By Billy Rainford

Good Monday Morning (time change got me) from the west coast. It’s been a great few days out here in BC for the Future West Moto (FWM) Canadian Arenacross Championships, 2020 edition. It had been too many years since I had the chance to check out the indoor racing that has groomed so many of our top Pro racers over the years.

This was also the first time I’d flown since the COVID-19 pandemic took over our lives. I have to say, I was a little surprised they allowed the flight to be filled up with people in all 3 of the seats in my row. I guess with all the recycled air pumping throughout the cabin we’re all breathing the same air, good or bad, together anyway.

I’ve also never sat beside someone who was legitimately terrified of the idea of flying. This dude was out of his mind with fear. Of course, I took the opportunity to do my part to ease his mind and told him the old story about why they even have seat belts in airplanes. I told him it was just to identify the bodies after a crash. It worked…a little too well.

He had everyone in front and behind us 10 rows listening to him in his panic. He wouldn’t stop talking and commented on every little sound the plane made. It reminded me of that Simpson’s episode where they take a flight and Marge is terrified to fly. Homer describes what is happening with each noise to the point where the plane crashes.

It turned out we didn’t crash and he was a really nice guy on his way out to BC for the first time with his girlfriend after they had to cancel their original plans to go to Las Vegas.

They even kept offering to buy me a drink until I finally gave in and accepted. When’s the last time you had a beer at 8:30am? It’s been a long while for me.

We landed and said our goodbyes, but not before I gave them a list of things they should be sure to check out on their trip that was going to take them to Tofino, Whistler, Revelstoke, and eventually, Field. Yes, Field.

So, we’re back at Chilliwack Heritage Park in Chilliwack, BC for the Arenacross championships. It’s been such a strange year that I wasn’t really sure what to expect, but I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the enthusiasm for the series, from the youngest classes all the way up to the Pros on top.

Specifically, I’m here to help the FWM gang broadcast the races live over their Facebook page. It’s been received very well and I’m happy to have Matt Koeleman helping out and John Wren doing his in-house announcing while wearing our headset so everyone tuning in online can follow along.

With all of the pandemic restrictions, this high quality racing deserved to be seen, so when I ran the idea past FWM owner, Lesley Reid, she was quick to agree that we needed to do something.

Round 1 Video:

Open Pro Main 2:03:00

Pro Am Lights Main 3:13:00

Pro/Am Lights

  1. 170 Julien Benek YAM
  2. 77 Casey Keast HQV
  3. 482 Teren Gerber HQV
  4. 36 Parker Eales HON
  5. 737 Tea Perrott YAM
  6. 133 Tyler Yates KTM
  7. 700 Cody Rouse KTM
  8. 30 Devyn Smith KAW
  9. 12 Luke Svensson YAM
  10. 52 Blake Osatchuk YAM
  11. 819 Dawson Gravelle YAM
  12. 177 Josh Nay KAW
  13. DNS 381 Jake Piccolo KTM
  14. DNS 16 Brett Turcotte YAM

Open Pro

  1. 77 Casey Keast HQV
  2. 2 Brock Hoyer YAM
  3. 10 Keylan Meston HQV
  4. 36 Parker Eales HON
  5. 170 Julien Benek YAM
  6. 482 Teren Gerber HQV
  7. 737 Tea Perrott YAM
  8. 700 Cody Rouse KTM
  9. 177 Josh Nay KAW
  10. 52 Blake Osatchuk YAM
  11. DNS 291 Dylan Delaplace KTM
  12. DNS 381 Jake Piccolo KTM

Round 2 Video:

Pro Am Lights โ€“ :55:30

Pro Open โ€“ 2:22:00

Pro Am Lights

  1. 77 Casey Keast HQV
  2. 170 Julien Benek YAM
  3. 482 Teren Gerber HQV
  4. 36 Parker Eales HON
  5. 737 Tea Parrott YAM
  6. 133 Tyler Yates KTM
  7. 700 Cody Rouse KTM
  8. 30 Devyn Smith KAW
  9. 12 Luke Svensson YAM
  10. 52 Blake Osatchuk YAM
  11. 177 Josh Nay KAW

Open Pro

  1. 10 Keylan Meston HQV
  2. 77 Casey Keast HQV
  3. 2 Brock Hoyer YAM
  4. 170 Julien Benek YAM
  5. 482 Teren Gerber HQV
  6. 291 Dylan Delaplace KTM
  7. 737 Tea Perrott YAM
  8. 700 Cody Rouse KTM
  9. 52 Blake Osatchuk YAM
  10. 177 Josh Nay KAW
  11. DNF 36 Parker Eales HON
  12. DNS 16 Brett Turcotte YAM

Full resultsย HERE.

Here are a few of the interviews I did with riders after the racing on Sunday.

Dexter Seitz:

Blake Davies:

Keylan Meston:

Casey Keast:

We’ll be back in the barn this coming Saturday/Sunday for rounds 3 and 4. Here’s a look at the schedule:

Steve Sulyok is pumped! What else is new? | Clayton Racicot 2015 photo

I found it interesting when Keylan Meston said in our earlier interview something to the effect that if anyone who normally beats some of these BC riders during the MX Nationals thinks they’re going to have it easy at the AX events, they have another thing coming.

These BC (and Alberta) riders who make the effort to be at these races definitely have a leg up on the competition for indoor racing. There are a ton of fast kids on their way up. Lots of riders caught my eye and I’m sure will be names we’ll be talking about a lot in the future.

#170 Julien Benek | Bigwave photo

#170 Julien Benek showed he has the speed to race right up at the front with Keylan and Casey. He’s tall now and is in complete control of the bike on these tight tracks.

I spoke with him after Saturday’s racing:

This kid is the real deal and it will be fun to watch his career progress.

From little #65 Braxton Becker in the 50cc class…
…to #09 Annalyse Lopushinsky in the Ladies…
…to #234 Zach Ufimzef in Intermediate, there is a lot of talent on its way up.
And a “Get Well Soon” to #36 Parker Eales who took an awkward fall in this corner/jump on Sunday in the Open Main. He said, “Compressed a disc in my back, but Iโ€™ll be back for the last couple rounds. ๐Ÿ‘Š๐Ÿผ”

MXGP of Flanders – Lommel

OK, I hope that got you through another cup. See you this coming weekend for more action. I’ll get to an in depth look at the racing as soon as I get settled.

How could I not end it with another shot of #112 Ever Coughlin in the Tyke class on an electric bike wearing a tutu?! Have a great week, everyone, and we’ll see you at the races… | Bigwave photo