Frid’Eh Update # 5 Presented by Gamma Powersports
By Jeff McConkey and Billy Rainford
In 2017, #5 belongs to #800 Mike Alessi. Mike was back in action last summer and really seemed to enjoy his time north of the border. Mike could always be found hanging around the starting line before the MX2 motos chatting with riders and giving gate pick advise to those who asked. Mike has always been known as one of the best starters the sport has ever seen and his advice to young MX2 riders is a valuable resource.
Here’s a look at his 2015 season in Canada:
Mike is currently racing the 2017 Monster Energy AMA Supercross series on his Smartops Motoconcepts Honda team. I was at the San Diego and Anaheim 2 rounds, but those were the two Mike wasn’t able to race, so I don’t have any new photos of him on his red Honda from this season.
Mike’s Supercross season so far:
20th, DNS, DNS, 15th.
He currently sits in 22nd place in the 450 class but will move his way up the points chart as he continues his way across the country.
We spoke with his dad, Tony, today but we weren’t able to get in touch with Mike in time for this Update. Like I’ve been saying a lot lately, we’ll get an interview with him up on the site at his earliest convenience.
Mike rode for the Monster Energy Alpinestars Kawasaki team in Canada last season. We spoke with Team Owner, Jason Hughes, and he mentioned that they would really like to be fielding a 3-man team with Mike, Jacob Hayes, and Kamloops, BC’s Josh Allen in 2017 but nothing has been finalized as of yet.
I know the TV package is a main concern for many teams and their sponsors these days. Getting our series on a mainstream channel and in a timely manner is of utmost importance to the people signing the cheques. Let’s hope we can get back to the days when our series is seen by millions of people here in Canada and abroad. I know this would go a long way in attracting more, and more outside the industry, sponsors to our sport.
Good luck this weekend in Phoenix, Mike.
Hey, guys. I don’t know how many of you are superstitious, but yesterday was Ground Hog Day, and supposedly spring will be here soon. I myself think it’s complete bull, but deep down am hoping the little rodent is right. We have been blessed with a great start to the Supercross season in both classes, and the surprises keep coming.
After Ken Roczen went down with a brutal arm injury, I really expected to see the same old podium each and every weekend, with Ryan Dungey on top. Well, Eli Tomac and Chad Reed had other plans. Tomac had been looking very solid early on in qualifying, and during the heat races. Come main event time poor Eli was very far off the pace and didn’t look very good at all. I really wish I could tell you what it was in Phoenix, but I have no clue. He absolutely smoked the entire pack and made it look way too easy.
Then we have Chad Reed. Chad turns 35 March 15th, and he seems to shock us each and every season. The bigger the whoops and more technical the track, well, that just means we are going to get a better Chad. It’s pretty impressive, and as a vet racer myself, I salute you Chad Reed. Dungey has still got to be the heavy favourite, but like we saw at A2, anything can happen at any time. This week the action heads to Oakland, California. Here are my predictions for Round 5.
1st Ryan Dungey
2nd Cole Seely
3rd Marvin Musquin
4th Eli Tomac
5th Chad Reed
In the 250 West, it started out as ‘The Shane McElrath Show’ for rounds 1 and 2. Rounds 3 and 4 have belonged to Justin Hill. Both of these guys have 2 wins under their belts so far this season and have established themselves as the front runners. There is a 3rd guy that should be swapping wins, but he just can’t buy a start. Aaron Plessinger has all of the tools to run with and possibly beat these two, but he just can’t get a start. If Plessinger doesn’t grab a win very soon, his championship hopes could have to wait for next season. Young gun Austin Forkner earned his first SX podium in Phoenix, and will now be hungrier than ever. With a good start and some clean laps, Austin could definitely land on the podium, and maybe even win one of these. Here are my Oakland predictions.
1st Justin Hill
2nd Aaron Plessinger
3rd Austin Forkner
4th Shane McElrath
5th Martin Davalos
Editor’s Note: Don’t forget, Oakland is an EARLY START. Here is the schedule for the day in PST:
DMX Toronto SX Parties at The Houston
So, with us already heading into the 5th round of AMA SX, that means the the annual DMX Toronto SX Pre-Party and After-Party at The Houston are right around the corner. Planning has been in the works for quite a while already, and I can promise you this will once again be a “can’t miss” event. We have a ton of great sponsors, supporters and great friends that come from all over for this weekend. It will also be a good time to support a great cause, Team Canada Motocross Des Nations Team Manager, Kourtney Lloyd, will be in attendance and she will have everything you need to support the team for 2017.
Short week for me. Before I go, I’d like to send a big thank you to David Bond and Motovan for sending me some of the new 2017 SHOT Race Gear. I will be loading up the DMX YZ250 and heading down to RAM JAM indoor in Ohio to spin some laps and look good in the new SHOT gear. Also, a big congrats to Brock Hoyer and Cody Matechuk on their great performances at Winter X Games. Have a great week and #smileforBC and #liftwithscott!
Thanks, Jeff. After a long 3-week moto adventure in the west, I am finally home again. That one felt like a lot longer than 3 weeks, actually. I’m not sure why, it just did. I think it may have had something to do with the fact that I chose to sleep in the #DMXVAN during the weekdays and once I got to Aspen for the X Games it was -15 C at night! Ya, I think that had a little something to do with it. I found a strip mall in Glenwood Springs that had an exposed outlet. I brought a long a little space heater so I plugged that into the wall with a long extension cord. It took the edge off the cold but couldn’t really keep up with the frigid demands. It was fine and didn’t mean forking out the $1500 per night price tag people were paying to be in Aspen.
My co-pilot for the drive west was Port Perry’s up-and-coming racer, #211 Jack Wright. Watch for him to make his Pro/Am appearance when the Rockstar MX Nationals head east, starting at Gopher Dunes. We met up with Moto Mech‘s #818 Davin Grose out on the coast and this meeting left me solo for the long drive home.
Jack has decided to stay out there with Davin and continue his adventure. Davin has his Sprinter Van decked out for this exact purpose and even has 2 Yamaha’s in the back – a 250 and a 450. These guys have been doing all kinds of things out there and Jack has the secret DMX Twitter codes, so watch for a few updates from along the way.
I know they went to ride the electric bikes from Alta Motors in Northern California the other day, so I’m waiting to see something from that. Last time I spoke to Jack he was lying on the beach in Santa Monica while Davin was in the water getting his surf on. Send a few photos our way, Jack!
Shawn Robinson to Motosport Saint-Cesaire for 2017
Motosport St-Césaire is proud of you announced the coming of Shawn Robinson in l team @motosport_sc for the 2017 Season National Mx1 28 #. Welcome to the family @sr_robinson more details on the rest of the team 2017 coming soon @motosport_sc @yamahamotorcanada @motovancorp @kutvekamerika @tcxboots @shotracegear @oakleymotorsports @dhlettrage
We gave Shawn a quick call today while he was busy at work. He said the deal will see him compete in all 10 rounds again with the possibility of a teammate. Shawn mentioned he would like to have Jeremy Pronovost on board again if they can make it work. Stay tuned for more on that in the coming weeks.
Shawn Maffenbeier to MX101 FXR Yamaha
The Amsoil Arenacross series heads into Louisville, Kentucky this weekend for it’s 5th stop on the tour. Here’s a look at the points, so far:
Winter X Games | Snow Bike Video | The Canadians
A Newby’s Trip to the Winter X Games – Photos
If you’d like to see a few photos from my time at the Winter X Games in Aspen, click HERE.
Dean Wilson Lands at Rockstar Factory Husqvarna
So, #377 Christophe Pourcel is coming to Canada in 2017. Um, that’s a pretty big deal. Christophe has all the talent in the world and it will be interesting to see if he can put that natural talent to use and take a solid run at the Rockstar Energy MX Nationals MX1 title in 2017.
I guess this is a great place to start another debate like we did last year when it was finally officially announced that Davi Millsaps was heading north in 2016.
I don’t think Christophe will be at the same level Davi was but he will definitely be up in the mix and threaten for wins… if he wants.
Where do you see #377 fitting into our MX1 series title chase?
Ken Roczen Talks Diet with GQ Online Magazine
#94 Ken Roczen is out for the foreseeable future but got an interview with the mainstream online magazine for GQ to talk about what top athletes eat on a daily basis. Ken is always to the point and doesn’t feel the need to ‘sugar coat’ anything, and that’s refreshing.
You can read the interview HERE.
Top 20 – Who, What, Where?
1. Davi Millsaps – Staying south to race the entire year
2. Matt Goerke – Rockstar OTSFF Yamaha for another 2 years
3. Kaven Benoit – KTM Canada
4. Brett Metcalfe – headed home to Australia to race. Didn’t rule out a rare appearance here in 2017
5. Mike Alessi – likely Monster Energy Alpinestars Kawasaki here in Canada
6. Tyler Medaglia – a hybrid schedule with Husqvarna Canada
7. Cade Clason – has a home with Redemption Racing should they return in 2017
8. Keylan Meston – Canadian Nationals with same sponsors as 2016
9. Morgan Burger – likely a game-time decision next spring
10. Colton Facciotti – Honda Canada GDR Fox Racing
11. Cole Thompson – KTM Canada
12. Shawn Maffenbeier – MX101 FXR Yamaha
14. Dylan Wright – Honda Canada GDR Fox Racing
15. Brad Nauditt – semi-retired from Pro racing and working 9-5. Kamloops???
16. Jess Pettis – MX101 FXR Yamaha
17. Mark Worth – likely looking for a deal down south
18. Dakota Alix – likely race our eastern rounds unless a ride becomes available to him north or south
19. Hayden Halstead – MX101 FXR Yamaha
20. Kyle Swanson – Team PR-MX
377 Christophe Pourcel – just announced MX1 for Rockstar Husqvarna (we called Husqvarna Canada to see exactly what this means but were unable to get in touch)
That will do it for Week #5. Have a great weekend and don’t forget that the Phoenix Supercross is early this week. Thanks for the support!