Set up your ATV to go fast like the pros with David Haagsma
David Haagsma is a force to be reckoned with in the ATV racing circles of the West Coast. In 2015 he earned himself a WORCS championship win, along with taking home the title from the Quad-X series. This year Haagsma has a new plan—to compete full-time with the big boys of the ATV MX Nationals back east. And to help ensure that his quads are in top condition to race he depends on his long-time friend and mechanic, Allan McCostlin. You could be one of the most talented racers in the world, but a well-built and -setup machine is your ticket to winning. Haagsma’s quads are equipped with top-quality products from the tires up that are designed for high-performance racing. We caught up with #422 David Haagsma and his mechanic Allan, and here is what they have to say about their racing career in 2015 and plans for 2016.
DIRT WHEELS: How did racing WORCS go for you in 2015?
DAVID HAAGSMA: The 2015 WORCS season was amazing. I was very consistent and had no issues thanks to my mechanic, Allan McCostlin. I think I was on the podium every round and won quite a few races. It felt great to win the championship, and it wouldn’t have been possible without all the amazing people and sponsors behind me.
DW: You also won a championship in the Quad-X series; how do you feel that will relate to the upcoming ATV MX Nationals of 2016?
DH: Winning the WORCS and Quad-X championships this year gave me a lot of confidence, and I hope to bring that confidence into the ATV Nationals for 2016. It’s going to be a lot of hard work to compete with those guys, but I’m ready for the task.
DW: What are all of the series you will be competing in for 2016?
DH: My main focus will be the ATV MX Nationals, but I will also still be doing the full Quad-X series and almost all the WORCS races. It’s going to be a busy year but I’m excited.
DW: With new tracks, weather conditions and competition, do you have a new training plan set in motion?
DH: Yes, I’ve been riding a lot more and trying to gain some more speed and stamina, but off the track I will definitely be doing a lot more preparations than I usually do.
DW: What are your expectations for your first full year of racing the ATV MX Nationals?
DH: I just want to be able to give it my all and learn from every race. I am going to try to podium every race that I can and just be consistent.
DW: Will this be a one-year commitment, or do you plan to continue racing the ATV MX Nationals after this year?
DH: I’m definitely planning on at least two years. No matter how well my rookie year goes, I think I’ll be more of a threat in my second year.
DIRT WHEELS: How long have you been a part of David Haagsma’s racing career?
ALLAN McCOSTLIN: I started helping David when he was 13 and have been helping ever since.
DW: Where did you get your first steps into the profession of being a mechanic for racing?
AM: I use to race professional ATV flat track. I actually rode for our engine builder, Curtis Sparks, for a while. I gave it up for a job offer I could not pass up. I then met David and his family and started wrenching for and helping him. I’ve done this full-time for around five years now.
DW: You mentioned you raced yourself; when and what series/machines did you race?
AM: I raced pretty much any and every flat-track series on the West Coast and was able to go back east and race quite a few ATV Nationals also. I can’t remember how many exactly, but I won around 20 ATV Pro championships on the West Coast. I raced a 1988 Honda 250R ATV.
DW: Are you excited for the ATV MX Nationals? What preparations do you have for this new endeavor of yours and Haagsma’s career?
AM: Yes, I’m very excited. We have been fortunate enough to be able to race a few ATV MX Nationals each year for the last few years, so we know how it all works back there, and we are not going into it blind, which is great. The biggest thing on my end is making sure every single part of our program and bike builds are perfect, and David is in shape and ready to go. If one thing is off racing with the big boys back east, it’s over. Everything has to be perfect to have a chance for podium finishes back there.
DW: What are the major differences in setting up an ATV for Grand Prix racing versus motocross?
AM: There are quite a few differences. MX ATV’s are lightweight, and they run standard fuel tanks and small MX tires. They do not run any sprocket guards or brake rotor guards. The offroad (WORCS) ATVs are a lot heavier because they do run sprocket and rotor guards, bigger fuel tanks, and bigger wheels and tires. The off-road bikes are basically built for what I call survival. You have to make sure they can go out and do a two-hour race through mud, rocks, trees, dust and whatever else you can think of. It’s not often you see a rider that can win in off-road and motocross. Beau Baron and David are definitely gifted, as they have won races and championships in both off-road and MX, which is an awesome accomplishment.
H&M MOTORSPORTS 2016 SPONSORS
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Finish Line Signs
The Winning Team (Dye Fusion Apparel)
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