450 Words: Silly Season Update

450 Words Silly Season Update

September 9, 2014 1:20pm

By Racer X Staff

It’s the most wonderful time of the year—contract time. We were seriously struggling to find fresh info for RacerXOnline.com at this time last year, because nearly every rider, it seemed, was in the middle of a two-year contract. But those 2013-2014 deals have expired, and practically every rider was on the free agent block. Crazier, one of the few riders that did have a 2015 deal in place, defending Monster Energy Supercross champion Ryan Villopoto, has essentially made himself a free agent by backing out of the third year of his Monster Energy Kawasaki deal. He’ll probably go to Europe to race MXGP next year, or if not, he may retire. Further, back in February, James Stewart re-signed with Yoshimura Suzuki for the 2015 and 2016 seasons, but now his status is in limbo as he waits out the World Anti-Doping Agency court date regarding his failed test from the Seattle Supercross.

GEICO Honda: Eli Tomac

Notes: The two rider GEICO 450 team, which included Tomac and Wil Hahn, last year, has been trimmed to just Tomac for 2015.

American Honda: Trey Canard, Cole Seely

Notes: Canard signed an extension this year, which will keep him with Honda through 2016. Seely and Honda agreed to a multi-year deal in August.

GEICO Honda will only have one 450 member in 2015, as Wil Hahn is rumored to be headed to Monster Energy Kawasaki. 
GEICO Honda will only have one 450 member in 2015, as Wil Hahn is rumored to be headed to Monster Energy Kawasaki.  Photo: Simon Cudby

Yoshimura Suzuki: James Stewart

Note: The team has confirmed that they have signed a second 450 rider for 2015. We suspect it will be Blake Baggett.

RCH/Soaring Eagle Suzuki: Ken Roczen

Note: Not sure if there will be a teammate for Roczen. If there is one, Broc Tickle would be the logical choice.

Red Bull KTM: Ryan Dungey, Dean Wilson

Note: The Wilson deal, like so many team switches, won’t be officially announced until October 1.

BTOSports KTM: Justin Brayton, Andrew Short

Notes: Justin Brayton will make the switch to BTO after spending last season with Toyota/JGR Yamaha. Short returns to the team after a fantastic 2014 season.

Rockstar Energy Racing Husqvarna: Jason Anderson

Note: This is today’s Rockstar Energy KTM team in new colors: Husky! Anderson re-signed with the team for a 450 deal after winning his 250 West Region Championship.

Justin Brayton will move to BTOSports KTM in 2015. 
Justin Brayton will move to BTOSports KTM in 2015.  Photo: Simon Cudby

Toyota/JGR Yamaha: Justin Barcia, Weston Peick

Note: Like Wilson with KTM, expect to hear about these signings officially on October 1. We also think Phil Nicoletti might be back here with another part-time deal.

Monster Energy Kawasaki: Davi Millsaps

Note: It appears Ryan Villopoto really won’t be racing for this team next year—he’s likely off to Europe or just off from racing altogether. We’re pretty sure Wil Hahn will end up with the second Kawasaki spot at Millsaps’ teammate.

TwoTwo Motorsports: Chad Reed

Note: Reed would like a second rider on his team. We hear it might be Josh Grant.

SmarTop/MotoConcepts: Mike Alessi

Notes: The team announced yesterday that they had come to terms with Alessi on a new deal for 2015. According to the press release, the team will compete in “AMA Supercross season, AMA Pro Motocross, Canadian Motocross, and a very strong interest for a World GP partnership.” The release also stated that the team is in discussions to bring on another rider.

Mafia Moto: Nick Wey

Note: We hear Jake Weimer could hook up with Wey in tandem on Kawasakis.

DirtCandyGraphics/ PRBC.COM: Ronnie Stewart, Robert Lind

Notes: Both riders will return to the team for 2015.

Chad Reed is rumored to be interested in another rider for next year.
Chad Reed is rumored to be interested in another rider for next year. Photo: Simon Cudby

Free Agents

Josh Hill: No word yet on Hill, who rode the CMRC Canadian Motocross Nationals this summer after parting ways with RCH/Soaring Eagle Suzuki after supercross.

Broc Tickle: Will Tickle return to RCH/Soaring Eagle Suzuki? Like the rest, we should hear something shortly.

Jake Weimer: Possibly a Kawasaki side deal with Nick Wey.

Brett Metcalfe: No word on what awaits Metcalfe, who filled in for Ryan Villopoto with Monster Energy Kawasaki in 2014.

Wil Hahn: See above.

Matt Goerke: Goerke spent the past two years with BTOSports KTM.

Ken Roczen is moving back to Suzuki for next year. 
Ken Roczen is moving back to Suzuki for next year.  Photo: Simon Cudby

Malcolm Stewart: We addressed Stewart in our 250 Silly Season update.

Jimmy Albertson: Albertson will probably be back with his own deal like he had in 2014.

Nick Schmidt: No word yet on the Washington native.

Fredrik Noren: Noren told us recently that he will know more when he returns from the Motocross of Nations in Latvia.

Kyle Chisholm: Chisholm split his time between Canada and the U.S. in 2014.

Phil Nicoletti: Could be back in a part-time deal with Toyota/JGR Yamaha like he had in 2014.

Ben LaMay: Could return to CycleTrader/Rock River Yamaha.

Kyle Regal: Regal split his time between arenacross and supercross last year.

Kyle Partridge: Partridge is returning from a torn ACL suffered in Monster Energy Supercross.

Killy Rusk: No word on where Rusk will land in 2015.

Chris Blose: Blose posted on social media that he will ride for the Babbits/Monster Energy Kawasaki team in arenacross next year.