Week #52 belongs to Alberta rider Derrick Barr.

Week #52 belongs to Alberta rider Derrick Barr. | Bigwave photo

‘If you can’t be first, be last.’ That’s the motto some people go by. Well, I’m not sure if that’s a credo that 2014 #52 rider Derrick Barr lives by, but he is, indeed, the final rider of the 2014 season to have an Update dedicated to him. So congrats, Derrick. I don’t know a whole lot about Derrick but I remembered taking lots of photos the #797 Yamaha rider in 2013. When I got in touch with him and asked which of the Rockstar MX Nationals he did in 2014, he told me that he didn’t do any. That’s why I didn’t have any more recent shots of him. Anyway, he was kind enough to give us a short update. Here’s what he had to say:

I’m 21 years old and grew up on a farm in a little town just south of Edmonton called Millet. I’ve been racing for 16 years. My best race, I’d say, was when I was in Intermediate at the WCAN when I beat Jared Petruska for the first time (Laughs). I was pretty pumped!

In 2014, I took the year off just to work and get some money ahead. I also bought a house but 2013 was a good year and I ended up with national number 52.

Since my last race, I’ve just been working, really, and hanging out with friends. For winter this year, I just plan on working and going up to the mountains and sledding. I really love to sled and it’s something I look forward to doing in the winter when I have free time.

My 2015 race plans aren’t exactly in stone yet, but you might see me on the bike and you might not – I haven’t made that decision yet.


Will we see Derrick Barr on the track in 2015? Even he doesn't know yet. | Bigwave photo

Will we see Derrick Barr on the track in 2015? Even he doesn’t know yet. | Bigwave photo

Thanks for talking with us today, Derrick. Enjoy the mountains on your sled this winter and we’ll look for you when the 2015 season begins out in Kamloops, BC at Whispering Pines.

This week's Update is brought to you by Troy Lee Designs.

This week’s Update is brought to you by Troy Lee Designs.

This week’s Update is brought to you by the great people over at Troy Lee Designs. When you think about fashion-forward, technically sound moto gear, you definitely think TLD. For year, Troy Lee and his gang have been developing amazing gear for adventure sports. If you do it on two wheels, TLD has you covered from head to toe. Be sure to head over and check out what they have in store for 2015 by clicking HERE.

Jeff McConkey

Hey, guys. It’s the Friday before Christmas and all of us MX/ SX fans just got dealt a crappy hand. Superstar James Stewart Jr. has been suspended by the FIM for 16 months for failing a urine test last SX season. Love him or hate him, if you are a true fan of the sport, you want to see James Stewart out there racing! This has got to be a huge blow for everyone involved. In my opinion, the suspension is a joke and I am really hoping the Moto Gods or Santa Claus come through and “Free Bubba” before A1.

James Stewart has been banned for 16 months (starting last April) so we won't get the chance to see him battle #41 Trey Canard indoors this winter. |  Bigwave photo

James Stewart has been banned for 16 months (starting last April) so we won’t get the chance to see him battle #41 Trey Canard indoors this winter. | Bigwave photo

In some better Christmas news, Bigwave and Kyle Carruthers have been putting up some amazing Christmas gifts on the “25 Days of Christmas.” There are a ton of great ideas to help you get that Moto person the perfect gift. The only bad part is, my list for Santa keeps growing daily. Be sure to give it a look and support the people that support us and our great sport.

In some even better news, I am super-excited to be making my way West down the 401 on Saturday morning. I will be picking up fast Intermediate rider Jack Wright and we will be on our way to ride at Tillsonburg Indoor MX at Chesterman’s in Southern Ontario. This will be the first indoor ride of the year for both of us and, and we can’t wait. Anytime I can throw a leg over the DMX Scott-Sports, Fox Canada, Hindle Yamaha it is a good time. But, add in the fact that I have been seeing non-stop awesome pictures and videos of the Chesterman Track so far this season, and I am completely ecstatic to ride. There has been nothing but great feedback so far this season and I can’t wait to hit the dirt. I will try my best to get some pictures of everyone riding this Saturday. Now for the hard part…to pick out which colour combos to wear!

I’m going to cut it short today. If you haven’t already, be sure to check out my revived ‘Out of the Blue’ column. I featured Barrhead, Alberta’s Megan Arnemann this week, and I have a growing list of female talent to complete your “Women’s Moto Wednesday” every week. Thanks to all of the great lady racers showing interest and helping us out. Good luck to everyone with their Christmas shopping and don’t forget to #smileforBC! Merry Christmas, you filthy animals!

Jeff expresses his sincerest Holiday wishes...  | Boopli image

Jeff expresses his sincerest Holiday wishes… | Boopli image

Billy Rainford

Thanks, Jeff. Have fun riding this weekend. OK, I don’t know about where you are, but here in London, Ontario, we are supposed to be shovelling the driveway so we can get over to the mall to buy gifts for Christmas. Well, it was 6 degrees yesterday and looks like a Vancouver winter outside. We are in danger of having a green Christmas over here! It won’t be the case for me because, as has been the tradition my entire life, we will be making the drive north on Highway 11 to the little town of Kirkland Lake, ON. It is a gold mining town that was actually a bustling hub of activity back in the 1950’s (so I’m told). The mine is open again but the sign that proclaims a population of 12500 has to be off by at least one zero.

It’s the kind of northern Ontario town where when you drive into town in the dark you can see the smoke rising pin straight into the star-filled sky, and when you step out of the car the nostril hairs you didn’t realize you had freeze instantly. It could be argued that Santa himself calls this place home.

Anyway, this is the final Update before the big day on the 25th and it means most people are taking some time to be with family and not consumed with the greatest sport on earth, moto. I’m no different and didn’t really do a tom of digging this week. Having said that, here are a few tid-bits we managed to get.

Cole Thompson Update

Cole Thompson will be spending Christmas down in Decatur, Texas, with his lovely better half, Chloe. I can’t believe she is actually from the little town that sits next to the Oak Hill track out there, but she is. Cole has been back on a bike after his knee reconstruction for about a month. He says he’s just been busy “shaking things out” and getting himself back to “full strength.” He’s got a 2015 KTM 250 and 450 from KTM Canada down there with him and has been spending most of his time on the 450 riding motocross at both the Masterpool’s track and over at Oak Hill.

When I asked him if he will be ready for the Lites East series, he said that he hasn’t really made up his mind about whether he will be lining up for it or not. His main focus is obviously taking a run at the 2015 Rockstar Energy Canadian MX Nationals next summer but said that he will make the decision on the indoor season as it approaches and he knows more about his program.

Cole will spend Christmas in Texas and then make his way home to Brigden, ON for a few days just after. Good luck getting back up to speed, Cole.

Cole Thompson has been back on his KTM for about a month, but we may not see him racing Supercross in 2015. | Thompson photo

Cole Thompson has been back on his KTM for about a month, but we may not see him racing Supercross in 2015. | Thompson photo

MX Stars of Tomorrow

The MX Stars of Tomorrow will take place for its 9th year next weekend (Jan 2,3,4) at the Toronto Motorcycle SUPERSHOW. This program has given many amateur mx riders the chance to hone their skills as professionals when it comes to presentation and the ability to speak in front of a crowd. If you’ve never seen it before, be sure to head into the corner of the facility that is dedicated to the 17-20 motocrossers.

There will be seminars from the sponsors (Hindle, Race Tech, and CORE) as well as the always-memorable talk by Todd Kuli. You may not always agree with his opinions, but you can’t deny the entertainment value of a Todd Kuli speach! You seriously won’t want to miss it.

You don't want to miss a second of a Todd Kuli speech. Agree or disagree with what he has to say, but it's priceless entertainment!  | Bigwave photo

You don’t want to miss a second of a Todd Kuli speech. Agree or disagree with what he has to say, but it’s priceless entertainment! | Bigwave photo

Show organizer, Peter Derry, wanted to thank Junior riders, Luis Ramos and Jacob Balsdon, for all their hard volunteer work getting the whole thing set up and ready to roll for 2015. It takes an awful lot of work, so you know they are appreciated.

Future fast Pro riders like Liam O’Farrell have used this program as a launching pad to acquire and keep connections to great industry sponsors. DMX will try to be there Saturday, so if you want to appear in a ‘Faces at the Races’ column, make that your day to be there.

German SX

ADAC SX Cup Munich 19-20 December 2014

Class SX2

TrackLength: 300 m

Official Timing www.camp-company.de

Event Results Munich

1. 14 Arnaud Aubin KAW 3-1
2. 170 Yannis Irsuti KAW 1-9
3. 931 Theo Ropin KTM 4-3
4. 773 Thomas Do HON 2-7
5. 226 Tom Koch SUZ 10-2
6. 137 Andrie Escoffier SUZ 7-4
7. 151 Matthew Bayliss HON 5-5
8. 259 Julian Lebeau KAW 6-6
9. 74 Franc Muratori YAM 9-8
10. 32 Marcus Soper SUZ 11-10
11. 443 Niklas Raths SUZ 12-11
12. 245 Kade Walker HON 8-DNF

As you can see, Canadian Kade Walker’s European tour continues this week in Germany. Unfortunately, he is scored a DNF in the second SX2 main event. Let’s hope he’s ok. We’ll try to get in touch with him for the full story.

As of this Update, the SX1 final results had not been entered on the site. I did see that Bobby Kiniry was shown as a DNF in one of the semi finals and was in the LCQ or ‘repechage’ as they are calling it. Future West Canadian Arenacross Open Class champion, Ross Johnson, is also there and is shown as 5th place in his qualifying race. We will be sure to post results as soon as we see them.

James Stewart Penalized 16 Months for Drug Infraction

I have to admit that I’m not all that prepared to make much of a comment on this situation. I’ve been involved in competitive sports a long time. I remember racing triathlons back in the 1990s and hearing stories of racers being suspended for drug use. I also remember the excuse for the presence of the banned drug in their system was usually Sudafed or some other cold or flu medication. Nobody blamed the federation for the findings back then and I’m not sure we can do that here either. As a Pro athlete (or as a handler of a Pro athlete) the onus falls on you/them to be sure they are compliant with the rules…ALL rules. The federation makes the rules. They cannot concern themselves with HOW the drug got into the system, only that it is there.

Having said that, I am as big a fan of the way James Stewart rides a bike as anyone and can’t help feel sorry for the series as a whole without #7 in it. Does everyone remember his ride at the Toronto Supercross last year?! Who knows what kind of super-human clinic we will be stripped of this coming year because of this?! Of course, there are appeals and campaigns in place in an attempt to have the ruling reversed. They have worked in the past and I guess we will all have to just wait and see the outcome of this one…but I wouldn’t hold my breath.

This is what James, himself, had to say on his Instagram (@JS7)page:

The last 8 months have been very tough & honestly devastating to a degree. The Love & support Ive received from the industry & my sponsors has been truly amazing. They’re has been a lot of athletes very vocal over this decision & I truly appreciate it tremendously. I’m extremely sorry that it’s come down to this but it has shown me just how much this industry stands up for each other through tough situations.

To my fans… I’m not gonna lie after receiving this devastating news last Friday, I was honestly contemplating retiring, I felt like I couldn’t fight anymore. This situation has taken a toll on me. But The support from you the fans this last 24hrs has had me nearly in tears. Reading the comments & seeing all the overwhelming letters, signs, shirts, etc has made me ready to fight & show you the fans & my sponsors what you deserve. Thanks to all of you Im gonna be around for a long time to come. Your support showed me how much you guys appreciate me so with that being said, it’s gonna take a lot more then this to run me off. Thank you for literally keeping me on my bike for years to come. The louder you guys are, the more it makes me ready to be back for you. I hear you loud & clear so no matter what you will see me behind the gate doing what I love hopefully sooner than later

Tanner Ward Injury Update

I spoke with young Tanner Ward to find out how his busted arm is coming along. He told me that everything is healing properly and that he is on schedule to be back on a bike sometime early in the New Year. He should have his cast taken off this coming Monday.

Tanner Ward will be back on a bike in no time.  | Bigwave photo

Tanner Ward will be back on a bike in no time. | Bigwave photo

Motosport Arenacross Tour

The Motosport Arenacross Tour takes a break now until January 3rd in Jackson, Mississippi. That will be round 5 of the 9-round series. At this point, Heath Harrison is leading the ‘Clash for Cash.’

Red Bull Straight Rhythm on NBC Saturday

The Red Bull Straight Rhythm competition will be shown on NBC this Saturday at 4pm EST. I’m sure most of us watched it live as it happened but it’s always nice to see a big-time TV production of a motocross event, so be sure to tune in tomorrow afternoon.

Join the MXGP Social Media Awards Madness

FUNCHAL (Portugal), 19 December 2014 – Since the launch of MXGP’s Social Media platforms, Youtube, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram in 2013, MXGP has expanded its fan base beyond belief. To increase the fan interaction over the winter period MXGP will be hosting its very first MXGP Social Media Awards.

The way it works is, YOU, as fans of MXGP can vote via MXGP’s Facebook page by clicking on the Social Media Awards app here and filling in the form, OR sending a tweet with the HASHTAG #MXGPSMA.

There are seven awards up for grabs:

* Social Media’s Most Valued Rider on
* Social Media’s Most Valued Team
* Social Media’s Rookie of the Year
* Social Media’s Best Tweet Award
* The #MXGPselfie Award
* The Best Insta-video Award
* Social Media’s Most Hilarious Moment

The Social Media Award winners will be announced over the seven days of the New Year with the first award winner being announced January 1st.

Voting starts now! Click HERE to go on Facebook and vote for your favorite, or vote via Twitter with the HASHTAG #MXGPSMA

P.S If you want to join in on the Social Media Awards buzz, HASHTAG your pics, statuses and tweets with the hashtag #MXGPSM

OK, that will do it for this week, folks. Stay tuned for our very unofficial 2014 DMX Awards in the near future here on DMX. We’ll name a bunch of serious and not-so-serious award winners, and it should be a lot of fun.

I’d like to take the time to wish our own Kyle Carruthers a speedy recovery. He suffered a pretty badly broken right hand a short while back and has had to undergo surgery to have it repaired. He’s right-handed and so it has drastically curtailed his typing and contributing abilities around here. Get well soon, Kyle.

We hope everyone has a great Holiday Season, a Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year. Don’t forget to check out or ‘DMX 25 Days of Christmas’ for gift ideas, especially if you plan on getting a good head start on your shopping this weekend…

Thanks to our readers and supporters for another successful year here at Direct Motocross. We have lots of cool things planned for the coming days, weeks, and months, so be sure to stay tuned in.