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Will dual front discs become the future?
AMA MOTOCROSS ROUND 3 FROM THUNDER VALLEY, COLODADO.
450 MOTO 1
450 MOTO 2
250 MOTO 1
250 MOTO 2
UP NEXT, HIGH POINT
Ken Roczen and Andrew Short at this years KTM dealer show. Ken seems to think they look like brothers.
At the Monster Energy headquarters one of Justin Hill’s damaged helmets hangs on a wall.
Ryan got a kick out of this photo of him riding a Velociraptor.
James is all smiles after him first moto win in Thunder Valley.
The Kurt Caselli foundation has been making big moves in rider safety. www.kurtcaselli.com
Weston had more than one close call, but still managed to pull off a top ten finish in Colorado.
Ronnie Renner on top of the box after his 5th Gold metal in Step-Up at the Austin X-Games.
I sneak peak photo of FMF’s upcoming catalogue. Deserted water park and wheelies!
Josh Hanson’s turn up whip is jaw-dropping.
This is a Fox Shox prototype of its Factory Series RC2 kashima- coated mini bike shock.
WATCH HOW DIFFICULT ERZBERG IS BY WATCHING THE POV OF THIS YEARS WINNER, JONNY WALKER
PRESS RELEASE: Ride Engineering now offers a lowering link for all 2014 Husqvarna models except the TC85. This suspension link lowers the chassis 6mm and stiffens the initial part of the rear suspension to improve handling and directional changes for 2014 Husky models. It also provides better tracking in off-camber or bermless turns, go straighter in whoops and helps keep the back end more planted in breaking bumps. All Ride Engineering Links come complete with bearings and seals. $219.95 www.rideengineering.com.
Application: 2014 TC125/250 – TE250/300 – FC250/450 – FE 250/350/501 & KTM 2011 – 2014 SX250F/350F/450F & 2012 – 2014 SX125/150/250; XC150/250/300
By Jim Kimball
Undoubtedly during the 2014 AMA Supercross series you may have noticed #415, Nick Schmidt. One of the bigger guys in stature, Nick was hard to miss. However, it wasn’t his build that drew attention, but instead his ability to make main events. With intentions to race the first few rounds of the 450 National series (at the very least), the 23-year-old Washington native hopes to follow in the wake of Weston Peick. Peick was recently called up to the big leagues, so to speak, when he was awarded a ride with the factory-backed RCH Suzuki team. Nick Schmidt, a privateer, is also looking for increased support. We tracked down Schmidt at Thunder Valley Raceway where a mechanical ended his day.
MXA: Nick, you had a pretty decent Supercross series and started getting some great exposure.
Nick: It was pretty good for the most part. My goal was to make mains and end up top twenty in the point standings by the end of the season. I came up a little bit short of that and finished up tied for 22nd. I made it through all but a couple rounds and got my feet wet. It was my first full season of racing Supercross. Of course you always want to do better, but I feel it went okay. Hopefully my results set me up for next year.
I like to think of you as the new Weston Peick. You are a bigger privateer guy that rides hard and determined–plus Fly Racing supports you.
Yeah, a lot of people have been saying that I’m the next Weston Peick! He’s done awesome, so to be called that is a big accomplishment. Hopefully I can keep following his career path. I’d like to keep the ball rolling and hopefully get a ride for next year. Max from Fly Racing has been keeping me looking fresh all year.
I wasn’t sure that I would see you here in Colorado. How did the first couple outdoor rounds go for you?
It was a very last-minute decision to race here. Thankfully Team 3BR helped me out with a box van to get here. We are really doing it old school. Glen Helen was my first ever National and I think it went okay. I qualified 19th fastest, so I got a somewhat decent gate pick. In the first moto I finished 16th. I was running about 12th or 13th, but in the last two laps I made a stupid line choice and had a little tip over. In the second moto I got a decent start and was doing pretty well until I got together with another rider and went down on the first lap. I was dead last and worked my way to the top 20. I ended up 19th overall for the day, so that was good. Then at Hangtown I qualified well in the top 20 but ended up having some bike problems. We had electrical issues, but we still have not really figured it out yet. I didn’t finish Hangtown, but at least I feel that I was riding well.
You are racing a Honda CRF450, which seems to be one of the preferred brands for a privateer.
I love the bike. It’s really good right out of the box. Colter Ahrens with Naveen Powered is doing the engine work, and that has been a huge help. Plus, I just like the way that it handles! For a privateer it’s just a great choice. Typically it is very reliable, and I really like how the 2014 feels; it is narrower like a 250 four-stroke and is also pretty light. It’s been just an overall good bike for both Supercross and motocross.
Have you taken any extra pride in beating factory guys?
Yeah! You know, it is pretty cool to do that. They have it made over there as they get to just show up and ride on their perfect bikes. I’m really having a lot of fun racing, and I will keep on doing it. Hopefully it will work out some day with a factory ride.
I would imagine that some of the factory team managers have taken notice of you. Is that true?
Yeah, here and there I think. I’ve been talking to a couple of them, and at times they stop over to see how I am doing. I try to introduce myself more and show them my face in case that there could be some type of fill-in ride if the opportunity came up.
Nick, that’s a great segue into my final question!. I heard a rumor that a fill-in ride could become a reality for you. What can you say?
Well, there are a couple guys that are out injured right now, and it would be an awesome opportunity if I could do that for one round or as many as possible! I’d love to have the shot to show what I can do on factory equipment. As I said earlier, my engine is done up a little bit, but I am underpowered just because I am a bigger guy. So if this happens I am ready to show what I got. [note: As Jim Kimball was leaving the Lakewood pits in the evening he noticed Nick and his mechanic walking away from the Muscle Milk Honda pits].
RONNIE RENNER’S GOLD METAL STEP UP RUN FROM HIS POV
(1) Activity. Keep your blood flowing regularly. Riding once every two weeks and being sedentary in between welcomes arm pump. Motocross is one of the most physically demanding sports on the planet, where you use many muscles and rev your heart rate. Riding the couch for a few weeks and then jumping on your bike is a shock to the body. Make sure to stay active, even when you’re not riding.
(2) Over-training. For some, less is more. Athletes are always looking for the competitive edge. Riding and training every day for weeks on end won’t allow enough time to recover. Getting arm pump can be a direct cause of this. When you ride, your body produces toxins that can get trapped in the arms. If you fail to take the necessary time off to let your body heal then you could suffer the effects of arm pump. Listen to your body.
(3) Ice. Ice is a great tool to help recover your arms from the pain and strain caused by a hard day of riding. Ice helps reduce swelling and promotes healing. It’s best to ice each forearm for ten minutes after riding, especially if you suffered severe arm pump.
(4) Bike setup. A good bike setup enables you to be comfortable on the bike. Without this, the rider will have a tendency to ride tight, which can lead to arm pump. A key component to becoming comfortable on the bike is having your suspension set up for your weight and skill level. If you have a rigid setup you will be fighting the bike and you will lack the ability to ride at your level. Also make sure the controls are in an easily accessible positions and are well maintained. Pulling in a tight clutch cable spells arm pump disaster.
(5) Massage. Massage is a great tool to reduce the soreness and minimize the damage done. Muscles in your arms will form knots and produce toxins shortly after you begin riding. Take care of your forearms by massing them. Make sure that you push the fluid and knots toward your heart.
(6) Warm up. Many pros ride a stationary bike before they race. The idea is to get their body properly warmed up before they race. Getting the blood flowing through the arms and warmed up before they get on the track will prepare their bodies for the physical stress. Most people don’t have the convenience of having a stationary bike at the track. That’s okay. Warm up by riding at 70 percent of your maximum speed for 20 minutes.
(7) Traction. Proper motorcycle traction is a huge factor for arm pump. Being in too low of a gear or getting a hand full of throttle will cause a lack of traction and make the bike difficult to control. Shift up, keep the momentum going and roll on the throttle. Don’t expend any more energy than you need to.
(8) Strength training. If your goal is to pump heavy weights and look like Arnold Schwarzenegger back in his Mr. Universe days then you’re a prime candidate for arm pump. Take a look at the top riders like Ryan Villopoto and Chad Reed. They are on the top of their game, yet they weigh less than 160 pounds and muscle around a 60-horsepower bike. Keeping weight training simple by focusing on your core and lower body. Strengthening those two areas are your best bet at keeping arm pump to a minimum.
By Jim Kimball
Unfortunately up to this point in his professional career, Geico Honda rider Zach Bell may be most known for his Supercross crash reel highlights. That is slowly changing. In what some may call the most improved rider, Bell is notching solid moto finishes in the Nationals with several very solid top ten finishes. Virtually with little or no experience racing in the Pro ranks due to injuries, Zach is mixing it up with many of the sport’s elite 250 racers. Making the jump to 250 Supercross and outdoor racing is difficult, but Zach Bell is beginning to make big strides. We caught up with the 19-year-old from Georgia after Lakewood.
MXA: Zach, unfortunately you have probably been more known for your spectacular Supercross crashes rather than your actual results.
Zach: Yeah, it’s been definitely an up and down Pro career, and not the way that I wanted it to go. The last three or four years have been really rough. Due to injuries I have really only been able to ride about one full year. It’s definitely hard on my body, and really takes a lot out of of. Trying to come back after so many injuries is very difficult. My shoulder injury from Supercross still bothers me, so this outdoor series I just want to take it kind of slow. I’ll take things step by step and try to get better and better. I know that I have the speed and that my fitness is improving. I just need to focus on riding my own race. I’m already looking forward to next weekend!
For someone who is taking it slow, you look pretty impressive! You are battling for position with a lot of current and former title holders.
Right now I am just trying to ride in my comfort zone and not get too far ahead of myself. But I do feel that I am progressing. Pretty soon will be able to wick it up more. I want to be more near Jeremy Martin, Blake Baggett, and my teammate Justin Bogle, but right now I am happy with where I am. The past couple years have not been so kind, but I am happy with where I am at. I want to finish this full outdoor season and keep having fun and improving.
Something that I have noticed watching you is that every time you are on the bike, whether practice or racing, you seem to be really enjoying it.
When you are out on the track, it is a race. But you know, you just cannot put your head down and make it work. You have to do some whips and have fun. That’s what keeps me motivated and having fun, which helps me keep pushing forward.
How is the atmosphere within the team? I know that Wil Hahn, and Justin Bogle are pretty close, but what about the rest of you guys?
There has definitely been a lot of success under the Geico Honda tent! When it’s time to train together we are all friends, and when we come to the track together we are all friends. I truly think that we enjoy being teammates and are happy when someone (within the team) does well.
This brings me to your team manager, Mike LaRocco. I’m sure he is great in his role, because he understands hard work, but he must be tough at times.
Mike is pretty much the best coach that you could ever have. If he sees you doing something wrong he will definitely tell you. He doesn’t hold anything back [laughter]. If he feels that you should be doing something differently, then you should follow his advice. I love the guy. He is a great team manager and I cannot think of a better person for the job!
What can you tell us about this “push-up” thing?
How did you hear that? Last weekend at Hangtown, Mike made up this rule that for every second you lose during a moto that you have to do ten push ups. Last week I had to do over 100 push-ups! He said that it will improve your consistency. I guess that it kind of works, as after the motos in Lakewood I only had to do sixty push-ups. So, he was happier, and so was I.
Looking towards the future, where do you want to be by the outdoor finale in Utah? Are you signed with Geico Honda next year?
Right now I just want to be top five to top ten in every moto. At this point, I have not signed a contract, but hope to be back here for 2015.
PRESS RELEASE: In honor of Kurt Caselli, Matrix Concepts is proud to make this special Stand available with the net proceeds going to The Kurt Caselli Foundation to support their mission to make off road motorcycling safer. The KC 66 Stand is available at www.matrixracingproducts.com starting June 10th.
Stand features include:
- KC 66 Graphics with Black or Orange Stand
- Injection molded from high strength lightweight composite polycarbonate plastic.
- Extra wide feet prevents rocking making this design very stable.
- Removable replaceable top pad.
- Design includes four rectangle anti flex support tubes.
- Bolted together with stainless steel fasteners.
- Priced at $125.00
EVEN MONKEYS CAN RIDE…NO JOKE!
WHAT IT’S LIKE TO RIDE THE ALL-NEW HARLEY-DAVIDSON STREET 750
By John Basher
Motocross Action is not a magazine that tests street motorcycles. We are strictly dirt–although, in truth, we’ve raced Supermoto, gone dirt tracking, ice raced, ridden a bike with a snowmobile track and drove shifter karts. So while we bleed motocross, the MXA gang isn’t afraid to take a walk on the wild side. Or, in my case this past weekend, the weird side. Weird is a fitting word for my experience at the X Games in Austin, Texas, because the unofficial slogan of the capital of Texas is “Keep Austin Weird.” It was fitting that I would be throwing a leg over a strange bike.
Years ago I completed my M1 motorcycle license, though I’ve only ever ridden the streets a handful of times (legally anyway, because you can get away with a lot on the country roads in Upstate New York). I’ve had very little interest in purchasing a street motorcycle and ripping around the death trap jungle that is Southern California. Splitting lanes and dodging Prius drivers who are texting while driving is not my idea of fun. I get enough thrills romping around motocross tracks, trying to hold my own against some of the best racers in the world. Tell me that it’s not adrenaline pumping when Blake Baggett carves a line around me through a sandy corner. What a rush!
I promised my wife that I would put street motorcycle riding on the back burner. With a 14-month-old and another boy on the way, I understand my wife’s reasoning. Limiting dangerous activities seems downright smart. I’ll happily cruise the streets in less populated areas or a controlled environment, but I’m not afforded those opportunities very often.
Enter the Harley-Davidson Street 750 motorcycle launch at Circuit of the Americas outside of Austin. I was already going to be at the venue to fulfill my responsibilities as Head Judge for Freestyle and Speed & Style. With Friday being a down day, the Harley intro worked out perfectly. I would meet up with incredibly nice Harley-Davidson folks, sign my life away, and go rocketing off toward the horizon. The only obstacles in my path would be the Circuit of the Americas security and the Texas bugs that peppered my face.
Not only would I be cruising around on a brand new bike that hasn’t even hit dealership floors yet, but I’d be doing so alongside famed BMX rider, Chad Kagy, and skateboard sensation, Greg Lutzka. I’ve been told that the joy of a motorcycle ride is often determined by the company you keep. I knew that years from now I would have a great story to tell my boys.
The first thing I noticed about the Street 750 was how compact it was. This wasn’t your typical monster Harley-Davidson with ape hangers or a kicked out steering head. The Street 750 looked like it could be raced. Guess what? It can! The bike can hold its own around a Flat Track course. Brad “the Bullet” Baker showcased the Street 750’s potential in Flat Track by holding an exhibition at the X Games this past weekend. It’s very possible that Flat Track will be a featured event on next year’s X Games schedule.
I’m not a historian on all things Harley-Davidson, but I did learn that the Street 750 is the first all-new Harley model in more than a decade. The U.S. manufacturer built the Street 750 V-twin cruiser for the global platform with the goal of performing masterfully in urban riding settings. What does that mean? Stop and go traffic, around city streets and weaving through traffic is where the Street 750 will do its best work. I was able to get a taste of that while carving corners on the roads around the Circuit of the Americas track. How I wished to take the Harley inside the confines of the course, but I would have been run over by the Rally cars that took up the infield.
The Street 750 is not a rocket ship, but that’s its charm. It harks back to the glory days of motorcycling, when bikes weren’t judged on their displacement but rather style and ease of riding. I can say with certainty that this bike would be easy for a beginner to feel confident on in no time whatsoever. The Street 750’s appealing styling and splash of old-school design (rubber fork boots and silver shock springs) are sure to draw attention. What will really capture the public’s eye is the price–between $7499 to $7794, depending on the color option. That’s less expensive than any 2014 450 four-stroke motocross bike! I’m not telling you to buy a Harley-Davidson, but it’s amazing how economically priced the five-speed, torquey Street 750 is for what you get. It’s so cool, in fact, that I might just be able to talk my wife into letting me get one. Okay, probably not, but at least I can dream.