Martin, Baker beat up on Mendota

MegaX round seven Shootout Series

July 9, 2005 Mendota, Illinois


By Merle Acord



he horde from the North” invaded the Mendota MegaX round seven Shoot-out Series and came away with the major share of the gold, but it wasn’t a runaway by any stretch of the imagination. Most of the Midwest shoes were there and the racing was tight and furious as befits stadium cross. It’s a fact; when there’s an excellent payback an excellent track it’s a personal invitation to those who like to race and make a few bucks (to give the lady behind the counter at the gas station) to show up and get their share.

“They don’t have a problem with it,” said Snowmobile champion and “Mendota Master” Ross Martin the evening’s double class winner, 125A and 250A, when asked about Polaris’ feelings that he is riding MX races. “They just don’t want me to get hurt, and that is ok because I don’t want to get hurt either. It’s a different set of muscles used to ride a sled, and you have to be in shape to ride either one of them but once you get there it’s not that bad. There aren’t too many tricks that you do on a sled that you do on a bike. I haven’t seen any one do a black flip yet…not on purpose anyway. I’ve been riding both of them since I was real little, you could say I grew up with them, and they both seem natural. We have a good A class here tonight with Modjewski, Poulter, Oettle, Molitor and Markwardt to name a few of them and I’m pumped: I’m ready man.”

“I’ve been busy the last couple of years,” said Dave Oettle, one of the elite Northern horde that has moved to Indiana, “I’m getting married in August and raising a family, I have a different sponsor. Just picked up a 450 Suzuki four stroke about a month ago and after missing the first two rounds of the regional area cross I got into them again and got fourth in the series. I like the four strokes better in most cases, especially on the local tracks because usually they are so slippery. I’ve heard that Martin has got this track wired and I can believe it. The local guys on a local track go faster than the Nationals and Martin is a good rider.’

“It’s fun riding with the best,” said Kevin Markwardt representing the local contingency, “and I’m looking forward to having a good time tonight. I’ve been working with Brad Modjewski all week at “Club 57”. That guy is amazing, the stuff he can teach you. I personally recommend, whoever you are, that you go to him for a little more help. He’s that good.

Kody Molitor with the hole shot led the 250A class into the first turn. Ross Martin, uncharacteristically, was back in the pack. Ross dropped the hammer on his Ace Power Sports Suzuki getting unbelievable drive out of the bowl turn to out jump the field in the triple and doubles on the back straight away and the first to go was Prophetstown Ryan Poulter’s Honda.

“I kind of messed up on the start and got squeezed out in the first corners and then had to pick them off one at a time,” said 250A winner Ross Martin from Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin. That’s a lot of work doing it that way. I would like to thank Ace Power Sports.”

Martin, with the “Williams motor” out-dragged Modjewski on the back straight and then never let up for the bowl turn. In the next lap he caught Molitor on the back triple and out jumped him to take the lead. A steady Kevin Markwardt passed into second and followed Martin under the checkers. “He (Martin) was riding awesome tonight,” said Kevin “I couldn’t catch. I would like to thank Dave Atolak at Tuf Racing, UFO, 4/play racing and”

“I had a busy time of it for a while,” said second place 14-24 winner Adam Tarara. “Jesse (Keith third place) and I were running close and I went wide on a berm and he got by, but I was able to get him back. It was a good race. I would like to thank Mom and Dad, UFO and Tuf Racing.”

            “I pulled off too early,” said 14-24 winner Justin Baker from Leland, Illinois. “As soon as I realized what I had done I pulled back on the track luckily I had a big enough lead that I could hold on to first place.”

            BriAnn Stiles had a good start in the women’s class but fell in the first lap and then she had to play catch up. Andrea Arwood of Maple Park, Illinois had the lead and BriAnn would spend the early laps working through traffic getting to Andrea and then a lap setting her up for the pass…. And the pass came after the fly away jump in the bowl turn, Andrea gave BriAnn a sliver of light on the low side and that was all she needed. BriAnn put her 250F Yamaha in fast forward, made a clean pass and went for the checkers. Andrea Arwood was second followed by Theresa Lanute.

            James Abbott never made a bobble in the 30A class to take the win. “Barney” Lavens pulled in behind Abbott trying to intimidate by showing a wheel at every corner, but the Hanna City, Illinois veteran had been there and had seen front wheels before and wasn’t intimidated also he knew that if you don’t play the rough stuff with him, Barney will play it straight with you.

            “I’ve been out of it for a couple of years now,” said second place winner John Steiner of Grayslake, Illinois. “I had a good time out there but mostly I was just trying to hang on. I would like to thank UFO, and 4/play racing.”    

            “I’ve been riding but I haven’t been racing,” said third place 250B rider Matt Entwistle. “I would like to thank Riders Choice,Troy Lee Design and DeCal Works."

            Jesse Keith won the 250B class and said, “The first moto was a little dusty and this one was a little slick but it was still a good track. I would like to thank Pro Source Motor Sports, Fox Valley Cycle and Fox Valley Off Road.”

            The “Ciszewski” brothers Zach and Cody from Hatley, Wisconsin, ganged up on the 125C class taking one two with Zach the big winner. We would like to thank D&D Power Sports  and Mom and Dad.









click on photo to enlarge

Ross Martin won the 125A and 250A class's




Kevin Markwardt with a steady second place performance in the 250A




250A class in a display of "togetherness"




Kody Molitor led the 250A for several laps