Ask Ping!

October 17, 2008 2:51pm | by:
Hey Ping-
Why do MX journalists label every racer that is non-U.S. based as friendly, likeable, approachable, etc.? It seems every time a MX racer with a foreign accent is interviewed, happy descriptors are attached to them. I’m not saying they are not, but does the MX journalist community lack such creativity that they all copycat each other’s style, or is it because the U.S. racers are such a bunch of self-centered, whiney-bitches that any time a non-US racer is interviewed it’s a refreshing change in attitude? Here are just a few examples of recent interviews from RacerX:

“Josh Coppins is one of the coolest guys in motocross, period. The Kiwi is always friendly.”
“…finish right behind England’s fast and friendly Tommy Searle.”
“That's a tall order, and we're pumped to have the likable GP star here to compete.”
“David’s English is coming along, and he is friendly and open; the fiery Latin temperament for which he was known in a successful two season rise in MX2 seems to have been edged away and replaced by steadfast determination...”
“…afterglow of winning the title after a spirited late-season charge had not worn off and the friendly, well-spoken South African.”
“Reardon will be in Las Vegas, Nevada to compete in the 2008 Rockstar Energy U.S. Open of Supercross. A hell of a slog, but one the friendly 22 year-old Australian.”

Attitude in NY

  • Dids't thou sayest that David Philliparts is not thy greatest rider ever?
Dear Attitude,
There are quite a few different dynamics going on here. First, I believe all of the quotes you listed are from foreign journalists. The media members that follow the GPs lack the bite that some U.S. journalists have and instead take on more of a groupie vibe. Or maybe it’s just that they might not get under the tent if they write something unsavory about a rider. Also, many of the racers from different parts of the world are just happy to be racing a motorcycle for a living. They realize that it isn’t a right they have to make a living this way; it is a privilege. And, finally, the simple fact is that most of the guys in this sport are pretty cool. Try writing something about Kevin Windham, Shorty, Dungey, Pastrana or Trey Canard without using a happy descriptor….

See, you can’t do it because those guys are all the salt of the earth. Hell, I even had a hard time finding anything bad to say about some of the French guys like Tortelli, Vuillemin and Roncada that have been here over the years. And if there is one collective group of people that I can pile some dookie on, well, you know….


A couple of years ago I remember seeing a guy ride in Colorado who was using a prosthetic arm. It was pretty cool and for some reason it got me thinking, do you know of any riders past (or present) who are or have ridden with fingers missing from accidents or weird self-mutilation ceremonies?  It's an odd question, but feathering a clutch could be a bitch.


  • Eliminate arm pump forever!
Dear ?,
I grew up with a guy named “The Bandit” in Arizona that had one arm and rode every week. He had both of his controls mounted on one side and he would jump a lot of stuff that guys with both arms wouldn’t do. I guess he rode past a downed power line and it jumped up and slashed through his arm. At least that’s the story I remember. I do know that he would straight-up whip your ass in an arm-wrestling contest with his good arm…er, well, only arm (I’m not sure what the politically correct way to say that is). I’m sure there are plenty of riders out there with prosthetic limbs that ride all the time. I even met a guy that had his big toe attached to his hand to replace a lost thumb. I don’t know where I’m going with that story but it just seemed kind of crazy. And my own boss DC is now working with approximately ½ of a finger less than he had two months ago due to a crazy street fight with gang banger in downtown Chicago. That’s what I heard anyway. (Editor’s note: Wrong, it was bears.) I’m working on making him a prosthetic pointer finger out of chicken wire, Play-Do and a ladies’ acrylic nail for Christmas right now. Hey, it was that or a Jelly of the Month club membership. What would you rather have?


Hey Ping-
What is J-Law doing back in Jersey right now? For a guy whose job is on the chopping block (or already on the floor from being chopped, allegedly) you would think he would be in Cali trying to get things in order.

Princeton, New Jersey

  • Mmmmm, Jersey.
Dear Jarrod,
From what I’ve read on our website, he’s back there doing various sand races. Jason isn’t the kind of guy that follows the typical course of action in times of crisis, or in times of non-crises, or really any other time for that matter. He has been a ghost lately and the only reason I can guess that he’s back there, other than to spend time with his family and friends from home, is to take in the crisp, clean autumn air you guys have there in New Jersey. I even bought a candle the last time I flew through Newark to remind me of the aromatic decadences of the Garden State. Check it out.


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