Racer X Notebook: Dallas

Racer X Notebook: Dallas

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  • It seemed like everyone’s post-race track analysis contained the same words: slickness and whoops. The track was very hard packed, as it always is in Dallas, although some of the Texas-based riders think that’s strange since the dirt at their training compounds is much softer. “This isn’t the Texas dirt that I know,” said Tommy Hahn. “And I only live 45 minutes from here. It seems like the exact same dirt we used to ride on at the old stadium. Maybe it is.” Ryan Villopoto’s mechanic Mike Williamson said RV even used a different tire for this track, as he found it even harder-packed than the west coast rounds seen earlier in the season.

  • The whoops were really gnarly, too, and with slick dirt on top, it was easy to get wheel spin and lose momentum. For sure, most of the races seemed to come down to who got through the deep whoop section at the far end of the stadium the best.

Stewart was cheered during opening ceremonies.
Photo: Simon Cudby

  • The track did offer a little relief from the hard pack with two sand sections, and one of them did offer some passing opportunities. The sand in the first turn allowed riders to hook a rut on the inside, or rail to the outside and triple the next set of jumps. Oddly, tripling proved no faster than double-singling the section, so most riders stuck with the middle or inside line.


  • The track offered one big rhythm lane, but most riders were able to figure out the fast line by the end of the first timed practice—including the Lites riders. A few riders did make mistakes there, though, and it cost them dearly. Ryan Sipes was pulling away in the Lites main when he messed up the section and had to single a bunch of the jumps. This allowed Justin Barcia to catch back up to him, and Sipes didn’t have enough momentum built to blitz the whoops, allowing Barcia to get inside and take the lead. Chad Reed also messed up the rhythm lane, which allowed James Stewart to catch up and attempt the same move. And we know what happened next!


  • The long season is beginning to rack up the injuries on the field. Dodge Motorsports Hart and Huntington riders Ivan Tedesco and Chris Blose are ailing, with Tedesco tearing up his knee last weekend in Toronto. It’s a significant injury that will probably require surgery, but IT is going to try to tough out the final races. Blose has a bad wrist and ankle, but much like he did last year, he’d rather not even find out the full extent of the injuries and just ride through the pain for a few more weeks. The duo soldiered on for 13th (Blose) and 15th (Tedesco) in Dallas.

Brayton had a big crash in Dallas, but appears to have avoided any major injuries.
Photo: Andrew Fredrickson

  • It was worse for team Muscle Milk Toyota JGR, as Davi Millsaps crashed out of the start and hurt his hand, and Justin Brayton went down later and hurt his back. Brayton even had to spend most of the night getting checked out in the hospital, but both appear to have avoided major injuries. They finished 17th and 20th respectfully.


  • J-Star JDR KTM’s PJ Larsen crashed in his heat race and aggravated a wrist injury he has been nursing all season. He didn’t return to the race. He’s getting it checked this week to see how bad the damage is.


  • Much anticipation as to how the fans would react to James Stewart in opening ceremonies after his arrest incident last week. The crowd reaction was overwhelmingly positive, and he was cheered as loud as ever when he came out.

PJ Larsen had a rough night in Dallas.
Photo: Andrew Fredrickson

  • Kevin Windham had a wild ride in his heat race when he ran into the back of Mike Alessi in the whoops and went down. He returned to win the LCQ, but wasn’t too worried, since he also raced in and won the LCQ in Dallas last year. In the main, he logged arguably his best ride of the year, finishing fifth and staying in touch with Villopoto and the leaders early.


  • Mike Alessi pulled another Nuclear Cowboyz holeshot in the main event—that’s two in three races for the once (and perhaps once again?) holeshot king. For any doubters out there, after the race, the AMA randomly selected one bike from each brand for a mandatory tear down and inspection. Mike’s 350 checked out with stock bore and stroke.

Mike Alessi grabbed another holeshot in Dallas.
Photo: Andrew Fredrickson

  • Kyle Regal was supposed to have a broken navicular and be out for the rest of the season, but it turns out the swelling in his wrist had resulted in a false reading on his MRI. A CT scan later showed the navicular wasn’t broken, and the radius bone—which heals very quickly in comparison—wasn’t too bad. Kyle started riding during the week and raced to 16th despite some crashes in the main. Regal lives in Texas normally, but has been staying at his teammate James Stewart’s house in Florida.



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