Story by Jessica Danielle Edmond
Photos by Josh Rud
Youth dirt track racers took to the TT track for the second day of the 2016 AMA Dirt Track Grand Championship in Du Quoin, Ill.
View results from Day 2 - 2016 Suzuki AMA Dirt Track Grand Championship
After a few rain showers, the AMA officials called an hour delay to see if the rain would let up in order to continue forward with the qualifier races. The qualifier races were successfully completed. Unfortunately, the rain did not stop, and the event ended before the main event races began.
This year’s competition has a couple standout youth riders; potential Dirt Track Youth Racer of the Year Tyler Tidwell (No. 72 on a Kawasaki) from Washington, Ill., on a 50cc, as well as Tyler Scott (No. 70 on a Kawasaki) from Emmaus, Pa., a phenomenal rider who has been a youth rider in the past and is likely a contender for the AMA Dirt Track Horizon Award in the future.
65cc DTX (7-11)
Tyler Tidwell rocketed his No. 72 Kawasaki to the win in the 65cc DTX Heat 1 qualifier race. Chase Anderson (No. 3 on a Kawasaki) was his top competitor, coming in second place. Austin Harrington (No. 99 on a Kawasaki) took third.
85cc Modified (12-15)
David Kohlstaedt (No. 29 on a Honda) from Payallup, Wash., took the lead at start with Isaac Hinton (No. 8 on a KTM) trailing closing behind. Kohlstaedt broke away from Hinton in Turn 1 on Lap 3. Kohlstaedt claimed victory coming in first. Hinton came in second and Ezra Brusky (No. 7 on a Yamaha) finished third.
65cc Modified (7-11)
Tyler Scott (No. 70 on a Kawasaki) from Emmaus, Pa., won the race by a landslide. With Chase Saathoff (No. 42 on a KTM) from Hillsboro, Ill., coming in a close second. Leaving Austin Harrington (No. 99 on a KTM) from Millington, Mich., in third place.
50cc DTX PW Shaft
Trevor Tidwell (No. 18 on a KTM) from Washington, Ill., won the race, but not without fighting for it.
Both Tidwell and Nicholas Fox (No. 11c on a Yamaha) left the starting line side by side. Fox briefly took the lead until Tidwell sped though the first turn and successfully made the jump to take the lead. Leaving Fox in second place, and Hunter Loeffler (No. 17 on a Yamaha) from Belleville, Ill., captured third place.
85cc Modified (7-11) Travis Petton (No. 82 on a Honda) from Ramona, Cal., took the win in this big race.
Petton`s start was just as fantastic as his first place finish. Petton popped a wheelie coming off the starting line. Going into Lap 3, Chase Saathoff (No. 6 on a HSK) stayed behind Petton until the end of the race. Kody Kopp (No. 43 on a Kawasaki) from Mica, Wash., placed third.
50cc DTX PW (4-8)
Bradon Pfanders (No. 88 on a KTM) from Bethlehem, Pa., won one of biggest qualifier events of the day: 50cc DTX PW, ages 4 to 8. Trevor Tidwell (No. 18 on a COB) from Washington, Ill., came in second, and Nicholas Fox (No. 11c on a Yamaha) from Statesville, NC., placed third.
Parents stood along the track and cheered the racers on. By Lap 3, the track turned slippery in Turn 1 due to the light rain. But racers proved that they had the skills.
85cc DTX (12-15)
Brady Murdock (No. 47 on a Honda) from Fruitland Park, Fla., won the 85cc DTX, ages 12 to 15, race.
The riders had great airtime coming over the single jump. Jayden Walter (No. 326 on a Honda) from Kent, Wash., came in second, leaving third place to David Kohlstaedt (No. 29 on a Honda) from Payallup, Wash.
50cc DTX Sr. (7-8)
Bradon Pfanders (No. 88 on a KTM) from Bethlehem, Pa., took first place. Trevor Tidwell (No. 18 on a KTM) from Washington, Ill., came in second, leaving Gavin Grow (No. 9 on a KTM) from Hamilton, Ohio, in third.
85cc Modified (7-11)
Chase Saathoff (No. 6 on a HSK) from Hillsboro, Ill., took first place. Tyler Scott (No. 70 on a KTM) from Emmaus, Pa., secured second place, and Kody Kopp (No. 43 on a KAW) from Mica, Wash., came in third.
Thirty-four year AMA veteran and current 2016 Suzuki AMA Dirt Track Acting Director, Joe Bromley, is passionate about the sport. He has two sons who competitively race dirt track.
“My sons are following my same path and it is kind of neat on my side," Bromley said.