AMERICA GETS PUSHED BACK ON THE MXDN SCHEDULE
Bailey, O’Mara, Magoo and Gibson in 1982.
As is their way, Youthstream has changed their race schedule again—this time the previously announced 2015 Motocross des Nations in the USA has been kicked back to 2017—September 24, 2017 to be exact. Let’s not hold our breath. Here is the new Motocross des Nations schedule.
2017......Glen Helen, USA
MIKE BROWN MAKES IT OFFICIAL: MEET THE 2014 HUSQVARNA TEAM
Mike Brown and his new Husqvarna FC450. Photo: facebook
“Husqvarna is the new ride! Very excited to be apart of the pioneers of motorcycles for the next couple of years and I hope longer. It’s a great company, that has a lot of great people behind it, to makeit a winning team! Just want to say thanks to Jon-Erik Burleson for putting me on a great team. Then, to my new team manager Andrew Jefferson and my mechanic Chad Sweitzer (happy to have him with me on this new adventure)," said Mike Brown.
Team Husky: Andy Jefferson, Russell Bobbitt, Andrew Delong, Jacob Argubright and Mike Brown.
Team manager Andy Jefferson said, "We have an amazing lineup for this season. This is a landmark year for Husqvarna and we couldn't ask for a better team to fly the flag. Mike Brown and Russell Bobbitt are well known and respected champions, and Andrew DeLong and Jacob Argubright are both budding talents in offroad racing. Between the four of them, Husqvarna is covering five different National Championships, as well as other select events around the world. It's going to be a busy and exciting year for the 2014 Husqvarna Off-Road Race team.
NOT EVEN FLIES DROP THIS FAST! THIS WEEK'S INJURED RIDERS
Movin' Marv will be movin' slower for awhile.
KTM Factory rider Marvin Musquin sustained a torn ACL last week. He has already undergone surgery in France to have it repaired. The surgery will keep him from racing the 250 East and slow his preparation for the 250 Nationals. Roger
DeCoster said, “This is an unfortunate injury, but
we know Marvin will do the all steps necessary to recover as quickly as
possible and come back when he is 100 percent.” DeCoster told MXA's John Basher in the MXA Mid-week Report that he is not looking for a fill-in rider—unless that rider can make the top five.
CASEY HINSON: Casey Hinson crashed practicing for the upcoming season and dislocated his right wrist, broke his left hand, suffered a concussion and fractured his cheekbone in five places. Hinson has had surgery and hopes to be back in action before the season is over.
BLAKE BAGGETT: For the last week there have been rumors that Blake Baggett broke his foot, but there has been no official confirmation yet. Pro Circuit's Mitch Payton plays his card close to his chest. He never announces which riders are hurt or which riders will be on which coast until the very last minute. Why? Because he doesn't know who will be hurt at the last second (forcing a rider swap) and he doesn't want the riders who are going to race the 250 East to slack off. He wants everyone ready to go—even of they aren't going to get the call. We'll have to wait for word on the extent of Baggett's injury.
Ken Roczen is on the internet's "injured" list—but he says that he's ready to go. Photo: KTM
KEN ROCZEN: Largely just a rumor. Ken Roczen says, "Guys relax, no broken arm. See u at A1." Moto Verte said that Roger DeCoster told them that Roczen fell while practicing yesterday and may or may not have cracked a bone in his upper arm, but that they are going to wait for the doctor's report on the extent of the injury before making any decisions.
THE SEMI-COMPLETE INJURY LIST:
Trey Canard...............Broken arm
Davi Millsaps..............Knee injury
Joey Savatgy..............Broken wrist,collapsed lung
Justin Bogle................Broken vertebra, broken shoulder blade
Austin Howell..............Broken thumb, collapsed lung
Marvin Musquin..........Knee injury (ACL)
Casey Hinson.............Broken hand, facial fractures
Blake Baggett.............Broken foot
SPEAKING OF FILL-IN RIDER—BLAKE WHARTON GETS SECOND FILL-IN RIDE OF 2014 SEASON
Blake, the last time he was on a Geico Honda.
Following an injury to Geico rider Justin Bogle, who failed to fully scrub a jump, former Geico Honda rider Blake Wharton will join the team to fill-in for Bogle in the 250 East—which starts on February 15 in Dallas. In a turn of good news, Wharton will be able to race the complete 250 East series—even after Bogle returns to action. Wharton was third overall in the 250SX East championship last year. The first official fill-in ride of the 2014 season went to Ivan Tedesco got the nod to fill-in for the injured Davi Millsaps at Rockstar KTM. And, Phil Nicoletti got a gig at JGR to be both a part-time racer (six Supercrosses) and a back-up fill-in rider for either Josh Grant or Justin Brayton. It must not be a good feeling for Josh and Justin to hear that the team hired a fill-in rider before the season even starts.
MXA PRODUCT SPOTLIGHT: UFO YELLOW YZ125/250 RESTYLE KIT
It may look like something that Bob Hannah would race, but this is a 2014 Yamaha YZ125 decked out in UFO plastic.
Do you remember the Bob Hannah Yamaha four-stroke plastic kit from a few years ago? Now you can turn your YZ1250 or YZ250 two-stroke into a yellow and black Bob Hannah replica with the new UFO plastic kit (it also comes in blue, black and white). The retail price is $239.9 (yellow) and $229.95 (blue, black, white)—www.ufoplasticusa.com or (815) 756-9400.
GODSPEED! SACHI HONDA (1914-2013)
Honda exec Kiyoshi Kawashima, Sachi Honda and Soichiro Honda at the opening the Marysville, Ohio, factory
Sachi Honda, the 99-year-old widow of Honda founder Soichiro Honda, passed away in her own home at 3:05 p.m. on December 15, 2013, due to natural causes. She was born on July 11, 1914. Socihiro Honda died in 1991. She is survived by her son, Hiro Honda, the founder of Mugen Motorsports.
DO YOU STILL THINK MOTOCROSS IS EXPENSIVE?
You could buy this bike and go racing for only $200,050. Photo: Gold and Goose
The FIM Grand Prix Road Race Commission agreed to put a price cap on a 250cc Moto3 rolling chassis (starting in 2015). A rolling chassis includes the frame, swingarm, bodywork, seat, tank, suspension, brakes and wheels—but no engine. What is the price cap for a rolling chassis sans engine? $116,000. For that price a motocross racer could buy 13 Honda CRF450s—with engines and gearboxes.
The good news is that starting in 2015, the reduced cost of a Moto3 engine package (which includes six engines, minus the gearboxes) is $82,000. The extra gearbox price is capped at $2050 each—and a team will need a couple to meet the various track layouts. The price cap on a rolling chassis is the sales price to teams and privateers—but it does not stop a team from upgrading the wheels, brakes and suspension. As it sits, last year's best bike, the KTM RC250 Moto3, will cost $200,000 in 2015.
RICK MENAPACE RETIRES AFTER 30 YEARS IN THE MOTORCYCLE BUSINESS
Rick plans to spend more time on his bikes—motorcycle and bicycle. Peggy will spend her time trying to get him off the bike.
MXA got a letter from our buddy Rick Menapace on Thursday that surprised us. Rick and his wife Peggy have handled Arai Helmets marketing for 30 years and it has been a fruitful relationship between MXA and Arai thanks to Rick.
The letter said, “In a few short words (and weeks), on December 31, 2013, I am retiring. It’s time. My clients have known since the end of summer when Peggy and I decided that, after 38 years in the powersports industry, it was time to turn the page to the next chapter of our lives, loves and interests. It’s been a mostly fantastic experience! I have been truly blessed to work in a job and an industry I passionately love. The challenges, the dynamics, the rewards and setbacks, the people and bikes and gear, they’ve all been part of it. When you can wake up each morning wanting to get to work, you know you’ve got something rare.
“Some things will hard to move on from. Like my 30 years as the ad and marketing agency for Arai Helmets. By far the longest of many long-term client relationships and one that became much more than simply “business.” What a ride, from a relative newcomer to our market to the Arai of today. And now... I can move on.” Rick Menapace.
THIS WEEK’S BIRTHDAY BOYS: STILL REMEMBERING ADOLF WEIL
Dec. 20...Jesse Casillas 1984
Dec. 21...James Stewart 1985
Dec. 23...Jeff Fox
Dec. 23...Will Hahn 1989
Dec. 25...Mark Burkhart 1979
Dec. 25...Adolf Weil 1938
MAX ANSTIE SIGNS WITH DIXON YAMAHA FOR THE 250 GP SERIES
The likeable Englishman, Max Anstie, has been on a roller coaster ride over the last few years, but most of the ride has been downhill. He left the USA for what he hoped would be greener pastures in the 250 World Championship—but it hasn’t been easy for Max. He finished 10th in the 2013 FIM 250 series with only a fourth in Holland to show what he was capable of. Now, for 2014, Max will join the Dixon Yamaha team to replace Dean Ferris—who both aged out and moved to America. Max signed a two-year deal.
SUPERCROSS FORMAT CHANGE: THE SEMIS ARE BACK
Make room for twenty-two.
It is rare that motocrossers get to say anything nice about race promoters or sanctioning bodies, but our hats are off to the Supercross honchos. Why? Because they are bringing the semis back to Supercross. More racing and more track time means more action for the fan’s money. The 2014 format will start with two 450 heat races (where the top four riders will advance to the main). Then, there will be two semis (where the top five riders will advance to the main). The Last Chance race will move four more riders to the main. Yes, the math does seem strange, but that is because the 450 class will now have 22 riders behind the starting gate instead of the previous 20 riders. The 250 East and West format will stay the same (two heats, a last chance and a main), but they get a 22-rider main also. Good news—and you thought that the Supercross promoters didn’t care.
BABY BECKER JOINS THE TEAM
Delivery had to wait until Tracey Becker found out who won the 450 Shootout. Just kidding.
Ernie and Sloane.
Former Pro Circuit Husqvarna rider and current Mercedes-Benz AMG driver Ernie Becker and the lovely Tracey Becker welcomed Sloane Isabella Becker to the team on December 16. It’s up to Sloane to decide if she wants to race motocross or sports cars when she grows up.
DEFINITELY NOT MOTOCROSS, BUT JODY SAID HE LIKED LAUREL AND HARDY, SO WE RAN THIS FOR HIM
MEMORIES OF THE WAY WE WERE: THE WORLD’S FASTEST BULGARIAN
Most motocross fans do not remember the name Dimitar Rangelov, but the early 1980s racer was on the fast track to motocross stardom. He was third overall in the 1980 250 World Championships behind Georges Jobe and Kees Van Der Ven. Sadly, a major concussion affected his riding and ended his GP career. Rangelov’s son, Dimitar Rangelov Jr. is a World Cup soccer star for FC Luzern.
The son—Dimitar Rangelov, Jr. is proud of his father — the world's Fastest Bulgarian.
JAKE WEIMER AND RANDY LAWRENCE TOGETHER AGAIN
To change up his training program for 2014, Jake Weimer returned to his old trainer Randy Lawrence. Lawrence, the brother of "Factory Phil" Lawrence, was originally a mechanic before taking on the trainer role. Weimer had been with Aldon Baker last year.
TEXAS WINTER SERIES STARTS ON DECEMBER 28-29
Suzuki Motorcycle tests