Friday morning we took an early flight from Manila to the Lanao Del Norte. I wish I could be more descriptive and tell you where that is in relation to Manila, but honestly I had no clue where I was going most of my stay in the Philippines. We landed into what seemed like an inhabited jungle. I was finding it hard to believe there was going to be a motocross track there. Sure enough after a short white knuckle drive, we arrived at the track. As I got out of the van I was instantly amazed how hot and humid the local weather was. It felt like stepping out of the van into a steam room. The track is built on the side of the hill and consisted of some decent jumps, whoops, lots of off camber turns and hard packed blue groove dirt,not one rut on the whole track. Shortly after a quick track walk, we headed back to our hotel. The hotel was very nice and had an awesome pool that I looked forward to using the next few days. Saturday morning came quick and so did practice. I met my mechanic Noel Paredes. He was super nice and referred to me as his “brother from another mother”, we hit it off instantly and he had me laughing all weekend with his humor. He threw some fresh tires on for me and I set my levers and bars on the 2012 kx 450F I would be racing. I went out for a few laps to get comfortable on my bike. The suspension was really soft , like it was either set up for a light kid or I was extremely overweight by Asian standards. I ended up going all the way in on the compression clickers to make it rideable. During practice I was following Glenn and he got a little sideways and high sided hard. He slammed the rock hard dirt and broke some ribs. I ended up giving him a ride back to the truck where he ended up going to the hospital later to get further checked out. My main competition and friend was now injured and out of the race. I was bummed for him. The first race was Open Pro. It was about to start and I headed down to the gate. The 30 second board went sideways and the gate instantly dropped. I guess they don’t wait 5-10 seconds like the states. I got a horrible start and went into the first corner in the back of the pack. I ended up making some good passes the first lap and caught up to the top 4. I battled with the top 4 guys most of the race and horrible arm pump. Apparently so was my competition, I ended up getting by the next few riders and pulled off a second place. Not bad, but the leader checked out and beat me by probably 10 seconds. I was a little disappointed with my results in the first moto. My second race was Open Pro International. This moto I got a much better start and went into the first corner in the front of the pack. I ended up coming in a little hot and wasn’t able to hold the inside line and came out of the first time in third place. I made a pass for second a few laps into the race and ended up passing the leader for the win with a few laps to go. It felt good to get a win. I was pretty happy after that moto. Later that afternoon I got a chance to meet Khalid Dimaporo, the governor of Lanao Del Norte. He was a motocross fan and racer himself. Come to find out he was responsible for having the track built. We all talked about motocross and politics for a few hours and I was honored to have the chance to meet him.