Let’s begin with the Daytona Supercross by Honda. Although it was one of the worst quagmires in recent history, it was good for Big Red as five of the six podium positions were occupied by Honda-mounted riders, including both winners, Kevin Windham and Trey Canard, of the Torco Racing Fuels Honda team. There were also two first-time podium finishers, as BBMX’s Matt Boni landed in third in the Lites class and Bad Boy Energy Drink’s Jake Marsack finished third in the AMA Supercross class. Well done, guys!
The big topic of discussion following the Daytona Supercross was the off-track excursions by Chad Reed during the main event, which ultimately led to him being penalized one position. We’ve received a ton of emails regarding Reed’s sixth-place (now seventh) finish at Daytona, including this one from Randy Webber:
How can Chad Reed score any points when he DNF’d? He didn’t make it to the checkered flag! Not to take anything away from him on the ride cause he was the dominant rider out there, but I always thought you had to finish the race! Has the rules changed?
P.S. I also I heard Ping was going to come ride the Racer X vintage weekend in Idaho. Is that true?
Reed completed 11 laps, plus most of the next lap, which put him ahead of everyone who only finished 11 laps total. Since there were only five other riders on the lead lap, he finished sixth. Which was later made to be seventh due to the penalty. In short, his 11 7/8 laps beats everyone else who only completed 11 laps.
And yes, David Pingree will be competing in the Boise round of the Racer X Inter-Am series on Mar. 29-30. David will be riding a 1974 YZ250 on Saturday and a 1981 Maico 490 on Sunday. Another rumor has it that former National star Tom Benolkin might race as well. Here’s hoping Idaho residents Bob Hannah, Darryl Schultz, and Damon Bradshaw also attend.
Chad Reed was a hot topic this week. photo: Simon Cudby
How did the AMA decide on the 3 1⁄2 minute penalty for 22? Shouldn’t he have been docked a lap or DQ’ed for the pass he put on K-dub in the left hander? I thought the video clearly showed he was off the track, accelerated forward past several Tuff blocks to ‘gain an advantage,’ and pulled even with Kevin to make the pass. Not a 22 hater. Just an inquiring mind.
The answer to that one has to do with the rulebook stating that it’s either a five-second penalty or a penalty which results in at least one position loss, whichever is greater. The next person behind him was 3:30 back, so that’s how much time they had to penalize him in order for him to lose a position.
Chad Reed was a hot topic this week.
photo: Simon Cudby
So what’s your take on the Chad Reed situation? We asked our online readers earlier this week in our Racer X Online Poll, and after more than 6,300 votes, 34 percent of Racer X Online readers agree with the AMA’s ruling at Daytona.
Here’s another reader’s email we’ve received, and we hope someone out there can help him:
I’m moving to Okinawa Japan for three years (military – obviously). I was planning on taking my bike, but I also thought about selling mine in the states and buying a new one over there once we have a house (pronounced, “apartment with no chance of a garage”) & a place to keep it. I tried looking for a way to contact one of the American marketing organizations for the manufacturers but came up with nothing. Can you give me some information or at least a place to look (please)? Thanks in advance for any help you can provide!
David. Oklahoma City, OK
Can anyone help? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
No wonder Billy Payne needed eye care! photo: Simon Cudby
No wonder Billy Payne needed eye care!
photo: Simon Cudby
Wil Hahn interviewed Josh Grant for us after the race in Daytona. See if you can pick up on the sarcasm.
Wil Hahn: Josh, you know, it was slightly muddy out there – a little more than tacky. I couldn’t tell from the stands, because it was a little foggy from the smoke and stuff blowing from the starting gate, but I just wanted to know how your night went, starting in practice and going forward.
Josh Grant: Well, Wil, my season is pretty much on a roller-coaster ride that never ends. The first drop actually goes underground, because it’s so far down right now. But you know, the track was super-tacky, as you can tell. I was just getting so much traction out there that I just didn’t know what to do with my bike. Overall, if I would’ve had a snorkel, I think I could’ve done a lot better. I think that I might just show up next weekend with a fan boat and try to do the best I can with that.
Josh Grant is on a roller coaster ride this year. photo: Steve Cox
Josh Grant is on a roller coaster ride this year.
photo: Steve Cox
“I am so excited to get this done,” Jonon said. “I haven’t been 100 percent for almost eight years, and back then I was beating guys like Mike Alessi and Ryan Villopoto. I will be coming back 200 percent after this. I would love to get a chance for a try out at a test track with a big team to prove I have speed on good equipment, so hopefully something like that will come my way.” If you’re putting together a team for 2009, you can get in touch with Jonon at 913-980-1012 or via email at email@example.com.
Goose may be looking for a ride this summer. photo: Simon Cudby
Goose may be looking for a ride this summer.
photo: Simon Cudby
Paul Carpenter read, with interest, the story in the April 2008 issue of Racer X entitled “The Team,” where Mitch Payton talked about all of his riders. Payton said Carpenter liked to “smash things,” and his training partner – also from New York – Bobby Kiniry likes to smash things as well. Carpenter responded at Daytona: “I guess it’s just a New York thing,” he said. “We don’t really go around the bump that’s in front of us, we’ll go through it, and I guess that’s where the term smash came from. But I don’t want to smash everything or smash everybody, I just want to ride, and at the end of the day, I want to go home too. I’ve got a lot of stuff to look forward to, and that’s not my deal. I read that thing where Mitch said, ‘Pauly wanted to smash this and smash that,’ and he can think what he wants to think – he gave me a great job and he had an awesome team to ride for – but it’s not like that. I put a lot of work in, and some people don’t understand me. I want to do really good, and sometimes I’m not able to. I don’t know if it’s mental or what, but I work really hard to be ready, and Mitch and other people misunderstand me when I say ‘smash’. I just want to frickin’ do it. If there’s a better word for it, then tell me.”
Rockstar/Makita Suzuki’s Ryan Dungey will be racing his first home-state supercross, as there hasn’t been a Minneapolis SX since 2004. After finishing a strong fourth in his debut, and then running third in the muck of Daytona before finally succumbing to the elements, will he be inspired by his home race? Or will it just provide added pressure? One thing we know is that he's showing up with a pretty cool new sponsor. To read more about it, click here.
DC added this:
Jake Marsack gave Alpinestars gear their first AMA Supercross class podium finish last Friday. photo: Matt Ware
Jake Marsack gave Alpinestars gear their first AMA Supercross class podium finish last Friday.
photo: Matt Ware
“I saw him come around and I was just trying to keep my eye open for where I was and just wanted to make sure I didn’t get in his way,” he told us. “I think he actually lapped me, but then I followed him through the pack, and once I saw him go down…
“So I got the white flag twice. I actually pulled over and stopped and looked back and said, ‘I think they threw the white flag again.’ I really didn’t want to do another lap, but I did and I’m glad I did. I think the second turn after that, I figured it out that I was in good position.” No doubt about that! Marsack spent the week in Georgia at the GPF, riding with MDK/KTM’s Ryan Sipes, Justin Sipes, Dave Ginolfi and some others. And yes, he is riding the same bike this week as he rode Friday night in Daytona, though his Rick Ware Racing/Bad Boy Energy Drink team tore it down and rebuilt it, sending him pictures along the way.
One more thing: Was Marsack’s third-place finish Pirelli’s first podium in AMA Supercross? Here’s another: Was this Alpinestars’ first podium in the AMA Supercross class as a riding gear manufacturer?
Pirelli made the podium at Daytona with Marsack as well. photo: Matt Ware
Pirelli made the podium at Daytona with Marsack as well.
photo: Matt Ware
One other thing: Janson was the AMA MX/SX director through the early nineties, then left in 1994 when the SX promoters briefly considered running their own sanction body, dubbed AIR. A peaceful resolution between the AMA and the promoters worked out, but Roy stayed on the promoters’ side of the table. For the past dozen years he has played a huge role in helping shape what is now the Monster Energy AMA Supercross Series, and has worked with the likes of Charlie Mancuso, Gary Becker, Bill West, C.E. Altman, Eric Peronnard and more. In other words, he’s seen the business of event and series organization from both sides of the table in the last two decades.
Trey Canard is still undefeated! photo: Simon Cudby
Trey Canard is still undefeated!
photo: Simon Cudby
199 Lives, featuring Travis Pastrana, will premiere on April 16 & 17 in more than 400 select movie theaters nationwide. Travis hooked us up with some tickets, so for the next three weeks we will be playing Travis Trivia in Racerhead.
To enter, you'll need to check the list of theaters to make sure there is one near you, and then correctly answer our Travis Trivia question. We will randomly choose one winner and send them off to the movies.
Name the year that Travis Pastrana won his first Loretta Lynn’s championship, and the class.
Email your answers to firstname.lastname@example.org.
There are still several riders on the sidelines, including Honda Red Bull Racing’s Ben Townley, but we just found out that he is finally back on the bike. He was hanging out in the Honda rig at Daytona, along with a bunch of other folks dodging the rain: Jeff Stanton and his father, Erwin, Erik Kehoe, EnduroCross founder Eric Peronnard, Fred Bramblett, Andrew Short’s father-in-law, Tom Hudson, and a few others, enjoying an all-time bench racing session. Townley is riding his CRF450R again while also undergoing some therapy on his foot. You can read an update on BT101 —a full-on student of motocross history, by the way—on his website right here: www.bentownleymx.com.
Get a BT101 update on www.bentownleymx.com. photo: Simon Cudby
Get a BT101 update on www.bentownleymx.com.
photo: Simon Cudby
Throughout the afternoon, I kept trying to talk Stanton into putting on the gear and heading out there. I’m sure someone at KTM was thinking the same of David Knight. Like Bramblett said, it’s a shame that KTM couldn't enter Knighter at the last minute, because he may be the best mud rider on the planet right now—he even topped Stefan Everts a couple years ago at the wet, muddy Weston Super-Mare Beach Race in England—and would have had an excellent shot at getting KTM its first AMA Supercross win.
I have a Tim Ferry update. He rode this week and will try to race, at least it’s 90 percent for sure. Scratch that... Just talked to Ferry and he’s out, had two good days of riding but now is pretty sore. Ferry out for Minny.
For hard hitting journalism at it’s finest check out Matthes’ podcast with Jeff Stanton here.
And yet even more knee-slapping humor, here’s his Observations from Daytona before he got wet and left before the mains.
Hey Steve your column is the best moto related column in cyberspace. But wussing out at Mudtona kinda sucks, a REAL man would have stuck it out. Thanks for all the great stuff you write and see you at the Humpty Dome this weekend (if you make it)
Tickets to Daytona: $35
Umbrella, raincoat, galoshes: $48
Getting called out by Mike LaRocco’s distant cousin: Priceless.
And this is from Mototalk: “I got a call back from the AMA after OBS posted but Hansen got DQ’d because he was cutting the track blatantly. JT also confirmed this to me as he said Hanny blew by him on the grass one lap. I will now duck while the CR-track cutting-why-Hanny-and-not-Reed talk begins.” RV is due for a W. photo: Simon Cudby
Let's turn this over to Ping:
RV is due for a W.
photo: Simon Cudby
If I was in the Villopoto camp I would be pretty bummed out with the broadcast crew from Daytona. During the race they repeatedly talked about how Canard had "gotten in Ryan's head" and that's why he hadn't won a race yet and why he didn't look like himself in the mud at Daytona. But it would have done them some good to find out about the injury to Ryan's wrist before the series got started. RV had two different surgeries to his right wrist during the off season to address an old injury to his scaphoid, or navicular bone. Anyone that has had surgery knows that those things don't heal overnight and the fact that he had two operations tells you a little something about the situation. He admitted that he only started riding just a week or two before the season opener in Atlanta, knowing that he would probably have to race his way back into form. His altercation and subsequent DNF in Georgia didn't do his wrist, confidence or title hopes and good. And after talking to the Pro Circuit camp this week about Ryan's ride in Daytona, it turns out he didn't have any brakes after the second or third lap. When he ran into the barriers by the mechanics area and fell over it was because he couldn't slow down. So, for him to get a second under those circumstances is respectable.
Ryan Morais DNF'd Daytona. photo: Simon Cudby
Ryan Morais DNF'd Daytona.
photo: Simon Cudby
"I was running third or fourth for the first couple laps and I actually felt pretty comfortable out there. My bike started popping and spitting a little bit on the opening lap from going through the puddles." Then, like many other bikes that night, Morais's steed just quit running. He says that when they took the seat off back in the pits the airbox was filled halfway up the filter with muddy goop that, understandably, went straight through the motor.
And what about Trey Canard? I didn't think it was actually possible to give 200% effort but this kid is doing it. Even in the mud he looked smooth, fast and completely in control. I'm pumped for him because he is genuinely a nice kid; and he's got a sense of humor. I mean, anyone that likes the movie Anchorman as much as I do can't be all that bad. I'll bet you that even if he has to bump up his effort to 250% to win the championship Trey will make it happen.
Moving on, the 2008 amateur motocross season kicked off in a big way this week in Whitney, Texas, at the Parts Unlimited Spring Classic at Lake Whitney Motocross Park. Wes Williams and the boys over at www.vurbmoto.com are keeping everyone up to date with videos and results posted daily, as well as Chris Hultner on www.amateurmx.com. For live scoring and results, click here. You can also check out daily films posted by Wes at www.racerxfilms.com.
Last week, Jim Kimball did a Privateer Profile interview with Michigan native Josh Woods, who we haven’t seen on the track for a while. Josh is doing really well, and he’s staying busy riding at the Georgia Practice Facility (GPF). After we posted the interview, Josh sent us this:
“Thanks for posting the interview! It’s really good press for GPF and for myself, seeing how I have been MIA for a while. Anyways, I have a kid staying here at GPF who has been making some films and trying to get his own productions thing going. I’m sure you guys get tons of people wanting to post vids but I told them I would send you guys the links to check them out on YouTube and if you’re interested you could possibly get them on the Racer X Films site. Check them out and let me know what you think. Also, if you ever need clips from anyone down here, like Millsaps or Davalos, he would be a good guy for it. Thanks a lot.”
Here's an update on injured rider Hayden Justice from Kevin Boyle:
"I just spoke with a real good friend of the Justices. Jay had surgery for his C-6 vertebra. The surgery went great he’ll be in a hard neck brace for 8 weeks. Hayden’s left the hospital two days after the accident and is at home with grandpa doing great."
That's great news, Kevin. Thanks.
Where: Roosters, Lancaster OHIO. On Rt.33. Stoplight City.
When: Saturday, March 15 From 2-4 PM (1400-1600 Hrs)
Why: Besides Suffering Multiple MX-Related Injuries Throughout His Career, Chris Whitcraft Recently Had His Van, Toolboxes and Bikes Stolen At The Atlanta Supercross.
What: We’re Going To Party And Chip In To Help CHRIS. That’ s What We do.‘Cause Chris Is All About Motocross And So Are We.
Dress-Code: Normal Relaxed MX’r Attire. Black hat backwards, etc….
If You can’t attend, but yet want to help, click here.
Sports Illustrated posted a four-part column about steroid and other PED use in America, where it is made evident that such things are not just for athletes, but that many people in Hollywood, in the music industry, and others, are very likely taking HGH and the like. It’s called “Steroids in America: The Real Dope,” by Jack McCallum. It’s a very interesting read.
Coming in fall 2008 A new movie on Motorcycle racing The Indian Wrecking Crew here’s a trailer.
2008 Pre-MXoN Report by David Bulmer over on Vurbmoto.com.
Check out this Evel Knievel memorabilia Don Hachmeister found in between beers on Main Street in Daytona Sunday afternoon: