Hello, everyone, and welcome to the Rev Up, presented by One Industries. Sorry I'm a day late here, guys. Yesterday got away from me and I got stuck in the gate. I mean, my bike was sputtering and I had my hand up asking for "two minutes" to change my spark plug. But, the card had already gone sideways and I had to watch the pack funnel into the first turn without me. In other words, I had a bad day. Sorry to get personal, but most of you reading this have been with me for several years and know I share every now and then. Everyone has bad days, and there will always be more ahead of us. Sometimes bad days arrive in the way of bad weather, a traffic ticket, or losing your keys. But, they can also smack you right in the face on a perfectly sunny day that even saw you get on your dirt bike.
I did everything right Wednesday. I woke up and went for a run, but I started coughing on congestion and actually threw up! I pulled a tear off and finished the run and continued on with the day. Little did I know that was as good as my day would get. After being unproductive at work and staring at my tax bill with my jaw dropped, I got in a fight with the girl. Awesome. I decided to load up my bike and head to the track to go make everything better. Of course, I only made it about twenty minutes before I high-sided at speed. Don't you love those? I was laying there in the dirt looking up at the sky realizing I hadn't really crashed since 2003.
Shortly after that realization, the burning pain in my hip brought out the anger in a big way. There it was; the 32-year-old bitch fit. It was a big one that never really got out of the fuel until my favorite day of the week came to pass. With the tragedy in our sport and the world lately, it was selfish and ridiculous. It's the hard way sometimes. A lot of motocrossers don't seem to handle it the best. You've seen the names making the wrong kind of headlines lately, and some people say, "How could he ever get to that level?" Hey, it's not as far away as you may think. Family and friends are my glue and I'm very lucky, but some folks aren't as fortunate.
You have to be strong. Do your best to prevent the bad days, they're going to come. Ask Christophe Pourcel and Ryan Villopoto. Ok, let's put up the Kleenex and get down to brass tacks. Jacksonville is on the board Saturday night and just like every single round of the 2010 Monster Energy AMA Supercross series, she carries some serious heat. Jacksonville is one of the youngest venues on the tour, but it has already seen some huge battles and drama. Let's take a look at what's coming our way and get revved up for the greatest show on dirt.
AMA Supercross Lites
I was working at Loretta Lynn's in the summer of 2008 when I stopped to watch Blake Baggett and Justin Barcia go toe to toe. The two seemed pretty much identical in speed, and there was no love lost between them. In fact, Barcia knocked Blake down and quite a big deal was made of it. Blake has watched Barcia get a ton of hype and a great support ride while he was forced to scratch and claw to keep his name alive. They saw Blake at Steel City and they've been watching him indoors this year. All it takes is one time, baby. One time. Mr. Baggett went and got him some last weekend and you have to think that behind those tears of victory set that little memory of Loretta's 2008.
Meanwhile, the championship between Stroupe and Pourcel is boiling. Christophe may be crafty, but his championship luck is poor. Last summer got away from him due to a DNF, and he is one slight step away from letting Austin Stroupe podium his way to the title, ala Tim Ferry in 1997. Three races to go and a four-point deficit means it's time to get nasty. And it will.
Ryan Villopoto had a bad day in Dallas. It wasn't a disaster, though. He had been dynamite TNT for three straight races, then he got fourth last weekend. No need to hide the knives, but now he has the pressure, not Ryan Dungey. Then again, RD5 didn't need any pressure to hit the eject button in San Francisco with a huge lead. Twenty-four points is a big lead late in the season and Ryan needs to be smart and nail this sucker down. That said, there are six races to go. Go back and look at the first six races and it's easy to see that this thing is far from over. Not to go too "Nostradamus" on you, but I'm getting a feeling we'll see someone else win this weekend. Davi Millsaps and Josh Hill have been banged up, but they're healing and getting faster. Kevin Windham has been quiet for the past several rounds, but I think he'll win before Vegas gets here. They all better keep a trained eye on Trey Canard as well. What a win that would be.
In closing, I want to touch back a little on the aforementioned bad days. Not everyone has the same strength and some things don't slide off like they should. Racing was all I knew from when I was five years old till I was twenty. I relate almost everything to racing, and almost everything is competitive to me. That's helped and hurt me. Life isn't a race and winning doesn't always count. We motocrossers are all a lot alike, and we're pretty selfish. The little stuff digs into me hard. I went on a bad run that started with my Jayhawks losing, then saw my brother blow his motor, and grew talons through a bad day that ended with me laying on my back in pain. It took a full day to realize that none of that was important and see the bright side. Ran out of strength. I'm no philosopher, but I wanted you guys to know it happens to me and I'm with you.
Who's going to have enough strength in Jacksonville? Who will have to fight through a bad day? Let's all have a great, safe weekend and get ready to watch it go down!