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Chapter 3

MotoPlayground Race Continues to Rewrite Ponca City Motocross History

THE WORLD National Pit Bike Championship races feature a wide variety of competitors ranging from little kids on little bikes to big kids on little bikes, and occasionally the MotoPlayground mascot

THE WORLD National Pit Bike Championship races feature a wide variety of competitors ranging from little kids on little bikes to big kids on little bikes, and occasionally the MotoPlayground mascot “Boom-Diggity.” The pit bike races feature a plethora of pitfalls, questionable tactics, cut-throat strategy, a fairly loose interpretation of course boundaries. and non-stop laughter for all who attend. The just for big fun little race will be held on Saturday at 8 p.m. (News File Photo by Steve Dye)

By STEVE DYE

Mid-Week Editor

At 9 a.m. this morning the gates opened at Jack Blevins Motocross Park, with first dozens of vendors and then hundreds of motorhomes and funhaulers rolling into the pit and camping areas for what may be Ponca City’s biggest motocross race ever.

Now, those may be bold words to those who remember the halcyon days of the NMA National Amatuer Motocross Championships in the 1980s, when the largest amatuer motorcycle event in the country was held every July in Ponca.

But the Ponca City nationals had, for myriad reasons, long been eclipsed by a similar event held each August in Tennessee.

Going into the third year of a partnership between the Ponca City AMBUCS and promoter Harold Martin of MotoPlayground magazine, the MotoPlayground Race held the third weekend of October has already climbed

PONCA CITY'S AMBUCS partnered with the preeminent youth publication covering the sport to presentThe MotoPlayground Race, a featured event on the American Motorcylist Association 2018 scheudule.

PONCA CITY’S AMBUCS partnered with the preeminent youth publication covering the sport to presentThe MotoPlayground Race, a featured event on the American Motorcylist Association 2018 scheudule.

the ladder to a top-tier event for the fastest up-and-coming racers in the nation.

The first-ever MotoPlayground Race was held in Ponca City in 2016, hashtagged “Make Ponca Great Again.”

It just two short years, and on the eve of the third event, the event has done just that.

Ponca City is back on the map for top-level amateur motocross racers from all across the country, and hotels, restaurants, and stores will see a big influx of customers and cash this weekend with literally thousands of racers accompanied by support staff, mechanics, vendors, and lots and lots of moms and dads.

“The MotoPlayground Race at Ponca City is so much more than just another dirtbike race,” says Martin. “When we first approached the industry with our intentions of creating an event that truly put riders and families

RACING WILL begn at the Jack Blevins Motocross Park on Friday, with racing continuing through Saturday and Sunday. The MotoPlayground Race has rapidly gained prominence in the world of racing, with the first two editions of the event drawing rave reveiws.  Admission fees are $20 per day. (News File Photo by Steve Dye)

RACING WILL begn at the Jack Blevins Motocross Park on Friday, with racing continuing through Saturday and Sunday. The MotoPlayground Race has rapidly gained prominence in the world of racing, with the first two editions of the event drawing rave reveiws. Admission fees are $20 per day. (News File Photo by Steve Dye)

first, we realized very quickly we should not tell everyone how good it would be, we should show them. And that is exactly what we’ve done. We continue to strive to create something special that is more than just another race. We continue to under promise, over deliver, and never take advantage of the purity of what we are creating.”

Move-in for vendors and campers will continue today, with a full day of practice and race course familiarization set for Thursday before racing begins on Friday. Gates will open at 6 a.m. to spectators, with practicing beginning at approximately 8:30 a.m. and races beginning at 10 a.m. and running throughout the day each day through Sunday.

Classes range all the way from miniscule 51cc machines piloted by 4-6 year olds up to professional level racers on

MOTOCROSS RACERS from all over the country will flock to this weekend's

MOTOCROSS RACERS from all over the country will flock to this weekend’s “MotoPlayground Race” at the Jack Blevins Motocross Park in Ponca City. Over 2000 race entries have been received for the third-year event. Top-level amateur and professional motocross races will run each day on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Although a possibility of more rain is forecast for Thursday and Friday, hopes are high to run the races under sunny skies, as shown here during last year’s event. (News File Photo by Steve Dye)

60-horsepower 450cc machines. Many of the top amateur racers in the country are confirmed for the event.

On Friday night some of those top racers will team with locals who benefit from AMBUCS efforts at the Ponca City YMCA at 7 p.m. to take part in the AmTRYKE race.

Saturday night will also feature a hilarity laced minibike race for big kids — the “World National Pit Bike Championship” — that is pure comedy and not to be missed at 8 p.m. on a specially constructed smaller course adjacent to the park entrance.

“We’re looking forward to maybe the largest turnout we’ve ever had for this year’s event,” said Bill Stuever of the Ponca City AMBUCS. “The rapid growth of this event has been very gratifying for everyone with AMBUCS, and we’re hoping to have many

AMTRYKE BIKE racer Braxton negotiates a high-speed turn with the help of three top motocross racers serving as wingmen for the Ponca City World Championship AmTryke event held last year at the Ponca City YMCA. The event, organized and sponsored by the MotoPlayground magazine in conjunction with the AMBUCS, will take place again this year on Friday at 7 p.m. at the Y. All are encouraged to come cheer for local Tryke racers. (News File Photo by Rolf Clements)

AMTRYKE BIKE racer Braxton negotiates a high-speed turn with the help of three top motocross racers serving as wingmen for the Ponca City World Championship AmTryke event held last year at the Ponca City YMCA. The event, organized and sponsored by the MotoPlayground magazine in conjunction with the AMBUCS, will take place again this year on Friday at 7 p.m. at the Y. All are encouraged to come cheer for local Tryke racers. (News File Photo by Rolf Clements)

from Ponca City and surrounding communities come out to see what we’re building here.”

World AmTryke Championships

The Ponca City World Championship AmTryke event will be held Friday, Oct. 19, at 7 p.m. at the Ponca City Aquatics and Family Center-YMCA. In a fierce battle against the clock and each other, athletes breakaway from the motocross track and convene to help local AmTryke racers circumnavigate a course laid out on a gym-floor. The event is organized and sponsored by the MotoPlayground magazine and the MotoPlayground Race in conjunction with the AMBUCS, and with top racers volunteering to make it a memorable event.

Proceeds from the races held at Jack Blevins Motocross Park go towards providing therapeutic adaptive tricycles to amazing people who can benefit from the added mobility. The community is encouraged to attend, and cheer on

SPECTATORS CAN watch as top amateur and professional racers from all the country do battle on the revamped, enhanced, and rebuilt Jack Blevins Motocross Park race track. Over 2,000 entries for this year's race include some of the top amateur racers in the nation, with motor homes and vendors filling the facility today before practice sessions begin on Thursday Gates open at 6:30 a.m. each day, with racing beginning at approximately 8:30 a.m. Friday through Sunday. (News File Photo by Steve Dye)

SPECTATORS CAN watch as top amateur and professional racers from all the country do battle on the revamped, enhanced, and rebuilt Jack Blevins Motocross Park race track. Over 2,000 entries for this year’s race include some of the top amateur racers in the nation, with motor homes and vendors filling the facility today before practice sessions begin on Thursday Gates open at 6:30 a.m. each day, with racing beginning at approximately 8:30 a.m. Friday through Sunday. (News File Photo by Steve Dye)

these local athletes.

World National Pit Bike Race

On Saturday night after the serious races take place on the big track, serious frivolity and mayhem will ensue at the “World National Pit Bike Race” on a much smaller, tighter track located just to the west of the park entrance.

Little bikes line up, but the racers are allegedly grown men, along with mothers, sisters, and other family members and support staff. With thumping background music as a soundtrack, the bar-banging action under the lights is a pit party and laugh-a-minute spectacle onto itself.

The “World National” mini races will begin at 8 p.m. on Saturday, and are worth the price of admission alone.

For more information on the race, go to www.poncamx.com or www.motoplayground.com or search “MotoPlayground” on Facebook.

For more information on the fine work accomplished by the AMBUCS organization with AmTryke Therapeutic Tricycles, visit okcambucs.com/Community_Support.html#AmTryke®.

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