Frid'Eh Update #6 Presented by Toronto Supercross
Hey everyone and welcome to this edition of the DMX Frid’Eh Update brought to you by Toronto Supercross. The series hits Toronto on March 23rd, which is always a jammed packed weekend for Canadian moto fans as we see the best of the best line up on Canadian soil. Even better this year, we may possibly have 3 Canadians to cheer for. We know Cole Thompson will be lining up after taking most of the wins in his brother Justin's Arenacross series and we also caught up with Nicky Beatty last week who has been down in Florida preparing for his first shot at racing Supercross as he gets ready for the east coast to start up and of course you never know when Gopher Dunes Troy Lee Designs Red Bull rider Tyler Medaglia is going to line up and take a shot at it. If you haven’t gotten your tickets yet, make sure you do and type in RIDERSX at ticketmaster to save $5 a ticket. And for all you out of towners, it's always worth a flight to come hang out, see the race and party with us at the Houston restaurant after for an unforgettable night. We will see you there!
You know where to find us!
Now this update is dedicated to 2013 national #6 Morgan Burger. Morgan, who hails from Idaho, is one of the funniest odd-ball characters you will ever run into. He put in some amazing finishes on the west coast on his privateer Kawasaki and almost didn’t make it east due to lack of support until he was able to team up and hitch a ride with the Blazing Ministries team for the remainder of the series. He kept it together and ended up with #6 after a great year. I know he is looking for support to race again so if anyone has any room under the tent, you can add him to the list of many riders looking for a ride in Canada.
Morgan Burger just loves to ride his dirt bike.
I caught up with Dylan Kaelin this week and it looks like he and Drew Roberts have made the drive out to Alberta to start working again and put some cash in their pockets so they can race this summer. Unfortunately, their first couple nights all the local hotels in town were booked so they had to spend the nights in the van. Pretty cool to see these guys doing what it takes to make it possible to race this summer. Dylan Kaelin is just in the middle of signing his deal with KTM and Apex Cycle and looks to return to being a podium threat when the series starts up in Naniamo.
Dylan Kaelin is close to inking a deal to ride a KTM for Apex Cycle.
Did you guys see this press release from Atlas? Atlas is giving every AMA pro who competes in at least 6 events a year a free Atlas Brace. That is a bold marketing move and no doubt it will pay off in the end. Not only will the product be branded but it will be proven as well. It is really cool to see a Canadian company seeing such great success. Of course, now that Newf is retired officially, he can get those Atlas Braces to those riders that much sooner.
We got a few press releases this week with riders finding their homes. It looks like Canadian amateur sensation Westen Wrozyna has been picked up by WMX/MPH Pro Services Honda and will be competing in the states and in Canada alongside team mate Matt Babbitt. You can see the PR here.The WMX/MPH team has had some great success in Canada winning titles with Taylor Miller and top ten at Gopher Dunes last year with Nathan Bles. We know the equipment works and with a rider on it like Westen Wrozyna the bike is in good hands as Westen will attempt his first shot at the pro nationals this summer when the series moves east as an intermediate.
Watch for Westen Wrozyna on the MX2 gate as an Intermediate at the eastern rounds of the Canadian Nationals.
Also, it looks like Tyler Duffy is back with MX101. Tyler had some great finishes here in Ontario as an Intermediatte before injuring himself last summer. Look for him to come out swinging. Have you seen how strong the MX101 Yamaha team is going to be this year? Between Jeremy Medaglia, Shawn Robinson, Dylan Wright, Tyler Duffy and more, they have a powerhouse ready to take titles at all levels of racing.
Ok over to Billy with this weeks news scoop...
Thanks, Kyle. Wow, what a week it’s been! I’ve been getting the royal treatment here in Prince George, BC with the great gang at Cycle North. This group deserves a lot of credit for what they are doing for Canadian motocross—tons of support at the amateur level and also a foray into the world of professional racing with Ryan Lockhart and a soon-to-be announced rider for this coming summer…I hope.
The highlight of the week has to be the snowmobile trip we took in the mountains of Barkerville. I haven’t been on a sled since around 1986 when my friend Terry and I terrorized the campgrounds and gravel pits of the Greater Bayfield, Ontario area. Those machines were state-of-the-art for the time, but so was the over-use of Moog synthesizers, Schooner beer, and parachute pants! Compared to the 2103 Polaris 800 Pro I had the privilege of riding, those sleds might as well have been horse-drawn carriages!
It was like snowboarding in deep powder for the first time. I busted their chops afterwards that it would have been nice had someone explained counter-steering to me, but they all assure me that it was definitely touched on. I was hoping I could lay blame somewhere else. Oh well, by the end of the day I was able to avoid most of the trees and even took a run at a ‘high line’ on the side of the mountain. Thanks, Kourtney Lloyd, Cole Turner, Jess Pettis, and Cycle North for one of the best days I can remember. Click here to see photos from the day.
Jumping the 2013 Polaris 800 Pro.
Jess Pettis photo
It’s Friday and we’re about to put the 2103 KTM Canadian Arenacross Championships to bed this weekend, starting tonight here in Cloverdale, BC. I know a couple of the regulars will be missing for rounds 11 and 12, but we have some pretty exciting news to report: Sean Hamblin was cool enough to accept the offer from Cycle North Kawasaki and will be racing this weekend. I’m not even sure when I saw him last. I don’t think he’s been on a bike in Canada since the Blair Morgan Ride Day at Motopark back in October of 2008! I know I’ve seen him at an AMA National at Red Bud, I think it was, since then, but he’s been basically off our radar for a few years, so it will be great to see this ‘almost-Canadian’ this weekend. I bet he’s still got the skills to challenge for wins and I also bet he’s been working on his golf game since I saw him last. Watch for full reports here on DMX and also watch for @directmx to be tweeting periodically from the track.
Sean Hamblin briefing some young riders Friday in Cloverdale before they hit the track for more instruction.
Jacob Piccolo getting some tips from Sean Hamblin can't be good for the competition!
The facility in Cloverdale is great for arenacross. There are heaters above the grandstands with fans blowing the warmth down. Get out here this weekend!
When I spoke to Sean this week about coming up here to race this weekend here's what he had to say about the opportunity:
Basically, the only reason was because of Newf and his quote "retirement" weekend, I suppose! (laughs) On a serious note, I'm looking forward to coming up, seeing some friendly faces and obviously the racing in Canada again. Newf's always telling me I need to come up and do some, fortunately, this opportunity is allowing it to happen. I'm looking forward to good times and good racing.
The other big ‘news’ seems to be the continuing circulation of the rumours that Australian rider Brett Metcalfe is being courted by the Monster Energy Leading Edge Kawasaki team. Well, I placed a call to team owner Jason Hughes over at Leading Edge in Kamloops, BC and he chose his words very carefully. He wanted to confirm that the information Steve Matthes posted over on ProMotoTalk didn’t come from his end but that it was very accurate. He did confirm that they have been talking to Brett and that they may be on the right track to getting the AMA superstar and career number holder up here to race our series. Metcalfe himself even tweeted that Steve's information was accurate.
I like to try and keep my stories based in reality so I will not say you should go out and buy your tickets to Nanaimo today, but I will use my usual out: If I were a betting man, I’d say we’ll be seeing the likeable, hard-working Aussie lining up and challenging for wins when the Monster Energy CMRC Canadian Motocross Nationals get underway this spring. Stay tuned...
I spoke to Red Bull Royal Distributing Fox KTM rider Dusty Klatt yesterday to get an update on his condition. He’s obviously disappointed but you could hear the determination in his voice as he gets set to overcome a pretty big obstacle heading into the 2013 outdoor season.
It’s his birthday today, by the way, and he told me that he should be going under the knife in the next week or so. His fall last Saturday night in Chilliwack ruptured his right ACL. He’s been working hard trying to get the swelling under control and keeping full range of motion heading into the operation. The surgery will be done by a surgeon in his hometown of Campbell River who also worked on one of Dusty’s previous injuries.
He said he’s gone 19 years without damaging either of his knees so this will be a new rehab experience for him. He will be cutting it very close trying to be ready for the opening round of the Canadian Nationals but his trainer, Todd Schumlick from PerformX, has been through the injury himself and has an aggressive plan for Dusty.
I found it interesting that he said he’s broken bones before and had lots of crashes but that this was the first one that left him doing the ‘funky chicken’ on the ground (his words). I was standing right there and can attest to the fact that it looked to be (and sounded) very painful.
He was leading the first lap of the Pro Am main when it happened. He, Spencer Knowles, and Brad Nauditt were close in the turn before the rhythm section and when Dusty tried to protect the inside line he clipped the outside jump that put him off balance. He grabbed a handful of throttle as he went up the face of the following jump. He said he could hear his knee pop as he planted his right leg on the face and knew he was in trouble. It sent him flying off the track and the rest is history. Good luck with your surgery and 3-month recover timeline, Dusty. See you in Nanaimo!
It was just after this turn that Dusty injured his knee. Good luck with your surgery aggressive rehab schedule, Dusty. Oh, and happy birthday, too!
We finally got official word from the Rockstar OTSFF Yamaha team that Shawn Maffenbeier will be running the #10 on a Yamaha 250 2-stroke. We can sit here all day and argue the positives and negatives of 2-strokes, but I will say that the addition of these bikes to the pro ranks of the MX2 class will definitely add interest to the series. And, in the end, isn't that what we need? Last year, only Intermediates could run them in MX2 but having a rider of Shawn's calibre on one will give us a much better test of the viability of these versus the 250Fs. It will be music to my ears and potpourri to my nostrils! I think it's a smart move for both Yamaha and OTSFF to have Shawn on the 2-stroke--he will definitely get lots of press.
I spoke with Mitch Cooke a month or so ago about his plans for the year and he expressed an interest in doing some eastern rounds of the Nationals and said he would also love to do them on a 2-stroke. I'm not sure if anyone has made him an offer, but I sure hope someone does. I saw some photos of him practicing down in Florida with the Medaglia Brothers. It looks like he still has that classic Mitch Cooke style and flair!
Mitch Cooke practicing in Florida.
Digital Arts photo from Facebook
I also saw online that Jason Lawrence is back on a bike and contemplating returning to professional action when the AMA outdoor series starts up in May. I have no idea how he'll do but I know there will be a high number of cameras and microphones pointed in his direction. You can say what you want about him but nobody else in motocross is as polarizing as he is. And, in the end, isn't that also what moto needs these days? There will always be room for a 'bad boy' in our sport--there always has been and always will be.
The last time I saw #338 Jason Lawrence race was at the Indy SX in 2010.
If you're like me and you've been wondering where young Kade Walker has been lately, we got word that was is in Italy competing in the first round of the Italian MX Championships in the 125 class. His dad, Dave, sent over this link to a Youtube video of Kade dominating the competition. Congratulations, Kade, and good luck with the rest of the season. Check out the video:
I read that the French inventor of the Etch A Sketch, Andre Cassagnes, passed away this week. I'm not sure if kids today have the attention span to sit and try to draw something on this classic toy, but it's still one of the best toys ever made.
Mitch Goheen designed this Etch A Sketch image in Florida this past November.
Also last week, Ryan 'The Newf' Lockhart announced his retirement from professional racing. He gave a rather heart-felt speech last Saturday in Chilliwack. I wandered out and recorded it, so, if you haven't seen it yet, here it is:
This weekend is also the Lethbridge Arenacross out in Alberta. Good luck to everyone competing in that event. Here's the PR:
|The 17th Annual Alberta Arenacross Championships return to the Lethbridge Enmax Center February 8th and 9th 2013! |
The best racers in Western Canada will compete in one of Canada`s longest running events. Make sure you are part of this great event!
(Pre-entry must be received by Jan 30)
· $55 Per Class Per Day
· 2 or More Classes Entered Both Days discounted to $50 Per Class Per Day (must race both days)
· MX1 & MX2 Pro - $55 / Class/ Day
Big Dog Classes
· Pro $25 Per Day
· Amateur $15 Per Day
For All Classes
· Cancellations after Jan 30 subject to a $15 – $20 Administration Fee
· Must have 2013 CMRC license
(Applications available at sign-in)
This will be the final round of the Arenacross Tour down in Tunic, MS. Brigden, ON's Cole Thompson has won 9 of the 10 rounds so far and finished 2nd in the other round. He's looking to take the title this weekend with another win and then get ready for round one of the East Coast Lites SX series that gets underway next Saturday the 16th in Texas. Good luck this weekend to Cole and watch for a 'Catching Up With...Cole Thompson' this week.
Good luck to Redemption Racing rider Eric Jeffery this weekend at the Wilkes-Barre, PA round of the AMA Amsoil Arenacross series. I'm not sure who else is racing it, but good luck to you if you are. You can check here for results.
It's time for me to head over to the Cloverdale Agriplex for Pro practice. I hope everyone has a great weekend. The San Diego SX is live this weekend on Speed so be sure to catch that. Also, I hear there is a major snow storm hitting my hometown area so stay safe, everyone. That's it for me this week. Stay tuned to DMX and @directmx for updates from here in Cloverdale this weekend.
Julie says, "Happy Valentine's Day and see you at the races..."