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Pat Burroughs - J19

McFresh - What do you do the night before a race?

Pat - I drink as much liquid as possible.  I try to stop drinking water by 10:00 or so, so that I'm not up all night taking moonlight potty breaks.  I also try to really stuff my gut, because on Sunday's I'm always to nervous to eat very much.  I'm also usually doing last minute bike preparations like putting on a clean air filter, doing gearing changes, things like that.  Then, when everyone goes to sleep...  I sneak over to J98's camp and steal his valve stems.  Then I make a "pit-stop" in the gas tank, play the Dumb Guy and say "oops, I thought this was the outhouse".  Just to keep things interesting.

McFresh - What do you think about during a race?

Pat - I am usually thinking about catching that Nathan Price punk.  When there's not another rider around, unfortunately, I'm usually thinking about how damn tired I am.  Either that or I'm thinking about how to avoid crashing,  I know, neither of these are good things to be thinking about during a race.  I try to make a conscious effort to keep pushing and maybe I'll catch one of those youngsters, but it usually doesn't happen.  When there's another rider around, I am usually able to concentrate on the task at hand, trying to find a way around them!  Then of course there's those times when I see Jeff Cox, and then it's "elbow's up!" "attack position!" "make it look like you know what the hell you're doing!"

McFresh - What is your favorite TCCRA track and why?

Pat - Gholson.  I like sandy terrain, and I like courses where you don't have to be stopping and starting every 50 feet or so.  It's much more fun being able to use all six gears!  Can we PLEASE go back there?

McFresh - When did you start racing motorcycles?

Pat - I started racing way back before there was even a thought of a McFresh, in 1972.  That was back when all bikes had two shocks and were all air-cooled.  Cack when there was Puch, Ossa, CA, Maico, Bultaco, Harley-Davidson DIRT bikes, Can-Am, Greeves, and Hodoka.  Back when Husky was King of the Desert.  Bet you didn't even know such things ever existed, eh McFresh?  These bikes DID, however, have round wheels at that point.

McFresh - How did you start racing motorcycles?

Pat - My dad raced Hodokas in the desert when I was a youngster,  He put me on a minibike when I was 5, and I was racing by the next year.  My brother (the now-semi-famous Husky team manager, check out the latest Dirt Bike magazine for a test on his 610) and I rode every chance we got.  We were very fortunate to have grown up where we did and spend our formative riding years in the California desert.  Our dad let us start racing desert races when we turned 13, so my first desert race was in early 1979.  The races are a little different that the TCCRA races, in the loops are a minimum of 35 miles long.  Consequently, you get a lot farther away from the camp during the race.  My dad wanted to be sure that we were old enough and experienced enough to handle ourselves in such a long race.  Plus, there are very difficult obstacles in your typical desert race, and we had to be ready for those.

McFresh - What was your first TCCRA race like?

Pat - It wasn't pretty.  It was at St. Jo in '96.  Mid-June, upper 90s with disgusting humidity.  The start was in a large field and was very long and high-speed.  After dumping the clutch on the start (seems I haven't had any progress since then), I was in about 6th or 7th place out of about 20 riders at that point.  Then the fun began.  It was extremely dusty and the first section was some old mud ruts now filled with silt.  I failed to remain calm, tried to go too fast, and crashed four times in the first mile.  I thought "I'm never going to make it a lap at this rate", so I slowed down a bit.  Of course after crashing four times in that heat, I was at the point totally whipped.  At the end of the first lap, I stopped and drank water, had water dumped on me, and got off the bike and rested fir a while trying to come up with a reason to do another lap.  After about fifteen minutes, I mustered up the energy to set out again.  I managed to make the second lap without any further crashes, but two laps were enough, and after that I waited for the overall leader to take the checkered flag and followed him through the barrels.  Quite a spectacular debut, huh?

McFresh - What do you like most about TCCRA?

It's off-road motorcycling.  I love following a marked trail and encountering a variety of terrain, rather than going around and around and around a motocross track, where all you do is jump and turn and turn and jump and...I like actually GOING SOMEWHERE while riding, rather then going around in circles.  The TCCRA is as good as you're going to get for that in this part of the country.  Riding off-road is much more of an adventurous thing, rather than a stunt show.

McFresh - What was your best TCCRA race, why?

Pat - I'd say Gholson in '98.  I was racing in the 125 Intermediate class.  For several months before that race, I had been issuing a "Joe Namath guarantee" to everyone.  I guaranteed I would win not only the class but be the overall leader in the amateur program.  this was a very unusual thing for me to do, I'm usually not very confident about my abilities.  But I knew that what strengths I DID have as a rider were well-suited to the course of Gholson.  Anyway, I got a pretty good start about fourth, and started picking off guys pretty quickly.  A couple miles into the race, with first place right in front of me, I dumped it and lost ground.  I recovered pretty quickly and started gaining again.  About four miles into the race I came upon a large backup, and thinking it was your garden variety backup, I cut through the trees to get around it.  When I got to the the same spot on lap two, I discovered in was the checkpoint!  At the end of the 2nd lap, I informed the officials at the barrels that I had missed the check on the first lap, and asked what the penalty was.  I waited there for close to a minute before they told me they weren't sure, to go ahead and go.  I ended up beating my class by about three minutes, but was docked a lap for having missed the check and ended up 5th.  That day was the closest I'll probably ever be to a first place in a TCCRA race (especially now that I have to ride in the Expert class), and because I was a lunk-head, I blew it.

McFresh - What do you have planned for the 2001 season?

Pat - Getting rid of some of those super-fast 125 Experts that are racing this season!  Although I know that as soon as Jared Green and Caleb Coleman are in the class next year, they'll be whipping me too, so...hopefully I can ride consistently and place in the top six.  And have some fun!  Of course there will be the 4th annual California desert trip to start the year.  If anyone is interested in going, let me know!  I can even tote your bike out there for you!

McFresh - Who are some of your friends at the races?

Pat - I'm a proud member of Team Patman Racing, and a dedicated disciple of Team President Pat Hall.  I also hang out with other Patman Racing members the Cooks, the Taylors, the Pattisons, and Brian Pruner.  I also stop and shoot the bull-poppy with Scott Wilbanks, Chris Leonard, Mark McDonald, and Eric Robbins on a regular basis.  then there's that McFresh charcter and that damn Nathan Price of course.  Craig Pundt is a super-nice guy, and his parents are just as nice as anyone can be.  Actually, almost without fail everyone out there is friendly.  There's a definite sense of camaraderie out there at the races.  Of course, there will always be those that feel they can cheat, take you out with danger markings around, and generally act like s*%theads, but those are few and far between.  And I certainly can't neglect to mention my fabulous spousal unit, Cindy Gross...

McFresh - We all know you're a pretty avid web designer, how did you get involved in that?

Pat - I was just goofing off on the Internet one day (what else is new?) when I stumbled upon Tripod, saw that they had an easy website-creator program, and had a page up and running in no time.  Boy am I glad most people haven't seen that one.  Not that I'm Mr. Professional now, but some of thsoe first efforts I made at making pages were really horrible!  Anyway, it's just something that I've gotted addicted to, and really enjoy doing.  Anyone that needs a website, be sure to let me know.

McFresh - Is there anyone that you would like to thank for helping, or supporting you at the races?

Pat - Well, sure.  There's Rob and Michelle Cook for kindly allowing Cindy and I to sleep in their trailer.  There's the entire Patman Racing crew for the mirth and intelligence.  There's Scott Wilbanks, for being an all-around nice guy.  There's Nathan Price, for proving that "friendly" competition really does exist, and for showing that our youth hasn't gone to hell in a handbasket.  Even though he always tans my hid if he doesn't get a flat.  Then there's that McFresh character, I haven't quite figured him out yet.   

Thanks alot Pat for taking the time to be interviewed.  I really appreciate it.  Good luck to you and Wheels-Off Web Design.  Check back here later for more interviews.  If you would like to be interviewed please E-mail me.

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