Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Dream Chaser...Jesse Wentland.

The feeling you get as a kid on a dirt bike is unexplainable. Your friends don't get it, it's just riding a bike. This week as Loretta Lynn's makes amateur champions in Tennessee many kids sit behind the gate and dream of being a professional. Many will realize just how hard it is to even be at the highest amateur level, while others prepare for the next step.

Jesse Wentland is a guy who made 10 trips to Loretta Lynn's and in 2012 he made it count in the toughest class at the ranch. Jesse won the Open Pro Sport class and missed out on the 450A Championship by one point just before turning pro.

Photo: Diffysmooth

Winning a championship in the pro class should guarantee you a spot on a factory team right? Not always. Jesse spent 2013 racing out of a van, funding his program on his own with the help of his parents. Not really how you'd expect to see the kid who had recently been crowned the fastest amateur in the country.

He'd make the move to Canada to race their professional series on a Yamaha supported team, but still wanted more back home. "My main goal is to race in my country and reach my goals as a racer in the U.S." 

The now 21 year old from Elk River, Minnesota is in his 3rd year as a pro, but just his first complete outdoor season in the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship. Jesse is aboard the number 84 Honda. The help of the RSR Team has given him the tools to compete for an entire season and improve results.

Jesse really put his name out there this season after a 15th overall at RedBud earned him the FMF Privateer Power Award. He'd then back that up at his hometown race of Millville by going 12-12 for 12th overall. Currently Jesse sits 19th overall in the 450 standings with 62 points.

Photo: Diffysmooth

Jesse is a "goofy dude that loves to race a dirt bike." He has a passion for the sport and says "the confidence and satisfaction of doing well in a sport you love is the best feeling in the world." Focused and looking for a top 10 finish before the season is over, he still knows how to make light of the rough points to his season. "Budds Creek mudder, shoulda brought my canoe for that round."

Like most racers Jesse is hard on himself and says the biggest thing is keeping it fun. He takes a loving to sand tracks and maybe a little bit of ice cream. He loves motocross so much, that his favorite supercross round is Daytona. 

A very supportive family. Jesse's mom and dad along with girlfriend Katelyn and his trainer Dylon are the driving force behind it all. "I race because I love it, but I always want to make my dad proud." 

Jesse gets help from a great list of sponsors: Rick Schugel, Starr Cycle, Wisconsin Kenworth, Pro Circuit, Fox Racing, Works Connection, Renthal, Twin Air, Rekluse, Black Diamond MX, EKS Brand,  Loves Travel Shops, Motool, EDM Sales, Motorex, Dunlop, and VP Fuel.

Jesse gives a huge thanks to his mechanic Sean Robertson, team owner Rick Schugel and trainer Dylon Turner.

"Fans should know that us racers love to meet them. Don't be afraid to come up and say hi or get an autograph." Remember just a few years ago Jesse was that kid with a dream. His first trip to Loretta Lynn's was the 51cc 4-6 class in 2001. Jesse finished 36th overall. He's come a long way in the best sport in the world. He's still chasing dreams. 

Follow Jesse on Instagram @J_WENTS84

-Kyle Pesci

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