(Posted Feb. 1, 2018)
By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor
The Madison County Fair is packing more horsepower than ever into its grandstand entertainment.
In addition to the usuals–tough truck and drag racing, truck and tractor pulls, demolition derby, and harness racing–the 2018 fair will feature motocross.
Fair organizers recently booked Fast Traxx Racing out of Athens, Ohio, to run dirtbike races on Thursday night of fair week, July 7-14.
“It’s another event that’s something different than we’ve ever had,” said Bob Richardson, fairgrounds manager. “They do some other fairs in the area and seem to be successful. It’s a pretty cool deal.”
Fast Traxx owners Shawna and Norm Bickley and a 25-person crew will transform the grandstand track area into a motocross course, complete with a starting gate, mounded jumps, humps, and a series of smaller bumps known as a “whoop section.”
On-site registration will start mid-afternoon, followed by a timed practice at about 6:30 and races at about 7:30. Anyone with a dirtbike or quad is welcome to enter.
“We have classes for everyone from 4-year-olds to 65-plus,” Shawna said. “We have over 40 classes, so there’s definitely something for everybody.”
Classes are organized by age, skill level, and bike size, with separate categories for youths, amateurs, and professionals. Many entrants race in multiple classes. The entry fee for youths and amateurs is $25 per class; for pros, it’s $30 per class. The cash payout for pros is 100 percent of pro entry fees. Plaques go to the top three finishers per class for youths and amateurs.
Racers must wear helmets, goggles, long pants, long-sleeved shirts, and boots that cover their ankles. Bikes/quads can range from 50cc to 450cc.
The set-up can accommodate 15 bikes, seven quads, or nine micro-quads per race. Each race covers six to seven laps, depending on the size of the course, and lasts roughly three minutes. Fast Traxx events attract an average of 225 entrants, which makes for lots of action.
“Anytime you have four, five, 10 or more motorcycles on a track, something exciting is going to happen,” said Norm about the sport’s appeal to spectators.
Besides watching the older, more experienced competitors do their thing, crowds also get a kick out of seeing the younger racers on the track.
“The little kids are cute. People are in awe because they’re seeing a 4-year-old racing a motorcycle,” Norm said.
The Bickleys have operated Fast Traxx for the past 15 years, running nine supercross races and 18 grand prix races each year at their home track in Nelsonville, Ohio. They got into the fair circuit about seven years ago. This year alone, they have 17 fair events booked, in addition to their home course events.
Go to fasttraxxracing.com or look for “Fast Traxx Racing” on Facebook for more information.
The schedule for grandstand entertainment at this year’s Madison County Fair is as follows: Saturday-Sunday, harness racing; Monday, KOI dirt drags; Tuesday, Central Ohio Truck Pull Circuit; Wednesday, Tough Truck contest; Thursday, Fast Traxx motocross; Friday, National Tractor Pullers Association; Saturday, demolition derby.
Richardson said he and the fairboard are working out details for other grandstand and midway entertainment. He noted that Triple Treat returns as the ride company for the fair.