Monday Morning with Bigwave

By Billy Rainford

Hello, and welcome to another new week. We’re going to head all the way west to Abbotsford, BC to start this one. Oh, by the way, I could be wrong, but I think the locals really like it when you call it “Rabitt’s Turd” instead…

After all the anticipation surrounding the start of the new Rockstar Triple Crown series, we had our first gate drops of the all-new season. Let’s start with the good.

There was a live video broadcast from the start of the evening program to the very end. When they went on air it was Kyle Thompson and Brett Lee who were in charge. I know both of these guys pretty well and so I was certain they’d be able to get the job done smoothly and with professionalism. I feel they achieved that goal.

Kyle is the older brother of Cole Thompson and the younger brother of Justin Thompson. It’s a family affair (Sly and the Family Stone).

The Abbotsford Centre is a relatively new arena and even though the west coast had been thrashed by snowstorms and rain, people actually showed up and there looked to be a pretty solid crowd. The main cameras were on the same side as the busier stands, so you may not have realized how many people were in fact in the stands, but there was a good number.

Of course, the main thrust of the series coverage lies in the 57 hours of programming on TSN, MavTV and Fox Sports, so that is where we’ll go to get a true idea of the interest in our great sport. Hopefully, people tune in and watch these programs.

The night ran smoothly and even though poor Kyle Beaton was on the dozer a lot more than he probably planned, they seemed to be on schedule. I’m sure they went through more of their fuel budget than they meant to!

All the top riders we expected to show up, did, and the gates were filled with several riders with a realistic chance at winning both the 250 and 450 classes.

But then the gate actually dropped…

Unfortunately, the dirt used for these types of events gets stored outside somewhere and only gets called into action when motocross or monster trucks come to town. That means it sits out there in the elements.

Anywhere else in the country that’s not such a huge deal, but in a place where it rains so much, it means a lot.

Whoever it was that owns this dirt, didn’t do their due diligence with regards to protecting it from the elements. Yes, they received a lot of rain and snow in recent weeks, but if you aren’t ready for that out there then I really don’t know what you’re thinking!

I lived in Vancouver for 11 years…you don’t wake up and act surprised when you look out the window to yet another rainy day. In fact, when you open the curtains to sunshine, you run out into the streets with the rest of the Vancouverites and celebrate. OK, that’s an exaggeration but only a slight one!

What I’m saying is that the dirt farmer for this event kinda screwed us all out of what should have been an amazing opening night of racing.

So, if I were to search for the silver lining in all this, it would be the fact that 5 years from now we’ll still be talking about “that crazy indoor mud race in Abbotsford back in 2018!” This may be the very definition of ‘infamy,’ but we’ll take it…we have to.

During the night, they threw to a spot where Dan Beaton described the struggles of trying to get the dirt dried out before the racing started. They added lime and kept moving it around in an attempt to make it workable, but the damage was already done and we were left with one of the worst indoor mud races we’ve ever seen.

To be honest, it was entertaining to watch these top riders fight so hard to do such slow laps, and I hope the fans that showed up left with that appreciation. We wouldn’t want to see this kind of thing every week, but one mud race a season is always something we look back on with a weird sense of pride.

Remember that Morden mud race back in…or how about that year they were paddling canoes in the Gopher Dunes pits? Hey, remember how tough that day was at Ste-Thecle back in 2009? We all talk about these days in the past with dubious enthusiasm, and it’s pretty cool.

So, if I were to search for the silver lining in all this, it would be the fact that 5 years from now we’ll still be talking about “that crazy indoor mud race in Abbotsford back in 2018!” This may be the very definition of ‘infamy,’ but we’ll take it…we have to.

I have to give the Jetwerx Crew kudos for sticking together and giving us racing to watch, at all! If this were a local race, it would have been canceled, it was that bad (he says in his best Jeff McConkey voice).

Anyway, onward and upward, right? The mud also made it difficult for them to get the scoring and results up right away and correct. They were taking hits from every side Saturday night. I hope they all get a chance to relax after this one. Yes, the blame lies somewhere for the condition of the track, but it wasn’t the fault of the workers who were there having to deal with that hand. They worked their asses off and deserve a lot of credit.

I’ll admit that I had struggles of my own trying to get results and columns up about the event all the while getting message after message that the results are wrong. We only had what we had to go on, so we’re sorry for any inaccuracies along with the coverage of this one.

Anyway, we’re off and running and Calgary will be a completely different story for their double-header March 16-17, BRETT LEE! LOL

Top 10

250 Class


450 Class

If you missed it, the video broadcast goes to archive on the Rockstar Triple Crown site:

If you’d like to read what I thought of the two main events, you can read my “Brainstorm” columns:

250 Brainstorm

450 Brainstorm

Kaven Benoit Raced Round 1 of the Amsoil GNCC Series

We’ll grab Kaven for a chat as soon as we can get in touch with him to find out how this grueling day went for him.

Shelby Turner Races WORCS Race

Westen Wrozyna Qualifies 35th in Tampa

#179 Westen Wrozyna qualified for another night show in Tampa this past weekend. He finished 17th in heat 2 and headed for the LCQ. In the LCQ he had some troubles and finished 18th.

He’ll regroup for this week in Atlanta. We’ll grab him for an interview later today.

OK, have a great week, everyone. Jeff and I will be heading south this weekend to catch Westen Wrozyna‘s next go at Supercross in Atlanta. It’s also another Amateur Day on Sunday, so I’ll be there checking out the action all day long. Be sure to check in with us as we will keep you updated on any Canadians who make the trip.

Hey, Josh Cox, take the afternoon off today, and we’ll “See you at the races…” | John Meaney photo