Frid’Eh Update #8 | Mitchell Harrison | Brought to You by GasGas Canada
By Billy Rainford
Welcome to Week #8 of the DMX Frid’Eh Update this week brought to you by GasGas Canada. It’s been a while since we’ve had anyone run the #8 in the Canadian Triple Crown Series. For some reason, the number is avoided. The last time I asked someone who used the number, they weren’t aware of any specific reason for the avoidance, other than to say they didn’t think it looked very good. Well, that’s all about to change because Mitchell Harrison has chosen it for his career number after winning the 250 Triple Crown title for 2022.
After spending 2 nights at a hotel at the Calgary Airport due to weather conditions back in Ontario, I’ve finally made it home to London. It was -26C in Calgary when I left and +2 in Toronto when I landed. I don’t think I remember another flight across the country where the entire time was flown over clouds. I didn’t see the ground once.
The problem wasn’t actually the frigid temps out west but the freezing rain that was happening in Ontario. I always say that I don’t mind extended layovers in airports, but 2 days was beyond even what I can put up with, so I made myself comfortable at one of the hotels close to YYC. But of course, the pool and hot tub were closed for renovations…
Anyway, I was hoping to get home and dust off the YZ 250 because while I was away in Kamloops, BC I saw that Gopher Dunes had opened for riding a couple times. Well, we’ve got a pretty decent blanket of icy snow here right now, but the forecast is for plus zero temperatures for the foreseeable future, so I don’t think it’ll be long before the sound of the 2-stroke rings loudly….slowly, but loudly.
Direct Motocross: Hello, Mitchell. I got to see you a bunch out in California but let’s back it up to last year’s Canadian series. You won the 250 Triple Crown title. No, it’s not the AMA series, but how did it feel to take this championship?
Mitchell Harrison: It felt good to win the Triple Crown Series. It was big for the team and getting more sponsors, and it was awesome to hold up a #1 plate. Yes, it’s not AMA but it’s hard to gain confidence if you’re not winning at all. Plus, I get a single digit #, which is pretty cool.
Ryder McNab won 4 overalls in MX and you won 3. How did the outdoor series go for you? You top 4 riders really separated yourselves.
I thought the series went incredibly well for me. I didn’t know where I was going to stand against everyone. I still felt like I was foreign to the GasGas and I had a nagging knee injury in SX. I thought I should have won more overalls. Sand Del Lee was one I should have walked away with but way too many mistakes. But now I know most the tracks so that should play a big roll.
And then you took the AX/SX title by a pretty good margin. How did that portion of the series go for you?
The AX/SX series was a lot of fun. Cole (Thompson) was really hard to beat and we had good battles. Once he went to Australia is was really my title to lose. It was also good to have Jess (Pettis) for the last round, he’s always fun to race against and a great talent. Sarnia was really tight so it was a hard fought 2 nights.
It looks like all of the top guys will be back in 2023. How do you see the series going this season?
I see it being better than last year. I was just hoping to contend for a title, which I did, so now I know I can win it and ride every round with no fear. When I got the points lead I felt I had something to lose which I haven’t had that feeling in a long time. Now I know what I did wrong and am fired up.
We’ll also have Justin Bogle thrown in the mix. How do you think he’ll do up here against all of the top guys in the 250 class?
Justin will be winning races. He has won a SX 250 title soo can’t overlook him. I have always welcomed the competition. I want to be the best in the world. I know I’m a long way away from accomplishing that, but in order to get there the better the riders I race the more I’ll learn.
You seem like you really fit in up here and signed a contract extension with Cobequid. How easy was that decision?
That decision was easy – loved the team, loved where I was based, and love the outdoors… and Alex (Parker) loves golf just as much as I do, so it’s a great match. Haha.
You’ve had some struggles in Supercross so far this season and are currently 18th in 250 West points. Can you take us through how it’s been going?
Bad luck, among other things. I was ripping pre-season so it’s been frustrating. 10th this weekend was a big step in the right direction. Still way off of what I’m capable of but getting there.
Would you consider doing some 450 rounds on your 250 like a few of our guys are doing down there?
I want to do Daytona so working on that, but that’s the only round I am considering. Only thing is, I only have a stock 250 in Florida and that won’t work there. Hahaha
What have you been doing while the series heads east?
I have been in Florida with my trainer, Justin Boyd. I’ve always believed sand makes you the best rider and it’s been a while since I’ve trained in it.
When will you meet up with your Canadian team for testing etc.?
Right now, I am riding the Cobequid bike down in Florida with T-Dags (Tyler Medaglia). Eve (Brodeur) should be down soon as well. I wouldn’t say I’m testing but I’ve done a few little things different with my suspension from last year, since my speed has increased a bit.
Are there any big bike changes with set up or parts you’ll need to get used to this year?
I don’t believe we are doing much different. I think I know the bike really well and don’t need to do much besides little suspension changes.
What do you miss most about being up here?
Just Nova Scotia and the Village, Heidi’s (Heidi Cooke) bakery (Hurricane Heidi’s), and all of the crew up there. I really had a good time up there. It felt like a second home. I don’t miss Tylers Hard Enduro. Hahaha
What’s something weird that we do up here that you can’t get used to? Is there anything?
You guys call beanies toques, which is weird, and the loonies and toonies are awful. $1 are wayyyy better. [Sure, but what about your pennies?!] I have so much change everywhere. You guys will never ride in the fast lane unless passing. US everyone rides in the fast lane. I wish we would learn from y’all with that one. Haha.
Well, good luck with the rest of your series and we’ll see you at round 1 up here. Who would you like to thank?
My mom and dad, first off, my fiancée Madison, AJE Overstock vehicles, Hammer Nutrition, Mind FX, premier Sport Performance, Moti Coaching, Mobius Braces, Leatt, Cobiquid Mountain Sports.
2023 Canadian Triple Crown Series Riders and Teams
Now that we have a couple more pieces to the puzzle figured out, let’s have an updated look at riders and their teams for the 2023 Canadian Triple Crown Series.
- 8 Mitchell Harrison GAS – Returning to the Parts Canada Cobequid GasGas team -250
- 64 Ryder McNabb KTM – Moved to the Red Bull KTM team -250
- 14 Quinn Amyotte YAM – Returning to the Manluk Rock River Yamaha team -250
- 30 Sebastien Racine – Moved to the MX101 Yamaha team – 250
- Jeremy McKie – Walton Kawasaki – 450
- Jacob Piccolo – Moved to Honda Canada GDR Fox Racing team -250
- Wyatt Kerr – Priority Mechanical KTM team – 250
- 22 Tyler Gibbs – Returning to TLD SSR GasGas team -250
- Josiah Natzke – Returning to Partzilla PRMX Kawasaki team – 250
- 46 Marco Cannella – Stepping away from racing for 2023
- Tyler Yates – Fox Canada Relax Collective Scotty Fishing – 250
- Zach Ufimzeff – Joined Manluk Rock River Yamaha team – 250
- Julien Benek – Partzilla PRMX Kawasaki team – 250
- Westen Wrozyna – Retiring from Pro racing
- Teren Gerber – Mountains Edge TLD Yamaha – 450 West
- Tanner Scott – In talks with Al Dyck at MVP Sky Racing – 250
- William Crete – Select eastern rounds in the 250 class
- Cole Thompson – Likely race Supercross/Arenacross portion only on his own deal – 450
- Preston Masciangelo – Partzilla PRMX Kawasaki – 250
- Clayton Schmucki – Unsure
- Dylan Wright – Returning to Honda Canada GDR Fox Racing – 450
- Tyler Medaglia – Returning to Parts Canada GasGas – 450
- Tanner Ward – Moved to Walton Kawasaki – 450
- Shawn Maffenbeier – Returning to MX101 FXR Yamaha – 450
- Westen Wrozyna – Westen has retired from Pro Motocross
- Chris Blackmer – Taking time off to fix back issues
- Daniel Elmore – Joined TLD SSR GasGas team – 450
- Felix Lopez – Not returning to Canada
- Tee Perrott – Returning to Manluk Rock River Yamaha – 450
- Yanick Boucher – Bailey Motorsports Husqvarna – 450 East
- Liam O’Farrell – Stepping back from Pro racing
- Ryan Derry – PDR WeldersHelper.com Maxima – 450
- Keylan Meston – And I quote, “Washed up.”
- Cole Thompson – Likely AX/SX portion on his own – 450
- Parker Eales – Holeshot Motorsports Frazer Excavation – 450
- Mitchell Harrison – Returning to Parts Canada GasGas – 250
- Logan Leitzel – Planning to return to Canada – 450
- Max Filipek – Team SunguardAwnings.com, Peak Powersports, Simply Moto Grimsby – 450 East
- Guillaume St Cyr – Likely select MX rounds and AX/SX series
- Tommy Dallaire – CarrXpert, Fox Racing, Oakley – 450
Preston Masciangelo Racing Arlington Supercross Futures
Don’t look now but we’ve got another Canadian to cheer for this weekend when the Monster Energy AMA Supercross Series heads to Arlington, Texas, tomorrow. #622 Preston Masciangelo will line up in the Supercross Futures to get his SX career started.
Preston is coming back after breaking and dislocating both wrists earlier this winter.
From his Instagram page:
Good luck, Preston.
Jake Tricco Back on the Bike
I don’t know about you, but it makes me smile to see the #527 of Jake Tricco back on a bike and having a blast riding down south.
From Dan Tricco‘s Instagram page:
Hopefully, we get to see the speed and skill of Jake at some eastern rounds of the Canadian series this summer, whether it’s in the FXR PreMix class or the Pro Nationals.
We’ve got young Meston Lockhart to cheer for when the KJSX riders hit the track in Texas this week.
The first Supercross held in the DFW Metroplex was on February 28, 1975 and was the season opener for the second instalment of the “Yamaha Super-Series of Motocross.” The season had grown from two to four rounds and it was Jimmy Ellis who took the overall in Texas Stadium along with each of the other three rounds on his Can-Am. Ellis repeated his Texas Stadium heroics in 1976 but it was Bob Hannah who took Texas Stadium and the sport over in 1977.
THREE RACES AGAIN: Arlington was a Triple Crown in 2020 in which Eli Tomac won the last two races and the overall. Arlington hosted three rounds during the 2021 pandemic host site season and it was a clean sweep by eventual champion Cooper Webb. 2022 was another Arlington Triple Crown round and Tomac pulled the reverse sweep by going 3-2-2 to take the overall. The only time a 450SX Class Triple Crown event was won by a rider without winning a race 2023 will be another Triple Crown and the
fourth year in-a-row AT&T Stadium will host three races one way or another.
OK, we’re about to watch our nephew play some basketball in Kitchener, so we’ll leave things here for this week. Have a great weekend and enjoy the racing.