Friday, July 31, 2009


Hey everyone,
It looks like I have an internet connection so here’s a blog…. With no pictures… Hopefully I can post some race video footage tomorrow night.
I’m sitting in my hotel room after returning from the track and a quick stop (hamburger joint) for dinner. I’m staying at the Hotel Dunord in Linkoping. It’s around 10 minutes from the race track. It’s an older, small hotel but it has some character. Nice clean small rooms. Jeff and Leif’s brother Tommy are just down the hall (separate rooms!). The route to and from the track takes us right past the Saab aerospace plant. It’s been pretty wet today but most of the locals have said that the track should be in great shape for tomorrows racing. The forecast for tomorrow is calling for nice weather. That’s a big plus! Jeff and I got all signed in and our bikes went through tech with no issues.
I thought Randy Skiver’s tech inspections were sketchy until we went through tech inspection here… The track itself is fast and wide with a few long and short table top jumps along the way. The starting gate is 40 gates wide with a big long start straight. The setting is a lot like the Mid Ohio or the old Sears Point race. There’s road racing, trials, speedway as well as the motocross. Walking through the pits was interesting to say the least. Jeff and I were walking around checking everything out and a few people would start talking to us. Well…. Not understanding a word they were saying to us we would just smile and nod our heads yes and say the only Swedish word we know…. “Rovhol”…. They would stop talking to us after that…. Can’t imagine why?
That’s all for now…. Need to get some sleep… Big day tomorrow….

Thursday, July 30, 2009


Getting ready for dinner...
Hey Jeff... What are you doing with the whip cream!

One of Leif's many on going projects.... 1981 YZ490 with "factory" works triple clamps

Jeff and I displaying just a couple of the many "factory" works parts that Leif has

Today was a day to get the bikes seviced and make the minor changes needed before we head out to Linköping tomorrow. Our plan is to have most everything loaded and ready to go tonight and be on the road before noon tomorrow. The drive south to Linköping will take 2.5 hours. The weather outlook for the weekend looks good with no rain. Though it's been wet here today.
Tonight Jeff and I along with Leif's family went over to Leif's brother Tommy and his family's house for a smorgasbord dinner. Tommy lives not too far away in a town called Ludvika. The dinner was excellent!!!! Of course there were things that I wouldn't touch... The Swedish meatballs... Now that's another story. I certainly had my share for sure! Jeff went out on a limb and had horse meat... No way!!! He actually had some yesterday morning for breakfast. Give him credit for having the "Jimmy's" to try it...
This may be my last post until Monday. I've had to make these blog posts using Leif's computer. If I can get internet connection while in Linköping I'll be able to keep the blog rolling through the weekend. Also, I don't think I'll be posting any pictures on the blog until Monday. I've had to use Leif's camera (and photography skills) and download them to his computer before posting. I didn't come too prepared in the camera department to post pictures... I'll have pictures posted from the weekend on Monday for sure. If I'm lucky I'll be able to post some videos from the racing over the weekend.
That's all for now...
I hope everyone is staying cool...

Wednesday, July 29, 2009


Falun church

Lugnet Riksskid ski jump
Falun copper mine

Arne Kring's NOS Husqvarna collection

NOS 250 Husky

Arne Kring and a couple of Yahoo's

Hi everyone...
Today was a busy day of traveling for us. You wouldn't believe all the country and open space here in Sweden. The first stop for us today was a 2 hour drive to a city called Edsbyn to visit Arne Kring. Leif warned us that he has the reputation to be cranky and grumpy on occasion. I'll tell you that he couldn't have been more nicer to us. He took the time to talk to us and ask Jeff and I plenty of questions. He had some funny stories to tell himself.
Editors note: Arne would be a great guest to have someday at the Chehalis premier race.
Those of you who don't know who Arne Kring is... He was one of the first europeans to travel to race in the US as well as a World championship contender in the late 60's early 70's riding for the factory Husqvarna team. You wouldn't believe all the new Husqvarna parts and motorcycles this guy has. He purchased all the NOS Husqvarna parts that the factory had. Today he runs a successful bicycle, snow ski and lawnmower sales/repair business. Any of you Husqvarna nuts that may need a hard to find "new NOS" part.... He's you man...
After meeting Arne we drove to a city called Falun to do some shopping. Elyse and Stacee.... You'll be happy to know that "yes" we did buy you something! While in Falun we met a friend of Leif's named Tommy who will also be riding this weekend in Linkoping. After shopping we drove over to the Falun copper mine. It was an amazing sight for sure. One thing that you'll notice in Sweden is that the majority of the homes are painted red. The red paint comes from an extract of the copper mining process. This mine has been inactive for about 20 years. We also made a stop at the Lugnet Riksskid ski jump. There's a 90 meter jump as well as a 130.5 meter jump.
To kind of wind things down after returning to Leif's home we watched some videos from his band touring days. There's some funny stuff.... Those guys did have fun.... With you tube these days.... If I were any of Leif's bandmates I'd be awfully nice to him....
Tomorrow is just going to be a get the bikes ready for the weekend day then we're heading over to Leif's brothers house for a polar bear potluck dinner.... Can't wait!!!!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009


Hi everyone,
Today Jeff and I slept in until 10:30 Swedish time (1:30 am home time). Jeff felt pretty good but I felt like a truck had run me over. No alcohol was involved! We went out today and tested our race bikes at a place called Nyberget. It was good to get out and ride, though both of us felt we had never been on a motorcycle before. The YZ360 is certainly different than my YZ250. Both bikes ran great and only minor changes will be needed before the race this weekend. I couldn't believe this one, but there also some freestyle ramps set up near the track. Jeff and I took a look... For about two seconds!!! Could you imagine the horror on Leif's face if we would have taken a fifth gear run at one of those ramps!!!
Tomorrow we're going to take a trip out to Arne Kring's home to see his motorcycle collection then do a little shopping in a town called Falun.
Leif also taught us a new word today.... Rovhol... We have no idea (yes we do!) what it means but Leif told us to say this to our compeitition on the starting line and smile... a lot...
The picture of Jeff and I in front of the Sergels torg fountains was taken yesterday while in Stockholm. The motorcycle pictures are from todays practice session.
That's all for now....

Monday, July 27, 2009


Jeff and I have made it to Stockholm! The flight was looong. We did have a 1 hour layover in Reykjavik Iceland but we really didn't get to see much of Iceland. To be honest there wasn't much to see there anyway, but we can say that we've been there now. One more item crosswed off the bucket list! We met Leif and his wife, Ullis at the airport. We were a little concerned about our first meeting Leif. He did say he'd be the toothless guy wearing the hillbilly outfit, playing the banjo screaming "hog boys"!!!! Now that's a possible red flag....
All I can say is that's the furthest visual of Leif that you could imagine. Try visualizing a burnt out rocker instead! OK, not true. Leif and his wife are very down to earth people. For the people concerned about what Jeff and I were going to eat in Sweden you'll be happy to know that the first stop we made after leaving the airport was a McDonalds.... Happy meals for all....
What's funny here in Sweden is the Swedish spelling for enter and exit. The spelling for enter is infart and for exit the Swedish spelling is utfart.....
The next stop for us was Stockholm for a quick tour of this beautiful city. We walked through the shopping gallery which included the Sergels Torg fountains. I guess this is the area that is used when any Swedish sports team wins a championship. The parade and celebration can get pretty wild with many of the party goers jumping into the fountains.We also walked the grounds of were the King of Sweden lives... Try doing this at the Whitehouse.... When we arrived at Leif's house, which is located in a town called Saxdale, we met his two children. Rebecca is 14 and Isabella is 10. I don't know if this was there choice or not, but they were kind enough to give up their beds for us to sleep in during our stay.
Soon after Leif was taking us for a tour of his house, showing use his unbeilievable collection of NOS 1974 YZA and 1981 YZ 465 parts and bikes. It's amazing the hard to get parts he has collected. He mentioned that many of these parts he collected while touring and playing music.
Tomorrow, weather permitting Jeff and I will be out testing our race bikes for the upcoming weekend.
That's all for now...

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Sunday 7-26-09

I wanted to have this blog for family and friends to follow my experiences and time spent over in Sweden for a “once in a lifetime” chance to race oversees.
In a nutshell, this Swedish racing adventure was started by an email through my web site back in the spring of 2008.
Leif Sundin, the guy who sent that email has been kind enough to invite and host us for our stay in Sweden. I’ll be traveling with my friend Jeff May. Jeff or I have never traveled oversees before. One of our “big concerns” is what kind of food are we going to eat? Now... By looking at me (I don't look like I'm a starving Ethiopian) you wouldn’t think I’m a pickey eater. Well, I have news for you…. Just ask anyone who has traveled with me. Hopefully there’s a McDonalds or Taco Bell in town.... Leif has guaranteed us we won’t have to eat polar bear. That sounds encouraging… I think.
Leif built me this (pictured) beautiful “brand new” 1974 Yamaha YZ360A to race. This bike is set up with a “works factory” cylinder and head. I’ll also be racing a 1981 Yamaha YZ465. Jeff will be riding an "almost new" 1974 YZ250A as well as a 1981 YZ465. Leif has told me that he has enough parts to build 5 or 6 “new” YZA machines. He’s definitely a huge fan and collector of the 74 YZA models. I’ll need to be careful with the “I can’t hurt a loaner” YZ360 while riding this beautifully prepared machine. Jeff and I will be testing our race bikes on Tuesday to make sure everything is good to go.
To close this first blog I would like to give a "big thank you" out to a few people who are helping to make this trip possible.
My understanding wife Stacee for being supportive and basically putting up with my, which probably to her, seems like an incurable “motorcycle habit”

Leif Sundin and family for inviting Jeff and myself over to race in Sweden. Not only is he supplying us with great race bikes but he's also picking us up at the airport, hosting us in his home and pretty much he's going to keep us out of trouble (I hope) during our stay.

I’d like to thank Bruce Burwell, Rick Weidman and the rest of the gang a Rainier Cycles in Spanaway. They have supported me for over 25 years.

And finally Pete Treadwell and the gang at Fly Racing for being a huge help with their quality riding apparel. Great stuff!
That’s all for now….