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By Terri Stevens
Photos by J and J Racing

STQRA Round 3 Takes Quad MX Racing to Louisiana

Riders and their families gather after racing for an awards presentation.
Riders and their families gather after racing for an awards presentation.

When the South Texas Quad Racing Association took its 2006 Southern Challenge Series to Breaux Bridge, Louisiana April 8-9th, they did it Cajun style! Riders from Louisiana and Mississippi joined those from Texas in a weekend of ATV motocross racing and family fun, many will be talking about this one for days to come.

The gates at Gravity Alley MX opened Friday afternoon, and the riders and their families began arriving soon afterward. Many commented that the track more resembled a TT or flat track, and that it would be high-speed, with fourth and fifth gear used a lot more than usual, but they were eager to get out on it and give it a try.

Track official, Michael Shae and crew had worked into the night on Friday preparing for Saturday’s practice, and the track looked great when it began. The riders spent hours in organized practice, dialing in their quads and having fun tearing up the dirt as they premeditated race strategies for Sunday.

After early race signup and tech inspection ended Saturday evening, everyone moved from the pits to the drag strip. During the weekend of their last round, held in March at the Holeshot MX in Victoria, TX, the STQRA had held an impromptu “barrel race” in which riders, two at a time, drag raced toward two barrels, went around the barrels, and then raced back. These elimination races continued until only two were left in each class, and then those two raced for the win. Everyone enjoyed this activity so much they decided to try it again at the MX Oasis. Having a drag strip available was an added bonus. Although the winners walked away with a little cash in hand, the incentive to participate for most was pure fun.

Team Fury hosted a group crawfish boil Saturday evening before race day.
Team Fury hosted a group crawfish boil Saturday evening before race day.

When those races ended, the crowd then headed back to their pits, with a majority gathering around Team Fury’s camp for a group crawfish boil. The Fury gang had started cooking earlier, and a line of tables were covered with crawfish, potatoes, corn, celery, mushrooms and more. The tables were quickly surrounded, and stayed that way throughout the evening as parents and grandparents with kids of all ages joked and laughed while sharing the meal together. A few were heard commenting that “it just doesn’t get any better than this!”

By 10:00pm, most had retired for the night, knowing that race day would soon be upon them. A few were left at the tables, peeling the left over crawfish and cleaning up, and then the track was quiet.

Roars of quads starting up woke many early the next morning as signup began and racers prepared for the big day. After the last of the quads were signed up and teched in, a riders meeting was held, then a few laps of practice for each class before STQRA’s Round 3 began.

Excitement was building as the Open C class lined up first at the gate. In Moto 1, Chris Thomas (5) of Kingwood, TX took the win on a Suzuki, chased by James Lozano (741) of Richmond, TX on a Yamaha. Jason Bryant (121) got third and Paul Gray (105) of Cleveland, TX finished fourth. Lozano took the win in the second moto, giving him first overall in the Open C. Gray finished second in Moto 2 and the overall, with Bryant taking third, Brant Draper (244) of Spring, TX in fourth and Chris Thomas rounding out the top five overall.

Up next came the Pee Wee class, with riders from three to six years old. If you have yet to watch these little ones race, you are certainly missing out! It is just too cute. Nicholas Webster (105) of Cypress, TX took both wins on his little DRR, followed by Ty Cruse (11) of Lumberton, TX as second overall with a 3-2 finish. Hunter Gengo (9) of Spring, TX came in third with 2-4 finishes, and Camden Nichols (13) of Conroe, TX finished fourth, followed by Cole Mc Cray (121) of Onalaska, TX in fifth.

Only two riders entered the Over 30 A class, the third race of the day. In it, Philip Vann (18) took both wins, followed by Ramiro Medina (08) in second.

Mike J Gleason took both wins in the Super Pee Wee class.
Mike J Gleason took both wins in the Super Pee Wee class.

The Super Pee Wee class came next. With an age limit of 5-8, this new and growing class is limited to 52cc production quads, and allows specific modifications to prepare riders to move up from the Pee Wee class. In this class, Mike J Gleason (717) won both motos, with Ty Cruse getting second, Hunter Gengo in third, Kentleigh Nichols (10) in fourth and local rider Dalton Hanks (123) in fifth.

Once the little riders and their parents had cleared the track, the Open A class rumbled at the gate. Slinging dirt, these fast riders raced through both motos, and Ben Sanamo (3) took the overall win on his Honda with 3-1 finishes. Chad Brooks (59) finished second, followed by Robert Hanson (94) of Sourlake, TX, who won the first moto, finishing third overall. Chris Newland (777) of Dayton, TX placed fourth overall with his 5-4, and Megan Manshack (58) of Cleveland, TX took fifth with her 4-5 finishes.

Taylor Seale (14) took the overall win in the Super Mini class and third in the Youth class.
Taylor Seale (14) took the overall win in the Super Mini class and third in the Youth class.

The Super Mini class, with riders from 8-13 years old, battled it out next. Taylor Seale (14) of Denham Springs, LA took the overall win with his 2-1 finishes and Bubba Hinton (112) of Sauciao, MS, finished in second with a 1-2. Hanging right with them, Grady Antich (00) of Port Neches, TX placed third. Kyla Mercado (4) of Conroe, TX took fourth overall with a 5-4, and Mike J Gleason (7) finished fifth with 4-5.

In the Sport Quad, one of STQRA’s most competitive classes, national rider Ryan Anderson (414) of Huffman, TX, took both wins on his Yamaha Blaster. Josh Juneau (56) finished second overall on the only Honda 300ex in the class, chased by Jesse Velasquez (320) of New Caney, TX in third. Amber Vann (12), a local rider, took second in the first moto, but ended up fourth overall after mechanical problems in the main. James Murrah (84) completed the top five.

The Women’s class had a wild start as two of the riders, Brittney Keene (13) of Baytown, TX and Courtney Leax (111) of Conroe, TX, both wheelied out of the gate and collided. The race continued, with Amber Vann (18) taking the win in both motos. Amber won the first moto on her Blaster. Kara Corn (454) of Alvin, TX placed second overall, with Leslie Smith (43) of Navasota, TX in third, Debra Mercado (911) in fourth, and Angela Bryant (121) of Vidor, TX in fifth.

Tyler Webster (104) took the win in the Youth class, but Kegan Montgomery (79) gave him a race for it both motos.
Tyler Webster (104) took the win in the Youth class, but Kegan Montgomery (79) gave him a race for it both motos.

Tyler Webster (104) of Cypress, TX, was flying on his Honda 300ex as he took both wins in the Youth class. Kegan Montgomery (79) finished second, Taylor Seale (14) took third and James Murrah (84) placed fourth overall.

Next up was the Mini class. Colten Dore (2) of St. Martinville, LA took the overall win on his Polaris with a 4-1 finish, followed by Zaine Melder (55) of Conroe, TX in second with 1-5. With her 6-2 finishes, Kyla Mercado (4) got third overall, Briana Helms (05) of Cleveland, TX placed fourth overall, and Sara Trevino (61) of Tomball, TX finished out the top five.

Another one of STQRA’s national riders, Josh Bateman (7) of Spring, TX walked away with the Open B class win. T.J. Arceneaux (8) finished second overall with a 2-3, followed by Brandon Duhon (12b) with a 5-2 in third. Ryan Callahan (124) of Pearland, TX, placed fourth overall with a 3-6, and Jeffrey Gaunt (12r) got fifth with his 6-5 finishes.

In what some jokingly call the old folks class, the Over 30 B, Wade Babin (7x) got the overall win with his 3-1 finishes. Scott Sanchez (51) finished second, Mike Gleason (7) placed third after a 1-3, followed by Dwayne Touchet (101) in fourth and Mark Barnett (59) in fifth.

Two quads wheelie, then collide into each other at the start of the Women's class, in Moto 1
Two quads wheelie, then collide into each other at the start of the Women's class, in Moto 1

As the final race, the Expert class put on a terrific show. National Pro-Am racer Chris Brian (82) of Zachary, La. took both wins, and Mike Wise (34) got second overall with his 3-3 finishes. Patrick Babineaux (2) placed third overall with a 5-2, Philip Vann (18x) got fourth with 4-5, and Rhett Smith (8) completed the top five with a 6-4. STQRA’s 2005 Champion John Buller (18) finished second in the first moto, but took a hard crash coming out of the holeshot in the second one.

After the races ended, everyone gathered for an awards ceremony. Trophies, cash and prizes were distributed, and then one by one, the riders and their families left the track, with many commenting on what a thrilling weekend it had been.

For race information and to learn more about the STQRA, visit their web site at www.stqra.com.


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