Frid’Eh Update #51 Presented by Matrix Concepts

By Jeff McConkey and Billy Rainford

Week #51 belongs to Reno, Nevada, native, Daniel Mills. | Bigwave photo

Welcome to Week #51 of the DMX Frid’Eh Update, this week presented by Matrix Concepts. We’re deep into the silly season here in Canada, and we’ll get to that, but first let’s get to know Daniel Mills a little better.

I have to admit, I didn’t know anything about him before our conversation this week. He came north to race the Canadian series in 2016 and ended up earning #51 for the 2017 season. Unfortunately, we never saw him run it and we’re about to find out why.

Here’s our conversation with the rider who hails from Reno, Nevada, but now calls Southern California home:

Here’s a more recent shot of Daniel by Connor Moore @activatephoto.

Direct Motocross: Hello, Daniel. You were #51 in Canada last season but we never got to see you race it. But before we get to all that, let’s back it up and give people a chance to get to know you a little. Can you tell us where you’re from and how you got in to Motocross in the first place?

Daniel Mills: I’m originally from Reno, Nevada, but I’ve been living in Southern California since 2013 to pursue racing. I originally got into racing because my dad raced while I was growing up. On my fourth birthday he ended up getting me a PW50 and it was all over from there.

I always like to ask this question: How did you choose your first racing number?

My first racing number was actually 45, and I picked it because it was the same as my dad’s number when I was growing up.

I have to admit that I don’t know a whole lot about you. Can you take us through your amateur career? Did you hit any of the big Amateur Nationals? How did you do? What was your best memory from those days?

Yeah, absolutely! My amateur career actually started late. My first amateur national was the GNC Oak Hill Amateur Championship in Texas in 2012 as a Novice rider. I’ve raced just about every amateur national across the country with the exception of Mini O’s, and my favorite national definitely being Oak Hill.

As a B rider I actually did decent with a couple championships here and there. I wasn’t always the best amateur, but I felt like I held my own. My best memory would be from Loretta Lynn’s in 2014 in the two stroke class. My last moto I was sitting 5th overall after going down every moto. The first lap I went down twice in the mud, and ended up just pushing my way back into a top 10 finish from 40th. It wasn’t my best result or anything, but it was the best I’ve ever felt like I’ve ridden, even to this day.

What year did you turn Pro and what did you race that season?

I turned Pro in at the end of 2015 and just did a few amateur nationals, and Pro-Am races.

Daniel loved racing in Canada and hopes to do it again in the future. | Bigwave photo

You came up to Canada in 2016. How did that decision come about?

Honestly, it was kind of more of a spur of the moment decision. We were burnt out on amateur nationals, and wanted a change of pace. Everyone had been talking about how fun the Canadian national series was so we made plans to give it a shot!

What did you think of our series? Did it differ from what you were used to?

Honestly, it was the most fun I’ve ever had racing. Up there I noticed everyone is friendly. Although it’s still competitive and everyone is there to race, it isn’t as clouded by big egos. Sitting in staging everyone is talking and having a good time. Guys will come up to you after motos and tell you, “Good job.” It just was such a more relaxed atmosphere. I would love to come back up and race it again.

You traveled across Canada. What part of the country stood out for you? What did you like best?

I think the further east we got the more different it got. Nova Scotia was crazy for me. Flying in the fog was so thick I didn’t even know the plane was landing when we touched ground. I would say I liked Calgary the best, but mainly because I thought the fact that the track overlooked the city was so cool.

How did that series go for you? What was your best finish?

It went all right. My preparation went really well coming in, but personal life issues got in the way of my performance. My head just wasn’t in it, and looking back on it I’m pretty bummed about that. My best finish ended up being a 10th in Regina, I believe.

If his Twitter account is any indication (@DanalWanal525), we’re guessing he’s a bit of a character. | Bigwave photo

Did you find yourself battling with any of our riders on a consistent basis? Who was it and how was the rivalry?

Honestly, I found myself in the track with McCoy Brough like every week by some stroke of luck or another. I wish I could say it was some heated rivalry, but he and I would talk before every moto and laugh about how we couldn’t get away from each other.

What track did you like the most?

My favorite was definitely Ulverton. The elevation and different dirt types just made for the most fun track conditions I’ve ever experienced not only in Canada, but anywhere.

How about least favourite?

I wasn’t a fan of Nova Scotia. The dirt was extremely slick and hard packed. It wasn’t a bad track, by any means, and it was as good as it could be, but it just wasn’t my style.

You ended up with #51 for this season. Were you happy with your results?

I was and I wasn’t. I wish I could’ve made it through the entire season, but I was happy with making it to each round I did and doing my best. I wish I could’ve had some better finishes though!

What did you do last fall and winter after our season ended?

I actually went home and got two shoulder surgeries. I had been dealing with an existing injury for quite a while, and finally couldn’t handle it anymore. I ended up getting a full reconstruction of my left shoulder.

Unfortunately, nagging shoulder issues took him out before the end of the season. He’s had them both fixed and is heading to Arenacross this winter. | Bigwave photo

You didn’t come back this summer? Why not? What did you get up to last summer?

I was sitting on my couch in a sling, unfortunately! I wish I could’ve come up. I was actually planning on it before my first season even ended.

Do you have a 9-5 job on top of racing?

I don’t currently, but if I did I’d probably be working construction for my dad.

What are your winter plans?

I’m going to be getting ready for Arenacross.

How about next summer?

I’m not quite sure yet. I’m trying to decide between doing the US outdoors or coming back to Canada in the MX1 class.

OK, I’ve avoided this question long enough. What is up with your Twitter account (@danalwanal525)? It seems a little…”edgy,” for lack of a better word. What’s the deal? And yes, we saw it before you cleaned it up a little!

(Laughs) I knew this was coming. So, my roommate just got a kick out of all the nonsense that came out of my mouth. He finally just got tired of me not having a Twitter and made me one. I try to keep my Instagram as professional as possible, but I really only have most of my close friends on Twitter so I’ve just made a huge joke out of the whole thing.

Sorry, that was more questions than I meant to ask you. Thanks for taking the time to help us get to know you a little better. Good luck, and is there anyone you’d like to thank?

Not a problem! Thank you so much for the interview. Yeah, I’d just like to thank my parents and my girlfriend for being so supportive, EVS Sports, Chad and Leah at XPR Motorsports, Randy Lawrence, and Tagger Designs.

Thanks very much for talking with us, Daniel, and if you’re reading this now, you know you’re going to click his Twitter page, so don’t fight it…and I apologize.

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Hey, guys. Happy Friday, and Happy Holidays. We are now covered by a layer of the white stuff here in Southern Ontario. That bad news means that moto is pretty much non-existent for us at this time of the year, but it is going strong down south.

Monster Energy AMA Supercross

“Ken Roczen will win the 2018 SX Championship followed by Marvin Musquin in 2nd and Eli Tomac in 3rd overall for the season.” ~ Jeff McConkey

Everyone is amped up and preparing for the 2018 AMA Monster Energy Supercross series. Like previous years, there is no reason this series won’t be a barn-burner in all 3 classes. The returning 450 champ, Ryan Dungey, is not participating as he retired following his 2017 championship, which leaves the door open for a new winner. I will start by running over the championship contenders, then work my way down the list through who I think will be the main event guys week in and week out.

Going into 2018, Eli Tomac is the favourite. It makes sense as Eli won 9 SX races last season and narrowly missed out on the championship by a mere 5 points. Add in the fact that Eli captured the 450 motocross championship, and that means you have a very dangerous beast. Eli is going to be fast, fit and hungry to avenge his loss last season. At times later on in the season, Eli looked unbeatable. Nobody was going to touch him no matter where he started. Unfortunately, the season is 17 races, and Eli was pretty average in the first few rounds.

#3 Eli Tomac is the favourite to win the 2018 Supercross title. | Bigwave photo

A lot of people always say every season, “you win championships with your bad races.” I agree with that 100%. If you can limit the damage on your ‘bad nights,’ and make your bad races better than your competitors’, well, there is a great chance that you will come out on top. Eli will win races in my mind, he will even dominate some. The big thing that sticks out to me, is that Eli’s bad races and bad nights are really bad. Those are what hurt him and cost him the championship in 2017.

Next we have Marvin Musquin. Marvin has been on fire as of late. He pretty much won everything put in front of him in the off season and is riding high. He too will be fit, fast and hungry for the championship. I feel Marvin is very good at damage control and his bad races are usually not that bad. He’s full of confidence right now and has a very strong program behind him. The one big knock Marvin has against him is the fact that he still struggles when the whoops are big and nasty. Marvin tends to back it off a bit and tries to jump through them rather than skim through like the rest of the top guys. We always joke that sometimes you need to have “the right amount of stupid” to go fast and win in moto. This may apply to Marvin as he might just be a little too calculated with the whoops. I honestly feel that this will be the only weakness for Marvin. He will be good at every round and be there right up until the final main event in Las Vegas.

#25 Marvin Musquin has been on fire lately. | Bigwave photo

This last rider has the biggest question mark beside his name. Ken Roczen started 2017 SX on fire. Nobody could touch him. He was strong everywhere and was just getting started. Then disaster struck at A2. Kenny was bucked over the bars from a kicker and left A2 on the medics’ mule. Fast forward 11 months, 11 surgeries later and Ken Roczen is ready to make his return to the sport and the actual stadium that almost took his career and arm.

Ken has recently posted on social media that he feels more prepared this season than last year. That is great! I myself as a fan was worried that Ken’s career may have been cut way too short due to that devastating injury. You never want to see anyone go out like that, but especially a guy like Kenny. If you have ever met him, you will know what I am talking about. He is one of the most genuine nice guys and personalities out there. The sport really needs Ken, and I am very happy that he is back. Just like Tomac and Musquin, Ken will be fit, fast and very hungry to win.

But will anyone be hungrier than Ken Roczen? | Bigwave photo

The big question I keep asking myself is, “can Kenny’s arm take a big crash?” We have all seen the video’s and pictures from Ken and his camp. He is absolutely flying. The problem is, this is Supercross and mistakes happen. Even the top guys have scary big crashes whether it be at the practice track or during the races. I’m just worried that Ken, who has had some spectacular crashes over the last few seasons, may not be able to get back on the bike and either finish the race, or line up the following weekend. That is the only concern on my end. I feel he has the speed, confidence, and to be honest… I don’t think anyone is hungrier than Ken Roczen.

So there you have it. That will be your top 3. In what order you ask? I’ve never been one to throw out a crazy prediction here or there, so I am going to call it right now. Ken Roczen will win the 2018 SX Championship followed by Marvin Musquin in 2nd and Eli Tomac in 3rd overall for the season.

As for the remainder of the class, here is what I predict for the rest of the main event regulars.

McThoughts | 2018 Supercross Season

#2 Cooper Webb: Cooper is a big question mark for me. A few years ago in 250 SX, he looked like he was on his way to becoming a winning machine in either class. I know the new Yamaha is a way better bike, so that will help Webb a lot. I feel he will fight for some podiums and should 5th-8th on most nights.

#2 Cooper Webb. | Bigwave photo

#4 Blake Baggett: Blake will be the surprise of the class. I see him winning a main event, getting a few podiums and running 4th to 6th on most Saturday nights. I’m hearing his whoop speed is insane, which is not normal for guys so short.

#5 Ryan Dungey: Our defending champion announced his retirement.

#6 Jeremy Martin: Jeremy will line up in the 450 class for the first 3 rounds before stepping down to race the 250 East class. I feel like J-Mart will be very fast in practice, but he will have some kind of spectacular get off that will cut his 450 experiment short.

#7 James Stewart: I am afraid we may have seen the last of James.

#10 Justin Brayton: Brayton will be solid all season long. I see him anywhere from 7th to 12th. I just don’t think he has the speed anymore to run in the top 5.

#10 Justin Brayton | Bigwave photo

#12 Jake Weimer: Jake is coming off of injury, so he will be behind the 8 ball a bit. He might have one or two top 10’s in him, but for the most part be around 15th or 16th place guy.

#14 Cole Seely: Cole has been working hard to improve indoors and out. He will be hovering around the podium, and be a top 5 guy every week.

#15 Dean Wilson: What a rags-to-riches story for Deano. This guy goes from a full privateer effort with his dad, Andy, to a full factory racer reeling off podiums in the off season races. He is working hard and I see Deano just on the verge of a podium on his great nights, and a 4th-7th place guy most nights.

#18 Davi Millsaps: Davi was hurt early in the off season. He will miss the first few rounds. I expect to see Davi as a 5th-8th place guy when healthy.

#19 Justin Bogle: Justin is another question mark. He is sneaky fast and sneaky good. On the perfect night, I see him sneaking in a 3rd, but for the most part I see him 5th-12th.

#19 Justin Bogle. | Bigwave photo

#20 Broc Tickle: Broc is always a question mark to me. He works hard, but has a boring look or style that always has me forgetting how good he actually is. He will be a top 10 guy every week, with a few top 5 rides.

#21 Jason Anderson: Jason will win one or two races and get a bunch of podiums. I think not staying in Florida all off season will hurt him a little bit, but I think it will help as he won’t burn out as quickly.

#22 Chad Reed: I am a Chad Reed fan, but I feel he will struggle this season. He’s coming off of an injury that has kept him off the bike since Red Bull Straight Rhythm, and he really wasn’t even on the bike before that event. When you are the oldest racer in the class (and you sit out the outdoor season), you have got to be putting in the work to outclass the younger, hungrier racers. Chad will always have the skill, but the fitness will be a huge question mark. I see him finishing anywhere between 7th-12th on most nights.

#27 Malcolm Stewart: I hate seeing former champions without rides, but I also hate seeing young racers sitting out the motocross seasons too. Malcolm is too young to be an SX only guy. His fitness was weak last season, but his whoop skills were stronger than ever. Unfortunately, I don’t see Malcolm in the top 10 on a regular basis.

#33 Josh Grant: Josh has been a huge surprise the last few seasons. From a guy showing up at Daytona fresh off of the couch, to getting a factory ride, he has been consistently good. I see JG33 anywhere from 7th- 14th on any given night.

#34 Weston Peick: Weston has a style where he plows through stuff. I just feel like that style won’t hold up for 17 rounds. He needs to have a little more finesse to save his body. He could run as high as 6th or 7th on a good night but I see him more around the 7th-11th spots most nights.

#41 Trey Canard: Trey announced his retirement.

#51 Justin Barcia: Justin will be good, but I don’t think he has podium speed anymore. He should be a top 10 guy every week, but he needs to stay healthy.

#51 Justin Barcia

#55 Vince Friese: Like always, Vince will get good starts and be very hard to pass. Back in the day he would get the start, then ride like a meathead to hold position. Nowadays, Vince has improved a lot, and he now has the skill to run with most outside of the top 10. I feel like Vince could be anywhere from 12th-16th in the mains, depending on his starts.

#60 Benny Bloss: I really don’t know where to put Bloss yet. I’m thinking he should be a top 15 guy and will maybe get close to maybe a 11th or 12th with a great ride.

#91 Alex Ray: Alex has busted his ass to get in shape and get better at SX. I see him bumping Nick Schmidt as that guy making almost every main event.

#97 Cade Clason: Cade pissed hot and is currently serving a ridiculous suspension. He is now working for FXR as a gear guy, and should be the fastest gear guy in the game.

That is it for me this week. Be sure to check out the new revamped ‘Out of the Blue‘ interviews brought to you by Schrader’s. This week’s feature rider is Shelby Turner. In all honesty, Shelby is probably the most bad ass girl in the world right now on 2 wheels. If any girl has better all around skills, I’d love to see it.

Check out the latest ‘Out of the Blue Presented by Schrader’s’ with Shelby Turner. | Bigwave photo

Also, be sure to check out this week’s 5 Lap Sprint Christmas Edition Part 1 brought to you by Scott Sports and Mica Sports Canada. I have Parts 2 and 3 ready to go for you early next week. Have a great weekend and #smileforBC, #liftwithscott and #4estrella.


Thanks, Jeff. Well, winter has made itself known here in my neck of the woods, London, Ontario. When I was a kid, we got a ton of snow here. In fact, London was always in what was called the “Snow Belt.” We got the streamers off Lake Huron that dropped more than our fair share of snow on the city. However, for the past decade or so, London just hasn’t gotten the same number of big snowstorms that it used to.

Sure, we’ll still get some big snowstorms, but winter just hasn’t been what it used to be around here. I have no idea why. I mean, it’s not like the Great Lakes have moved or anything.

This past week has been a strange one around here, to say the least. We’re closing in on late winter amounts of snow on the ground. The snowbank between our driveway and the closer neighbour’s is over the rook of the DMX Van! It’s Snowmageddon all over again.

And to think Gopher Dunes was open for riding just the week before we got any snow at all! I’ve never canceled a driving trip due to weather before and yet this week we packed everything up and loaded the two dogs in the car and set out for my parents’ place on the east side of Lake Simcoe.

Both days, we made it about 20 minutes north of the city and decided to turn around. Visibility was so close to zero that I couldn’t even turn around. You literally couldn’t see 2 feet ahead to know if a car was coming. Hey, I’ve lived in the mountains and hit the slopes 2 or 3 times a week for 11 years and never turned around!

I don’t know what’s going on around here, but I’m sure the local snowmobile shops are finally licking their chops. I actually saw a pick-up with a snowplow on the front pulling a trailer with a brand new sled on it last night. Good news for the industry, for sure.

Anyway, don’t worry about us – the neighbours on both sides and across the street all have nice, new snowblowers, so we’re in fine shape.

There’s been quite a bit of chatter lately about who’s going where and racing what. There’s a lot to talk about, so let’s get to it.

Westen Wrozyna Needs Approval from CMA to Race Supercross

We have a Canadian to cheer for in 250 East Supercross, if he can get to the line… | Bigwave photo

Would-be Team PRMX Strikt Kawasaki Supercross racer, Westen Wrozyna, is finding some hoops to jump through before he is able to line up for a 250 East Supercross race this coming winter.

From the 2018 Supercross Rule Book:

3.2 Supercross License Regulations

f. Foreign riders applying for an AMA license must submit a rider release from their home federation.

g. FIM Motocross World Championship licenses for riders, valid for the Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship 250 and 450 classes, are issued by the rider’s home federation,

1. FIM Motocross World Championship licenses for foreign riders that have been released to the AMA by their home federation will be issued by the AMA.

h. In order to obtain a FIM Motocross World Championship license for riders, the applicant must first hold a current national license of his respective FMN.

After speaking with team owner, Julien Perrier, it seems they are having some difficulties getting the green light from the CMA here in Canada. As you can see in the above rules, they need to get the release from their home federation which is the CMA.

I know the team went through similar difficulties and stress when they signed Dave Blanchet to race Supercross a couple years ago. It all worked out in the end, so I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.

Failing the release, they would be forced to race some AMA Arenacross to gain the necessary points in the Road to Supercross, but since they are not American, this should not be the road they are required to take.

Good luck, guys. If the rules state that he just needs a release form from the CMA then I believe Westen is a rider who is qualified to receive that to race the 250 class. Let’s get this done so he can concentrate on getting more comfortable without worrying about if he’s even going to be allowed to race.

Redemption Racing Club MX Supercross Team

Although they may not have a Canadian on the track, the Redemption Racing Club MX Supercross Team is coming together and there are definitely Canadians behind the scenes.

I spoke with Redemption’s Josh Snider this afternoon to find out how the team’s quest for riders is going. They released the official PR on Josh Osby and their deal with new-to-motocross Hoosier Tires. This is a pretty big deal for them as they will be hands on in developing the tire program for them.

From their Instagram page @clubmx:

First rider joining the ClubMX/RSR/Redemption Racing team is none other then @joshosby87 !!! Josh will be competing in the East Coast Lites Supercross series, and the Canadian Pro Motocross Championship! Thank you to all our sponsors for helping us build this program! #ClubMX #RSR @redemptionracing #JeffreyHomes @brewercycles @motorexusa #Westwood’s contracting @ktm_canada @rickziebell #WohletzLawFirm @defiancelifestyleclothing #SSI @bermshredder @answerracing @ride100percent @nihloconcepts @ridedunlop @hotcams @hotrods @pivotworks @vertexpistons @mikametals @matrixconcepts @evanscoolantdr @guts_racing_inc @tamermx @motohose @twisteddevelopmentracing @wp_suspention @hinsonracing @fmf73 @dubyausa

Rumours floating around when we were down south at the Mini O’s was that rookie Pro, Joey Crown, may have also found a home on the team. Also drifting in the air was the rumour that a former very fast rider may be coming out of early retirement to race Supercross on the team, but we don’t want to say the name in case it’s true. We’d hate to ruin the surprise! Apparently, there’s a end-of-year deadline for the deal, so we’ll wait for that one.

Michael DaSilva’s ‘Quest for the West’ Fundraiser

25$ at the door per person or 5 tickets for 100$ in advance!

**Fundraiser** The purpose of this event is to raise money to help me go out west to race the first four rounds of the 2018 Jetwerx Rockstart Energy Triple Crown Series! We will be watching the Oakland Supercross! Multiple TV’s as well as a bar on the spot! We will also have auctions going on throughout the night as well as multiple door prizes! This year’s event will be held earlier! More information to come, stay tuned! You don’t want to miss it!

For more information, click the link:

It sounds like Michael finally has his health issues sorted out and he’s ready to get back to training at full capacity. It turns out he was fighting through 2 bouts of the Epstein Barr Virus throughout the racing season last year. With this obstacle behind him, he should be making improvements this coming season.

‘5-Lap Sprint’ | Christmas Edition | Scott Sports Canada

With answers like this, you’ve got to give this a read. | Bigwave photo

We had a blast putting this article together. Like Jeff said, it’s a great way to see a different side of the racers and industry people you think you know. Here is the latest installment:

By Jeff McConkey

‘5 Lap Sprint’ is presented by Scott Sports Canada.

Well, it’s that time again. 5-Lap Sprint | Christmas Edition | Presented by Scott Sports Canada is here. Basically, we reach out to a whole bunch of great people in the moto community and ask them personal questions that don’t always have to do with moto. It gives them a chance to have a little fun and let’s the readers get to know them better.

For round 1, I hit up Kaven Benoit, Mike Alessi, Cade Clason, Daryl Murphy, Tyler Medalia, and Michael Fowler. These gems gave us some great answers. Hope you enjoy!

What are your plans for Christmas?

#26 Kaven Benoit

Spend some good time with family and friends. Enjoy outdoor winter activities, also.

#26 Kaven Benoit.

#800 Mike Alessi

We have my wife’s family coming in for Christmas this year. It will be the first time we have Christmas in our new house in Florida.

#9 Cade Clason

Family, food, drinks and fun!

Daryl Murphy

The plans for Christmas are wide open to spend time with any and all my family and friends. The usual always starts with meeting up for a beverage and a cheers with my best bud, Kreg, then heading to the annual Christmas Eve family supper. Probably throw in a night cap with the parents and a hot tub! Christmas day will be at my mom and dad’s spending time with my brother Michael, sister-in-law, Kendra, nephew, Kaine, and niece, Jordyn. I also wouldn’t mind hitting up a theatre Christmas evening with some friends hoping to watch the new Jumanji movie.

#5 Tyler Medaglia

Having the family come to Nova Scotia instead of flying with 3 kids Xmas day to Ottawa. Ride some bikes, play hockey and enjoy the holidays.

#24 Michael Fowler

I spend Christmas at home with my family ever year. We all open gifts in the morning, then meet with the extended family to eat a huge meal.

Who is the hardest to buy for, and who is the easiest to buy for?

#26 Kaven Benoit

Nobody is hard to buy for and the easiest is my girlfriend.

#800 Mike Alessi

I would say I am the hardest to buy for because I usually buy what I want when I want it (Laughs). The wife is the easiest. She makes very detailed list and where to get her presents.

#800 Mike Alessi.

#9 Cade Clason

My grandparents are the hardest and my little brother is the easiest, because it’s basically like buying for myself!

Daryl Murphy

I usually find everyone pretty hard to buy for, however, I will say the absolute hardest to buy for would be my parents, Dean and Roxanne. Not because they are hard to please, but more so because I want to gift them the world. They have always been in my corner for absolutely everything in my life…Mistakes included (Laughs)! Thanks, Mom and Dad!

Easy… ?  Yeah right, let me think. Well, the easiest would have to be my niece and nephew. It’s pretty awesome when Kendra gives me some ideas along the way. I always try to have the best ones though! You never want them to put it to the side and move onto the next! Usually, they stop at mine for a while and that gives me the greatest joy! Their uncle kicks ass! (Laughs)

#5 Tyler Medaglia

Jeremy is the hardest person to buy for as he is very picky on what he likes and usually keeps everything in really good shape so nothing he has actually wears out. Heidi is the easiest to buy for. Her list is as long as mine so there is no shortage of things to get.

#24 Michael Fowler

Hardest person to buy for is my mom, for sure. My little brother, on the other hand, is young enough still that he is by far the easiest to buy for.

What is the one Christmas moment that stands out the most for you?

#26 Kaven Benoit

When I was about 8 years old, I was with my family on my grandpa’s boat on gulf of Mexico in Florida and the boat broke many miles away from the shore so we had to spend Christmas Eve out there waiting for someone to come rescue us.

#800 Mike Alessi

I would say last year was one that stands out. Not in a good way (Laughs). I got impatient and didn’t want to wait to see what I had wrapped under the tree so I opened all my gifts while the wife was out buying more gifts. She got home and wasn’t pumped with me. I promised her this year I would be good. She doesn’t believe me and currently has all my gifts hidden somewhere.

#9 Cade Clason

It’s actually the day after Christmas when my dad crashed my brand new race trailer. I was so bummed, but not as mad as my mom was!

#9 Cade Clason.

Daryl Murphy

Well, I kind of gave those ones away last year. I would still have to say the Vegas Supercross tickets, airfare, and lodging that mom gifted the men a few years back! That was kick ass. Also, the dirty garden gnome given to grandma for Christmas… She thought it would be an angel. Twas not any angel (Laughs). Another favourite moment would be just being able to spend some time with the grandparents during the holidays. We have some good laughs. Like when those couch commercials come on where prices are “Sofa King Low!” Grandma Murphy kept saying it out loud a number of times until she figured out what she was saying. Classic!

#5 Tyler Medaglia

I mean, besides getting the family together, the certain foods that come around once a year are usually a hit for me. The kids act like lunatics so I won’t even say watching them open presents because it’s a spoiled sugar-induced shit show.

#24 Michael Fowler

I would have to say that’s the last Christmas I got to spend with my grandparents and my dad. I would go back to those Christmas days any time.

How will you be bringing in the New Year?

#26 Kaven Benoit

At my friend Phil Chainé’s cabin up in the north of Quebec. No cell service…nothing, just some good times with friends and nature.

#800 Mike Alessi

I plan to celebrate the New Year with family and friends we have in Florida. Maybe have a big bonfire and cook some good southern food. Plus football is on, on New Year’s so I will be watching that.

#9 Cade Clason

With a drink in one hand and my fiancé in the other!

Daryl Murphy

Most likely with some card playing or games with some family and friends with some drinks. Again, I just love and really enjoy chilling with family and friends.

Daryl Murphy.

#5 Tyler Medaglia

New Years was sick in my late teens early twenty’s but it’s been gradually getting lamer each year. Once the kids go to sleep we don’t last too much longer. Unless there is some sort of hockey New Year’s Eve then that would likely be pretty fun.

#24 Michael Fowler

Hopefully, I will be bringing in the New Year somewhere in the south with a dirt bike and a Supercross track or at least that’s my plan.

 What was your best moment of 2017?

#26 Kaven Benoit

2017 was rough on me but I would have to say just racing in my backyard was a pretty cool feeling.

#800 Mike Alessi

I had a lot of really great moments this year. I made a lot of new friends this year racing up in Canada. I would have to say driving our RV to the east coast nationals was probably the best for me because we got to really travel Canada and see how beautiful it is.

#9 Cade Clason

When a girl brings me a pack of Starbursts and says, “I know Jeff couldn’t be here and I know he would have brought you these“!!!

Daryl Murphy

There is never just ONE best moment with me, so my highlight moments would be:

1: The day I fulfilled the goal from last Christmas’ DMX 5-Lap Sprint. A promise to myself with bets on the line to quit smoking cigarettes. So far it has been 6 months cigarette and smoke free. Sorry, not sorry Steve Simms and TDags. Thanks for the positive encouragement. Also, a huge thank you to Wendy Snelgrove and Michelle Halstead for their moral support throughout.

2: I smiled a lot more in 2017… So that is a best moment (Laughs).

3: Watching the MX2 Class in 2017! WILD.

4: Pourcel’s pass on Goerke at the finish of PG. I was able to watch it very intensively with my own eyes and was privy to instant replays as well. WOW! Like Travers always says…”You need to see this LIVE!

5: First time walking into Mosaic Stadium for the first Roughrider game of 2017… The electricity in this stadium is unreal! GO RIDERS!

#5 Tyler Medaglia

The birth of my third child, Poppy, was P1. Honourable mentions would be ISDE being an unbelievable experience and being a part of Huber Motorsports from the beginning of the MX chapter is awesome, too.

#5 Tyler Medaglia.

#24 Michael Fowler

Best moment of 2017 was definitely earning my first top 10 overall at a national. Been working for that for years, so it’s nice to get that monkey off my back.

What is your New Year’s Resolution for 2018?

#26 Kaven Benoit

Simple things like remembering myself that life is good and to live it to its fullest.

#800 Mike Alessi

I would say my New Year’s resolution would be to have more patience. I’m not the most patient person and I need to work on that.

#9 Cade Clason

Do something worth remembering in the next 365 days.

Daryl Murphy

My resolution for 2018 is to start off with a healthier lifestyle, and also to control my spending habits (Laughs). The weird part is, I can’t even tell you where the cigarette money went…. Don’t judge me (laughs)!

#5 Tyler Medaglia

Work on being able to communicate a bit better. Maybe tidy up the diet a bit but that seems a little unrealistic so let’s say if I’m over 150 I’ll eat a touch cleaner.

#24 Michael Fowler

My resolution for 2018 is to put more time into the things that matter the most to me and stop wasting time on things that are so trivial and meaningless in my life.

#24 Michael Fowler.

Is it “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Holidays?”

#26 Kaven Benoit

I like saying “Happy Holidays.”

#800 Mike Alessi

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!

#9 Cade Clason

People can say what they want. For me, it is Merry Christmas!

Daryl Murphy

It’s both Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays, but the ‘go to’ is definitely Merry Christmas!

#5 Tyler Medaglia

It’s Merry Christmas.

#24 Michael Fowler

For sure Merry Christmas. I mean, come on, that’s what Santa says when he is flying away in his sleigh. The chubby happy guy in a red coat can’t be wrong (Laughs).

Thanks for that, everyone, and Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and Happy New Year to all!

The Value of a #1 Plate | Where Will Shawn Maffenbeier Land?

Defending MX2 champion, Shawn Maffenbeier, has been down this road before. | Bigwave photo

In the world of sports, there is some validity to the silly cliché that “If you’re not first, you’re last!” If you were to believe the word on the street, it looks more and more like 2017 MX2 champion, Shawn Maffenbeier, from Swift Current, Saskatchewan, will be saying farewell to the champion makers over at MX101 and heading for “greener” pastures at another team. Everyone wants a #1 plate in their pit.

The rumour mill is predicting that team will be the 2nd year Canadian Motocross effort over at Huber Motorsports. Of course, nothing is official yet, so take this with a grain of sea salt, but if you were betting on this situation, the safe money is probably on the side of MX101 giving up another hot Canadian rider.

Everyone in a position to give a definitive answer is keeping tight-lipped, but all signs in the unofficial world are pointing to this becoming a reality.

The career of a motocross racer is short and you have to do everything you have to to earn as much as you can. You can’t blame a rider for going where the money is, that’s for sure. Just because it’s fun, doesn’t mean these guys aren’t professionals and need to make what they can when they can. Sometimes, you really need to make these decisions with your head and not your heart, even if it means breaking one.

Either way, good luck to all concerned. If this were to happen, like we said last week, Marco Cannella is a young, hungry, fast Canadian, and he’s already riding a Yamaha. If the shoe fits…

Cole Thompson Update

Cole Thompson will stay north of the border and contest Arenacross in the Rockstar Triple Crown Series. | Bigwave photo

At this point, KTM Canada racer Cole Thompson will concentrate on the @triplecrownseries Arenacross this winter and not line up for any Supercross races south of the border.

He’s back 100% healthy and riding again after his thumb injury last summer and has to be one of the favourites going after the @rockstarenergycanada $100K in 2018.

It’s too bad we probably won’t see him on the line in Monster Energy AMA Supercross, but it’s great that we’ve got another fast rider to cheer for throughout 2018 up here in Canada.

It’s time for me to go back outside with the shovel. I wish I were joking…

Thanks for reading. It’s been another great year here at DMX and we’re looking forward to giving out our annual awards in the coming weeks. It’s always a fun yet controversial time of year. It’s also fun to keep an eye on Jeff’s predictions for the year. Remember when he said Shawn Maffenbeier would be an 11th place guy? We still kid him about that one. Too soon?

Have a great weekend.

Congrats on your new gig, Cade Clason. Go ahead, say it. “See you at the races…” Thanks. | Bigwave photo