I have not ranted in a while. Some have asked for it, others don’t seem to miss it at all. After all it is just the collected thoughts of another asshole on the internet. For those of you that enjoy my rantings, I can only commiserate with your mental illness. I’ve been silent for many reasons, not the least of which is I really don’t like to share that much of myself. But, once in a while I spew the verbal vomit of my mind, some of you like it, some wish I would just keep my thoughts to myself. Only you can figure out where you stand.
I feel I need to address the subject of what it costs to race REM Saturday MX. Once and for all, and hopefully for the last time.
REM does not receive one dime, one cent from the front gate at Glen Helen Raceway. Never have, probably never will. Glen Helen in their defense has several tracks open on most Saturdays. The front or main track is usually open for practice on Saturdays, when it is, GHR charges $30 per bike to get into the park to practice. They do not charge per person unless there is another race on the main track; then they charge $10 per person to get into the raceway, whether there is a REM race or not. So to make it simple for some of you, if there is no place to practice on Saturday it s ten bucks per person. If there is open practice on the main, or the main and REM, it s thirty bucks per bike to enter the park. Now to throw a monkey wrench into that, Dr. Feldkamp, in a generous offer, allows those with the REM card to come into the raceway on REM race days for twenty bucks per bike. The reasoning is that most REM regulars do not practice on the main track. And actually, if you have the card and are racing, and you paid $20 to get in, you should not ride on the main track. However, if you do not have the card, and paid $30, then ride over there to your hearts content.
On a related cost note, REM pays for the ambulance, and the crew which includes a paramedic that is at the race track on REM race days. We never cut cost on this, we don’t hire an EMT in a rhino. Tried renting an ambulance lately? If a rider is hurt on any of the other GH tracks practicing, or any other medical emergency, our ambulance responds to the incident. We never have and never will ask the injured party to cover the cost of the time that the ambulance crew is tending to them whether or not they are racing with REM. REM also pays a lot in insurance every event. REM pays for 20 track staff, and their needs on race day. We pay for a lot of things that you as a racer never need to worry about, you should just come, race, and have a great time with others that share your passion.
For 2019 to get the card you must have your own MYLAPS transponder. There are many reasons for this, suffice to say REM does not receive any kick backs from MYLAPS. But, the Glen Helen transponders that GHR so graciously allows us to use are rapidly dying. The orange units have gone way past their life span and are giving up the ghost at an alarming rate. If you want to continue with transponders you will need to prepare for the future as none of the organizations that now own the transponders that are dying are going to be willing to spend tens of thousands of dollars to replace them. I can see in the very near future where most of the organizations will be requiring you to own your transponder to compete. A side note if you think it is cheaper for organizations to run transponders you would be wrong. The costs are quite a bit higher. You still need to have scoring people, you have to run the transponder loops, and all the associated equipment and software. The infrastructure costs for promoters have become very expensive. So, if you don’t care about transponder scoring let us know, we can go back to the old ways.
And finally, REM has been around since 1986. We have run more races in that time frame than any other organization in the US, and maybe the world. When we started the young hotshots were Ricky Johnson, Broc Glover, and Ronny Lechien. We have gone through so many generations of racers that it is difficult to remember sometimes. Those newer to the sport do not realize how long we have been promoting. We have changed the way Motocross is run in SoCal, and in some ways across the country, we are the innovators, and those innovations have been copied so many times I’ve lost count. Most racers have no clue that REM promoted one of the most popular, most viewed, well attended, and most sponsored events of the late 80’s and 90’s. For ten years Commotion by the Ocean was our way of proving that we could do it better than anyone else. We have not forgotten how to do big events, and you never know, poke us enough and we just might get back into that game.