2020 AMA National Championship Ice Races in Oshkosh Wisconsin
The races were held at Miller’s Bay on Lake Winnebago midway between Green Bay and Milwaukee. 240 competitors registered and there were just about as many spectators which was amazing given the subzero cold. The races were hosted by High Voltage that is run by Ronster Ron Brefka. Proceeds were donated to cancer research, a passion of Ron’s since surviving Pancreatic cancer. Ron says that “every day is a gift, we are not guaranteed tomorrow” and that is how he lives his life. Through High Voltage he hosts several events each year, the High Voltage Street Drags, the Shovelhead Reunion, and the annual Ice drags. His purpose is to bring “Old School” back to motorcycling while supporting charitable causes.
Back to the races:
It was cold, I mean REALLY COLD!!! When we got up our thermometer read -5 with a -17 windchill. If you have ever lived in northern Wisconsin you know that is stay at home weather but not that day! I had promised Ronster Ron that I would provide first aid for his event and a promise is a promise. Preparing to be outdoor in those temperatures means layers. Lots of layers. I put on a turtle neck, a heavier tunic over that, an insulated jacket with fleece lining, a vest, and Ron gave me a windbreaker tunic to put over all of that. I added a neck warming hood (also had a hood on my jacket), and a stocking cap. On the bottom was insulated leggings, thick jeans and bib snow pants. Two pairs of wool socks in my Sorel books with cleats and insulated gloves with hand warmers completed my ensemble. Now, if I could just move! It warmed up to 7 degrees eventually with a -11-degree windchill. The sunshine and the chance to see friends warmed my heart. We were able to pull our truck right down to the track and pull up like we were at a drive-in movie. We spent more time out of the truck than in it but it sure was nice to be able to warm up from time to time.
These racing bring people from all over the country. One person was even from Brazil! We saw license plates from as far away as Texas. In addition to the serious expert races were citizen classes such as the kids races, hooligan (Antique) races, and citizen race. I thought for sure racers and spectators would need help staying warm. Much of my first Aid supplies were hot packs, hand and body warmers but people seemed prepared. Outside of a few hand warmers and a racer that high sided and needed to get x-rays I spent the day enjoying the camaraderie. After the event Ron & I talked more about how comforting it is for him and others to have someone providing first aid services.
At an AMA Grand Championship race there has to be an ambulance on standby but they are not there to take care of the smaller things. We talked about what a great fit it is to have Road Guardians at all High Voltage events! Have you been trained? Check out our website to learn more about Accident Scene Management training and supporting your community motorcycle events.