With the Northeast still trapped in the cold snowy grip of winter, the Team EJP athletes headed to warmer areas of the country to make their 2018 racing debut. Andy Mathieu took his Husky 450 down to the famous Daytona Motor Speedway for the 9th Annual Ricky Carmichael Daytona Amateur Supercross taking place on the same infield track the pros raced the night before. Reid Lanpher got his season started at the NASCAR K & N Pro Series season opener in Bakersfield California. Both athletes provided strong results to kick off 2018!
This was Reids first time in Bakersfield California and his first shot at racing the famous Kern County Raceway. “This was probably one of my favorite tracks I’ve raced at. It had really aggressive banks and you could run both high and low lines…” said Reid about the track. “ We had a pretty stabile car but it wasn’t the quickest. I got up to around 7th but a slight motor issue pushed us way back. Once we got that figured out I made it back up to 10th. Not the best results..” He went on to say. Reid has a couple more shots at putting the #59 Picarazzi car on the box next month in Bristol and again mid summer at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Andy Mathieu returned to Daytona for his forth time. This year the track designers sculpted a course that was a little tougher than years past with Andy saying it was the hardest one he has ever seen. “They laid down a lot of sand and incorporated a lot of rhythms, it was supercross for sure.” Although he qualified through to the mains with ease, rough starts in the heat races on Sunday would result in some tough gate picks on Monday. “I honestly could have won both races if I had better starts but, thats why we race!” The 25 plus class was run during some fairly muddy conditions and Mathieu’s slow start would only allow him time enough to get up to 4th. In the 35 plus class the track had dried out and Andy seemed to have figure out his starts coming into the first turn in the top 5. He would pilot the Team EJP Husky to 3rd finishing out his weekend on the podium.