Making lemonade out of lemons; turning a negative into a positive. Here’s how one rookie pro racer made some lemonade at the San Diego Supercross last weekend.
The season started promising enough for Bryce Vallee. After his 3rd podium finish in the last 2 years at Lorettas, Bryce, or “B-Val” as he’s known in the pits, turned pro and signed with the new Truth MX/MB 1/FLY/ PanicRev Kawasaki Team to race the West Coast Lites Supercross series. A pre-season crash changed everything. First diagnosed as a wrist sprain, Bryce attempted to race a few rounds with mediocre results. Follow-up tests revealed the wrist actually had a fractured scaphoid bone, and surgery with a bone graft and screw put Bryce off the bike and unable to race in his hometown San Diego supercross round. (Bryce lives just north of San Diego in Escondido).
Not content with just going to the race and watching, Bryce decided to give the gift of supercross to 4 kids from his hometown who normally don’t have much to smile about. Bryce bought 4 extra tickets to the San Diego race and found a local foundation whose mission is to brighten up the lives of children who live in a group home with parents who are recovering addicts. He told them he wanted to take 4 of the kids to the Supercross races; his treat. The foundation held a lottery among the multitude of kids who wanted to go, and Jordan, Jessie, Devon and Jacob were chosen to go with Bryce. The kids ages ranged from 10 to 13; none of them knew much about Supercross or motocross racing, let alone been to a race.
Truth’s founder and team sponsor Jeff Ray believes in giving back and trying to make a difference. It’s one of the goals of the Truth MX team. So when Bryce brought his plan to the team, they were more than supportive. First, Truth shipped boxes of hoodies, shirts and other gear to each of the kids to wear at the races.
Next, team manager Luke Evans (Bryce’s teammate Ben Evan’s older brother) set up the group at the Truth MX rig with the full VIP treatment.
“This is what life is like, kids, in the Privateer pits”
“It was cool to see the smiles on these kid’s faces.” Luke stated. “It was really special of Bryce to make this happen for these kids; we like to think that one of our goals at Truth MX is to make a difference in kids lives when the opportunity arises. Bryce went out and made the opportunity happen and we’re real proud of him.”Bryce and Travis Baker are not only training partners, but really good friends as well. Travis invited the kids over to the TLD rig and gave them the grand tour plus plenty of swag. Likewise for Trey Canard, another friend and PanicRev partner, who spent his time taking the kids through both Honda rigs, talking with them, and making them feel special. Trey Canard was a big hit with the kids and a gracious host.
After that, Jim from North County Yamaha invited everyone over to their annual Tri-tip barbeque in the parking lot. With bellies full, Bryce and the kids donned their rain gear and watched some great racing; the rain didn’t dampen the smiles.
“It was cool to see how pumped these kids were. They didn’t care about the rain at all!” Bryce said.
To top off the evening, Bryce’s Truth MX teammate Ben Evans rocked to his best finish of the season, crossing the line in 8th place in the Lites main.
“Injuries are part of the deal. I try not to focus on that and try to remain positive,” Bryce states. “From what the foundation people tell me, these kids have it pretty rough, so bringing them a few hours of fun is easy, and really makes me feel better as well. I think I got more out of it than they did!” The lemons are squeezed and the lemonade tastes sweet.
For more info on Bryce Vallee go to www.brycevalleemx.com ; on facebook: Bryce Vallee
Look for the Truth MX / MB1 / Fly / PanicREV / HYH Team at all the west coast rounds.