First, I just want to take this opportunity to apologize to Mr. Terren O’Dell. A few weeks ago in a Vintage Vibes column I completely skipped listing his name on who was featured in the video. It wasn’t on purpose and I DO NOT have a vendetta against the man. The good news is that he earned himself his own T-Dog Shack column for my terrible accidental oversight. He’s earned a dog name too for being an OG of vurbmoto. He now goes by O’Dell Dog.
If you go back and search through all the old amatuer race footage in the Vurb archives you will find terabytes of Terren O’Dell footage. He was always up in the mix giving guys like Eli Tomac, Justin Barcia, Lowell Spangler, Blake Wharton, Vince Friese, and Ben Lamay fits. So what happened and where did O’Dell Dog go? Why did I completely brain fart and not list him in the stacked pro class of 12-13 years ago? Luck for you, I have all the answers and we are getting to the bottom of this right now.
Let’s start back in 2006 after Loretta Lynn’s when O’Dell won the Supermini title and moved up to big bikes. He signed on with the Rockstar Suzuki amateur team for 2007 and then again in 2008. In 2009 the economy was tanking and with it the once loaded Suzuki amateur team would crumble. O’Dell found a home with Rock River Yamaha for his final amateur year in 2009. It was last minute and the program was new, however O’Dell still put in a top five overall finish at Loretta’s that summer in 450 A.
That brings us to 2010 and O’Dell Dog’s only professional MX season. He raced the 450 class on his Rock River Yamaha as a true privateer. Yes, Mike Duclos (owner of Rock River) was bringing his bikes to the races and offering a great hospitality on race day, but O’Dell was trying to make ends meet while trying to open a team’s eyes. His best finish that summer was a 17th overall at Freestone with 15th being his best moto finish. In hindsight, O’Dell said that season was unbelievable for him and that it was a pleasure racing all of the other 450 guys. When that summer was over, O’Dell said that he was physically and mentally smoked. He didn’t get any offers from other teams. He spent most of 2011 laying low and practicing for Supercross in 2012.
The story that O’Dell Dog told me about 2012 is pretty intense. The year started out with Mr. and Mrs. O’Dell Dog talking about giving SX one more big hurrah. He sold everything he could to make a run at the 250SX West Region. With help from training with Shannon Niday, and Jim at Merge Racing on a bike, O’Dell made it work. He showed up and made every night show, but said that he put way too much pressure on himself to succeed. He said he never felt like he belonged out there and rode the bike like he was scared. On top of that his wife was pregnant with their first child, so it was time to call it quits. He had to find a job with consistent pay and take care of his family.
O’Dell didn’t touch a bike until 2020 when he bought a two-stroke and started riding for fun again. To make this story even better, O’Dell Dog qualified for Loretta Lynn’s this past summer in the +25 class. O’Dell said that it was unbelievable to be back at the Ranch and seeing so many old faces. He battled with Heath Harrison and Sean Lipanovich, just like it was 2008 all over again. Since O’Dell works 5-6 days per week he hardly had much preparation time for the event and he knew he had at least six good laps in each moto. He wanted to get onto the podium, but just came up a little short. O’Dell finished sixth overall with 7-6-6 scores. He was consistent, but he’s still hungry for that podium.
So, what is next for O’Dell Dog? Will we see him at Loretta’s again in 2022? At this point he’s not ruling it out. He wants to do Mammoth or Mini O’s at some point as well. Regardless of where he shows up next it’s just nice to know that we have one of vurbmoto’s OG’s back racing and having a great time. That’s what it’s all about.