat diner with the best of people in the paddock from the everyday mom and pops to people like Destry Abbot. The late Nathan Woods once let me sleep inside the back of his toy hauler. I was pickep up by some sugar daddies to race for Team USA in an FIM Asia Enduro round in Thailand. Simply because of how I did things. By the final round of the year I won an amateur over all class championship. All this with no real source of finance. Just the desire to race. That winter I bought a van and since then I have chased my never ending dream. The adventure will always be whatever we make it to be…

Thursday, March 1, 2018

The Land's End Hill Climb 2018

Read all about it in the new issue of Sideburn Magazine. Pictures by Brapp_Snapps Wallace. Get it here -Do it now!!

Monday, January 29, 2018

Look At Life 1960's Scrambling

Found this good glimpse into another world that once was over at Thanks G!

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Check yo self befo you wreck yo self

The old knee wrap ice machine. My old friend, I have not seen for years. Just a simple line of plumbing coming out of a small igloo cooler.  A small electric pump, an analog control valve with a mercury thermometer, and a wrap to compress over the knee. I have had three knee surgeries. Some more successful than others but the last one has left me pretty good.

When I was young I landed my self 86 hours of court appointed therapy. This would have been a total bummer had it not been that my therapist was a rather interesting and intelligent man of  psychology. And an outspoken user of LSD. The old fellow talked and I listened. One lesson I learned from him that I have taken to heart: If you don’t want to get caught, don’t break more than one law at a time. If you are going to drive without a license than don’t have a cracked windshield, or roll a stop sign, or not use a turn signal. If you are going to live a life on the run as an outlaw with a warrant out than don’t break any other laws. You can tell how I have used the lesson mostly involving my passion for operating vehicles at speed. Now I mostly use closed course race tracks but it was not always so.

I broke too many rules last weekend and that is why I have the companionship of my old ice pack machine. Friday was a mad scramble for me to finish the complete restoration of my 1998 KX500. A fantasy bike come to fruition. I had never ridden one other than customer test drives around the shop I have wrenched in. Saturday I awoke and rushed the big green dragon of a mythical bike to the local pro motorcross track. The reputation of the bike was up to snuff. Fast. Scary. Scary fast. I was constantly giggling at the gobs of horsepower the big bore two stroke would cough out at any rpm. I over shot more jumps last weekend than I have for the last ten years. Power galore but suspension way way way to under sprung. But as the weekend progressed I kept pushing it farther and farther. Until I was battling with the A riders who were not as old as my bike. The perfect storm was building. Not only was I breaking more than one rule at a time but I was breaking many. They stopped making 500 cc two strokes along with three wheeled atvs for a reason. They are unforgiving and undersprung in my case. Sunday afternoon, and I was getting tired. I was outfitted in ridicules 90’s freestyle motocross gear, The thick canvas cow skin pant weighed a ton and were like giant bucket scoops around my boot heels. Wallace said he was going to get right up in the corner and I was eager to give him a glory shot for his camera lens. I rode into the corner as hard as a Bruce Lee roundhouse and gave the throtlle the beans. Right  then the meat of the berm blew out under the assault of such shredding and as the suspension compressed an absurd amount my knee became pinned under the handlebars. My foot attempted to posthole into the loam. My knee brace earned it’s weight in titanium. With out it I would not be walking today, but hobbling. My own medical prognoses is merely stretched tendons. Not torn. Lucky I am. And reminded once again to not break more than one rule at a time. Anybody want to buy a bad ass KX500?

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Game on!

Well the friendly people of the Pikes Peak race committee have welcomed me back to race once more. This will be my 11th year on the hill. One of those as Crew for Paul, two years on bikes with with nearly as many cubic centimeters of displacement as feet of elevation at the summit, and the other seven years on 450cc Honda dirt bikes. Back to the fun of it is my plan for this year. No carefully worded press releases or expensive matching wardrobes. Just a van, a dog and a DIRTBIKE. And of course some good friends. So far Johnny Mother Fucking Goldwrench has come on board with major help along with some help from good friend Julian with Dues Motorcycles USA. I plan on upgrading my good ol Pink To Purple steed with a slipper clutch and a Lectron carb. It is a 450cc comeback attack and I am as eager as a squirrel on a tour of a peanut factory!

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Crowning turd

The days are now slowly getting longer. Waning towards the racing season. Can I make it. I know I can but sometimes feel the darkness take hold like an endless dream of a tar pit dragging me down into winter's digesting foul bowels. Waiting to be shat out and free to be the happy throttling turd I am.  This is the time of the season I plan my attack. Devise the battle plan and make the most of what worn weapon I have heaped in my shop. Making a nickel purchase a dimes worth. The commerce of my business nears hibernation. A ground squirrel holed up in the frozen dirt. The heart beats so faint, feeding only enough blood to keep the brain alive. Ready for the first sign of the season to re-boot and slowly shake away the inactive death virus that many a man has fell victim. Replenishing health and the divine will of nature to shred. Shred!

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Getting through winter the only way I know how

Bigger is better.
I have gone overkill with the engine. 750 high comp wisecos, Web number two cam, VM36 round slides, Gutted bottom end, cut down, knifed, polished, and welded crank, Accel total loss coil. YZ front end and rear wheel with RM swing arm. I have much to do to the frame and shock mounts. Shed life.

Saturday, December 30, 2017

2017 Racing Reflections

With the end of one season of racing brings the start to a new one. I feel I did less racing in 2017 than years prior. The Bottpower bike was an exciting and all encompassing experience and it was the focus of the first half of the year. Getting to go to Spain and test on the MotoGP Aragon track was special even though I never had a complete lap without the bike literally falling apart. The Pikes Peak race week was stressful with the bike seeming like a sure suicide machine but coming away with a class win and respectable overall finish was rewarding. Since the race I have not spoken with Bottpower. After reading my story in Sideburn I imagine I am not well thought of. I see pictures of me on the Bott all over social media and the internet and rare is any credit given to me. When I see my picture on 10 foot posters at the Eicma show and no mention of my name or instagram pics of my race number with out a tag I feel almost plagiarized. I reckon the monkeys that were sent into space never had mention of their name either though.
Other highlights of my 2017 season were purchasing and racing the late great Carl Sorensen's ZX10. It is a proper race bike and I look forward to taking it to new tracks and having fun with it. Raging a DIRTBIKE through Morocco for Sideburn was totally rad! At the beginning of the year I got to race an electric Alta at the Indoor short track is Salem Oregon. That bike is amazing and I want one very much. The ultimate urban enduro assault bike! Later in the season I had a lot of fun with vintage MX. It is a very fun form of low pressure racing. I am building a yamaha twin for this coming season. For the 2017 season the only series I followed was the Colorado Hill Climb Association. these are not hill climbs like you think but more like a sprint rally. Gravel road racing on a 500cc or less dirtbike. I hope to get more moto racers involved with this great form of competition.
Much love and happy trails for this upcoming race season.