For 48th time, Labor Day race a success

WAILUA – For 48 years on Kauai has hosted an annual Labor Day Race held at the motocross track in Wailua.

It is the longest running MX event in the US, and takes place at the Wailua Motocross Race Track. The track is located next to a turquoise blue pacific ocean and is always cooled by the tradewinds.

There is a melting pot of racers, a unique group of hardcore individuals from around the island known as the Kaua’i Motocross Riders Association.

Each year top outer-island racers and often mainland pros come to challenge the Kauai Boyz, including Jeremy Mc Grath, Rodney Smith, Mad Mike Jones, Travis Preston, The Flying Hawaiian, Trevor Vines, and this years special guest- 125 Expert- David the Pin Pingree.

Pingree put on an outstanding performance in both 125 and 250 Expert classes.

Club president Kip Furugen and his wife Leilani, along with the countless volunteers too numerous to mention, made this year’s event the great success it was. The track was prepared to the ultimate racing condition complete with a bamboo palm thatched shaded starting line. As usual the excitement builds weeks in advance in preparation for the race. Everything from trophies to registration, bulldozers to water trucks.

The difference here on Kaua’i compared to mainland races is that all of the work is done solely by volunteers. Families and friends come together to work unselfishly as one.

Days in advance adrenaline flows in anticipation of who will win this year’s titles. Shade tents go up, outer island racers and containers start to arrive and frantic last minute repairs and adjustments are made before, finally, the gate drops and the roar of horse power flies down the straight-away into the first turn.

Hole shot- who is it!

There is no shortage of talent here on the Hawaiian Islands. On Saturday alone the keiki racers blasted the track with courage and determination. These kids have a “never give up” attitude, which will lead them into becoming the future wave of big bike champions.

On Sunday, an amazing display of racing in all classes was put on by the teens and adults. The expert classes were especially awesome competing against pro rider Pingree. Its almost as if these men tame steel and horsepower to a point of beauty and grace.

There were moments when the crowd was completely silent as these riders exchanged battle for position. Back and forth, lap after lap, no one willing to settle for second.

This years event had some of the best Hawaii has to offer -editor/photographer Lee Radder was on scene shooting a feature on Kauai and outer island racers for MX Rider Magazine, and the JK Show was filming live.

The races were followed by an extreme jumping contest and later that evening an awards banquet with the cool island sounds of the band Revival, and even a mechanical bull.

Wailua race track is a one of a kind place – a unique and memorable experience for both riders and spectators. Look forward to the 49th Annual Labor Day Race event next year.

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