Nate’s Grands Report

In years passed, the ABA grands was always one of my favorite races of the year. It’s always a fun track, and the energy in the building has a way of getting me pumped to race. With 4 years off the race circuit and attending the grands, it was great to be back in that building, and back in the gate. Coming off of 4 dirt jump seasons, and a bad ankle injury, I raced the A pro class, and wound up being a top contender. I went through qualifying on day one with all top 2 finishes, and wound up taking 4th in the main. On grands day, I started off with 2 good moto finishes, then got crashed in the 3rd moto. It had been a while since I got taken out like that, and I crossed the line heated. I had some words with the kid, and rode off to the DB pits. I showed up for the 1/4′s and see that the kid that crashed me had brought his dad to staging with him, maybe as a bodyguard? I didnt even need to get him back, I was in his head, and he blew it in the 1/4, I win. Took a top 3 and qualified on the the pro spectacular night race.

Showing up to the arena in the evening, and seeing the stands fill with spectators as we warmed up was one of the best feelings ive had in a while. Before the race started, there was an incredibly touching tribute to Kyle Bennett. We lined the sides of the first straight, and his mom, coach, and bike walked down the hill. With the words said by Redman, and the emotions in the building, there was dead silence. So many memories were talked about, such a legend in the sport taken too soon. The lights came back on, I got myself motivated and warmed up, and headed to the gate for my semi. I chose lane 8, as it had been good for me all weekend so far. I got out great, had a good line goin into the turn, but the guys inside had some bumping goin on. One guy got sent far inside the hay bails and pushed someone right up into my rear wheel. I pedaled it off, and came back a bit, but missed 4th by a bike length. I would have loved to have made both mains, but had to settle for one.

Overall it was a great weekend. I felt like I rode well, but more satisfying than that was seeing so many old faces, and the compliments that were given about my riding. BMX has always been fun to me, so no matter what I ride, I love every bit of it. I couldnt believe how many riders came up to me at the DB pit just to chat, and talk about dirt jumping. I guess I inspired a ton of kids in the race scene to hit the trails, it was awesome to hear. I guess there’s been a couple of us that went from racing AA to riding dirt or park and doing quite well, but going back to the track after that is a first for sure. With a Dew Tour dirt final in September of 2011, and a Grands main in November of 2012, ill take it as an accomplishment. Im not sure what’s next for me, but no matter what, ill be ridin!

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