Monday Morning Coffee
By Billy Rainford
As I finally sit in front of my laptop to start this week’s column, I do so after leaving the Deschambault National just west of Quebec City at 8pm Sunday night and digging into the 10-hour drive home to London. After crawling into bed just after 6 this morning, I found it pretty hard to get up in time to have this posted before noon. What I’m fumbling to say here is I’m sorry this week’s installment is a little late. But unlike the beliefs of George Costanza, it’s never to late for a cup of coffee, so go grab another and settle in as I take you through the motos from another amazing day of Rockstar Energy MX National racing from Motocross Deschambault.
There was talk of making the long drive east down the 401/20 highway early Saturday morning to be sure we made riders’ meeting Sunday morning in Deschambault. However, once we thought about the racing we’d miss Saturday at the annual ECAN, we decided we should make the move on Friday. The next two hurdles were the weekly Frid’Eh Update column and the fact that DMX Contributor Jeff McConkey had to work his full-time job until 5. OK, it looks like we’re pulling an all-nighter! No problem, it’s been done before and will surely be done again.
I started working the math backwards in my head an realized we didn’t need to show up in Quebec at 2 in the morning, so we pushed departure time to 1:00am from London. Yes, we are sadistic fools.
The first stop was to fill the tank in ‘Dave’ the #dmxvan. Magically, the price of gas went up $.05 per litre the second I left the driveway! The biggest thing when heading east from London is getting through the behemuth that is Greater Toronto. Fortunately, even though the Pan Am Games were conspiring to make things difficult, traffic at 3 in the morning was light.
I had to pull into Oshawa to pick up DMX Videographer Mitch Goheen and his better half, Ally, and although an early-morning trip into ‘The ‘Shwa’ can be an adventure in itself, I didn’t see much of interest other than a few ner-do-wells trying to figure out a way to cause trouble on their way home from…wherever.
Next stop was a few interchanges later to grab Jeff. He was up and ready for action and even offered to take the next driving shift, which I quickly accepted. Off we went pointed east toward Quebec.
OK, you didn’t call in today to hear about the non-stop action of a drive east on the 401 through Ontario so I won’t go into those details, of which there really are none.
We arrived at the track in the quaint little French town north of the St. Lawrence River before noon and were impressed to see all the cars lining the road parked to get in to see the racing. We pulled the van into the line-up and waited. Now, it’s a well-known fact that sometimes things get lost in translation when you show up in Quebec with your official CMRC Pro Nationals’ credentials. I even remember CMRC President, Mark Stallybrass, having difficulty getting into Ste. Julie once!
To my surprise, a friendly gentleman saw the ‘Direct Motocross’ graphics on the van and made a special trip over to chat. Next thing you know, he’s pulling us out of the line, opening the exit gate and sending us through! It was pretty cool, so thank you very much for that Deschambault MX!
I won’t get into ECAN details here now, but we’ll throw up a few photos and a short video later on that topic. Let’s cut the jibber jabber and get to the Pro motos, shall we?
MX2 Moto 1
Of course, the partisan Quebec crowd was hoping to see another dominant performance by their prodigal son, Royal Distributing Fox Racing KTM’s Kaven Benoit, but would they get it? Kaven is on a roll and could run out the east if he keeps this up! I’m sure that hasn’t been done too often.
When we woke up Sunday morning, the ground was wet but it wasn’t raining. The Deschambault track is somewhere close to the consistency of Sand Del Lee and so can take a lot of moisture before getting unrideable. The forecast was for rain until mid-afternoon so we all just looked at the sky and crossed our fingers we wouldn’t get the same as we got early last year.
A few interesting things happened during practice and qualifying:
– #456 Intermediate rider Honda Canada Motovan Oakley rider JC Bujold went down after a jump and was in a rather sketchy spot. #17 Redemption Racing Fly Dragon KTM’s Seth Rarick saw the flagger standing with the flag gently blowing in the breeze and, like everyone was told at the riders’ meeting, jumped with a bit of caution. Well, apparently a lot of caution and a red cross flag was needed as JC was in the middle of the track on the landing and Rarick slammed into him and went flying. #22 Ornage Motorsports Scott KTM rider Liam O’Farrell did likewise as a fan ran out, grabbed the red cross flag and started waving it properly to avoid any further damage.
-#36 McKee FXR Yamaha rider Hayden Halstead told us he crashed into a tree and laid in the track for “5 minutes” without a flag being waved at all. He finally came back to the now-empty mechanics’ area and asked me if I’d seen his dad, Brent, because he probably assumed Hayden “was dead.”
I only mention these two incidents in the hope that word gets to someone who can make a difference at the Quebec races to avoid any possible serious damage that could most-assuredly have happened.
-I thought it was funny when #761 Redemption Racing Fly Dragon KTM’s Cade Clason asked if I saw him attempt ‘the quad.’ He excitedly said, “I tried that quad twice. I missed it both times, but I tried it!” I didn’t even know there was a possible quad out there! There wasn’t. LOL
-#134 Cole Martinez was back for the Monster Energy Thor Kawasaki team and so #108 Shawn Rife‘s Canadian fill-in adventure has apparently come to an end.
On to the motos…
The start is a very fast sweeping left-hander that put riders straight into a big single and then a table-top. I always expect carnage here but it never seems to cause an issue. #1 Kaven Benoit wheelied his way to another perfect start and was out front a distancing himself from the others immediately.
Behind him as they came across the finish line the first time was Honda Canada TLD GDR’s #21 Jeremy Medaglia, #762 Devil’s Lake MX Ansr Yamaha’s Blake Savage, #105 Canada’s Motorcycle FXR Yamaha’s Jimmy Decotis, #62 Bobby Piazza on his Suzuki, #39 Vernon Motorsports Thor Yamaha’s Jess Pettis, #620 GA Checkpoint Fox Yamaha’s Brad Nauditt, Rockstar OTSFF Yamaha’s #14 Shawn Maffenbeier, #444 Drill Tech Fox Yamaha’s Dustin Creson, Honda Canada TLD GDR’s #34 Westen Wrozyna, #20 Canada’s Motorcycle FXR Yamaha’s Dylan Wright, Duroy Racing KTM’s #29 Jeremy Pronovost, and #22 O’Farrell.
#51 Kawasaki-mounted Brock Leitner had issues early when he came together with another rider and had early motor troubles when a rad hose came off for a DNF.
On lap 4, I believe, Medaglia started slowing and looking down at his machine. And where was Rarick?
Medaglia would limp his bike around for a couple more laps as he told me afterward that it felt like he was riding a 50cc bike out there but it didn’t seem to be getting worse. When he finally pulled in to the mechanics’ area, he suspected a header pipe but that wasn’t it. Once he realized he’d now dropped down to 20th position, he decided to pull into the pits and call it a moto.
Rarick had suffered some sort of engine malfunction and was pushing his bike back. Not good for the would-be top 5-8 rider out of the USA.
By lap 4, Benoit had established a lead over Decotis who now had a safe gap over Savage, Piazza, Maffenbeier, Wright, Nauditt, Pettis, Martinez, Creson, Pronovost, O’Farrell, #803 Marcus Nilsen, Wrozyna, and #88 Vincent Lauzon. a bit behind him, #9 Strickt Racing Scott RMX Yamaha’s Morgan Burger had Intermediate Bujold all over him.
By the 7th lap, 1, 105, and 762 were riding pretty safely on their own with Maffenbeier and Wright in a tight battle behind them. In fact, they went back and forth and when Maffenbeier tried to re-pass Wright in the corner in front of me, they tangled and Maffenebeier found himself on the ground as Wright motored away.
The Martinez, Nauditt, Pettis battle was a good one, as was the Creson, Pronovost, and O’Farrell battle. Nilsen had Lauzon on him, and the Burger/Bujold train followed them.
Late in the moto, Benoit had a gap on Decotis who had a large lead over Savage in third.
While having a great moto, #62 Piazza “threw a chain” and had to take a DNF.
At the flag, Benoit held his lead over Decotis who had a large gap on Savage who had Wright behind him. After a gap, it was Maffenbeier and Martinez then a gap back to Nauditt and Pettis. O’Farrell and Creson followed ahead of Pronovost, Lauzon and a tight battle between Nilsen and Wrozyna. Burger managed to put some space on Bujold behind him.
Top 10: Benoit, Decotis, Savage, Wright, Maffenbeier, Martinez, Nauditt, Pettis, O’Farrell, Creson.
MX1 Moto 1
The thing with trying to get a good start shot at Deschambault is that you stand out wide in the cedars, point your camera and run back into the trees as 40 450s come tearing dangerously close to you at top speed. I snapped away but didn’t really eaven see who headed down the first straight in the lead. I DO know that at the end of the first lap it was Rockstar OTSFF Yamaha’s #101 Matt Goerke with the lead over #148 Royal Distributing Fox racing KTM’s Cole Thompson, #1 Honda Canada TLD GDR’s Colton Facciotti, #3 Parts Canada Thor Husqvarna’s Tyler Medaglia, Cade Clason, #123 Monster Energy Thor Kawasaki’s Brett Metcalfe, #7 Rockstar OTSFF Yamaha’s Bobby Kiniry, #38 Yamaha’s Tim Tremblay (back from his supposed retirement from moto), and #24 Devil’s Lake MX Ansr Yamaha’s Kyle Swanson on his new ride. Having problems and bringing up the rear was #43 FXR Yamaha rider Jay Burke.
By lap 2, Goerke, Thompson, and Facciotti were going at it with Medaglia just behind them. Metcalfe and Clason had gapped Kiniry and Tremblay with Swanson and now #26 Duroy Racing KTM’s Michael Da Silva right with him. #978 Franklin Nogueras had #33 Duroy Racing KTM’s Shawn Robinson, #36 Halstead and #30 Honda Canada TLD GDR’s Kyle Keast with him.
It was around this time that #5 Monster Energy Thor Kawasaki’s Teddy Maier pulled into the pits and was having things worked on before heading back out a lap down. Unfortunately, his return to the race didn’t go well and after he took a hard fall, a broken wrist and thumb are the apparent result. Get well soon, Teddy. Will we see the friendly almost-Canadian rider from Iowa at another race in Canada is the question.
By the 4th lap, Metcalfe had joined the amazing top 5 battle that had the crowd running all over the place to watch. Next came Clason and Kiniry with a tight battle with Tremblay, Swanson and Da Silva bhind him. Nogueras now had Keast all over him in the fight for 11th.
The top 5 were still going at it on the 6th lap and Kiniry and Clason were doing the same a bit behind them. Keast had gotten around Nogueras who was still running hard. The battle behind them between Robinson, Schmoke, #71 Xtreme Toys rider Drew Roberts, and #35 Red Line Scott Thor Yamaha’s Matthew Davenport and Halsted was a good one to keep a third eye on.
At the half, Goerke had a bit of a lead over Facciotti who had Metcalfe a bit behind him. Thompson had lost the wheel of Metty and now had Medaglia closing in. Keast was putting in a great charge, Da Silva was looking strong, and Robinson and Schmoke were at it again!
On the last lap, Facciotti was now out front with Goerke and Metcalfe right with him. Medaglia was also now knocking at Thompson’s back door.
At the flag, it was Facciotti with a slight gap on the amazing battle between Goerke and Metcalfe. In the final corner, Medaglia tried to rail the outside line while Thompson went wide too. The resulting contact between Medaglia and the steel bridge was felt and heard by everyone standing on it. Medaglia was left on the ground while Thompson went on to take 4th place. Medaglia had a safe lead over Kiniry in 6th who had a gap on Clason ahead of Swanson, Tremblay and a late-charging Keast.
Top 10: Facciotti, Goerke, Metcalfe, Thompson, Medaglia, Kiniry, Clason, Swanson, Tremblay, Keast.
Thompson said he pumped up early in the moto and couldn’t really feel his hands! That’s new for the young Brigden, Ontario, native and lets’ hope he figures it out this week. Medaglia was left with a sore left arm and leg after his contact with the bridge and wasn’t too happy about what he saw as an intentional move on Thompson’s part. Would this carry over to the next moto? You’ll see…
MX2 Moto 2
When the 40 MX2 riders crossed the Royal Distributing Holeshot line it was Benoit out front again with Pettis with him. Benoit would make a rare mistake allowing Pettis to get a taste of leading a Pro moto. It didn’t last long as Nenoit regrouped and assumed his position out front.
When they came around to complete the 2nd lap, Benoit was starting to establish a lead over Maffenbeier, Pettis, Savage, Nauditt, Piazza, Wrozyna, Medaglia (on his backup bike), Martinez, Nilsen, Wright, Creson, Burger, O’Farrell, and #257 Tyler Arsenault. Next came #555 Jarek Balkovic and then Decotis.
By lap 5, Benoit was way out front with Maffenbeier in a safe 2nd. Pettis, Medaglia, and Savage were in a heated fight for 3rd while Piazza rode alone in 6th. Martinez and Wright were scrapping ahead of Decotis Nilsen, Nauditt, O’Farrell and Wrozyna.
Late in the moto, the top 3 of Benoit, Maffenebeier, and Medaglia were alone with Savage ahead of Wright and Decotis with Pettis now behind them.
At the flag, it was Benoit, Maffenbeier, Medaglia, Savage, Wright, Decotis, Pettis, Piazza, Nauditt, and O’Farrell.
1. 1 Benoit KTM 1-1
2. 14 Maffenbeier YAM 5-2
3. 762 Savage YAM 3-4
4. 105 Decotis YAM 2-6
5. 20 Wright YAM 4-5
6. 39 Pettis YAM 8-7
7. 620 Nauditt YAM 7-9
8. 134 Martinez KAW 6-12
9. 22 O’Farrell KTM 9-10
10. 444 Creson YAM 10-14
MX1 Moto 2
After the excitement of the first moto, eveyone was pressed up against the new fences to see if moto 2 could top it. It could.
Facciotti came away with the holeshot followed by Thompson, Goerke, Metcalfe, and Medaglia again at the end of the first lap. Here we go again!
By lap 2, the top 5 had again started to get away from 6th place rider Kiniry with Swanson, Tremblay, Da Silva, Robinson, Halstead, Schmoke, #69 Redemption Racing Fly Dragon KTM’s Eric Jeffery, and Davenport following.
7th place first moto finsisher Clason was way back in the pack and charging with Nogueras who was also at the back. It turns out, Clason suffered some troubles just after the mechanics’ area and was a lap down as he motored on.
Jumping ahead to around lap 7, it was Facciotti with a lead over Metcalfe who had a bit of room on Thompson who had Goerke all over him. Medaglia rode alone behind these riders then came Kiniry and the Tremblay/Swanson battle.
The Kiniry/Tremblay/Swanson battle was a good one as was the Robinson/Schmoke battle…again. #475 Parts Canada Thor Husqvarna’s Kyle Regal, Jeffery, and #53 PR-MX HAF Kawasaki’s Davey Fraser was another good one.
With Facciotti, Metcalfe and Goerke now ahead of Thompson who had Medaglia closing again, the battle between 7, 38, and 24 raged well behind. Robinson and Schmoke had Keast wanting in on the 9th-place battle.
Late in the moto, as the crowd ran from fence to fence, Facciotti had Metcalfe right on his rear wheel. As Colton got cross-rutted in the off-cambered left turn, Metcalfe grabbed a handful of whiskey throttle, made contact and it was Facciotti on the ground. Goerke, Thompson, and Medaglia all got by as Facciotti lay beneath his bike waiting for someone to pull his 450 off him. Facciotti finally got up and took off in 5th.
With 2 to go, Goerke now lead Metcalfe with a gap on Thompson in 3rd. After a gap to Medaglia came a huge gap back to Facciotti then another back to Kiniry then Tremblay, Swanson, Schmoke, Robinson, and Keast. Goerke was next which meant he’d lapped up to 11th.
At the flag, it was Goerke the Metcalfe. Thompson had Medaglia coming after him (literally), Facciotti and Kiniry. Tremblay in 7th then Swanson, Schmoke, and Robinson.
1. 101 Goerke YAM 2-1
2. 123 Metcalfe KAW 3-2
3. 1 Facciotti HON 1-5
4. 148 Thompson KTM 4-3
5. 3 Medaglia HSK 5-4
6. 7 Kiniry YAM 6-6
7. 38 Tremblay YAM 9-7
8. 24 Swanson YAM 8-8
9. 30 Keast HON 10-11
10. 23 Schmoke KTM 14-9
It was another great day at the races. If you can make it to River Glade in Moncton, NB, I suggest you do. The fight for wins has been intense!
MXGP Czech Republic Results
Have a great week, everyone. Good luck to all the Canadians down at Loretta Lynn‘s this week! Is it hot there? Yikes.
Thanks for reading.