Frid’Eh Update #48 | Presented by MP County Line
By Jeff McConkey and Billy Rainford (not really)
Welcome to Week #48 of the Direct Motocross Frid’Eh Update this week presented by MP County Line. In 2016, #48 belonged to American rider, Shawn Rife.
He only raced a handful of nationals in 2015 and earned 74 points. Here’s a look at his brief season:
I wasn’t able to get in touch with Shawn before this Update, but as I was sitting on the grassy knoll late this afternoon at Gatorback, I looked beside me and he was standing right there! We got chatting and he mentioned that he plans to get back on a bike really soon and wants to get back to racing too. He said he’d love to come back to Canada, so if anyone is reading this and wants a fast rider, he said he’s IN!
We’ll post an interview with him up on the site this coming week, so watch for that.
Hey guys. Happy Friday and Happy Thanksgiving to all of our American friends.
MP County Line
The wall isn’t built yet, so it’s still relatively easy for all of us Snow Bunnies to cross the border and head south for some sunshine and warmth, and winter Motocross. Being from the East Coast, the typical winter hot spots have been GPF, MTF, South of the Boarder, Club MX, Real Deal, Climax and many many more. One particular track that has always been a Canadian hot spot, has be County Line. Located near Panama City, it had moto and it had the beach for mom and sister; you could get the best of both worlds. Well, it just got a little better. As we announced earlier, the great gang at the legendary Motopark in Chatsworth, Ontario, has purchased and taken over County Line. Now, Canadians can train with the same familiar crew year round. I can’t wait to get down to Florida and ride with the MP Crew at MP County Line.
Speaking of Canadians down south, we have one heck of a solid group of Canucks lining up all week long in Gainesville, Florida, at the Mini O’s. It’s really nice to see such a big group of talented Canadians lining up against some of the best in the world. Some Canadians are pretty hard on fellow Canadian racers for not wanting to head to these races to race with the stiffer competition. Well, it’s not always for that reason that we don’t see many Canadians at these big US Amateur Nationals. I don’t know where some of you get your money, but it’s pretty damn hard for the majority of us to make this happen and still have a house to come back to. Anyways, congrats to everyone that had the money and courage to race this past week. I’m sure the speed of some of these classes was a real eye-opener for a few of you, and now you have a better idea on what you need to work on for 2017 and beyond.
Speaking of 2017 and beyond, we are still pretty early into our Canadian “silly season.” This is the time of year when everyone is still trying to figure out who is going to end up where. The big news so far was the signing of Dylan Wright to the mighty Honda Canada GDR Fox Racing team. So where does that leave my good buddy, Jeremy Medaglia? There are some quiet rumblings that Jeremy may be done with Pro racing. As a close friend and former mechanic of Jeremy’s, that really made me sad. I have spent a ton of time with him, and I still don’t think we have seen the best J-Dags yet. Yes, according to some people, Jeremy may have burned a few bridges along the way. But you have got to give him credit for not taking shit from anyone and doing it his way. He has won races and overalls in both classes, he has a Future West AX title, and a Montreal SX win in the MX2 class under his belt. This guy is far from done, and I really hope someone sits down with him and works out a deal to see him out on the track this season and more. I would prefer to see Jer ride the MX1 class on a white or a blue bike, but that’s my opinion and unfortunately it usually doesn’t count for much.
Moving, it’s not official yet, but KTM Canada Thor Racing looks to be sporting the same squad in 2017, minus Davi Millsaps. I’ve heard Justin Brayton‘s name mentioned to be taking Davi’s spot, but I honestly can’t see that happening. Brayton looks to be an SX-only guy from here on out and I think this was just a fun rumour.
Staying with the MX1 class, there is a big question mark beside Brett Metcalfe. Metty has been a class act from day one of his Canadian career, and I personally would love to see him back. I’ve heard from someone in the industry that Brett may be heading back to Australia to raise his young family. It would be sad to see Brett leave, but he has definitely earned the right go wherever he chooses after such a great career. Names being mentioned to fill Brett’s ride have been Dean Wilson and Jake Weimer. Both guys would be an instant fan favourite and title contender, but only time will tell if we will see either North of the boarder in ’17.
The next big question is, will we see the Monster Energy Alpinestars Kawasaki team back this season? If we do, I think it’s safe to say we won’t see Vince Friese back. Mike Alessi has mentioned many times that he would like to be back, and I hope he can find a spot. I spoke to an injured Jacob Hayes way back at the Gopher Dunes national, and he was chomping at the bit to race some outdoors. Jacob would instantly become a title threat and most likely the first guy to put a wheel in on Cole Thompson. Chances are that we won’t be seeing a Suzuki team in either class. It’s pretty sad that they sell bikes in Canada but seem to have zero interest in racing. Oh well, life goes on.
The New MP1 Suspension
Some news out of Tilsonburg, Ontario: I spoke briefly on the phone with Strictly MX’s Mike Parliament and he explained to me that MB1 Suspension Canada will be changing business names and will now be known and operated as MP1 Suspension. No need to worry, Mike will still providing the same great service and amazing trackside presence that we are all used to seeing. I finally got myself some of Mike’s suspension this past season, and personally can vouch for the professionalism and quality product. We here at DMX look forward to running the MP1 logo and working with Mike moving into the future.
That’s it for me this week. Before I go, be sure to check out this weeks ‘On the Radar’ with Cody Bint, and our ‘Out of the Blue’ featuring Tamara Jurkiewicz. I’d like to send a big Happy Birthday to the champ Eve Brodeur. We’ve seen her popping bottles for years now, but when will we see her finally drink them? Happy B-Day, Eve, I’m sure your father, Sylvain, will enjoy a few cold ones for you. Have a great weekend and #smileforBC!
Thanks, Jeff. And thanks for manning the ship while I’m down here in Florida at the Mini O’s. As much fun as it is to be at these big US Amateur Nationals, week-long events can sort of wear on you as the week goes on. There have been some late nights and early mornings this week, but at least the temperature is staying north of freezing at night now. I’m sleeping in a tent and the first couple nights were pretty chilly, to say the least!
I really don’t have much to add, other than the photo reports from down here. If you haven’t had the chance to check any of them out, we’ve done one each night from Gatorback, so go take a look so I don’t feel so stupid for doing them!
As I’m sitting here outside a closed Starbucks in Jonesville, Florida, about 10 minutes from the track, Michael DaSilva sent over a Press Release for his new team this coming season (PR down below). We got chatting and now a Starbucks Gift Certificate from Michael and his dad, Jay, just showed up in my email inbox. Haha Thanks, guys.
Click the links to be taken to each day’s report:
Future West Arenacross Championships Continues from Chilliwack, BC
OK, everyone, things are starting to get a little weird around this closed Starbucks, so we’re going to cut this one short. Be sure to check in with us on Twitter @directMX Instagram @Direct Motocross and on Facebook @Direct Motocross for updates on how the Canadians do on the final day of competition down here at the Mini O’s. We’ve got some contenders, and with good starts could even challenge for wins.