Monday Morning with Bigwave

By Billy Rainford

Presented by Renegade Fuel. Find it at Hall Race Fuel.

Good morning from another strange weather situation in Southwestern Ontario. Here in London we just got hit by record-breaking rainfall…in January! Yes, it’s normally snow at this time of year, but we’ve been getting some really strange weather this season.

It’s going up to 8 degrees Celsius tomorrow and we just had so much rain that the Thames River has overflowed its banks farther than I’ve ever seen!

Emily and I got some new kayaks last year and we were slightly tempted to drop them in the river at the north end of the city, until we heard all the sirens in our area.

We’re basically across the street from a boat launch just downstream of the forks of the Thames in the centre of the city and the police and fire departments were busy pulling a couple boaters out of the water who lost control and were suffering from hypothermia. We decided to postpone our first trip down the river for a few months.

I went downtown last night to snap a few shots of Harris Park downtown. This is the same park that hosts the annual Rock the Park concert series. This summer it will be Jack Johnson and Vance Joy, but, as you can see, it would be more like Pottahawk right now!

Harris Park in downtown London after the record-breaking rain. | Bigwave photo
That sucks. | Bigwave photo

Anyway, the sun is supposed to come out tomorrow, so I guess the river has reached its maximum level and will start receding and get back to its usually useless level, but that’s an entirely different story…

Let me start off by mentioning the passing of longtime Dakar Rally racer, Paulo Goncalves.

We know riding and racing motorcycles is dangerous, but we’re not supposed to lose our lives. I’ve paid more attention to the race this year than I have since the mid-80’s, maybe it’s Chris ‘Adventure Guy’ Vandelaar‘s influence, I’m not sure.

The Dakar put together this tribute video to honour the well-liked and respected racer. RIP, Paulo.

Here’s the highlight video from Stage 7:

St Louis Supercross

It was round 2 of the Monster Energy AMA Supercross series Saturday night. The teams had to get themselves from Anaheim to St Louis, some 1820 miles or 26 hours away. Ouch. Oh, and guess what? They had to hop back in their vehicles and head back to California for this week! Like I’ve always said, there sure is a lot of driving in Motocross racing!

If you haven’t already, be sure to follow the Canadian Team PRMX Instagram page to ride along with Frede Forest as she drives the new rig from round to round and post photos and tells stories from along the way.

Here’s a look at the results and a short version of Jeff McConkey‘s ‘McThoughts:’

250 Class

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  1. #52 Austin Forkner KAW – Austin has been pegged as a champion since making his way up through the amateur ranks. The most important thing was for him to prove to himself that he’s back from his ACL injury and ready to actually do it. He said this was a “bucket list” race for him, since he’s from Missouri. He also said that as the race was going on he just didn’t want to “do a repeat of last week.” The 250 west is going to come down to whoever can get good starts between the top 3 riders.
  2. #32 Justin Cooper YAM – Justin is obviously the real deal this season and you can tell he feels he belongs at the front. I think we all know how important that attitude is in racing. All these guys have a ton of skill and are fit, but the X Factor is confidence and the belief in yourself to get the job done.
  3. #30 Brandon Hartranft KTM – If Brandon keeps riding like that, he’d better get more comfortable in front of the cameras because he’s going to be telling us how his races went a lot more in the future! It was great to see him get his first podium this past weekend. I don’t think he’s going to pass his way to the front, but, with good starts, more podiums are a possibility.
  4. #26 Alex Martin SUZ – They didn’t show Alex at all during the main so I never really got to get a good look at him there in 4th place. He says he’s having a lot of fun racing this year, so that’s always good to hear.
  5. #83 Jett Lawrence HON – Did everyone see his holeshot from the outside gate?! How the hell did he pull that off?! He got passed by Forkner right away but he was staying with him nicely until he had some troubles. He stopped into the pits and then came back out and still managed to finish in 5th place. Good things to come from this youngster, for sure.

450 Class:

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  1. #94 Ken Roczen HON – How good was that to see Ken come all the way back from injury and win that one?! It was actually 3 years ago at round 2 since he was up on the podium like that and it was a pretty emotional moment, for sure. I called him for the season opener win, but he did it at round 2. The question is, can he stay consistent and be a title threat for the rest of the long season? Of course he can! He said he could see the time clock and it made for the longest race of his life. He also mentioned a “couple road blocks out there getting good starts.” Hmm, there’s a pretty good chance he’s talking about #64 Vince Friese who is apparently the new Kyle Lewis.
  2. #51 Justin Barcia YAM – Justin mentioned at round 1 that he also won A1 last year but it was a mudder. He said last week felt way better because it was normal conditions. He was sick all week but said he felt even more comfortable than at A1. He also said that historically he’s been scratching his head with settings at this point in the season but that he already feels great on the bike. Could this be the year he’s competitive all season long in the 450 class and chasing this title?
  3. #21 Jason Anderson HSK – I’m not sure why a recent champion is coming in under the radar, but that’s what Jason is doing and I think that’s exactly how he likes it. He said he’s not doing anything exciting and “keeping it chill.” He now find himself in a really good position in the series and will be good.
  4. #3 Eli Tomac KAW – Weird, huh? Another poor start (12th) left Eli trying to make passes the entire main. He’s sitting in 5th place in the points and we’re still waiting for things to get back to normal, or is this normal? Watch him come out and win A2 by 15 seconds this coming weekend…
  5. #16 Zach Osborne HSK – Zach got out to the lead but then got moved aside by Kenny early. He and #9 Adam Cianciarulo took turns pushing each other out of the way and he came across the line in 5th. He needs these good starts to battle for podiums, so we’ll have to wait and see what he does next.

Dortmund Supercross

Tyler Bowers is the King of Dortmund. | Dortmund SX photo

Thanks, Racer X:

ADAC GERMAN SUPERCROSS

Round 3 of 3 – Dortmund

King of Dortmund (SX1)

Position Rider Country Machine Total Points
1st Tyler Bowers USA Kawasaki 70
2nd Cedric Soubeyras FRA Husqvarna 65
3rd Thomas Ramette FRA Suzuki 64
4th Mike Alessi USA Honda 46
5th Ryan Breece USA Yamaha  44
6th Charles Lefrancois FRA Suzuki 44
7th Fabien Izoird FRA Kawasaki 37
8th Jordi Tixier FRA KTM 36
9th Adrien Escoffier FRA Honda 25
10th Nicolas Dercourt FRA Suzuki 22

SX1 Points Finish

Position Rider Country Machine Total Points
1st Ryan Breece USA Yamaha  125
2nd Charles Lefrancois FRA Suzuki 116
3rd Tyler Bowers USA Kawasaki 108
4th Mike Alessi USA Honda 107
5th Boris Maillard FRA Suzuki 73
6th Justin Starling USA Suzuki 59
7th Carlen Gardner USA Honda 50
8th Cedric Soubeyras FRA Husqvarna 46
9th Julien Lebeau FRA Kawasaki 46
10th Thomas Ramette FRA Suzuki 45

OK, have a great week, everyone. From the looks of the forecast around here, there’s a chance Derek Schuster will open Gopher Dunes again tomorrow? I’m sure he’d love it if everyone sent him texts asking him. Hahaha

From January 3rd:

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See you at the races…in a boat! | Bigwave photo