Amacker gets jump on big-time motorcycle racing |

Amacker gets jump on big-time motorcycle racing

For Meyers Elementary School second-grader Troy Amacker, Disneyland wasn’t the main attraction in Anaheim, Calif.

Earlier this year the 8-year-old had the unique opportunity of participating in the KTM Jr. Supercross Challenge 2001 during the Anaheim II Supercross.

Amacker and 14 competitors entertained 40,000 Supercross fans during intermission for the main event, which featured elite riders Jeremy McGrath and Ricky Carmichael.

“I liked it when the big guys raced and I raced,” said Amacker, who finished eighth in his three-lap introduction to big-time racing. “The jumps were really steep. The big riders take them two or three at a time.”

Because of the technical demands of the pro course, participants were required to have a year of competitive experience.

“You get all the protective gear you can for your child,” said Amacker’s mom, Debra. “It’s dangerous, just like in baseball. You have to put it all in perspective.”

Amacker began riding a motorcycle at 3 and started racing as a 6-year-old.

“I like jumps and racing other kids,” Amacker said.

Amacker received an invitation to Anaheim by competing in five Motorcycle Racing Association of Northern Nevada Racing Series events last year. Competing in the peewee division, Amacker was seventh in the Rock Hopper 2000 in Fernley; fifth in the Fort Sage Hare Scrambles in Doyle, Calif.; third in The Tiger Field Hare Scrambles in Fernley; second in the North South Hare Scrambles in Sopiago Springs Resort, Calif.; and second in The Ski Run Scrambles at Donner Ski Resort.

KTM has brought more than 1,000 boys and girls ages 7 and 8 to motocross venues across the country.

For a $125 entry fee, competitors received a complete K-Style riding outfit, a $100 U.S. Savings Bond, three complimentary passes, a factory rider visit and, most of all, the right to compete in a race during intermission of a Saturday night main event.

The one-time experience has only given Amacker more incentive to race. Last weekend, he placed second in Winnemucca.

“It’s a bit unusual for up here, and their friends think it’s really neat that he and his brother race,” Debra said.

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