Ask Ping!Friday, July 31, 2009 | 10:28 AM
ODI dates back to the 1980’s as the leader in grip manufacturing. Focusing primarily on the bmx and mountain bike industries through the 90’s and early 2000’s, ODI re-entered the motocross scene when they developed the patented lock-on grip system that eliminates wire and glue. Continuing to advance the way riders hold on to their bikes, ODI has worked closely with the teams they support such as Troy Lee Designs to create the product that is now being used by some of the top teams in the industry.Tweet
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What’s your take on tattoos? My wife wants to get one but I’m not really a fan of them. I took this picture of a girl at Washougal in the pits. Is it just me or is this tasteless?
Well, I have to be careful what I say here. On the one hand, I’m not a big fan of tattoos. But I seem to be the minority in that way of thinking because almost everyone I know has one. My wife wanted to get our daughters names inked on the inside of her wrists recently. She showed me the exact, italic writing that she wanted and the colors she would use and explained how sweet it would be. After she finished her spiel I rationally explained to her that I’d rather not be married to a skanky biker whore if it was all the same to her. I know that not every girl with a tattoo is a skanky biker whore. But every skanky biker whore I know has tattoos. Do you see what I’m saying there? There is a stigma attached to have tattoos and even if you are a sweetheart of a person, like my wife, there are judgments made as soon as the “body art” makes an appearance. I don’t actually know any biker whores but I have seen those HBO specials and I think my statistics are pretty accurate.
It used to be that people got tattoos to stand out and be different. But now that everyone has a shoulder piece or a tramp-stamp on their lower back, you only stand out if you don’t have any tattoos. Kind of Ironic, isn’t it? I guess I’m just old-fashioned. And maybe I have a tendency to over-think these kinds of things. But how is your flaming, dragon-filled collage going to look when you are forty or fifty? Probably like an unfortunate, blotchy birthmark is my guess. Let me ask you this… How would you explain that handlebar tattoo to your mom if you brought that girl home?
Were you as stunned by Clement Desalle’s ride in Washougal as I was? Who is the “MX Panda?” What does that say about the level of riding right now here in the US? Are the GP riders really that good? Give us the straight poop, Pinger.
After practice I rationalized his qualifying time. I figured that it was muddy and he is from Europe and clearly a mud rider. Then he nailed down a solid third in the first moto and I had no choice but to stick my foot in my mouth. He rode a great race and he is obviously a talented rider. To answer your first question, yes, I was surprised. I had never heard this kids name before that day and that makes it a little more surprising, obviously. But look at the injured list right now over here and it gives you a better sense of where he would have finished up with a healthy class. If Stewart were racing he would be cleaning house; you can’t argue with that. Without James, Villopoto and Alessi were the two quickest riders out there. Reed might have had something for them at times but they were going to win the majority of the motos and overalls this summer. Broc Hepler certainly has the speed to be on the podium if he could just stay healthy. Josh Hill might even be a front-runner if he could keep his pants from falling down. And even Tim Ferry would be at the front if he were riding healthy. If the class included all the regulars, Desalle might have been lucky break into the top ten. I don’t mean to discredit the young rider, I’m just pointing out some facts here.
Still, there are great riders on the GP circuit. The top riders there can come here and be competitive in motocross if they have the right team behind them. The biggest problem is when January rolls around and they have to race in Anaheim stadium. Most Euros are a hot mess when they hit the supercross track. That transition has kept a lot of great riders from making it here in the US.
Got a question for Ping? Email him at [email protected].
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Check out MY LIFE IN MOTORCYCLE RACINGin our Latest issue of Racer X available now.
Jean-Michel Bayle, the iconic superstar of yesteryear, raced motocross for the first time in twenty-one years at the Vets MXdN in England. Page 126.