Faces at the Races – Calgary AX
By Billy Rainford
I haven’t been posting these columns for most of the Canadian National AX Tour so I wanted to make sure we got one up on the site after the final round of racing at the Agruim in Calgary. With so many amateurs and full gates of Pro riders showing up, it was a great way to close out the tour. Here’s a look at some of the people who were in Cowtown.
Justin Thompson is the guy in charge of pretty much the whole Canada AX Tour situation. He wore a lot of hats this fall.
On the track, Austin Watling and Tanner Ward were fierce rivals, smashing and banging their way to first and second place on a weekly basis. Off the track, they are close friends and training buddies.
Just about every 50 and 65cc rider in Alberta was in Calgary for the final two rounds.
Do as I say not as I do.
Sometimes, you just need some time to yourself.
Jared Stock pretending to be closing deals on the phone.
What’s the last thing someone says to him when they don’t want him to leave?
Ernie has been there for every one of those #1’s.
John Rachmel carried a clipboard so he looked busy and nobody would bother him. It’s a classic trick.
Hydrate or die. For 100 bonus points, whose slogan was that?
This is how a true moto mom celebrates her 18th anniversary.
That’s a lot of rubber.
Anyone remember that song? If so, you’re old.
Head referee, Dan Beaton, had his hands full this fall.
Jacob Hayes’ name will dominate the record books when we look back at 2015.
It will be interesting to see how the books look this summer in the MX2 class.
Making sure Chris Blose’s bike is ready. Psst, check the front brake.
The Valvoline AX Tour LIVE broadcast booth had some VIP guests, including Kris Foster (left) and Shawn Maffenbeier (middle). And that’s Chris Pomeroy.
Don’t look now, but that guy is giving you the skunk eye, Cole.
Paying attention at the riders’ meeting.
First qualifier right after the meeting.
This is why I’m always shocked when I get a shot of Luc Caouette smiling. #happyface
Here’s what Stampede Park looks like from the road.
Michael King, Austin Watling, Tanner Ward, and Mitch Goheen.
If that’s not a face at the race, I don’t know what is.
This look on Jason Hughes’ face means both Monster Energy Thor Kawasaki riders are in the same heat…again.
When Tanner Ward talks, people listen.
There’s one in every crowd…
Probably getting better photos and video than I got!
Try to come up with something original for this one. I can’t.
Some subdued 50cc encouragement.
This is where it all starts. Actually, it can’t start any earlier than this!
There are a lot of places where people wouldn’t have a clue what this means. But it’s just so obvious to us, isn’t it.
Busy indoor pits at the Agrium.
Ya, whatever, Jared.
Brock Leitner talking with Andy White.
In case you’re wondering, the 18th wedding anniversary is the ‘porcelain’ anniversary, Paul Gibbs.
We had pretty sweet digs for the live broadcast in Calgary.
Ryan Gauld was in charge of the in-house announcing duties.
Podium interview with Chris Blose.
“Hey, Cole, shake my hand…PSYCH!”
Jacob was able to un-focus on Cole and win every title this season.
We took a little side trip to Banff Saturday before the racing action.
As the old saying goes, the view would be beautiful if the mountains didn’t get in the way!
From the hotel room, we looked over Shaw Valley right at Wild Rose MX Park where the Calgary National is held every year.
I don’t always drive to the races, but when I do… Typed myself into a corner there.
Ernie taking a moment to get caught up on current events.
It was great to see so many Pro riders out for the final weekend of AX racing.
“Go that way really fast. If something gets in your way, turn.” Name the movie.
Shawn Maffenbeier asking the age old question: What is a banquet beer?
Sorry, Mike Smith, this was your best shot.
That will do it for the first year of Canada AX Tour. It was a huge success and will expand in 2016. We’ll let Jimmy have it this time. See you at the races…