Gage gears up for heart of motocross season

Submitted photo — Tonasket's Dyllan Gage raced to a third place finish in age classes at the Desert 100 near Odessa in April.

Submitted photo — Tonasket’s Dyllan Gage raced to a third place finish in age classes at the Desert 100 near Odessa in April.

TONASKET – Tonasket motocross racer Dyllan Gage turned in a top performance in the 50-mile race at the 2012 Desert 100 near Odessa in April, finishing third overall in all age classes out of 177 that finished and about 230 that started.

“It was a very muddy weekend for riding,” Gage said, adding that there was also a 100-mile race that started before his race. “They had over 700 riders that started before us, and they had the course pretty messed up.”

Gage said his KTM 350 4-stroke handled the mud well. He was eighth out through the start gate and ran third through the whole race.

“This is a very hard race and you have to be determined to finish,” he said. I cannot wait to be running the 100-mile open class next year in this awesome race.”

The Desert 100 was not a Northwest Motorcycle Association (NMA) race, but Gage said that it was the biggest race in the Northwest. Gage competed in two NMA races in March.

At the Frostbite race on March 24, Gage said he got off to a strong start and was sitting in the top five when he ended up funneled into a mud pit.

“I ended up in the wrong place,” he said. “I was on the ground and stuck for about three minutes while everyone was passing me.”

Not much went right; later in the race he wrecked on an enduro cross course, where there were large tractor tires to traverse.

“I was pretty sore,” he said of his 15th place finish out of 26 in Open B.

The Whiteknuckle was the following day, a race on the same course but run in the opposite direction.

“I was thinking, ‘I have to redeem myself,'” Gage said. “We have a lot of good riders in the Open B class. It ended up being a good day for me, turning good lap times and keeping pace.”

His fifth place of 11 earned a trophy.

“I would like to thank my sponsors,” Gage said. “But most of all I would like to give a big thanks to my parents for standing behind me in what I do.”

Heading into the middle of the season, Gage is fourth in the points in his class.

“I’m just waiting to charge toward the top in the next half of the season,” he said.

The next NMA race is the June 2 Stumpjumpers Golden Spike near Packwood, WA.