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The season opener of ACES saw 110 competitors who weren’t afraid of the mud. The weather had been great leading up to the race, except the night before the race. The trail proved to be quite challenging for the Art Mitchell Memorial Enduro in Londonderry, OH, on March 13. It was truly an old-school style enduro where racers struggled to finish.
Robbie Jenks of New Straitsville, OH, captured the Overall win, dropping 43 points. Brett Zofchak finished 5 points behind Jenks, and Johnny Barber finished with 56. Jake Walters was fourth and Eric Kriberney rounded out the top five.
“The club had luckily put a lot of time into the trail and did the best they could for the weather,” Jenks said. It was tough, but it’s been a while since we have had a really muddy race.”
As far as his strategy for the race, Jenks laughed.
“Strategy? I never really have one of those anymore,” Jenks said. “It was more about not making a big mistake and getting stuck or losing too much time.”
He thanked his family for their support, his wife for letting him continue to do this and helping at the races, and his dad for always running gas. He also thanked Wheelsports, SCR, Enduro Engineering and all of the ACES clubs for having a great series.
Nathan Bidwell of Hilliard, OH, captured the Overall A win, dropping 65 points. He competed in the Open A class. Senior A class rider Steve Vollmar finished second in the Overall A chase with 69 points, while Chris Kight, 2014 Overall B champion, was third in the hunt with 70 points.
Bidwell has been racing ACES since it was established in 2008.
“My dad is why i started riding enduros,” Bidwell said. “I have a lot of good memories from watching my dad ride and prepare for the races.”
He said the trail was great despite the muddy conditions and had the perfect amount of tight, technical trail with sections that would really let you open it up.
“Strategy for the day was to use my head a pick good lines,” Bidwell said. “Taking a few seconds to find your line is better than digging out for minutes. Being smooth and letting the bike do its thing was key. My favorite part was the legendary, never-ending uphills.”
He thanked KRW Cycles in Dayton.
“They brought me in as a support rider and really helped me out with bike set up and built me a really strong motor,” Bidwell said. “I Can’t thank them enough for everything they have done so far. I also need to thank my Dad for all the wrenching he does, my wife and mom for their support. Also to Bo’s Radical Racers, Moose, Torq1racing, GOPRO, Acerbis, Factory Effex, Mobius, Leatt, Twin Air, Sidi, 100%, Matrix Concepts, Michelin and Ogio.”
First-year ACES competitor and Open B class rider Eric Lease of Salem, OH, took home the Overall B trophy. Fellow class competitor Zack Thomas finished one point behind Lease. Dylan Stevens, also in the Open B class, finished one point behind Thomas.
“The race went great considering all the rain and nasty conditions we had,” Lease said. “That was my first enduro ever and I had a good time.”
He would like to thank his mom and dad.
“The support they give me is out of this world,” Lease said. “They are truly great and motivate me to reach for the stars. I would also like to thank all my buddies for the late nights in the shop getting the bike ready and for all the support they give me coming to the races and cheering me on.”
View detailed results at https://aces-races.com/2016-results.
The next round of ACES, the Lost in Lodi Enduro, is scheduled for April 10 in Shade, OH. The event is hosted by the Lost in Lodi Enduro Group.