Monday Morning Coffee Opinion Column

By Billy Rainford

Sorry I’m late…

I didn’t get out on the dirt bike this weekend, but I managed to sneak in a couple bicycle rides. This is the first year in a while that I didn’t head out to California for January and into February so let’s just say my cycling “base” is a little less than what’s it’s been. That said, I have to force myself to take it easy either on the roads or the trails.

For all of you who didn’t manage to make it down south for training, remember that it’s going to take you some time to get yourself back to race shape. It’s very common for people to jump back into their mid-summer volume and intensity right off the bat once the weather allows us to get out on our bikes or into our running shoes.

If you’re in the same boat as I am, remember to back off the intensity until you’ve got your body ready for the load. It can be difficult when you look at your watch at the end of a session and you know you were just 5 minutes slower than you were last summer, but remember that the goal is to be ready AND HEALTHY for this coming race season.

An old rule of thumb for running is that you shouldn’t increase your mileage more than 10% week to week. If you do the math, that is very small increases. You may find you’re increasing more than that, but if you start getting pains it’s telling you you are overdoing it. Look at the numbers and be realistic about what you’re doing. Overuse injuries are the most common type and can nag you well into late spring/summer if you aren’t careful.

What’s 10% of nothing?

Canadians in the spring

I’m typing this as a reminder to myself as much as anything! It can be tough when the sun comes out and you want to jump back in where you left off last summer, but try to hold yourself back and you’ll have a much more effective base when the intensity goes up this summer.

I used to be a running/triathlon coach, so I’m not just talking out of my butt. Of course, that was back when we used sundials and hour glasses to time things, but the basic concepts still hold true today.

What do you prefer for your training, running, cycling, or both?

I did something I’ve tried to stay clear of for the most part year after year – I posted an opinion on Instagram.

Like everyone, of course I have opinions on the things I see at the races week in week out; you can’t not have them! However, I don’t feel it’s necessary for me to post them for everyone to see. More to the point, I don’t want to live my life defending my opinion. I don’t know how some people in the “media” do it. I guess the secret would be to post your opinion and then never ever go back to that post to read the comments. Is that what they do?

An opinion I posted Saturday night is something I don’t like to do. | Brown Dog Wilson photo

After watching #18 Jett Lawrence (he’s the one they showed on the broadcast) jump the checkered flag while the red cross flag hung, I couldn’t help saying something on social media.

Obviously, rules are rules, but if you think the winner of the race wanted to simply ignore the most important flag at the races and jump over a blind double, risking his own safety as well as others, I just don’t see that as possible.

He had time to slow down and just roll it because #3 Eli Tomac wasn’t close enough to make a last corner pass, so I don’t know how anyone could argue that he saw the flag and decided not to shut down on the way up the face of the jump.

I’ve seen many other forms of racing end with both a yellow and the checkered waving at the same time, so I don’t know why that wasn’t tried in this situation with the red cross flag, failing having the red flashing lights on.

People have shown photos of the flag at the finish line. Of course it looks obvious when you stop it in a photo. And then people ask if I’ve ever raced! Um, ya, and that’s why I know it’s very possible to be in the heat of battle and need things to be blatantly obvious to notice them under those circumstances.

I have no way of knowing for sure what was going through the riders’ heads who were guilty of jumping while the red cross flag was displayed. All I know is that this situation pointed out something that needs to be addressed. We need those flashing red lights on blind jumps as well as flags before the point on a jump where decisions have already been made about clearing it or not.

My problem is that I can usually see and accept both sides of a situation. I can see that you should be able to catch the flag under normal circumstances, but I also know that these aren’t normal circumstances.

Great, now my opinion is out there again! If nothing else, it made for a great conversation started on our Instagram and Facebook pages.

#107 Ryder McNabb in St Louis. | Brown Dog Wilson photo

#107 Ryder McNabb raced his first Supercross Futures round in St Louis. He was supposed to line up in Daytona but they wanted to wait for his wrist to heal and get him more time on Supercross. We had Brown Dog Wilson checking in with Ryder throughout the day, so tank you to him for that, and also snapping some sweet photos of our Canadians on the track.

As of this column, we have not spoken to Ryder. Brown Dog told me that he hit the ground a couple times in the Main, so that was tough.

#138 Dylan Rempel in St Louis. | Brown Dog Wilson photo

#138 Dylan Rempel was also on the track for Futures but he also had a rough night. I just did a podcast interview with him and he told me that he collided with another rider in the air on the first lap and went down pretty hard, messing up his bars. You can listen to our chat here:


As always, find it wherever you get your podcasts.

#71 Cole Thompson in St Louis. | Brown Dog Wilson photo

#71 Cole Thompson was back in action in 250 West. He took a scary crash in the first race (It was the final Triple Crown of the season) and it left him struggling and in some pain the rest of the night.

Cole went into St Louis tied in points with #36 Phil Nicoletti and just behind #85 Hunter Yoder. Unfortunately, Cole’s off night (21-14-13 for 15th) dropped him a couple positions in the point standings. He now sits 14th with 3 rounds left to race.

The series now takes a weekend off before we head to Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, MA.

April 13Gillette StadiumFoxborough, MAEast/Futures
April 20Nissan StadiumNashville, TNEast/West
April 27Lincoln Financial FieldPhiladelphia, PAEast
May 4Empower Field at Mile HighDenver, COWest
May 11Rice-Eccles StadiumSalt Lake City, UTEast/West/Futures

I’m sure you’re getting sick of my whining, but it’s D Day here at the house as we’re about to put ourselves in a mess at our place with a full kitchen renovation and new hardwood floors and paint throughout the main floor. I’ll have to set up a makeshift DMX World HQ in the basement for the next few weeks.

We’re in double digits and sunshine here today, so I’m going to try and get out the door for a cycle when I can put the pry bar and dolly down for a minute. Have a great week, everyone. At this point, the forecast for next weekend is beautiful, so I hope I get a chance to head over to one of the many tracks in the surrounding London area. Elbows up, everyone!

Oh, we’re going through all our stuff as we move it into a big storage bin in the driveway and I found an old “Writing Book” from 1986-87 high school year. It had a story about the 1986 New York State Amateur Motocross Championships at Broome-Tioga in it. It was a pretty funny read and brought the memories back as if it had happened just yesterday.

The gist: I waited all day for our final race. It was getting dark, started to rain, and I got completely taken out in the first turn. Man, that was a long drive for nothing! Fortunately, it was Pro National day Sunday, so that sort of made up for the long drive.

Oh, and I just remembered we blew a trailer bearing just as we crossed into Canada at Niagara Falls, but I digress…

Hey, Cole Thompson, take a couple days off and in Nashville on April 20th we’ll “See you at the races...” | Brown Dog Wilson photo