We all know the phrase “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.” I don’t believe in that saying and would like to invite everyone to read along as I document the CAPiTA crew’s recent trip to Las Vegas for the 2003 Supercross finals. All of this was made possible when CAPiTA won Best Overall Team at the 2003 TransWorld Team Challenge. On May 2, 2003, Red Bull threw down big time and flew myself, Ryan Thompson, Tyler Lepore, Corey Smith, Rob Bak, and Luke MacMaster to Vegas for a two night stay at the luxurious Orleans hotel and casino.
DAY 1: We meet again.
I met Tyler Lepore at CAPiTA, and we were off to the airport. We had a layover in Salt Lake City where I got off the plane to use the ATM so we could get this party started right. When I arrived back at my seat, Tyler told me about an angry lady who really wanted to sit by him and said, “If you get out of your seat, you lose it.” I was obviously coming back because my backpack was right there, but she didn’t seem to care. She told Tyler she would “slap him silly” if I didn’t come back. When we landed, there was commotion in the back of the plane. It was the lady at it again, this time causing trouble with big tattooed guys.
We all met up with Rob and Ryan, who had arrived at the Orleans an hour earlier. They pointed out that our “Fun Book” had some great coupons for free drinks. This is good, because we are all poor and we know Vegas sucks you dry. We proceeded to get three sheets to the wind for free and then set up a time to meet with Hayes Weelis from Red Bull. I have never met the guy before so I thought it was pretty cool that he was going to get jiggy with us. We all hooked up at the Hard Rock where Luke began telling the ladies he was in The Strokes, and they fell for it hard. After numerous Red Bull cocktails, some haggared vampire chick really wanted to spend some time with Luke and Corey. Rob, Ryan, and I were drinking the place out of Red Bulls, when suddenly we all looked at each other with perma-smiles and realized we needed to get out of there. No one knows how we got back, lucky for us we did.
Day 2: What are we in Vegas for again?
We all rose from the darkness and hit the always pleasant buffet. We were hurting and remembered that we were going to the supercross finals in just five hours. We all got ready for the event, but needed a quick nap. Then Ryan, Tyler, and I started drinking some PBRs and throwing ham across the room to wake people up. Nothing like the smell of ham after a nap. This was the beginning of unplanned events to come. We had some problems getting our tickets at will call, but once we did we were in. It was tough to get excited, though, because none of us know who any motocross riders are, let alone what a supercross final is. We were trying to get ourselves in the mix when we were approached by some gearheads that wanted us to move out of their seats. We didn’t say much, just got up and moved to new seats in the nosebleed section. See, we all thought we would be tasting dirt and giving high fives to the riders. Instead, our hats were getting blown off and we were freezing our tails off.
The races got underway and favorites like James Stewart, Chad Reed, and Ricky Charmichal were showing their stuff. Our favorite race was the mini bikes in which my boy from Iowa won easily. We decided to leave early to avoid standing in line hours to wait for a cab. Our cabie was cool, even though he charged $15 a head. He stopped and let us get some 32s of King Cobra. Ahh, the finer things in life.
Once back at the Orleans, we needed a plan for fun, and what is more fun than crazy bowling? Nothing!!! With six people to a lane, it was tough to roll without being messed with. Shoes were thrown down the lane each time someone rolled. If you got Corey Smith’s boots thrown at you, it was a good thing. Once we started rolling three balls at a time and basically doing anything we wanted, we caught the eye of security. Then we turn around to see EIGHT security guards there, ready to put and end to our party. We were 86’d and told to go to our rooms and not come out. This was definitely the highlight of the trip, and I must thank Tyler for talking us all into going bowling.
We all said our goodbyes at the airport and watched the Supercross finals on T.V. to see what we missed. It turns out we didn’t miss much, ’cause Chad Reed won but Ricky Carmichael still won the overall title because of points. The hype was big, but not as big as seeing the most dominant motocross racer ride his final lap, Mr. McGrath. Anyways, mad props to Red Bull and TransWorld Snowboarding for putting this on, but especially to the CAPiTA team. They were the ones who put on suits and did crazy snowboard stunts at Northstar to make all this happen. See you on the hill!