Hofmaster, Hyson, hammer Megacross bonus night!

by Dave Henry     Photos by Sam Holland


October 1st marked round 9 of the Megacross Shootout series and District 17 Stadium bonus points.  Over 260 of the area’s top stadium racers put their skills to the test and tried to gain an advantage in their pursuit of the annual points championship.  The weather was once again great and so was the racing.  In the photo above is night in and night out  one of the biggest classes at Megacross 125cc. This is the heat start, A, B, and C riders all compete head to head!!

Every round at Megacross produces great racing in the various classes.  Tonight the hottest action on the track was in the +25 A/B combined final.  When the gate dropped, it was Illinois Powersports backed Justin Kelly (904)on his KX450 with the holeshot.  As the racers made their way towards the first set of whoops off the start it was Tommy Hofmaster on his Rock River, Pro Circuit, Sano Systems, Answer backed YZ450 with a slight lead over Kevin Markwardt on his White Knuckle, RG3, one shot products Honda and Kelly back in 3rd.  As the racers completed lap 1, it was Markwardt regaining the lead, followed by Hofmaster, Kelly and Michael Wendricks.  You just had a feeling that the battle between Hofmaster and Markwardt was going to be a good one.  These two have been battling all year at the Megacross Shootout series, with Hofmaster usually finding a way around for the win.  As laps 2 and 3 went on the books it was Markwardt still holding off Hofmaster, but not by much.  As the white flag came out Justin Kelly had picked up his pace and you couldn’t count a full second between 1st, 2nd and 3d as they went across the finish line.  It was Markwardt, Hofmaster and Kelly.  At the midway point of the final lap, Hofmaster was all over Markwardt, looking to make a move, and make a move he did.  Hofmaster was able to get around Markwardt in the bowl turn after the start straight and look to head home for the win.  The battles were not over yet.  Kelly was still all over Markwardt as the two came through the S turns at the finish.  It was so close you could throw a blanket over the two of them, but in the end, it was Markwardt coming home in second, with Kelly taking home third.  WOW, that was an awesome race!

Another race that provided a great battle for the win, was the 85 Sr class.  The holeshot went to Logan Skaggs on his KTM and as they completed lap 1, it was Skaggs, followed by Brian Krohn on another KTM and Jimmy Epifanio in 3rd.  As the laps were going on the books, it was evident that Skaggs and Krohn were in a league of their own.  The two of them has built a huge lead over the rest of the field and were set to battle it out to the finish.  On lap 3, Krohn was all over Skaggs and at times they were so close it was hard to tell who was in the lead.  As the white flag flew, the two of them were getting into lapped traffic and you just knew that was going to add an extra level of excitement to the finish of this race.  As Skaggs and Krohn made their way down the “double, double, step-up”, it was Krohn side by side with Skaggs and appearing to take the lead, but no! Skaggs shuts him down in the big lefthander after the straight and the battle continues.  The two were so close as they made their way over the next two table-tops that you knew disaster could strike at any minute, and strike it did.  Skaggs is down!  As the two were flying through the air and landing off of the table-top, they appeared to come together and Skaggs went down hard.  Krohn made a look back to see what had just happened and to make sure Skaggs was OK and cruised home for the win.  Epifanio would come home in 2nd and RJ Mackenzie 3rd.  Skaggs did walk off the track on his own and appeared to be OK.  That was a tough finish for him after a great battle. 

In Open A action the holeshot went to Kevin Markwardt(14) with Justin Kelly and Tommy Hofmaster close behind.  Markwardt was absolutely flying through the whoops in an effort to put as much ground on the others as he could.  As they came around to complete lap 1, it was Markwardt, followed by Hofmaster, Kelly, Mad Maxx Malatia and Jonathan Six.  Laps 2 and 3 went into the books with Markwardt holding down a 2 second lead over Hofmaster, with Kelly, Malatia and Six still in 3rd, 4th and 5th.  As lap 4 was in the books, the battles were really starting to heat up.  Hofmaster was now all over Markwardt for the lead and Malatia was all over Kelly for 3rd.  On lap 5, Hofmaster and Markwardt were side by side and as the lap was completed, Hofmaster was able to take over the lead, moving Markwardt to 2nd and Kelly in 3rd.  Malatia had bobbled and Six was now in 4th.  As the white flag came out it was Hofmaster, followed by Markwardt, but Six was on the move and now in 3rd.  As the racers completed the last lap, it was Hofmaster taking home the win over Markwardt in 2nd and Six rounding out the top 3.  Kelly would come home in 4th with Malatia in 5th.

In 250 A, the holeshot went to Hofmaster (110)on his Rock River YZ 250 2 stroke, followed closely by Jonathan Six on his Decal Works backed Honda.  As they completed lap 1 of the 7 lap main, it was Hofmaster making sweet music with his YZ250 and holding down the #1 spot over Six in 2nd and Brian White on his BWR Honda in 3rd.  As laps 2 and 3 completed it was the same top 3, but the battle was brewing between Six and White.  On lap 4, Six slid out in a turn and was down, handing over the #2 spot to White.  White was putting a ton of pressure on Six and that may have been just what he needed to cause Six to push too hard into the corner and go down.  As lap 5 was completed, White was keeping Hofmaster honest with Tommy only in front by 1 ˝ seconds.  Six was still holding down 3rd, but had fallen to 5 seconds behind.  With one lap to go, Hofmaster was keeping the others in check and at the finish it was Hofmaster taking the win by 2 seconds over Brian White and Six in 3rd.

Hofmaster would have one more go around on the track before his evening was over, and that was in the 30+ A main.  Hofmaster, back on his YZ450 would pull the holeshot and would go on for a wire to wire victory and give himself another perfect 4 for 4 night.  Coming home in 2nd with a strong ride was Burton Lavens.  Nate Eslinger would round out the podium in 3rd.

Speaking of Lavens, he was ready to do battle once again in the 35+ main on his new ride.  Lavens, who just got his bike back from longtime sponsor Borelli suspension was soaking up the bumps and jumps with ease on his new Service Kawasaki 2012 KX450.  Lavens went on for a wire to wire win over Tim Damron in 2nd and Dave Hayes in 3rd.

In 40+ it looked like Dave Hayes (63) was looking for redemption from his 3rd place in 35+ as he appeared to have the holeshot.  However, Steve Perkins(164) snuck by him on the inside for the lead.  Lap 1, would show Perkins in the lead, followed by a close battle between Hayes in 2nd and “The Rev” Larry Dean Bank in 3rd.  As Hayes made his way towards the finish line jump to complete lap 2 in the lead, he would stall his KX450 in the corner and the lead was once again back in the hands of Perkins with the “Rev” in 2nd.  Midway through lap 3, the “Rev” was showing his desire to take his Honda into the number one spot and do that he did, with a pass on Perkins.  As the white flag came out it was “The Rev” followed by Perkins and Hayes.  Midway through the final lap, Hayes would have issues again and give up his podium spot.  The win, went to a very excited Larry Dean Bank, with Perkins in 2nd and Troy Quest rounding out the box.  “The Rev” went on to tell the announcer that “ I have the upmost respect for guys like Steve Perkins and Dave Hayes and I love racing against them” 

In the 125 class, Robbie Hyson(4) , on his 2012 KTM, was on fire!  He blasted off the line like a rocket with the holeshot and lead wire to wire for the win.  2nd would go to Jordan Mackiewicz on his RCR Kawasaki and 3rd to Matt Mellott.  Brian Krohn would put up a good fight with Mellott for 3rd, but come home in 4th. 

In the “B” classes, the racing was great as always with Eric Utech taking the holeshot and a wire to wire win on his Port Yamaha, Tom Zont Racing backed Yamaha in Open B.  Ricki Williams would come home in 2nd and Jessie Keith in 3rd.

Speaking of Jessie Keith(69), he would take his Service Honda back CRF450 to a wire to wire win in the 30+ B/C class.  He got off to a great start with the holeshot and never looked back.  Coming home in 2nd was Yamaha mounted Adam Fusinetti and 3rd went to Doug Harms on his RM250 2 stroke.

In 250B, Utech would try to repeat his Open B performance, but an outside the top 3 start would make it a very tough challenge.  Off in the lead was Honda mounted Jody Walker.  At the end of lap 1, it was Walker in the lead with Utech making his way up to 2nd and Mark Mannce in 3rd.  Over the next 3 laps, Utech would try everything he could to put his Yamaha in front of Walkers Honda, but it was Walker holding on for the win as he and Utech went up the finish line jump side by side.  Mannce would come home in 3rd.  

In 250 C Kody Smith pulled out to an early lead with the holeshot.  At the end of lap 1, it was Smith, followed by Jake Cinkus on his Venning ride, Trevor Hayes, Kelsey Rogers and local boy Travis Ward holding down 5th.  Over the next 3 laps Smth would fight off several attempted moves from Cinkus and bring home the win.  3rd would go to Hayes with 4th to Ward.

The last race of the night and the largest class, fielding 19 racers was Open C.  Out in front with the holeshot was 250 C winner Kody Smith (784).  At the end of lap 1, it was Smith, followed by Service Honda, Fox Valley Cycles, Fox Valley Off Road backed Travis Ward(351) and Steve Bookhouse.  Lap 2 saw Trevor Hayes replace Bookhouse in 3rd and the top 3 of Smith, Ward and Hayes were pulling away.  On lap 3, Ward was feeling it and he was pushing leader Kody Smith for all he had.  The two were back and forth and side by side.  By the end of lap 3 Ward was in the lead.  Ward was feeling his mojo and as the last 2 laps went into the books, Ward pulled away for the win.  Coming home in 2nd was Smth with Hayes in 3rd.

Other class winners were Chase Sexton taking home wins in both 85 Jr and 85 9-13, both in convincing fashion.  April Roper took home the win in the womens class, Super Mini win went to Logan Skaggs,   65 Beginner to Tommy Fortune Jr.  Jody Walker picked up a 2nd win of the night in 14-24, 65 Sr to Tyler Evensen and 65 Jr to Chris Swieton.  In 50cc Jr, Ewan Krisch cruised home for the win.  50cc Sr saw a wire to wire win go to Kash Schnowske and Kevin Huddleston took home the win in 50cc 4-8.  In the Quad classes, a total of 21 were on hand to race in the A, B and C classes.  Dillan Boeke took home a wire to wire win in the A class and dominating the C class by 10 seconds was Ted Loomis on his retro Honda 2 stroke.

October 15th, will mark the 10th and final round of the 2011 Megacross Shootout series and racers will be treated to a Megacross championship with double Megacross points being awarded.  Honda and Husky contingency will be available and this final round will be just as, if not more exciting as the first 9 rounds.