RENO, NV (Jan. 13) – The MRANN (Motorcycle Racing Association of Northern Nevada) awards banquet is time to honor the achievements of those that raced last season. It also was a chance to honor the two founders of the organization as well as a rider lost this past year.
Topping the points for the 2017 is Reece Honea, and next year he’ll carry the Blue #1 plate.
Asked about his plans at the season’s start Honea explained that the title was in his plans.
“Especially after my last year previous to that I wanted to go out there and just get the overall championship. That was my goal so I set out for it and got it. I just wanted to be always winning the races so that was my goal, to ride smart, try to win the championship and that’s what I did.”
Then he thanked his sponsors for their support.
“The big person is M.J. Berenbak with Berenbak Plumbing, Big Valley Honda, Reno Motor Sports, General Transmission, Tina Bodden Realtor and girl friend,” he said. “For next year I’m just kind of playing it by ear by now but already missed the first round of the Big 6 Series. I want to do Endurocross but have to find a bike for that.”
This year MRANN celebrates its 20th anniversary and early in the ceremony the two founders, Paul Ziegler and Dennis Belingheri, were honored.
Belingheri explained how when these two friends from Las Vegas came north they were surprised at the lack of racing and how it wasn’t really a family affair.
Thanks to them MRANN has become a family affair with riders from all ages getting a chance to ride and compete.
Then the awards began with Saturday referee Beth Legenbauer handing out the hardware for those that race on that day.
In her comments she mentioned how fun it is to see the youngest and younger racers grow both in speed and skill. Not to mention the interaction between families and groups as most MRANN races, which are two-day affairs, usually become a big camp out at each location.
On Saturday racers from under 6-years-old all the way through Women and Bombers compete. These days usually end with the Team Racers where pairs of rider compete.
Last season the team championship was won by the father-son duo, Josh and Austin Wilson. They earned a special trophy that is divided in two parts, which fit together.
One of the special awards handed out was the Sportsman of the year. It was decided that the previous winner would hand it to the current one.
Well this time 2016’s winner Dave Zotter got to hand the 2017 award to his daughter Julianne.
Another set of awards are scholarships named after the late Corey Herring. This year winners are Morgan Martin, Taylor Kemp an Skylar Mattison each received one of the scholarship, which was handed out by Herring’s parents.
There were also three Hard Luck awards handed out to a trio of Saturday racers and Brody Honea gave those to the young riders.
Each season MRANN members vote on the Race of the Year. This time it was the race put on at Wells, Nevada by the Gold Diggers Motorcycle Club.
Then things got somber as Josh Morros, who passed away Christmas Eve was remembered.
Both Ziegler and Bob “Moto Mouth,” Cavakis remembered his racing when he, at age 14, became the youngest rider to win the overall points championship. That was before he became the youngest pro rider hired by Team Green Kawasaki.
Sadly Morros had a carrier ending crash around nine years ago but battled back and put his talents to use helping others recover from their injuries.
After the tributes his father John Morros got up and spoke to the crowd. And for the first time in its history MRANN officially retired the number Josh Morros raced with.
Now no one will race with number 351 as it will always belong to Morros.
There were a few breaks in the ceremony as raffle prizes given out then it was time to honor the big bike racers that ride on Sundays.
It began with the oldest and most veteran riders in the 60 plus class as the ageless duo of Pete Prichard and Scott Mass ended up one-two. Following that Beth Legenbauer was awarded the Women’s championship trophy.
She also expressed her wish that more women would join her on Sunday.
The awards went through all age categories then the top 20 in points were awarded the number they’ll carry next year. Everyone gets a blue number for their front plate.
Unfortunately second place Dan Capparelli wasn’t unable to attend the banquet but third place Brody Honea was. Then the number one plate and special trophy were awarded to Reece Honea.
After that the ceremony was over the party began with dancing and music. Now everyone has about a month before the Trailblazers begin the 2018 season on the weekend of February 17/18.
REPORTER’S NOTE: Besides myself Amy Fye was also photographing the awards as she does for most races. You can access her photos at, www.amyfyephotography.com. There is a photo gallery of my photos at the end of this article.
OTHER RACING NEWS:
- Members of the Northern Nevada Kart Club attended the KPX awards banquet in California this weekend.
Jess Peterson is the Champion of the Senior 206 class while Brian Rivera wound up second in Masters 206. Zach Rivera was third in Senior 206 and named Senior Driver of the year while young Tarron Graves was the champion of the Honda Kit Kart Class.
• This reporter will be on Teresa’s Garage Radio Show on Tuesday. The show runs from 2 until 3 p.m. and my part is usually around 2:15 or I’m on for the entire show.
Good show about all things automotive an I encourage you all to give it a listen.
MRANN – 2017 Class Champions:
• Saturday Races:
Pee Wees: Peyton Mass, 6 & Under, Jesse Miller, 7 & Over, Trenton Johnson, 4 Stroke.
65cc: Seth Rigsby, Novice, Dalton Legenbauer, Amateur, Jordan Maas, Expert.
100cc: Blair Rankin, Novice, Camie Ingram, Amateur, Caleb Bonneville.
Women: Jamie Jenks, Novice, Shannon Fieste, Amateur, Taylor Kemp, Expert.
Bomber: Scott Martin*, Curtis Calder.
• Sunday Races:
Women: Beth Legebauer*.
60+: 1. Pete Prichard*, 2. Scott Maas.
50+: JohnBarron, Novice, Keith Alosi*, Amateur, Chris Sunderland, Expert.
40+: Peter Pensotti, Novice, Ryan Albert, Amateur, Jack Reader*, Expert.
30+: James McMurray, Novice, Alan Morton, Amateur, Jake Himphill*, Expert.
Open: Henrey Anderson, Novice, Dane Johnson, Amateur, Reece Honea*, Expert.
4-Stroke: Anthony Monachelli, Novice, Nathan Owen, Amateur, Donavyn Morris*, Expert.
250cc: Jacober Brandon, Novice, Kurtis Gray, Amateur, Brody Honea*, Expert.
200cc: Riley Wood, Novice, Kody Gray, Amateur, Chris Maas*, Expert.
* – Class champions.
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