For a first round void of last season's champ and a handful of other top tier racers, you'd assume Hangtown was going to be uneventful. The unprecedented mid season team-switch made by James Stewart upped the intrigue factor immensly but beyond that, there were several compelling occurrences unfolding as the National series kicked off.
Lets start with something that has hit close to my heart for a few weeks now. It's no secret that Broc Tickle is a friend of mine and I was vocal about his 450 ride not being yanked from under him. He had been dialing his 450 outdoor setup since Houston, was very happy with it and convinced his outdoor series was going to be the redemption he and the team expected and knew was possible. It was clear in Supercross, Broc wasn't riding like himself but as this sport goes, the mental side is often the hardest to dial-in. Even when all the tools are there, if you can't get out of your own head, it just won't work out.
After a couple weeks of uncertainty when Broc was asked to ride a 250 the day after Tyla was signed up for the Factory Kawi bike, the news came that Broc was going to be permitted to race the 450 outdoors. But, and this is a big but because this is where the effects of Hangtown could come into play; Broc's results were expected to improve if he wanted to stay on the 450. Well I'm happy to say, Broc's rides at Hangtown were strong, going 6-7 for 6th overall. There were many who just wrote him off. It was as if his Supercross season was representative of his capabilities, which obviously they were not. Anyhow, I digress.
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