Two Penticton teens are preparing to race in the upcoming Future West Moto final round at Williams Lake, and both are looking to achieve their own personal goals in the last meet of the season.
Jackson Logie, a Grade 12 student at Pen High, will be racing alongside Alex Gatt, a Grade 10 student at Princess Margaret Secondary School, in the 250 Junior Trophy 1-3 and Open Junior Trophy 1-3 categories. Logie said he prefers the open class, usually finishing within the top 10 in the competitions leading up to this final meet.
“I find there’s not as many people in the open class, and 250-cc being lighter, I get better starts,” said Logie. “I’m aiming to finish in the top three would be my goal. I usually never stray from the top 10.”
Gatt intends to leave the junior division after this season and hopes to do so on top, aiming to place first or second in Williams Lake in his categories. He also plans to race in the Under 30 category, stating he normally finishes in the top three in those races as well.
“I’ve been contending for wins almost every weekend. I’m at the point where I’m just a little (behind) the person ahead of me. So going into this last round, I’d have to beat him in every moto,” said Gatt. “It’s definitely doable. I know I’m faster than him, he’s just more consistent than me.”
Both teens started riding dirtbikes and motorbikes recreationally at a young age, with Gatt following his parents’ lead and entering the competitive circuit at just four years old. Logie took a short break from the sport to focus on competitive swimming with KISU Swim Club but began racing competitively again two years ago.
The teens said they didn’t know each other prior to racing against one another, and rivalry turned to friendship as they’ve gotten to know each other over the past couple years. Logie even joined Gatt and his retired pro rider dad, Dino Gatt, for training in California for a month last spring. All three are planning to make the trip again next year for four more weeks of training.
The Williams Lake competition will be bittersweet because it will be the last time Gatt and Logie will race in the same category for the foreseeable future, with Gatt ready to enter the intermediate division after this season. The pair said it can be hard to go up against your friend, but they have enjoyed the experience.
“It can be hard, but he’s never gotten in my way or anything,” laughed Gatt.
“There have been a couple of times where I thought he was lapping me, and I let him by just to find out he had crashed early on in the moto,” said Logie. “I once saw him and the other guy battling for first lock pegs, so they went wide open around the corner.”
Gatt added with a chuckle, “Yeah we went over the bank right into the ditch. My bike ended up on top of me.”
When it comes to getting their mindset right before a race, Gatt and Logie are polar opposites. Logie confessed to being “annoying and talkative” right before a race, a trait that Gatt acknowledges and tries to avoid.
“I just get really annoying and talkative. I don’t get in my headspace (or at least) I try not to, or I just start thinking about stuff that’s happened in the past like being landed on twice or tearing my ACL and MCL,” said Logie with a laugh. “So I just think about stupid stuff when I’m at the starting gate, and annoying him.”
“I’m always really far away from him now because of that,” said Gatt. “Usually on the start, it’s 30 people going into one corner and I know I’m one of the fastest guys. No one is going to hit you unless you make it happen, so I don’t worry about that I just focus on going as fast as I can.”
Logie and Gatt also have different methods of gearing up for a competition, with Logie running drills to build up his endurance and stamina and Gatt tweaking his bike to ensure he’s happy with its calibration.
Competition aside, both said they’d like to see an increase of motocross supporters in the area since it seems the sport is not as developed here as it is south of the border.
They added they are always looking for more sponsors to support their racing, noting expenses such as getting to the competitions, gate fees and accommodations can add up quickly.
The Future West Moto final round starts today in Williams Lake, with racing on tomorrow and Sunday.