BUCHANAN, MI – After a long, hot, competition-filled summer of MX activity at Michigan’s premier motocross facility – RedBud – the riders and families throughout the multi-state region that regularly compete at the famed circuit get to cut loose and have some added fun this weekend, Oct. 18-19, at the annual RedBud Grass Race, sponsored by Throttle Jockey.
“The Grass Race is traditionally a time to put aside the fierce competitions of the summer and have some fun. Some guys bring every bike they own, old and new, and ride as many classes as they can,” said RedBud’s Tim Ritchie. “We keep it light and make sure there’s something fun for everyone in the family to get involved with.”
Signaling that the onset of winter is right around the corner for the southwestern Michigan track, the Grass Race has long been one of the final big gatherings for competitors not only from Michigan, but also many of the surrounding states (Indiana, Ohio, Illinois and Wisconsin). Serpentining through the orchard on the back portion of the property – where fans of the RedBud MX National park and walk through the pro pits – the Grass Race melds both European-like GP racing with traditional American motocross as it uses both the naturally, untouched terrain and the existing pro MX track. “My dad (Gene) started the grass race back in the day out of necessity on a super muddy day, and now it’s a season-ending tradition. Every year it’s a different layout, so it’s new for everybody. This year we’re going up the ski jump for the finish line,” Ritchie explained.
“We’ve been racing at RedBud since 1978 so the old school feel of the Grass Race is right up our alley,” said Throttle Jockey’s Matt Davis of he and his brother/business partner, Robert. “That kind of terrain is what we grew up riding. So when we first heard about it years ago we had to go race it. We fell in love with the event and approached the Ritchie family about becoming the title sponsor. They loved the idea and we have been growing the event every year. The list of sponsors and support is great on top of the event just being plain fun, especially XR halftime races and people showing up in costume - it’s an absolute blast!”
This year's Suzuki Fall Classic weekend, the conclusion of the "Monster Moto Six-Pack" series, fell victim to the rains of Hurricane Ike, so the Suzuki contingencies and Monster swag will carry over to Sunday's grass race.
Locally, all the top riders from the great lakes region will boot up, along with a couple generations of LaRoccos (Mike & Ryder), frequent RedBud flyer/announcer Larry Witmer, who will no doubt - between his own motos - take over the P/A duties and talk up the locals like only he can. And, if you happen to sign up and race – and get beat by a neon pumpkin helmet – remember that was no ordinary neon pumpkin helmet, but in fact one worn by the ageless Grass Race legend, Connie Feist!
Here’s some quick facts on the race. All the important info is available on www.redbudmx.com
· Gates open Friday at 6 p.m.
· Saturday is Open Riding on the pro track (12 p.m. to 6 p.m.)
· Saturday night Trick-or-Treating in the pits
· Sunday Grass Race, featuring the XR 75/80 Championships, Single shock & Twin shock
· Sunday’s program includes classes for modern bikes, ATVs and vintage bikes.
· Practice starts at 8:30 a.m. on Sunday.
RedBud supports the sport of motocross and has since 1972! The region's most prestigious amateur events and Round Six of the AMA Toyota Motocross Championship are held in the beautiful rolling hills of southwestern Michigan. A state with an affinity for off-road recreational vehicle use, RedBud owns the bragging rights to the highest attended U.S. motocross race year after year. Just the right soil mix, lots of passing and the BIGGEST jump on the circuit (LaRocco’s Leap), the track provides for some terribly exciting motocross racing. Definitely a top motocross destination in a region that loves its motorsports.