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Keeping Pace

Colbert teen Anderson flat out fast

In July, Wyatt Anderson traveled to Illinois for the AMA Amateur Dirt Track Grand Championships and won the 125cc Modified National Championship in short-track and half-mile racing and clinched the Grand National Championships in the 250 Modified and 125 Modified ranks.


Doug Pace

The Spokesman-Review

For Colbert native and incoming Mt. Spokane High School freshman, Wyatt Anderson, this summer has been spent learning the tricks of the trade as a flat-track AMA motorcycle rider with the hope of becoming a professional champion in just a few shorts years.

In July, Anderson traveled to Illinois for the AMA Amateur Dirt Track Grand Championships and won the 125cc Modified National Championship in short-track and half-mile racing and clinched the Grand National Championships in the 250 Modified and 125 Modified ranks.

Anderson has been racing for 10 years on the flat tracks of AMA and has four national championships to his credit in that span.

This summer’s annual trek to Illinois presented many challenges, according to Anderson.

“We were always make sure the bikes were tuned and working well, that our gearing, carburetor jetting and the correct tires were on the bikes. You have a choice of tires and we had to be sure to use cut (prepared tires) or uncut tires at just the right time and that the air pressures were right because the track was always changing.”

Inspired by a chance meeting with Mica AMA champion Joe Kopp, it has been a tremendous amount of travel and work to reach the goal of being ranked as an amateur flat-track rider, according to Anderson.

“We went to Duquoin, Ill., (for the AMA Amateur Dirt Track Grand Championships) which was 1,900 miles one way and that was one of the longest trips we’ve made,” said the Diamond A Motor- sports rider. “We usually put on around 10,000-15,000 miles on our rigs each year and that will more then triple once we go professional racing.”

Kopp has set the standard for flat-track riders to chase if they have cut their teeth in the Inland Northwest, Anderson said. With Kopp on the verge of winning the 2010 AMA championship, the freshman-to-be knows he has a great teacher.

“Joe just turned 40 years old and is still out there and fast everywhere they race,” Anderson said. “He’s one of the greatest flat-trackers of all time and he is the peer I try to emulate on the racetrack.”

Anderson’s immediate future includes settling into high school and some ice-track racing across North America once the snow starts to fly, the 14-year old said.

“(This winter) I have been invited to race in Alberta in a 24-hour endurance race on ice. We’d like to go to Michigan in January for the AMA Ice Race Nationals then maybe hit Florida in February for the AMA Winter Short Track Nationals. Our 2011 season will include a return trip to Illinois and next year (depending on how things go) may be my last as an amateur. So we’re going to try and win the AMA Horizon Award for the best flat-track racer of the year that is going into the professional ranks the following season.”

Fans will be able to catch Anderson this winter, should he compete in the Diamond A Motorsports flat-track program held on the grounds of the Spokane Interstate Fairgrounds. Diamond A was formed in part to give Inland Northwest riders like Anderson the opportunity to continue to race close to home when the weather becomes a challenge to travel.

For more information regarding Wyatt Anderson or Diamond A Motorsports winter programs in the greater Spokane area, log onto www.diamondamotorsports. com.


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Motorsports correspondent Doug Pace keeps up with motorsports news and notes from around the region.

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