SCORE Journal

SCORE Journal - June 2018

SCORE Journal - The Official Publication of SCORE Off-Road Racing

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Page 73 of 134

The Long Ride Pro Moto Ironman racers have a big finish and great stories to tell of their long haul across Baja By Dan Sanchez Photography Get Some Photo The Pro Moto Ironman division is always one of the most impressive, showcasing perseverance, riding skills, and logistics. At the 50th BFGoodrich Tires SCORE Baja 500, there were some additional stories to tell in this division, that began with another 2018 season victory for #730x, Francisco Septien. He finished first at the SCORE San Felipe 250, so he was first off the starting line in the class. “This was not a usual ride and one of the hardest Score Baja 500,” said Septien. “The worst idea I had, was trying to pass the Sportsman guys. Being an Ironman, we are already tired and trying to deal with more and more dust; it was not a good idea.” Nonetheless, Septien managed to cross the finish line first, ahead of 2017 Pro Moto Ironman Champion Jose Carrasco who finished second, while Kevin Daniels on the 706x bike finished in third. While all the riders have their stories to tell of narrowly missing disaster and struggling to grip the handlebars after a grueling ride, one of the most intriguing stories in this division came from the father and son competitors who wanted to challenge the SCORE Baja 500 together. Pro Moto Ironman was filled with great stories. While Septien won, 2018 champion Jose Carrasco finished second (721x) followed by Kevin Daniels in the 706x bike The Father-Son Duo Tanner Janesky on the 775x bike had always wanted to compete with his father Lawrence Janesky and got the opportunity to do it at this race. The two Connecticut natives went on Baja motorcycle tour and learned about SCORE. Ten months later, they entered the 2015 SCORE Baja 1000 as a father and son team in the Sportsman division on their class. “We were assisted by Chris Haines who helped us dramatically,” said Larry Janesky. “The next year we decided to both enter the Ironman Class.” The race left Larry with a neck injury that prevented him from finishing the race, but his son Tanner finished the race. The proud family would try again in 2017, competing at the 50th BFGoodrich Tires SCORE Baja 1000. Again both entered into the Pro Moto Ironman class, but again had a string of bad luck. Tanner, who was allergic to peanuts had a meal with hot sauce that included the nuts in the ingredients. He was taken to the hospital in anaphylactic shock and although he recovered a bit before the race, he didn’t have the strength to finish. “We were both very disappointed,” said Janesky. “You think about this race for a year. You plan. You train, and a few drops of peanut sauce brings down the whole operation.” The troubles didn’t end there as Janesky continued on but missed a pit and ran out of gas. “I missed the Baja Pit which was “hidden in plain sight” amongst the people and colors and cheering. Off into the desert, I rode,” said Janesky. “ About them miles past the big river crossing, I ran out of gas.” It took seven hours for the team to get to Janesky and by that time, it had already been more than 37 hours since he started and he could not go on. With the perseverance of a true Ironman racer, Janesky was determined to finish another Ironman and did so at the 2018 SCORE San Felipe 250. Son Tanner was inspired again, and the two competed at the 50th BFGoodrich Tires SCORE Baja 500 where Tanner finished fourth and Larry finished in fifth place. “We had become the first ever father and son to finish the SCORE Baja 500 Pro Moto Ironman,” said Janesky. “Knowing what it took, I cannot imagine this ever happening again. Only those that have expressed the pain and fatigue and emotional willpower necessary to override physical suffering can truly understand. I have tremendous respect for those that challenge themselves and go as far as they possibly can, whether they finish or not. A man (or woman) learns who they truly are in attempting such a feat.” The season isn’t over for the Janesky’s as they are planning to enter the SCORE Desert Challenge in September and the 51st SCORE Baja 1000 in November. “I would like to thank Chris Haines, and our crew Victor, Arturo, Jimmy, Rodrigo and Oscar, and the people of the incredible Baja peninsula. Thanks also to SCORE for not only putting the races on but for improving safety for all each year,” said Janesky. “We live to return to our families and friends and race another day.” A Woman Alone In The Desert Elizabeth Karcz, a trauma nurse originally from New Jersey, grew up in outdoor sports before she saw the Dust To Glory movie. She got on a dirt bike in 2014 and never looked back. At the BFGoodrich Tires SCORE Baja 500, she decided to enter into the Pro Moto Ironman division and become the first woman to compete and finish the race. As most would expect, her day wouldn’t go as planned. Dealing with broken parts, a leaky water bladder and a decision to take the Sportsman loop to finish the race in time, cost Karcz an official finish. Nonetheless, she inspired many women that day and demonstrated a determination that is evident in all Pro Moto Ironman riders. “The decision to utilize the Sportsman's loop shortcut got me disqualified, but otherwise I would have definitely timed out (gone over the 22-hour limit) and possibly put myself in a riskier situation sharing the course with the faster trucks through the technical sections, said Karcz. “Ultimately, I have no regrets and still believe it was the right call to make. Points or no points, I still made it to the finish and am honored to have been a part of this historical event.” SJ

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