HomeFeatures & ColumnsRalphie Navarro : Star Racing Challenge - Round 1

Ralphie Navarro : Star Racing Challenge – Round 1

Star Racing Rider Challenge Update First Round


Star Racing - Ralphie Navarro

When I signed up for this challenge I did have a certain level of confidence, although we had a long winter with no opportunity to practice I was not too worried about how the competition, I know it would be fair. Although I was more interested on the experience than anything else, I started to realize how serious it was when I received a call from Rolfe. The conversation with him helped me realize how serious the competition could get. This is seriously going to be the “American Idol” of pro stock motorcycle racing. I have absolutely no experience on the motorsports industry, I have never ran in an event other than landspeed racing events and those are pretty quiet.

Star Racing - Ralphie Navarro
Coming in day one, confidence starts being affected a little by the anticipation and the pressure of having to be interviewed by Rolfe, Angelle and Jackie. First, I didn’t know or cared about my communications skills in this sport; I just wanted to get on the bike and keep improving my performance. Once interview, speech and other “interpersonal skills” were tested, I am began to realize how much more is to this sport.


Star Racing - Ralphie Navarro

First round of interviews, and speeches were completed and I left the room thinking “I’m going home early” First run begins with a burnout and a 60 foot run, trust me me it sounds easy and it is, if you have the required skills. First, to do a burnout and launch this machine to accomplish this distance as closest to one second as you can while displaying 100% control, easier said than done.

Star Racing - Ralphie Navarro
Second run comes in with a little over 330 foot-mark, same as the first run and again the goal is to go as fast as you can while uncompromising control and safety.

The remaining runs will increase incrementally while one each run you do get coached by George and Angelle (can’t get any better than that) and you will fight the urge to peek at their paperwork to see how you are scored (you are better off taking a deep breath and relaxing, go ponder on what you just did and move on to the next step).

Before you know, it is lunchtime, you are either taking a break or pushing (collectively) to move on and speak or do something through lunch time, just because adrenaline is forcing you to.

Star Racing - Ralphie Navarro

On the second day, the experience gets even better, hopefully you will advance enough to perform like a real prostock racer in all aspects and will learn to appreciate and understand how and why certain things happen.



The overall experience

I have been to the Star Racing PSM School a few times, and yes it has been instrumental to my performance thus far and anyone with any interest in winning, will need to practice, just like anything else.

Star Racing - Ralphie Navarro

It is evident the entire Star Racing operations is a well established business, and I am sure like everything else in this country it is operated like a business. I doubt anyone would want to do this for free. Those of you who don’t know how much your motorcycle cost you to to go down the track you either have way too much money to care, you are running someone else’s stuff or you don’t know better. The point I am trying to make here is that if you are concerned about how much money they are making on this deal you are off to a bad start.

Here is what I got from my investment, I got to learn the experience of sportsmanship; complaining, whining, making excuses and blaming others for my failures is simply not good sportsmanship. There are no do-overs, red-lights, missing shifts, not running straight it is always operator error. The best thing to do is to put it behind you learn from it and put it behind you. I also learned to appreciate even more competitors in the motorsports industry. The way they are judged, pressured and scrutinized by fans and media is unbelievable. And trust me unless you are on a NHRA or Nascar high points top competitors chances are that YOU reading this make more money than these competitors. They first go in for the passion and hope for the reward later.

Star Racing - Ralphie Navarro

Having the experience to work with the Star Racing Team is like none other, Ken Johnson is like no other, there is no fascade, what you see is what you get; never a lie, never a hypocritical demeanor, Jackie Bryce is the heart and the brains, I just can’t get enough of her; she will make business is done with fairness and will always listen to anyone and will do whatever it takes to make your experience a good one. George Bryce is a walking history book, go ahead, tap into it, he will let you. Angelle Sampey, everyone knows her, but know her beautiful personality who is a little too hard on herself but get close enough and you will see how much more she is…oozing love for family, a heck of a wife and an award winning mother; and go ahead ask her anything about her skills and how to get there, she seems not to get enough of it.

Star Racing - Ralphie Navarro

Making it to the next step of eliminations was a surprise and a bonus, sore losers will always come up and will soon be forgotten. I am so proud to be part of the first group, the original 25 (I want a sticker from Star Racing that reads the SRRC first 25) and humbled that I am 24 friends richer today, so as far as I am concerned, I’ve already won. I will share that I ended with my best ET and RT of my life but this is honestly in my life the second most important accomplishment in this contest.

Good luck to all on the rest of this journey and I hope you bring your game on.

– Best
Ralphie Navarro


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Star Racing - Ralphie Navarro

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