ALL IN: One Year Later

The 2022 JS7 Spring Championship at Freestone County Raceway in Wortham, TX is ready to commence in just one weeks time. And, because of that, I felt compelled to write a small story about our time at Freestone County Raceway just one year prior.

Originally, this article was set to go live last week and read much differently than what you are reading right now. However, shortly after completing the entire article, Wes Williams and his cohort, Brent Stallo, decided to delete the entire website within 20-minutes of me finishing this article. In doing so, it deleted (you guessed it) this article and could never be recovered. So, here I am, one week later, re-writing the same article. The only difference is this version is not nearly as funny or clever; all thanks to Wes and Brent. It’s okay, I am now numb to Wes declining all of my calls, ignoring my text messages, and burning his laptop to the ground every time I send him an e-mail.

So, the next logical step for him was to delete the entire website in hopes I would just go away. How Brent got caught up in the mess I’ll never know. But, I guess he hates me, too. Work for vurbmoto they said. It’ll be fun they said. Sheesh.

The Okay Tour circa 2021.

Last year, the lead up to Freestone was, uh… heavy duty. Wes and I were locked in what I dubbed The Tour De America. Or, as I also liked to call it, “The Okay Tour” because I would take a photo of the enormous amount of luggage we would have to stack on one of those carts. In roughly a 14-day span, we travelled to five or six different states? I can’t even remember anymore. I went from California to Florida to join Wes, then Florida to Georgia, a road trip from Georgia to Alabama and then back to Georgia. From Georgia it was Texas and Texas to back California. Our diet consisted of eating McDonalds 20 times. One week, we ate it 10 times in a six day span. So, yes, you’re right: our lives and jobs are 100% glamourous. #McDonaldsIsLife.

However, we did have a fun time. The highlight was the 2021 JS7 Spring Championship at Freestone County Raceway (does James even know he sponsors this race). One of the perks of working alongside Wes is that he knows where my abilities lay and what makes me the most happy and excited. And, that is pure freedom to create whatever I see fit. Wes’ only objective for me was to create a long form artsy piece from the week. This meant for me to go do my own thing and find a story to tell. I was so happy about this that I didn’t mind eating McDonalds 10 times in one week.

ALL IN – Part One: Team Green Kawasaki ft Ryan Holliday.

The first few days of shooting, I was simply wandering a bit aimlessly, shooting all kinds of different things while trying to figure out what the story was going to be. I believe it was about day three that I had the light bulb hit me which was the idea of ALL IN. Interviewing Team Green Kawasaki manager, Ryan Holliday, and former team manager to Monster Energy/Star Racing Yamaha manager, Wil Hahn, asking them each the same set of questions about amateur motocross and what it takes to be under their tents. They are the faces and voices that, essentially, hold the keys to the gate, but how do you enter?

I thought that concept would be a very unique and interesting take on amateur racing. And then, Wes and I realized we could split it into two episodes. A Kawasaki episode and a Yamaha episode. Once we had this realization in place, it was like the creative flood gates opened up and ALL IN turned into what it is today.

ALL IN – Part Two: Star Racing Yamaha ft Wil Hahn

The reception we received from ALL IN was unexpectedly positive. We weren’t sure if two longform pieces would even hit, but it appeared to us that people were actually craving longform pieces with substance and not the standard raws and “bangers” type of clips. Personally, it caught me off guard. I had thought if these pieces even hit 10,000 views it was a win because nobody would sit through two 20-minute pieces. But, it turns out that part one hit just over 130,000 views while part two hit just over 129,000 views. We were all like, “Um. Okay. Yes.”

Thus, we took the concept to Loretta Lynn’s in August of last year and those episodes of ALL IN will launch in July of this year (we haven’t forgotten). Now, one year later, Freestone is a week away and we are damn excited to be back out there. Will ALL IN return at Freestone? I don’t know. I hope so. But, Wes has to stop deleting the website and burning his laptop every time I reach out to him so that I can have that answer. Until then, enjoy watching the first and second installments of ALL IN from the 2021 events at Freestone County Raceway to help set the vibe for what will be a fun time.

Here is a sneak peak frame grab from our Loretta Lynn’s chapter of ALL IN, which will go live in July of this year.

Watch: RESPITE ft Jonah Geistler

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