Morehead, KY – The final 2 rounds of the ATVMX National presented by CST gave us all some of the best racing of the season. The Pro Championship was the closest race we’d had in a while with Joel Hetrick taking home the #1 plate. While we are mostly an amateur race team we did have our own Pro Rookie this year.
Being a Rookie in the Pro Class you’ve got to expect a bit of a learning curve. Racing in general has it’s ups and downs but when you are racing the fastest guys in the world those ups get minimized and the downs can seem bottomless. Zach Kaczmarzyk #41 experienced his fair share of those highs and lows. The High’s include his 9th place at Ironman MX and his Pro-Am podium from Spring Creek. Zach also managed on several occasions to qualify inside the top 10 during timed qualifiers. Now the lows….to say Zach shouldn’t gamble or even look at a casino is probably an understatement. We would never let him buy us a lotto ticket either because he just has horrible luck. To compete for a top 10 in the Pro Class every weekend you have to have some luck on your side and Zach just couldn’t catch a break in 2017.
Even with all the bad luck in 2017 Zach remained upbeat and positive. He understood he was running in the fastest class in the world on a shoe string budget and you factor in he is a full time college student with limited time to train finishing 13th for the year is a heck of an achievement. Team Media Allstars is a stepping stone and we’ve put our fair share of pro’s on their path to success in the sport. We’re stoked to know that we’ve done that for Kaczmarzyk as his future is bright! Our younger riders really benefitted this year having a rider of his caliber and with his knowledge. Zach was always willing to lend a hand and loves mentoring younger riders so in that aspect he was a huge asset to our race team. We’re not 100% sure what the future holds for the #41 but we know he’ll make the most out of any opportunity he gets to let his talent shine.
Some riders save their best performance for last. This year it seemed like we had several guys step up at Loretta’s and put in their best performance of the year. Brandon Cesaroni #243 was on that list. Brandon has seen his speed increase steadily all season long as he got more and more comfortable running the pace of the A classes. The season finale in Hurricane Mills, TN is the perfect platform to showcase your skills and Brandon’s was on fire all weekend long. “Cesa” had his starts on point at Loretta’s and that allowed him to run up front, his most impressive race of the weekend (and season) came in Sunday’s moto 2 of Production A. Brandon and class front runner Cody Ford battled for 5 laps to claim stakes on the overall for the weekend. The battle would come down to the last corner as the 2 were less than a second apart. Brandon ended up 2nd in that moto but he proved without a doubt that he has the speed and the talent to run with the fastest guys our series has to offer. The #243 went 2-2 for the weekend for 2nd overall his best finish of the year!
Brandon has the whole style thing down pat! Looking good is the key to confidence and no rider consistently has his setup on point more than Cesa. Brandon is opening up his own business in 2018 and his racing may have to take a back seat. We are crossing our fingers that we’ll get to see that #243 Honda under our tent at a few races next year, but sometimes life comes first and we wish this cat all the best as he takes a step toward his future.
Speaking of saving your best for last….Gabe Dommer #171 of Seymour, WI did just that at Loretta Lynn’s. Gabe has been close to the podium the last few rounds and has shown he belongs up front in the B class. Dommer finally caught the break he needed in Tennessee as he was consistently up front all weekend long. Gabe used moto finishes of 2-1 in 450B to take his first ever overall win! The smile on his face says it all, it’s an amazing feeling to get your first trip to the winners circle…to ride up on that podium and thank your sponsors, family, friends and your team of course. With the win Gabe locked up 2nd overall in the 450B points for the season.
Gabe Dommer will make the jump to the A classes in 2018. He’s proven he’s got the speed and the talent. The #171 should make some noise next season and we can’t wait to see what he can do against some of the stiffest competition on the planet.
We’ll stay with the current theme for a second here. Gabe Dommer wasn’t the only one to celebrate his first trip up onto winner’s circle at Loretta’s. Gage Beebe #99 took home the overall in the 450 B/C Limited class. Gage has really improved as the season went on and by going 1-1 for his first win showcases just how much speed he’s picked up these last few rounds. The class win also put Gage into sole possession of 2nd place in the B/C limited points standings.
Beebe also took home a solid 5th place finish in the Open C class at the season finale. Gage finishes up the year with a 4th overall in Production C and 6th in 450C. The #99 should be the man to beat next year as he comes back to put in a complete season in the C classes, we expect big things out of the Cedar Rapids, IA rider in 2018.
Media Allstar Rookie Jordan Trimble #18 had what could be called an up and down weekend. Jordan was on fire during Saturday’s motos as he took home moto wins in both the Open C and the 450C classes. Sunday he was running in a really good spot in the 450C class when he broke a footpeg bolt causing him to take an overall score of 1-7 which was still good enough for 5th overall on the weekend. The Open C class saw Trimble put in a solid ride but he just didn’t have enough speed to make a pass and take home the overall. Sometimes the other guy is just a little faster than you are. Leaving Loretta’s with 2 moto wins and earning a 2nd overall is a heck of a way to end a season.
Coming into the season if you had told Jordan he would compete for a Championship and finish up 3rd overall in Open and 450C for the year he would have been thrilled. We’re really proud of just how far he’s come in just 1 season as an Allstar. With a little more tutelage and some offseason training we’ll see what the #18 can do as a B rider in 2018. Future looks bright for this young gun.
The #60 of Kobe VanFossen put in a couple of really solid rides at Loretta’s. The 13 year old rider from Berlin, MD put his Media Allstar machine up front in the 90 Shifter 12-15 class and he took a podium finish home as a result. Kobe went 2-2 for a 2nd overall in the class and by doing so finished 2nd in the final points standings. VanFossen didn’t fare quite as well in the Super Mini class but still managed to take home a 5th overall for the weekend and that was good enough for 5th in the points standings as well. We’re looking forward to 2018 as Kobe should be a force in the 90 classes again next season.
The younger of the VanFossen duo, Kazin VanFossen has used 2017 as a season to learn the in’s and out’s of racing a machine that you have to shift the gears. The #60 machine managed to find it’s way into the top 10 at Loretta’s by way of a 9th place finish in the 70 shifter (6-11) class. Kazin finished up in a solid 9th in the season points standings.
Caleb Hatter #22 had a rough weekend at Loretta’s as he struggled with a few gremlins. Caleb was asked to do 2 things this year for Team Media Allstars and that was to get faster and have fun. We know he got faster and we’re pretty sure he had fun as well. The Lawrenceburg, KY rider finished the season up with 9th overall in Youth Allstar and 7th overall in the Schoolboy Sr. class on the year. Caleb moves up to the 450cc machines next season and he’s pumped to see what he can do in C class.
Michael Perkins hasn’t had the 2017 racing season that he’d hoped for…but Michael became a father earlier this year and we’re certain that while racing hasn’t gone as he’d planned that he’s still had a great year! Perkins just couldn’t seem to get in a groove on the track but we know he’ll be back in 2018 to try his hand at the College and A classes once again.
Sometimes winning the war doesn’t always mean you win every battle. Team Media Allstars Captain Chase Cunningham #419 knew coming into Loretta’s that after his win at Red Bud all he had to do was take care of business and he’d walk away from the ranch a 3 time National Champion. Saturday saw the Morehead, Ky rider get taken out in the 2nd turn and his Vet 30 championship hopes could have been over. Key word here is could as Cunningham picked himself up off the ground started his machine and put on a charge to save his Championship as he went from dead last to 6th. Sunday’s moto 2 was a little less hectic as we saw Chase put in a smart and solid ride passing his way to 2nd and never pushing his limits as he knew at that point it was in the bag. The 6-2 was good enough for 4th overall but the most important thing was it was enough to win the Championship!
Cunningham pictured here after going 1-1 at Red Bud a few weeks ago. Chase not only won the Vet 30 class but he also took home a respectable 4th overall in the Junior 25+ class points.
Every year our team uses Saturday night at the Lortta Lynn season finale to sit down unwind and enjoy some great food, fellowship and bench racing. We’ve been doing our season’s end team dinner since the 2010 season and each year it just seems to be the perfect ending to the season. Team Media Allstars is as close to a family as you’ll find. We have a saying “once and Allstar always an Allstar” and that rings true as we often see team alumni come and join us at Loretta’s for some of the best food and times you’ll find all weekend. They say a picture is worth a thousand words so we’ll leave you with some great pictures that say more about how this team came together this season.
A special thanks goes out to the guy on the right in this picture. Bradley Cesaroni is the man behind Barboski Photography and we can’t thank him enough for his contributions to our race team these past 2 seasons. If you haven’t yet go give Barboski Photography a follow on instagram @barboskiphotography and facebook https://www.facebook.com/barboskiphotography/
We’ll see everyone at the banquet in November! Until then enjoy the off season