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Winter Nationals race report & photos

Filed under General on February 13, 2016 | Comment(s)

When visitors come to Arizona, one of the first things people are amazed at are the many splendid types of cactus plants this great state boasts. Thus, we thought we’d educate you on cacti - as well as Winter National exploits.  

JUMPING CHOLLA 
This cacti is small and loves to jump (often attaching itself to your legs as you walk by). Small and jumpy reminds us of the Crupi’s newest pick-up, Josh White. The 8x from Kingman, continued his winning ways in Phoenix and scored wins on two out of three days. 

8 EXPERT 

  • JOSHUA WHITE, CRUPI, KINGMAN, AZ
  • MICHAEL MITCHELL, BAY AREA BMXERS, DUBLIN, CA
  • KARTER MONTELLANO, JR BICYCLES.COM/CHASE/BOX, RIVERSIDE, CA
  • FRANKIE STUBBS, GORDY'S BICYCLES, PHOENIX, AZ
  • AARON MATTHEWS, FULL TILT BIKE CO/SUPERCROSS, PASADENA, CA
  • JAYCE PATIN, SE RACING, NORCO, CA
  • JOSEPH EAGLESON, PAT'S 605 CYCLERY, LONG BEACH, CA
  • COLE CONCOBY, COB/FINDLAY/MCDONALDS, NORTH LAS VEGAS, NV

SAGUARO 
Pronounced “Suh-war-oh,” these are those big ol’ monster cactuses are seen everywhere, with big ol’ arms on ‘em. Kind of like Jason Carne$, on this month’s cover. The reigning No.1 champ dominated 41-45cruiser all three days, and plans to retain his title. But it looks like Kuwahara’s Todd Parry, who is also built like a saguaro, has his sights set on chasing the ‘Cup, and also took straight wins in 46-50cruiser.    

Saguaro cacti’s are also tall - able to grow up to 30 feet high. ...which reminds us of Josh Banuelos. As one of the latest J&R Bikes recruits, Banuelos had his good moments (winning 19-27x on Friday and scoring 2-spots on Saturday and Sunday), and bad (crashing hard in qualifying, in spectacular fashion).   

19-27 EXPERT

  • JOSHUA BANUELOS, MEDFORD, OR
  • JUSTIN KNAPPER, ANSWER/RENNEN, POTTSTOWN, PA
  • ROBERT PATTERSON, EXTREME TEAM, ROY, UT
  • SHANE (DA MONSTER) HARLOW, ELITE BICYCLES, MORENO VALLEY, CA
  • EVAN STEINBERG, MOTIVE POWER/FLY/TANGENT, PHOENIX, AZ
  • TAYLOR STEPHENS, FULL TILT BIKE CO/SUPERCROSS, REDMOND, OR
  • DYLON VAUGHN, FACTORY HARO/PROMAX, TUCSON, AZ
  • ROBERT SPANYARD, TUCSON, AZ

SMOOTH PRICKLY PEAR 
Of the many types of prickly pear cacti, we like the smooth ones the best. They are thornless; thus the “smoothness” in their name. Speaking of smooth, you should’ve seen the Haro and Rift riders at Black Mountain BMX. Between the yellow jerseys of Welch and Pauls, or the neon green and blue flashes of Ramos and Hammond, smoothness was a key factor in the class wins. One slight bobble, and you’d be eaten up in the third or fourth straightaways.

The cool thing about the popular prickly pear cactus is that Arizonans make jam out of its “fruit.” Speakin’ of jam -  FullTilt’s Peter Choat was jammin’ all weekend long, and had some great battles in order to score his multiple wins.
In 17-18x, Justin “The Juice” Richmond was also jammin’ - and beating his comp with about a 8 to 10 bike-length lead at times. Nobody was close! Although, it looks like he might's used up all of his cactus juice on day 1, as Dustin Hammond would go on to win on Saturday and Sunday. 

17-18 EXPERT

  • 1 JUSTIN RICHMOND, SSQUARED BICYCLES, ROCHELLE, IL
  • DUSTIN HAMMOND, ANSWER/RENNEN, STOCKTON, CA
  • MAKIEVA HOPSON, JR BICYCLES.COM/CHASE/BOX, N LAS VEGAS, NV
  • MICHAEL BOYLE, DAYLIGHT CYCLES, BOISE, ID
  • PONTON CARY, HOSTILE ELITE, WINCHESTER, VA
  • AUSTIN ROGERS, GORDY'S BICYCLES, SURPRISE, AZ
  • DOUGIE BUTCHER, GT, SCOTTSDALE, AZ
  • ANTHONY MARTINEZ, FACTORY HARO/PROMAX, SANTA CLARITA, CA

ORGAN PIPE CACTI 
The frequently-seen organ pipe cactus has many tall stems, which the same goes for older Novice riders, who tend to run their stems a little stacked. Novice winner in 28-35, August Culver - who listed his sponsor as “Wife’s Wallet,” took Saturday win in true nov’y style.  

28-35 NOVICE 

  • AUGUST CULVER, WIFE'S WALLET, RIVERSIDE, CA
  • JEFF ROBERTS, SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, CA
  • ANDREW BLAESI, BARNEY LAKE, WA
  • STEPHEN DOLPHIN JR, COLTON, CA
  • DOUGLAS GAUTHIER, PEORIA, AZ
  • JOSEPH PENDLEY, PHOENIX, AZ

BUNNY-EAR CACTUS 
When you point a camera in the direction of most young riders in staging, half the time you might get some kid putting bunny-ears behind the helmeted-head of their competition - which has nothing to do with this cactus, other than it’s name. But speaking of little tykes on bikes, Bombshell’s True Johnson (cool name, right?), Hostile’s Kinlee Snyder, Derin Martin and Annalyse Solano all scored impressive wins in the younger girls classes.  

 

COB BEEHIVE CACTI 
The cob beehive looks just like it’s name; with a spiderweb-like fuzz over top of beehive. Imagine a more prickly version of the 50’s-style hairdo. Although none of the older cruiser ladies would dare run that hairstyle these days, they did show up in force in Phoenix. Answer employee and racer Michelle Senger held off the pack to add two more wins to her already impressive resume’, while MisBeehavin’s Zoa Schmidt dominated on her home track in 51-55.  

41-45 WOMEN CRUISER

  • MICHELLE SENGER, REDONDO BEACH, CA
  • HOLLY DUNN, FACTORY CCH, GILBERT, AZ
  • REBEKAH ABBE, ALPHA FACTORY TEAM, EL CAJON, CA
  • KIMBER BAY, FACTORY BLAZE, WELLINGTON, CO
  • JENNIFER NORTON, MILWAUKIE, OR
  • KAREN HEWIG, NEWBURY PARK, CA

51-55 WOMEN CRUISER

  • ZOA (Z GIRL) SCHMIDT, TEAM MISBEEHAVIN, PHOENIX, AZ
  • SUZANNE BORLAND, GILBERT, AZ
  • DIANA FRERICK, CAVE CREEK, AZ
  • SHERI MEINS, COB/FINDLAY/MCDONALDS, KINGMAN, AZ

CALIFORNIA BARREL CACTUS
Although he’s not from California, former No.1 Amateur Radro Jaworsky wears a bright uniform that is as yellow as the blooms on this popular landscaping cacti that adorns 2 out of every 4 front yards. In a streak of yellowness, Roman fought hard all weekend on his cruiser with the Muskrat, Tyler Cacciola - who is now riding for Daylight Cycles. But come class, 14x, FullTilt’s Derek Phipps was The Man. 

14 CRUISER

  • ROMAN (RADRO) JAWORSKY, RADRO RACING, LAS VEGAS, NV
  • TYLER CACCIOLA, FACTORY DAYLIGHT, CARMICHAEL, CA
  • TRE HEXIMER, GORDY'S BICYCLES, GLENDALE, AZ
  • JOSH KIRKBY, GORDY'S BICYCLES, SCOTTSDALE, AZ
  • PRESTON (TURBO) MUTZHAUS, LAS VEGAS, NV
  • GIANNI LAW, BALLISTIC BMX, CHICO, CA
  • MAX SHARP, FAST BIKES RACE TEAM, SAN JOSE, CA
  • JACOB ZOLL, SEATAC, WA

DEVIL CHOLLA 
For the many BMX families who camped out in RV’s, tents and trailers in the prickly desert landscape of Black Mountain BMX, chances are they were awakened each night around 2 or 3am by the local coyote packs as they stalked their prey. The devilish howl of coyotes had nothing on the dynamic announcing duo of Mike Redman and Erick Grindle, as they kept our spectators at the race and on-line, abreast of the action all weekend.

In the end, Black Mountain BMX saw some incredible racing, come every main. Track Operator Debbie Kelly and her crew deserve a huge howl of applause for making the 2016 Winter Nationals one of the best races of the 2016 season. 

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