Armed Forces Day Race 2017
A Salute to the Troops!
By Steve Caro
Photography by Kathryn Caro
Perris, CA. May 21
Round five of the 2017 CALVMX/100% vintage motocross series saw the caravan of vintage racers rolling into Southern California’s oldest circuit in continuous operation, Perris Raceway. Dating to the 1950’s, the course has progressed from a smooth course TT/scrambles to an outdoor motocross venue providing both a “modern style” course, along with a tamed down “Vet track”. To accommodate the machines from the vintage and post-vintage eras track officials modified the Vet Track to resemble a period correct course.
The men and women serving in all branches of America’s armed forces were saluted by the club, with materials provided for members to send a message of thanks and best wishes to an individual soldier. CALVMX member Tim Vasquez surprised the crowd with a fly-over in a WW 2 era North American AT-6 advanced trainer he booked for the occasion. Vasquez could be seen waving from the rear seat of the iconic aircraft as it passed low over the Perris race course trailing smoke from its onboard smoke generator.
On the track, Norm Himaka and his Maico returned to the top of the podium with an overall win in the 60 Plus Vintage Intermediate class. In the first moto, Himaka and CZ mounted Alan Cheever contended for the top spot on the demanding Perris course. Cheever emerged with the moto win ahead of Himaka, with Craig Walker (CZ) crossing in third.
Himaka and Cheever continued their duel for the overall victory in the second moto. Himaka timed the flag start perfectly and emerged from the tight first turn with the lead. Cheever promptly tucked in behind Himaka, with Walker pursuing a few bike lengths behind in third. Himaka kept his classic German machine at the front of the pack to secure the moto and overall victories, while Cheever’s 1-2 scores earned him second overall followed by Walker in third.
For the past several seasons, the 50 Plus GP Intermediate class has featured a different overall winner at each round of the CALVMX races. At this latest round, Yamaha mounted Billy Nielsen powered his way to a 1-1 moto sweep, followed by Kent Musgrave (Suzuki) and Mark Stubbs (Honda). In moto one, Nielsen pushed his mono-shocked classic to the front and sped to the moto win, followed by Musgrave, with Stubbs in third.
With an eye towards the overall, Nielsen had a laser focus in the second moto and never set a wheel wrong during the race as he motored to the overall in an unruffled manner. Musgrave followed him across the line for second overall, while Stubbs took the final podium spot in third.
Steve Furman was the master of the GP-3 125 Intermediate class at Perris. Furman urged his late model Yamaha to a two-moto sweep of the class, with fellow Yamaha mounted Paul Grossberg, sporting a fresh new knee, taking a well-deserved second overall.
Other class winners were Ed Dazzo (Hon) in 60 Plus Vintage Novice, Micah Davis (Hon) in GP-100 Modified Expert and Garet Segkora (Hon).
The 2017 CALVMX series will take a break during the month of June. July 9th will see the series making its first appearance in several seasons at the Glen Helen Raceway. The event will be staged on a modified version of the REM track. As with all of their races, CALVMX offers a class for bikes of all eras and riders of all ages and ability.
Further photos and race coverage can be found at: