Staging a motocross racing series in the Payson Event Center, where horses normally reign supreme, was a Herculean task.
For almost two days, four veteran construction workers using both dump trucks, backhoes and loaders hauled tons of dirt in PEC to construct the track, jumps and hills the riders first used the evening of Friday, June 27, for practice rounds.
By the time they were finished, the Event Center took on a whole new appearance, looking more like a speed racing facility than one where rodeos, ropings and gymkhanas are usually held.
"We finished just a few hours before the practice was to begin," said event spokesperson Michelle Worth.
Following the races, which were held June 28, the dirt remained in PEC for the next 2008 Summer Gold Motocross event, scheduled for July 5.
"We'll be back over the holiday," Worth said.
In addition to the weekend's racing, renowned motocross cyclist Zack McKinley will be at the Event Center from 6 to 10 p.m. July 2 and 3 to teach racing classes.
To enroll or for more information, call (623) 210-RACE.
At the June 27 event, which drew about 130 racers from around the state, five Rim Country cyclists -- Ryan Steelman, Mickey Stodghill, Austin Kriebel, Bobby Worth and Jeff Kelly, fared well, Worth said.
In the 250 cc beginners class, Steelman raced his way to a first-place finish. Stodghill was third in the 250 cc beginners class and Kriebel rebounded from a wreck in his first motocross race to win the second. He was entered in the 250 cc novice class.
Kelly also emerged a class winner as did Worth in the 450 cc big bike open division.
Also representing Payson were Drai Nichols and Irvan Vasquez.
In the Dash for Cash, which had a $150 first prize, Valley resident Bill McMaster rode his way to victory.
For those unfamiliar with motocross, it is a form of motorcycle or ATV racing on enclosed, off-road circuits.
It is distinct from other motorsports in that it has mass starts in which all riders line up alongside one another at the starting gate.
Worth said she wished to thank the Town of Payson, Rim Country Power Sports, Hooter Haught, E&E Paving, JMK Construction and Payson Concrete for their help in starting the Summer Gold events.