Starting steady: Motokazie offers a new sport to local youths

Published 10:13 pm Tuesday, August 8, 2023

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Austin 10-year-old Ila Raffelson started her night by singing the national anthem in front of a full crowd at the Mower County Fair’s grandstand, and that would be the most relaxing part of her evening.

Ila and her younger brother Cohen, a seven-year old, went on to hop on a pair of four wheelers and compete in the Motokazie Supercross Series for the first time ever.

Ila and Cohen have taken up the sport due to inspiration from Adam Heimer, who is their mom Lyndsey Raffelson’s boyfriend. Heimer’s son Leo Heimer also competes in the Quad Division and it was a natural fit for Ila and Cohen to give a try.

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“Leo helps us a lot. He kind of got us started and we became interested in riding,” Ila said. “It’s really hot out there. You’ve just got to stick with it, try your best and have fun.”

Cohen’s night started out with him crashing on his warm up run, but he soon recovered and found his groove in the real races. 

“There were a lot of jumps,” Cohen said. “I liked them.”

The night was an overall success for Cohen and Ila, who have only had their four wheelers since the beginning of this summer.

Heimer said it has been a joy to teach them along with his son Leo.

“I grew up doing the same thing and I decided to get these two some four wheelers also and let them have fun doing it,” Heimer said. “I raced here back in the early 2000s and it’s super cool to see them do it. They try to have a good time.”

Jens Raffelson, who is the father of Ila and Cohen, was a strong supporter in the pits on Tuesday night and he’s hoping it’s a sport that sticks with his children.

“I didn’t have any four wheelers or dirt bikes when I was a kid so this was fun to watch,” Jens said.