TODDVILLE — Jamie Bennett has transformed his past experiences and made a new journey for himself in the world of motocross.
“His attitude on and off the track is awesome and makes him a very valuable person,” said friend Bailey Strausser, who handles his social media and public relations.
Bennett, of Toddville, will compete in the Rocky Mountain ATV/MC AMA Amateur National Motocross Championship at Loretta Lynn Ranch in Hurricane Mills, Tenn., later this month. This national competition is the largest, and highest, amateur championship in the world.
Bennett, 45, picked up motocross at the age of 4, after watching his older brother. He started racing competitively at age 5.
“You were supposed to be 6 to start racing so I was six for a couple years,” he said.
He continued to compete until 1997 when he suffered an injury, limiting the amount of racing he did. Bennett still continued to be involved in the motocross community. In 2010, he opened Bennett Motorsports, a shop located in Toddville for motocross, ATV, UTV parts and accessories along with apparel and repairs.
In 2013, Bennett decided it was time to get in better shape. While working out at Farrell’s Extreme Bodyshaping, he was challenged with setting a goal. One goal came to mind — getting to Loretta Lynn’s Ranch to race in the amateur national championships.
After making the national field in the Senior 40-plus category with intentions of winning, he “did pretty well for what I put into it,” he said.
Bennett wasn’t satisfied, however.
Fast forward a couple years and the goal is the same.
He has transformed his training and efforts to get back to the amateur national championships.
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“Jamie has done so much this year to prepare for this, and has put his entire heart and soul into it,” Strausser said.
This time, he has a “better training program now than I’ve ever had. It’s really challenging.
“You have to be really physically fit to ride a motocross bike,” he said.
The current program includes strength training, cardio and a nutritionist, along with the help of ex-racer Jonn Strausser, a former customer of Bennett.
To qualify for nationals, Bennett went to an area qualifier in Tigerton, Wis., winning all four of his races, two in each class. That led him to the regional qualifier in Millville, Minn., where he won six races with three races in each class, earning him a spot at the national championships.
“This is very cool for all of us to watch because he is so humble about everything,” Strausser said. “He is fantastic but won’t come up to you and tell you he’s fantastic.”
Going back to Loretta Lynn’s ranch years later, Bennett is competing in the Senior 40-plus and Senior 45-plus categories. The competition runs July 30-Aug. 4.
“His success will be well deserved. Follow along, it’s gonna be great,” Strausser said.
To follow Bennett’s journey, you can follow @BennettsJourney2018 on Instagram and “Bennett’s Road to Loretta’s 2018” on Facebook.