The air was thick with the smell of exhaust and the sound of dozens of dirt bikes as the Pilgrim Sands Trail Riders Club held a hare scramble race in the woods around the Mattapoisett transfer station.
“We have about 300 members or so,” said Bruce Rocha, Jr., who helped organize the event. The Riders can be found living all over New England and over 100 rode in Sunday’s races.
The 2.5-mile track snaked from the sand pits to the wooded trails near the bulging hill of the town landfill, now green and dormant. The riders came in all ages, from teens to seniors, in several heats that blasted off from the starting line throughout the afternoon.
These sorts of races are family events, too. Most of the riders come from generations of dirt bike enthusiasts, like Rocha.
“There goes my oldest son, the one who just sped by us,” he said as the brightly colored rider gunned the engine down a straightaway.
“This is one of several races that we do every year, but this location is still new for us,” said Rocha. “We have another race coming up on November 18. We try to do as many as possible because they’re so fun and these guys really love doing it.”
He said there’s the possibility of another scramble coming to Mattapoisett in April of 2013.
Proceeds from the race will be part of an annual donation the Pilgrim Sands Trail Riders make to the fight against cystic fibrosis.
For more information, visit pilgrimsandstrailriders.org.
By Eric Tripoli