AMSOIL Arenacross setup at BOK Center is down and dirty affair
BY ZACK STOYCOFF World Staff Writer
Friday, January 25, 2013
1/25/13 at 3:24 AM
Spreading 170 truckloads of dirt over an arena floor takes less than a day in Bill Heras' business.
By nightfall, the dirt is clumped, pounded and pressed into the winding, undulating track of 6-foot ramps and sudden curves that draws motocross fans to arenas across the country.
"It's high-intensity racing," said Heras, the events manager for AMSOIL Arenacross. "You get pretty close, tight racing action."
The BOK Center will host the fourth race of indoor motocross league's 2013 season this weekend, with dozens of local and professional racers set to jockey for position atop truckloads of dirt poured over the arena's ice rink Thursday.
Relying on wood planks covering the ice, dump trucks were expected to cover the rink in 170 trips - a typical number for Arenacross facilities, Heras said.
Crews spread the dirt to a depth of about 8 inches, and then bulldozers pushed it into mounds that were to become ramps, he said.
Obstacles such as lane dividers followed.
It's not the first time that Arenacross has buried the BOK Center floor.
The league comes to Tulsa about every two years and always attracts a good crowd, Heras said.
"I know Tulsa's always a good one," he said. "It's always welcome in Tulsa."
The first racing is planned Friday, when qualifying rounds will begin narrowing the pool of racers to 16 for each of the main events Saturday and Sunday.
Saturday's event features professional racing with two classes - "Arenacross class," with large bikes and top-level riders, and "Arenacross Lite," with smaller bikes and less experienced riders, Heras said.
Those events draw professionals from across the country but will likely include local racers, he said.
Amateur racers will be featured Sunday.
After the events, crews will push the dirt to the middle of the arena, scoop it up and dust off the remains - all within a day, Heras said.
The dirt will then go back to a local stockpile, where it will wait to be used again, he said.
Weekend of AMSOIL Arenacross events slated
What: Professional racing
When: 7 p.m. Saturday; doors open at 6 p.m.
Cost: $20-$30 adults, $5 kids*
What: Amateur racing
When: Noon Sunday; doors open at 8 a.m.
Cost: $15 adults, $5 kids*
*Tickets cost $2 more at the door. Advance tickets available at BOK Center box office or by calling 866-7-BOK-CTR
Original Print Headline: Motocross setup is down and dirty affair
Zack Stoycoff 918-581-8486
Pete Henderson, a member of the Dirt Crew, uses a bulldozer Thursday to make an arenacross track as the advance crews set up for AMSOIL Arenacross race that will be held on Saturday at the BOK Center in downtown Tulsa. JOHN CLANTON/Tulsa World
Pete Henderson, a member of the Dirt Crew, talks with Rion Baker on Thursday about what they need to get done as the advance crews set up for AMSOIL Arenacross race that will be held on Saturday at the BOK Center in downtown Tulsa. JOHN CLANTON/Tulsa World