Rifle youngster returns home after race in Detroit

Ethan Webb of Rifle gets ready to take off at the KTM Jr. Challenge at the Monster Energy Supercross race at Ford Field in Detroit Saturday, March 19.
Provided |

In a trip that was a dream come true, 8-year-old Ethan Webb of Rifle capped off a great weekend of racing at the KTM Jr. Challenge at the Monster Energy Supercross race at Ford Field in Detroit by finishing 8th out of 15 riders.

Racing in front of 60,000 fans on the same track that the pros rode on, Ethan was nervous and slightly afraid of the loud noises around him as fireworks went off inside the domed stadium. But once the gate dropped to start the race, Ethan proved strong on the KTM-issued bike.

“He had a lot of fun out there; it was a great experience for him,” Brenda Cruz, his mother, said. “It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience for him and he loved every second of it. He came off the track with a big smile on his face.”

The Rifle youngster didn’t crash once, staying on the bike throughout the three laps on the track.

Prior to the race, Ethan and his parents, Brenda Cruz and Chelsea Webb, along with his younger brother, Alex, arrived in Detroit early Friday morning after a long flight.

Being in a new city for the first time, the family decided to stay in that day and hang out at the hotel, knowing that Saturday at Ford Field would be a long day.

Once they arrived at the track Saturday morning, Ethan was able to meet pro riders such as Malcolm Stewart — who went on to win the 250 event that day — as well as Ryan Dungey — who originally won the 450 event that day before being docked two positions for an on-track penalty.

Getting to rub elbows with the pros was just one part of a great weekend for Ethan and his family, who returned home earlier this week.

“KTM did a great job with these kids by treating them like pro riders,” Cruz said. “The whole weekend was just an incredible experience for Ethan and the rest of us. KTM put on a great show and we were just lucky to be part of it.”

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