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Zach Klamfoth merely captured the win at the Milk Run Enduro over AA class competitor Jake Fiola. Klamfoth dropped 16 points, while Fiola and third place winner Josh Gaitten both dropped 17 points.
It stormed the night before the race on the eastern sections of the course and it might have scared away some fair-weather riders, as only 55 guys showed up to tackle the muddy conditions on Sunday. Thunderstorms popped up throughout the day and created hot, muggy conditions. Four sections of the course had to be re-routed, as only 30 riders finished within their allotted hour.
Klamfoth was inspired to start riding enduros thanks to his dad and his dad’s friends. Klamfoth said he also used to ride BMX before he transitioned into enduros. His first enduro was the 2002 Sandlapper Enduro in South Carolina.
“I’ve been racing ACES for three years and like the challenge of new trail,” Klamfoth said. “Timekeeping is a love-hate relationship, though. All in all, I like the enduros.”
He said the Milk Run is always technical, but this year the mud really added to it. He said his bike worked great thanks in part to JD Performance.
“I just tried to keep the bike upright and keep moving,” Klamfoth said. “It seems like every enduro something happens, so it is hard to have a mistake-free race.”
Klamfoth is currently second in the series championship contention, seven points behind reigning champ Josh Gaitten.
“I am just going to keep pushing for the championship,” he said.
He would like to thank Wheelsports, his mom and dad, JDP, Fly, Rekluse, Dirt Tricks, Silkolene, Smith, Fast Am, and Nick and Charlier for being his gas crew.
It was 250 A class rider Nathan Bidwell who captured the Overall A win at the Milk Run. Bidwell finished fifth overall, dropping 24 points. His fellow classmate Billy Weaver also dropped 24 points, but Bidwell beat him by only seven E-check points. Gary Johnson, a Senior A rider, finished 1 point behind Bidwell and Weaver.
Bidwell started riding dirtbikes when he was just six years old and started racing local hare scrambles when he was 10 years old. He then transitioned into racing enduros as soon as he turned 16 years old and has raced the ACES series since it the year it was established. This season marks his seventh season for enduros.
“I’ve grown up around racing- watching my dad race three-wheelers, four-wheelers and now bikes,” Bidwell said. “My dad has definitely been my inspiration. I love riding and racing, and my dad has always been there to help me, whether it’s mechanical or just advice on how to be faster.”
Bidwell said the technical single-track trails are his favorite part of racing the enduro series.
“Getting to line up with three of your buddies and push each other through sections is a unique bonus to the series,” Bidwell said. “I’m also a fan of the staggered starts. Not everyone taking off at once keeps you guessing all day knowing you have to push yourself. You never know how your competition is doing throughout the race, the anticipation is unique.”
He also laughed and said “a huge perk of riding enduros are once you make it through a bottle neck or mud hole you know it’s the last time for the day!”
Staying fit is something that lots of riders strive for. It could mean the difference between winning and losing to your competitors.
“I’m lucky enough to be a full-time fireman,” Bidwell said. “One of the added benefits to the profession is that being physically fit is encouraged. Every firehouse I work at has an on-site gym, and being able to workout more has definitely helped my training regimen. Lifting weights and continuing to get stronger is the base of my training. I try to mix up my workouts from traditional weightlifting to CrossFit. Cardio-wise my goal for running in a week is 20-25 miles. To supplement running and to give my knees a break I do a lot of rowing.”
He said he is currently saving up to purchase a bicycle and is anxious to start training on one. He also monitors his water intake and follows a fairly strict diet. He just wishes he had enough time just to ride his dirtbike more.
“Knowing that a majority of southern Ohio got pounded with rain a few days before the race was definitely something to get yourself ready for,” Bidwell said. “I knew the trail was going to be slick and greasy. My dad reminded me the morning of the race to be patient. Throughout the day I really just focused on being smooth, not picking bad lines, and most importantly not fighting the bike. I let my suspension work and let the bike kind of slide around and do its own thing.”
Bidwell said his bike ran “awesome.” His dad had just installed a new clutch with all new Hinson components and his suspension was spot on. He said suspension is professionally done by FCR and is full of Works parts and innovative technology.
“Although I kept in mind to be as smooth as possible, I definitely didn’t ride a perfect race,” he said. “Minimizing mistakes is always something I wish I would do better. Enduros are separated by seconds. As for the rest of the season, if I continue to be consistent, ride my own race, and try to minimize my mistakes — I have the potential to win. This win was a confidence booster.”
He would like to thank his dad and all of his family. He would also like to thank his sponsors FCR suspension, Hinson clutch components, Moose Racing, Twin Air, Torc1Racing, Suomy Helmets, ProGrip, Factory Effex, Sunstar, GoPro, 1.7 cleaning solutions, Bo’s Radical Racersm and Bill Boltz. He also said he is appreciative of the Gaitten’s who were his gas crew.
John Bittner, a Vet B class competitor, has won Overall B three times this season. Bittner crushed the Overall B competition, dropping 27 points while the next closest competitor, Jake Walters in the 250B class, dropped 31 points.
He is currently second the series points for Overall B, only 11 points behind fellow Vet B rider Chris Kight.
“My bike ran good, but I thought the trail was fairly challenging and very slick,” Bittner said. “I also made sure to drink a lot of water, since it was so hot and humid. I didn’t want to get dehydrated.”
He would like to thank his brother, Roger Aney, for racing with him this year.