Frid’Eh Update #41 | Presented by Yamaha Motor Canada

By Jeff McConkey and Billy Rainford


Week #41 belongs to 5-time Dominican Republic champion, Franklin Nogueras | Bigwave photo

Hello, and welcome to the 41st week of the Frid’Eh Update. When #978 showed up on a Suzuki at Gopher Dunes in 2015, we wondered who was on the 450 and qualifying up in 15th place. Franklin Nogueras is a fast rider from the Dominican Republic. He raced the last few rounds of the 2015 Rockstar Energy MX Nationals. Here’s a look at his results:


His best finish was at the final round at Walton raceway where he finished 7-9 for 7th overall.


Franklin’s best finish in 2015 was a 7th overall (7-9) at the final round at Walton Raceway | Bigwave photo

For 2016, Franklin was set to race the Lucas Oil AMA Nationals, but I couldn’t find his name in the results. Judging from his Facebook page, he has a good sense of humour and really likes pit bull dogs.


OK, so I knew I had photos of him from the 2015 season and I’m talking to Jeff McConkey via text. I tell him I’m looking for some photos to go with this Update and he texts back, “Good luck: Bell Moto 9 helmet, Gaerne boots, 100% goggles, Seven gear.” Bingo! The guy is a total moto gear savant! It’s uncanny. I defy anyone to mention a rider from the last 10 years and see if he can’t tell you what gear he was wearing!

We were unable to get in touch with Franklin in time for this Update, but I found this short Bio on him over on the Red Bull website:


Motivated to follow in his father’s footsteps, Franklin Nogueras Jr was practically born to ride. He had his first-ever encounter with motocross when he was only three years old, and after a year of competing he was already taking on older kids. It was during these early days that Franklin discovered his great passion for his sport – the same passion that has carried him to where he is now.

With five consecutive national champion titles and counting, Franklin is well respected among Dominican riders. “My dad was always my inspiration. I always wanted to be like him and he was the reason I started to ride in the island. It’s been a great journey… I’ve done really well and this has allowed me to represent my country in other places,” he says.

With tracks harder to come by than basketball courts and baseball parks in his country, Franklin’s success is testament to his commitment to training and his perseverance. He is the first Dominican to race in one of the most demanding motocross competitions in the US – Loretta Lynn’s – and continues to fight to achieve his dreams, signing for the JMR Suzuki Team in 2015. “I see myself riding with the top professionals of the world, representing my country,” Franklin states.

If we are able to get in touch with him, we’ll be sure to post an update on what he’s been up to since his visits to Canada in 2015. Best of luck with your racing, Franklin.


As I was looking for results of the Costa Rican MX Nationals, I found Franklin’s name in these results.


Week #41 is presented by Yamaha Motor Canada. Head over to their website to see the 2017 line up.


The 2017 Yamaha YZ250F underwent several changes | Yamaha photo

Key Improvements for 2017

  • New cylinder head with revised intake & exhaust port shapes
  • Revised intake & exhaust camshafts & valve springs
  • Revised intake tract & intake manifold
  • New connecting rod design
  • New crankcase heat treating process
  • Revised 5-speed transmission, shift drum & gear shift lever
  • Revised wrap around exhaust system header pipe
  • Revised ECU
  • Revised frame & engine mounts
  • Revised front fork outer tubes & damping settings

Jeff McConkey

Canadian AX Tour

Happy Friday, everyone. The Canadian AX Tour is finally here. Round 1 goes off tomorrow in Sarnia, Ontario. The weather looks to be pretty decent and the Pro turnout should be pretty solid. Former National Champions Matt Goerke and Colton Facciotti will be lining up, along with a very solid group of fellow racers. American Chris Blose will be making the trip up and will no doubt be fighting for wins and podiums.


I’m almost more excited to see how the “next group” does. By next group, I’m talking about the ‘Fabulous 3‘ in Ontario right now. No, it’s not a new boy band, although they could probably do some damage with the ladies. I’m talking about Austin Watling, Tanner Ward and Marco Cannella. No disrespect to the others, but these 3 young racers are the future of Canadian moto until others step up. I really love how these 3 guys will line up anywhere against the best, and put in very solid results each and every time. They are very fortunate to have each other as they are always pushing to not be the guy in the rear. They have a healthy rivalry, and it’s going to elevate their game, and Canadian moto as well. It will be hard to pick a winner out the ‘Fab 3,’ but you can bet the racing will be close and tough.

Marco Cannella Austin Watling

Here are 2/3 of the ‘Fab 3.’ #46 Marco Cannella, #424 Austin Watling, and #184 Tanner Ward will supply a lot of the racing action at round 1 of the Canadian AX Tour this Saturday night in Sarnia, Ontario | Bugwave photo

Tailgating with…Marco Cannella

Speaking of the ‘Fab 3,’ I have been able to get to know Tanner and Austin over the years. This past Tuesday, I was able to spend a little time with Marco Cannella at the Yamaha ride day at Motopark. We have known that this kid is a super talent for quite a while now, but I never really spoke to him to see what he was like off the bike. First impression…wow. Marco has got a solid head on his shoulders and has a very good program and goal. But what might be even better, is the people he surrounds himself with. This kid and his crew know what they want, and how they need to do it. All in all, I was very impressed with Marco on and off the track.

Tailgating with…Marco Cannella from on Vimeo.


2017 Yamaha Ride Day at Motopark

As I mentioned earlier, the awesome gang over at Yamaha Canada invited us out to Motopark this past Tuesday along with the other Canadian media to learn about the new 2017 line. After a brief introduction, we were set to hit the track. Now, if you read any of my stuff, you will know that I’m a huge fan of Motopark. Well, I think Iain, Zeb, Carl and crew outdid themselves once again and gave us the perfect track. No, it didn’t get rough, but come on… we’re media, we don’t even want to get dirty. But seriously, the track was as about as perfect as you could get to ride some fresh new 2017 Yamahas.


The first bike I grabbed was the new 250f. The first thing I noticed was how light and nimble the bike felt. To me, it felt thinner up around the rad shrouds than previous models. The bike had very good power, and later in third and fourth gear, the bike really seemed to rev, which was nice. I’ve ridden Yamahas on and off for a very long time, and I was very impressed with the braking power. They’ve upped the front rotor to 270mm and it was instantly noticed and appreciated. The bike was very easy to ride right out of the box, and will bring an instant smile to your face.

20161004 Jeff McConkey Yamaha 2017

Jeff loved the 2017 Yamaha YZ250F | Bigwave photo


After a fantastic lunch provided by the great kitchen staff, I decided to sack up and ride the new 450f. I am by no means a solid 450 pilot, but I have been able to spend more time on a 450 in the last month or so than I have my entire career. My first impression of the 450 was the sound. It was pretty quiet which is a nice change from some bikes. Next was the power. It was a light switch. It hit hard a pulled forever. Power should never be an issue on this bike. More than enough.

The biggest bonus, I think, was how easy the 450 turned for me. In the right corners, I actually preferred the 450 over the 250. Once again, the brakes were 100 times better than Yamaha’s of old. At the end of the day, I can honestly say that I believe both bikes are front runners. You could hop on either bike and feel comfortable right away, which is a huge bonus. Like anything, as a racer, you’d obviously get the bike valved and sprung to your liking, but for a bike straight out of the box onto the track I was very happy with both.

20161004 Marco Cannella 2017 Yamaha

#46 Marco Cannella putting in some time on the big 2017 Yamaha YZ450F | Bigwave photo

Once again, I’d like to give a huge thank you to the entire Yamaha crew that went above and beyond on Tuesday. Thank you to the whole Motopark crew for once again giving us the perfect conditions, and a big thanks to Andy White at FXR for making me the best dressed in the all new 2017 gear. Last but not least, Aaron Barsanti and Davis Brode from Mica Sport Canada/Scott Sports Canada for the amazing Scott Prospect goggle. Yes, the goggles are that good. Go check them out!

2017 Yamaha Ride Day at Motopark from on Vimeo.

Iain Hayden and Zeb Dennis on the Yamaha 125s

I’m sure by now you have all seen the quick video clip that Billy posted of Motopark’s own Iain Hayden and Zeb Dennis absolutely killing it on a pair of Yamaha YZ125s. That had to be the best sounding thing I have heard in quite awhile.  The past few years I have heard too many club kids say that they are too fast for their 125s and they need to move to a bigger bike. Guess what guys, no you aren’t. Watch this video, and Zeb and Haydo will show you how to ride a 125. I’ll bet you that Zeb is still smiling ear to ear.

Full video edit to come soon.

That’s it for me this week. Before I go, I’d like to send some ‘Get Well Soon’ wishes to our Ontario friend and rider, Brandon Caplar. Brandon spent the summer working for Teddy Parks‘ TPJ race team at the AMA Nationals. Anyway, Brandon had a hard get off on Tuesday evening and is down in Sunnybrook Hospital in Toronto with a long list of injuries.  Heal up soon, Brandon!

Also, don’t forget to check this weeks ‘Out of the Blue‘ presented by Shrader’s featuring Julie Roy. If you or anybody you know are interested in being featured in an Out of the Blue or our amateur column, On the Radar, please email me at Yes, it is that easy. Have a great week, I hope to hear from a bunch of you, and I’ll see you in Sarnia.

Billy Rainford

Thanks, Jeff, and I’ll see you Saturday morning at Hiawatha Raceway in Sarnia to get this Canadian AX Tour started! Things have been pretty steady since we returned from the Monster Energy MXON in Italy last week. I’ve been trying to get at all the video footage I shot in Maggiora, but whenever I try to add an effect or any text to the edit in Final Cut Pro, my Apple MacBook Pro shuts off immediately.

I’ve learned, through the use of the ever-helpful Google, that this year of laptop I have comes equipped with a video card that is defective and there was a recall on the actual part. Unfortunately, I’m past the recall date and so I’m left to suffer with this useless thing. I’m sure you’ve all been there when you’re trying to get something done and your computer shuts off. It sucks. I’m surprised it didn’t end up out in the street in pieces.

Microsoft Word - Cycle North Signs East Coast Racer Davey Fraser

Monster Energy SMX Riders Cup stimulation Monster Energy SMX Riders Cup stimulation Monster Energy SMX Riders Cup stimulation Monster Energy SMX Riders Cup stimulation Monster Energy SMX Riders Cup stimulation Monster Energy SMX Riders Cup stimulation Monster Energy SMX Riders Cup stimulation

Canadian Team Racing Supercross?

Redemption Racing head honcho, Josh Snider, was just by the DMX World HQ and we got talking about his possibility of racing AMA Supercross this winter. It sounds like it’s one of those “Well, how can I get experience if I don’t get a job?!” type situations. Every cog in the machine needs to know what the other cogs are doing before the gears can start moving. This company can’t make a decision until that one does, and this supplier can’t make a decision until they have riders lined up. How can you get a rider if you don’t have a bike brand? You understand the circular argument, I’m sure.

Anyway, if things start falling into place, we may have a Canadian-backed Supercross team to cheer for in the 450 class all the way across the continent! How cool would that be?!

Cade Clason has a home on the team and now they will look to fill a second seat with a potential ‘big name.’ Paging Weston Peick, Jake Weimer, and Dean Wilson

20160717 Cade Clason

If the Redemption Racing Supercross team happens, who will join Cade Clason on the roster? | Bigwave photo


The Rumour Mill

Rumour Mill

Being the de facto ‘off season’ right now, there are a few rumours swirling around the old mill these days.  It may be a short list, but the first item may be well worth the price of admission:

  1. Could motocross be on its way out? Well, we’ve heard a rumour that as of 2018 the American outdoor series will shrink to a 5-round schedule opening the way for Supercross to dominate the calendar in a 30-race series. The heck you say? Well, it’s what we’ve heard, so don’t shoot the messenger! I guess with 50 000 screaming fans showing up in a very easy to follow format with millions watching on TV at home, Supercross has been the writing on the wall for a long time now. We’ll wait to see where this goes and what it might mean for motocross here in Canada.
  2. Jacob Hayes injured? We’re hearing the likeable 2015 Canadian AX Tour champion crashed hard and injured his back recently. If so, get well soon, Jacob.
  3. Brett Metcalfe retiring? Well, why not go out after a solid career? Nothing more to prove for the Australian. However, he’s one of the best interviews you can find, so we hope he’s back in Canada next summer. If not, enjoy your retirement, Brett.

Not the most extensive list, but it’s enough to keep you wondering for a few minutes, at least.

Leading Edge Shuts its Doors in Kamloops, BC

Leading Edge Motorsports is no longer a thing out in Kamloops, BC. We had heard about it in passing but never really talked about it. The new owners took over from Jason Hughes 4 years ago and they are no longer making a go of it, as of September 1st.

It doesn’t affect the Monster Energy Alpinestars Kawasaki team at all because they weren’t involved in the team, so don’t panic about a top level team leaving Canadian moto.

Manufacturers are currently looking for another option in the very busy powersports market out there in the interior of BC. Best of luck to everyone involved.


Snowbike Racing to Debut at 2017 Winter X Games


X Games:
X Games Aspen 2017 will also feature the debut of Snow Bike racing – a competition of modified dirt bikes which replaces the front wheel with a front ski and snowmobile track in place of the rear wheel. Snowmobile Best Trick will also return to the lineup for the first time since 2013.
All medalists from X Games Aspen 2016 who have sport disciplines returning in 2016 received an early invite to compete at X Games Aspen 2017. The first full round of invited athletes will be announced November 16. Please visit for the most updated athlete list.
The X Games Aspen 2017 sports and disciplines are as follows:
Big Air (M & W)
Slopestyle (M & W)
SuperPipe (M & W)
Big Air (M & W)
Slopestyle (M & W)
SuperPipe (M & W)
Special Olympics Unified
Snowmobile & Snow Bike
Best Trick
SnoCross Adaptive
Snow Bike Racing
I’m guessing Canada’s own, Brock Hoyer, will be at the top of the list for invites and predictions for the top spot on the podium. Go, Brock…and give us a good reason to head to Aspen this winter!
Brock Hoyer

Snow Bike racing has been added to the list of sports at the 2017 Winter X Games. Brock Hoyer is smiling | Bigwave photo

Shawn Maffenbeier Signs with RTR Performance to Race Future West Arenacross Championships

Shawn Maffenbeier

Shawn Maffenbeier signs with RTR Performance to compete in the 2016 Future West Canadian Arenacross Championships | Tyler Spikman photo

From RTR Performance’s Eric Dubé:

We are extremely excited to announce that we have agreed on a deal for the Future West Canadian Arenacross Championships with Shawn Maffenbeier. He will be running a 2017 KTM 250 SX-F. We can’t wait to see what he can do. He has had an amazing year and we know that will continue into the Arenacross series.”

The deal will see Shawn run his 2016 National number, #15, with all his current personal sponsors. The series starts October 21-22 in Armstrong, BC.


Eve Brodeur at Round 9 of the WMX | Budds Creek

Quebec’s Eve Brodeur will try to improve on her 5th place standing in the WMX down south. They are at Bidds Creek for round 9 of 10. The season will wind up at the Mini O’s in Florida in November. Good luck, Eve.

WMX Budds Creek Information:

WMX $5,000.00 Big Pay Day at Round 9 of the 2016 series will be at held at the World Famous Budds Creek MX Park in Budds Creek, Maryland.

The last time Pro Womens motocross competed at Budds Creek was in 2012!

Your host and officiating staff for this event is American Motorcyclist Association, Middle Atlantic Motocross Association, AMA District 7, and MX Sports.

All racers must have a valid AMA card and a 2016 WMX credential or letter stating you are approved and paid your dues from MX Sports. Signup online is $100.00 and includes camping, one mechanic wrist band and transponder rental. Sorry no discounts if you have your own transponder.

Online signup at Sign up day of event is $120.00.

Monday following Round 8 at KROC, District 7 has contacted local tracks to secure your discounted or FREE to place to stay and ride. Thank you to all local tracks owners!

Week long events include:

Budds Creek MX in Budds Creek, MD will open its gates open all week long for WMX racers.  John Beasley will hold practice Monday – Thursday at $40.00 a rider each day.

SpeedCiti MX Park in Seaford, DE will be open on Wednesday October 5, 2016 from 5:30pm to 10:00pm.  Chuck Vane will allow for WMX credential holders to practice for FREE!

Tomahawk MX Park in Hedgesville, WV will be open Wednesday, October 5, 2016 from 11:00 till dusk. Chad Goechenour will waive the club fee and reduce daily cost to $25.00 for WMX credential holders.


MAMA members will begin to arrive at Budds Creek.  WMX racers will have reserved parking for this event.  Parking will be near the signup building.  Traders Racing will have the Traders Pro rig onsite for you to pit near.


MAMA will hold races and practice for MAMA respected classes.  There are a few classes WMX riders could sign up for.  See for Saturday classes. If you decide to ride, as per WMX rules, you cannot ride the Amateur women’s classes.

There will be Signup on Saturday night for WMX race on Sunday.


6:00am to 9:00 am signup (WMX will have their own window)

7:30 to 7:45 am open practice

11:00 am Moto 1 (15 minutes plus 1 lap)

12:00pm – 12:45pm WMX autograph signing at Traders Pro rig near sign up.  All WMX racers are invited.

2:30pm Moto 2 (15 minutes plus 1 lap)

3:30pm Pay out and WMX celebration of awards!  All WMX racers are invited

MAMA, D7 and local sponsors listed below will offer a 5K pay day for WMX racers. (Payout based on 15 WMX racers)

$5,000.00 Payout breakdown per Moto!

$750.00 $500.00 $350.00 $225.00 $175.00 $150.00 $125.00 $100.00 $75.00 $50.00 $5,000.00

(Based on 15 WMX paid women racers)

Thanks for reading and have a great weekend. We’re off to Sarnia tomorrow for the first round of the Canadian Arenacross Tour. I will be co-hosting the live broadcast with Chris Pomeroy (Andy White is off this week) on MAVTV, so be sure you tune in…how else will you be able to correct all my mistakes?!

20160925- Tyler Medaglia Kibby

This is how we feel to be heading to an event this weekend. See you at the races… | Bigwave photo