With a downpour of rain Friday night into Saturday morning, the race at Woodstock, Ontario, scheduled for Saturday May 14, was postponed until Sunday afternoon the 15th. With a large turnout of riders from Illinois, Michigan, New York, Quebec—and of course Ontario—it was vital not to disappoint riders and fans.
The Flat Track Canada team worked into Saturday night getting the track in shape for Sunday, but it was essential that the waterlogged track not receive any more rain—but be careful what you wish for! Sunday’s frigid temperatures meant that precipitation was not rain, but rather snow. With conditions bordering on the miserable, the races were on.
*Saturday VS Sunday*
Thankfully, the day was as memorable for the racing as it was for the weather. The open expert main event was the one race that everyone braved the cold for, but the frostbite was worth it. Steve Beattie nailed the start on his Harley-Davidson XR-750 but it was Tyler Seguin aboard his Waters Racing KTM 990 that led into turn three. As Seguin dropped off the pace rookie expert Brodie Buchan on a KBR 450 Honda charged to the fore, swapping the lead back-and-forth with Beattie in the early going.
With Beattie pushing to control the race pace, perennial hard-charger Don Taylor on a Sehl Racing Rotax surged to match Beattie’s pace and vie for the lead. The next seven laps saw no fewer than eight lead changes between Beattie and Taylor. In the leaders’ wake followed Buchan and Flat Track Canada number one plate holder Doug Lawrence on his XR-750.
On lap 12 Lawrence went for the lead. He made a quick pass on Buchan and Beattie and was about to make a move on Taylor when he lost complete control of his motorcycle. With his arms flailing off the ‘bars, it looked like a crash would be inevitable, but in a miraculous recovery Lawrence regained control but found himself down in fourth position.
On the final lap Taylor led heading into turn three but Beattie preserved his momentum by taking a high, wide line and then using his Harley’s power to slip past Taylor at the checkered flag. Lawrence recovered from his near disaster to pass Buchan and claim the final podium position.
Meanwhile, in the DTX expert main, Don Taylor crashed his Yamaha 450, which prompted a restart. The penalized Taylor started from the back row but by lap three was battling for the lead with Brodie Buchan’s Honda 450. It seemed like every corner on every lap the two swapped the lead, with Buchan prevailing for the win—an impressive start for Buchan’s rookie expert campaign.
The open intermediate class hosted an intense battle between Cody Marentette, Dustin Brown, Morgan Munroe and Dallas Daniels. Each took a turn at the lead, with first Daniels, then Munroe, then Marentette heading the field. Eventually, rookie intermediate rider Dustin Brown took control and won. Following the quartet home in fifth was 2014 Canadian Superbike Champion—and first year flat tracker—Jodi Christie on a KBR Honda. In the DTX intermediate class, Dustin Brown started well but faded with suspected mechanical issues. Marentette inherited the lead—and eventually the win—with Munroe hot on his tail.
In novice racing, Tyler Brown (brother to Dustin) swept both classes but the best action was the race for second between the 450 Yamahas of Bruce Martin and Jimmy McCollough, with McCollough prevailing. Felix Dandurand and Jarrett Phibbs also looked very strong: Phibbs looks like a championship contender and Dandurand impressed in his first flat track race. In 250 cc class action, McCollough won from Hunter Bauer on a late pass with Brandon Newman third.
In 85 cc class competition, Parker Robinson from Homer, Illinois, grabbed a big race lead and a win over reigning champion Hunter Bauer with Boyd Deadman third. Other winners included Maguire Scott in 65 cc, Liam Caskie in 50 cc shaft, and Ryan Beattie matching his father Steve’s finishing position, albeit in 50 cc chain.
Check out the point standings after Round 1 here and stay tuned for the Outlaw Production Web Series!
Photos by David Dudley and Shelby Lee Photography