Dave Chase, motorcycle racer, gifted engine builder and friend to many in the motocross racing community, passed away on November 12, 2009 after succumbing to complications from an illness. Dave was 47 years old.
There were many aspects to the life of Dave Chase, but perhaps the most visible side was the one related to professional motorcycle racing. Dave grew up in a motorcycling family and he became an accomplished off-road racer, competing in District 37 Hare & Hound events with significant success, and he also earned a SCORE Baja championship.
Following this active racing portion of his life, Dave took up the wrenches. He liked to say, “I was better at working on bikes than at racing them,” a nod to his more modest side. In a very short period of time as a professional mechanic, Dave achieved tremendous success, wrenching for such off-road legends Dan Smith, Scott Harden, Ty Davis and Danny Hamel, to name just a few. He then turned his focus to engine development, and from 2000 to 2005, Dave worked with the Pro Circuit race team, building some the fastest engines in the business for some of the fastest riders, including Ricky Carmichael. In December 2005, Dave joined Team Honda’s Motocross team, helping to create the CRF250R race motors that would lead to national championships for Davi Millsaps and Ashley Fiolek. And, of course, Dave built CRF450R engines for Millsaps when he stepped up to the big leagues, as well as engines for other Honda stars including Andrew Short, Ivan Tedesco and Ben Townley.
Dave always maintained an intense focus for his work, yet he was also quick to acknowledge the fun, human side of the motorcycle racing business. Dave served as a fine addition to every race team he worked with; he was always a good man to have on your side. He will be sorely missed by all who knew him.
Dave Chase is survived by his mother and step-father, Claudia and Bill Price, his father and step-mother, Richard and Wendy Chase, his grandmother Berenice Chase, his brother Frank Chase, sister Jennifer Llewellyn, sister and brother-in-law Erika and Martin Pikhart, nieces Kaila Chase, Haley and Taylor Pikhart and Rachael Llewellyn, nephews Trevor and Zackery Pikhart and Jacob Llewellyn, and his girlfriend Christy Lechner.
Information regarding a memorial service will be announced at a later date.