Robby-Bell-Off-Road-Baja-500-6-5-13This weekend I headed out to Nevada for the Best In The Desert Silver State 300. Arguably one of the most enjoyable races on the BITD calendar, the Silver State course winds its way through scenic mountain roads and twisty sand washes of northern Nevada. There’re little whoops to speak of, a few rockier sections, but for the most part the terrain is comprised of high-speed, graded, twisty roads, something everyone enjoys.

With this weekend being one of the busiest of the west coast calendar- there was the Silver State 300, the National Hare & Hound, Endurocross, the Primm Big 6 (and Supercross if you’re in to that kind of thing)- I was going to be riding the race solo. My teammate Ricky Brabec has been excelling at the Hare & Hounds, with a shot at the championship, and since he is the rider of record, his absence mean only one rider can fill in for him.

Robby-Bell-WORCS-Round-4-22-14
Robby Bell sent over his race report from the recent WORCS race. Check out video from his ride below as well.

The Sand Hollow recreation area is an incredibly unique place to stage a grand prix event. Parking is situated just above the Sand Hollow water reservoir and offers a panoramic view of the surrounding mountains, giving the event a grander feel. On top of that the terrain is comprised of two of the more challenging types available: deep, dune sand and sharp, slick rocks. It’s definitely a course unlike any other as it leaves little time for rest; you’re either working to keep the bike on top of the sand whoops or fighting to keep the bike pointed straight in the rocks. The two-hour pro race was sure to be a tough one.

Cholla (pronounced “cho-ya”): anyone who’s had personal experience with this demon of a cactus just cringed at the reading of its name. For those unfamiliar, it is a cactus that can grow to around handlebar height and is made up of conveniently detachable little golf ball-sized pieces just loaded with barbed needles. Once a Cholla ball hits your skin, its fish-hook-like barbs sink in and the only way to get them out is with a tool of some sort, be it a pair of pliers, a fine comb, or the caveman method of using two rocks, as using your hand only causes more needles to stick to your palm; and, oh yes, the experience is quite painful. Most racers coming to this event expand their list of goals, adding to the top of the pile: do not come into contact with a Cholla cactus at all cost; but as the desert surrounding Laughlin, NV is covered in these little demon plants, that goal is often the most difficult to achieve.