El Cajon racer looks to bounce back from injury at Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship


SAN DIEGO — Saturday marks the opening round of the 2021 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship at the Fox Raceway in Pala and a racer from El Cajon is looking to bounce back from an injury and win it all.

“When the gate drops, the adrenaline kicks in and the pain goes away,” said Christian Craig, who is looking to defy the odds in the opening round of the championship. “The main thing is to get that win. When you win once, it’s addicting.”

A little more than a month ago, Craig fractured his fibula in a crash in Salt Lake City. Three days later, he underwent surgery to place a plate on the break, allowing him to ride again.

“It’s such a cutthroat sport that you have to ride injured in a way,” he said. “There are contracts on the line, there’s money and this is round one of our series. So I want to show up and I want to do good for my team.”

Why rush back? Craig said because racing is his DNA.

A string of injuries forced him to retire in 2013, but after the birth of his son, the athlete decided to return to the track for the 2016 season.

“I grew up doing this, my son is 6 and I was here doing this at 6,” Craig said.

Craig isn’t the only local trying to earn a win at the championship. Dilan Schwartz, a 20-year-old from Alpine, is also competing.

“Right now, I just want to do the best I can, and keep on leveling up,” Schwartz said. “Just set smaller goals, and achieving those. So I don’t get too hard on myself. I can keep picking myself up and then working towards number one.”

The 2021 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship will consist of a 12-round season to crown a pair of AMA National Champions across two classes of competition.

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