I was enjoying a margarita at lunch at Gilbert’s El Indio when my phone lit up with a number from Lake Forest, California. Kawasaki is in Lake Forest, so it must be them, right? They’re probably asking when I’ll be returning the Vulcan S loaner, so I just let it go to voicemail. Another margarita later and I felt bad about ignoring the call, so I listen to the message. It’s not Kawasaki – rather it’s someone who used to work there. I hear the voice of Jeff Herzog, former Senior PR Coordinator of Kawasaki, and he tells me “I’ve got a super fun project if you want to do it…doing the 24 hour mini bike on a Z125.” There was more to the message but I skipped it so I could immediately call Jeff back to say yes. That’s why I’m now on the hook to race the upcoming 2017 UMRA (United Mini Racing Association) 24 hour Endurance Race. God help me.
I’ve wanted to race this event for a couple of years, so my excitement got the best of me when I immediately told Jeff I was in. It took me a couple of hours before I realized what a terrible idea this was. I have zero race experience, let alone for an entire day on a tiny motorcycle. What the hell was I thinking?
Doesn’t matter now, I’m committed. So join me as I fumble my way through an endurance race! I started this process without knowing anything about UMRA or the race. To be fair, that’s still the case, but my hope is that over the next few weeks I’ll be able to walk any of you that are interested in doing this for yourself through the process. I’ll be covering the bike, the team, the organization, the gear, and the prep. So feel free to laugh at my misfortune and ask any questions in the comments.
Cover photo from UMRA.