Parker named state motocross champion in first year
The sport of motocross seems to be a natural fit for Caleb Parker of Thorsby.
The 14 year old recently completed his first year competing in a series and wound up becoming a 2018 state champion in four classifications.
As is the case with most racers, Parker enjoys hitting his marks and putting together blistering lap times.
According to Parker, prior to competing he had spent plenty of time riding around the yard and watching professional riders on television.
He grew up following the career of former professional racer Ryan Dungey prior to his retirement in 2017.
“He was so competitive and it was fun to watch how fast he was,” Parker said.
The intensity of the fierce competition in the Alabama State Championship Series was a dynamic that Parker thrived in.
“It kind of surprised me, because it was a lot tougher than I thought it would be,” Parker said. “There is never a dull moment.”
The racing season consisted of 12 events and was held from March to October 2018.
Some of the tracks on the schedule included Crossbone MX Ranch in Billingsley, Monster Mountain MX Park in Tallassee and Sand Mountain MX Park in Albertville.
Due to living in Thorsby, Parker rides a lot at Crossbone MX Ranch. The familiarity with the Crossbone MX Ranch allowed him to produce some of his fastest laps of the season at the track.
“At Crossbone I was way ahead of everybody and had even lapped like three people,” Parker said. “I can just ride that track faster.”
Most events lasted throughout the day and were broken down into multiple races in a variety of classes. Fields ranged from 15 to 20 riders.
“Sometimes they would have races back-to-back,” Parker said. “I’d have to pull my bike in and get on a different one. It was tiring, but it was fun.”
Parker raced 38 races throughout the season with 25 podiums and eight wins.
He was named champion in the 250 D, 125cc, Schoolboy 1 and Schoolboy 2 classes.
The championship was decided from a season-long points system that factored in the results of all 12 events.
An area that Parker felt most comfortable was his handling of the jumps on the various courses.
However, an area that he continues to work on is his technique through the curved sections.
With the success that Parker has had at level D, the plan is to make the transition to level C starting this upcoming season.
Although he is in the early stages of his racing career, Parker hopes to continue to master each level and move up through the rankings until he eventually accomplishes his dream of reaching pro status.