Trackside Talk is presented by: Portland Trail Riders, since 1967 the motorcycle club has been an active host and supporter of motocross, quad and hare scramble events the members welcome you to their 51st year of racing and hope you enjoy the new rebuilt track. For more information CLICK HERE
Most of us have heard of Dream Trax, Dirt Works and Mark Barnett as famous track builders, but Michigan has its own track building legend, if you want a great track that looks like a piece of art when it’s finished, call Jeremy Booher. Jeremy has been in the game for a while, and his client list shows it. With this weekend being the first ride at the newly "Booher Built" Portland Trail Riders, we sat down with him to talk all things track building and moto.
MIMX: So, Jeremy let’s start at the beginning how did you get stared building tracks?
Jeremy: When I was a kid racing on 80’s I got to know Vaughn Smith who raced and owned a local gravel pit. In high school and college I worked for Vaughn where thankfully he let me burn countless gallons of fuel, in my spare time, building our own tracks at his various gravel pits. Years later Vaughn then went on to open the Fenton Indoor, which I designed and built as well. Around that time I started getting requests to build a few private tracks and as word of mouth spread and my reputation grew more opportunities came along. Since then I’ve designed and built numerous private tracks, practice facilities, fair and supermoto tracks and have been fortunate to redesign and rebuild some of our local race tracks that I grew up racing on as a kid which is very cool.
MIMX: With this weekend being the first actual ride at Portland Trial Riders new track, how does the track build process begin?
Jeremy: Well it always starts with what the customer wants so in Portland’s case they wanted a completely new layout but the starting gate and scoring tower locations couldn’t change. I went to the track and did some laps to get reacquainted and a feel for everything, so my biggest takeaways were that it was one lined, hard to pass, trapped water on the track in places and there weren’t sufficient water truck lanes to properly water the track. They were open to any and all ideas, so I came up with various designs that were rider friendly for all skill levels, offered multiple ways the track could be configured, allowed for good drainage and included dedicated water truck lanes. We agreed on a final design and I broke ground after their season wrapped up in the fall. I’m sure there will be tweaks that need to be made but I really hope everyone enjoys it.
MIMX: Are there bigger limitations on rebuilding an existing track vs building one from scratch in a field?
Jeremy: Not necessarily, I’ve done both and every track new or existing is a unique situation and has its own set of opportunities and limitations so it’s my job to maximize each tracks potential.
MIMX: Favorite and least favorite obstacles to build?
Jeremy: My favorite would have to be big uphill floater step ups because they look really cool and they’re fun to jump. As for least favorite, I’d have to say tabletops mainly because they’re so time consuming to build.
MIMX: Are there any tracks you would like to work on?
Jeremy : Pretty much any track that the owners willing to give me an opportunity. (Laughs)
MIMX: Are there any tracks that you get inspiration from when redesigning a track or building one from scratch?
Jeremy : For sure, I get inspiration from my personal favorites like Red Bud and Martin, but I’ve also been to so many tracks across the country during my years of racing that I always try to pull from the tracks that I enjoyed the most.
MIMX: If someone were to reach out about a track at their own property, is that something you do?
Jeremy : Absolutely, if anyone would like to reach me they can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or message on Facebook or Instagram. MIMX: Thanks Jeremy and we can’t wait to see what your next work of art looks like come out April 21-22 to check out Portland Trail Riders new “Booher Built” track