By Clarence Plank: PNT Staff Writer
The rattle and hum of dirt bikes is a constant at the Dixon Motocross track.
What started a small practice track for the Dixon family has now grown into a full-fledged race track, luring motocross races from across New Mexico.
The track is eight miles outside of Portales on New Mexico state route 88. At first Dustin Dixon, his wife, Tanya, and her two step-sons Pecos and Pryce, used the track for practice.
But since Dustin was spending so much trying to keep the practice track in shape, the family figured something had to change.
“We had a practice track that was out here,” Dustin said. “That was a really small track. We were trying to keep it up for the kids so they would have somewhere to practice and we decided that if we’re going to keep it up, then were going to start racing on it.”
Tanya got into racing along with Pecos and Pryce. Tanya started riding a small bike and soon got a bike for Christmas. She’s been riding ever since.
Dustin said Pryce, 6, is at the age where most boys start getting into the sport. He said Pecos, 10, and Tanya, have a disadvantage because they are older.
“We started going to local tracks and it was something I really enjoyed,” Tanya said. “I’m spoiled by my husband who gets me anything I want. I wanted to race on my own track so (Dustin) started working on it and it started getting bigger and bigger.”
“We go to a lot different places actually,” Tanya said. “My competition is 17-year-old girls and they have been riding for sometime, so I have a lot of catching up to do.”
The track is nine-tenths of a mile long and, Dustin says, it has the best dirt for riding.
It took Dustin a month to build the track using a loader and small tractor. The family works together to keep the track going, with Dustin taking care of the track and Tanya doing the books, Web site and other responsibilities of
They try to make it possible for someone who races to at least get something. Dustin said they have put every penny into the track and just barely break even at times on race day.
“People come and they pay 15 dollars per class to ride,” Dustin said. “We give trophies back to the riders, so it turns out to be non-profit. We’ve got some places in town that sponsor the track.”
Lower fees give riders a chance to practice on Saturday and have a free race on Sunday, then the next class race is $15. Dustin said other tracks typically charge $35 or more to race and $25 to practice.
Dustin said he and Tanya put this track together so families will have someplace to go and have fun.
“We rodeoed,” Dustin said. “The reason we quit rodeoing is because the kids didn’t like it. They were going to the ropings and not really having any fun at all.”
The track usually features about 250 riders racing in different classes. Racers from across the state come to compete. Dustin said the parking lot is always full around race day.
The next practice is Jan. 10 with races Jan. 11.