In July, 13-year-old Luke Geis told the Jordan Independent his goal was to finish in the top 10 at the AMA Amateur National Motocross Championship in Tennessee. He returned to Jordan a couple weeks ago with fourth and sixth place medals, accomplishing that goal after years of commitment.
More than 22,000 riders tried out for the championship series at Loretta Lynn’s legendary ranch in Hurricane Mills, Tennessee. Luke earned his spot by qualifying at regional competitions in Millville, Minnesota in June.
“Getting to the ranch is every kid’s dream. You’re one of the top 40 riders in the U.S,” said Jess Geis, Luke’s mother.
Luke rides a 125cc bike and competed in the 125cc class and the 450cc class at nationals. The competition for each class consists of three races, or “motos.” The scores from each moto are combined to determine each rider’s overall score and championship placing.
In the 450cc class, where he has the disadvantage of riding a bike with far less horsepower than his competitors, he finished fourth overall — proving that what he lacks in horsepower, he makes up for in weight and grit.
Luke’s light, but strong, build gave him the advantage over racers up to double his age and far larger. Jess said this made him an ongoing topic of conversation for the race’s commentators.
“They talked most of the race about Luke and that he’s the only kid on a 125cc and only 13 years old,” Jess said. “They end up nicknaming him ‘125 Assassin.’”
Geis earned his fourth place ranking in the 450cc class with with seventh, fifth and sixth place moto finishes.
In the 125cc race, Luke finished sixth overall, with individual moto scores of fourth, fifth and sixth places. One of the highlights of the competition for the Geis family was Luke leading the pack for about two-thirds of his first moto before falling back to fourth place.
“We were so proud of him,” Jess said. “He had to do a podium speech and all.”
On the road, Luke is accompanied by his parents, older sister and two younger brothers who also ride dirt bikes. Luke has been riding since age 5 after his mother took him and his siblings to a Motokazie show in Jordan.