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Ask Ping!

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Hey Ping,

Long time reader and a huge fan of yours.  I was just wondering what’s your take on Chad Reed?  I remember when he first came into the 250 class in 2003, every loved him and hated Ricky. Over the years Reedy has been a fan favorite until now. From 2006 -2008 I think Reeds popularity has dropped. I think Its because his frustration of losing to RC and James every single race combined with a terrible Yamaha 450 in the 2005 - 2006 years caused his attitude to push every one away. Even at the US Open people still loved James more than the current AMA champ it seemed.  I think his attitude has gotten better this past Supercross season like with the shoulder injury and being "aggressive lap traffic" with Kevin Windham. What's your opinion on why most fans cheer on the other guy and not Chad? And what it was that cause him to become an as*hole?

-Jared
Simi Valley, CA


  • credit: Simon Cudby
Dear Jared,

You have to admit that it would be frustrating to get beat by RC and James the way Chad has. Reed is clearly one of the best supercross riders ever, but unfortunately, he is competing during the era of the two best riders the sport has ever seen. And make no mistake; RC and James are the two best riders that our sport has ever seen. Hannah was amazing during his time and Wardy was my childhood hero and RJ was, well, a Bad Boy. But as bikes improve, so does the riders style and skills. And Chad has been just a tick off the pace of these two guys every weekend. That frustration has translated into a bad attitude, at times, for Reed and that is tangible to the fans. I wouldn’t call him an A-hole, but I do think he should just enjoy the success he’s had and appreciate the fans that are supporting him. Because the way Bubba is riding that new Yamaha I think 2009 is going to be more of the same.

PING
 

Ping,

Honda announced that they are pulling out of F1 racing, could this be a sign of things to come and could this possibly be a signal to most of the die hard 2-stroke fans that they might just make a come back? A lot of people are actually starting to buy 2-strokes again because they simply cannot afford the big 4-strokes. How does everything look in major sponsorship of motocross?

Thanks,

Antwan Rose

Dear Antwan,

Things look bleak in the motocross sponsorship world. They look really bleak. Suzuki is pulling out of amateur racing, teams are folding like origami left, right and center and, according to Brian Williams and the evening world news, the whole world is going in the crapper. It is a bad time to be a struggling privateer or even a good rider without a contract. Nick Wey was almost left without a chair when the music stopped and Nathan Ramsey looks like he’s going to be forced into retirement. Companies that were stepping up and throwing some dollars at race team in the past are not going to be able to do that again this year. In fact, many smaller companies will have a hard time even giving product away. I don’t know if this economic downturn will inspire people to buy two-strokes. I think it is more likely that they will sell their bike altogether. What you are seeing with Honda’s F1 program and with Suzuki’s amateur motocross program is corporate fat trimming. Companies that are run efficiently and without excess spending will be the ones still around when the economy turns upward again. My guess is that you’ll see Honda back in the fray at that point.

PING


Dear Ping,

What is up with the riders photos on the AMA website?  Have you seen them lately?  Some of them are the funniest yet saddest pics I have ever seen.  You would think that maybe every year or so they could get a new picture taken. 

Thanks- Suzie

  • C'mon, at least take off the glasses.
Dear Suzie,

Those are pretty funny. Izzi looks like Spicoli from Fast Times at Ridgemont High. “Aloha, Mr. Hand!”

What you have to realize is that riders are pretty lazy. I know this because I used to be one. Going all the way down to get a passport photo and paying the $20 for it just seems like a lot of work. Besides, that high score on MX vs. ATV Unleashed isn’t going to beat itself. Besides, isn’t that the team manager’s job? He’ll take care of it, right? Well, it is attitudes like that which result in photos like Gavin Gracyk’s. He looks like he just left a sleepover at Jason Lawrence’s house. Munchies, anyone? As long as they leave it up to the riders to take care of their credential photos you will have pictures like these on the AMA website.

PING

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