Motocross gives back

Published 12:47 am Friday, April 14, 2006

By By Matthew Nascone
The Atmore Motocross Track owners and operators showed their gratitude last weekend with a Rider and Sponsor Appreciation Weekend at the track.
"It was a great weekend and it was one of our bigger races," track co-owner Bobby Hadley said.
Track promoter Steve Hicks said the weekend saw 215 racers register and more than 1,500 people through the gates.
"The Atmore MX Park is becoming a popular place to be on race weekends for the local school age youth and teens," Hicks said. "It is a good family atmosphere where folks from all over get to meet and greet with people and watch some of the most talented riders from the Southeast."
Hicks also said the Motocross faithful in general have boosted the sport to the top of the motor sports world.
"The motocross community is a loyal group," he said. "They support the dealers and businesses that support their sport, like a lot of NASCAR fans. They buy their gear, bikes, tools, trucks and haulers from the folks that they see involved at a local or national level. A lot of people have done this and that has made motocross the second ranked motor sport behind NASCAR."
As far as the family atmosphere goes, Hadley said people with their campers showed up as early as Friday night to spend the weekend and have a good time. He said around 100 people were at the track from Friday until the action was done.
"We are getting more and more spectators and that is a great thing," he said.
All 215 riders were given a T-shirt as they registered as part of Rider Appreciation Weekend.
Hicks said Sears, Jim Johnson Ford and Kenny's Yamaha hosted the weekend and they all gave away various door prizes and other type things. Jim Johnson Ford was kind enough to lend their tent for the shrimp boil on Saturday night.
Jubilee Shrimp Co., from Bayou la Batre, prepared the shrimp dinner and people registered to win a 27-inch color TV from Jim Johnson Ford. On Sunday, Atmore Sears and Kenny's Yamaha of Brewton gave away door prizes.
"It was great to have Lamar Godwin from Sears join us out there and I hope he comes back for more races," Hadley said.
Spectators registered for a 51-piece Craftsman tool set, toolbox and a five-piece grill at the Sears tent.
Racers came from states all across the Southeast for the weekend, including Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Florida. This race also featured participants from Colorado.
Many of the riders who participated in Sunday's race have qualified to participate in the AMA South-Central Qualifiers held in Texas in June, Hicks said.
Another feature present on Sunday was the recording of personalized DVDs of each race. Hadley said a photographer from Action Shots out of Pensacola was shooting DVDs for any rider who wanted a personal version of the race.
This race concluded the spring schedule at the Atmore Motocross Track, but Hadley said they plan to not have a race in May, but start the one race a month schedule in June. And Hadley said a special event would be on the track starting in September.
"We will be co-hosting a racing series with Bumpers Race Track in Chatom," he said. "The series will be four races here and four in Chatom over the course of three months."
The Gulf Coast Championship Series will begin in September and run until December.
Before the series starts, Hadley said the plans for the track are to get some lights up.
"We want to be able to race at night when it is cooler," he said. "So our intentions for the near future are to get some lights up."
Overall, Hadley said it was a great weekend and he said he would like to thank all the sponsors involved and all the riders for participating.

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