MOTOCROSS ACTION’S MID-WEEK REPORT BY JOHN BASHER (12/26/12)

December 26, 2012
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PHOTO OF THE WEEK

    The sun is setting on 2012, but the racing world waits eagerly in anticipation for the beginning of the 2013 Supercross series. It’s gearing up to be a wild season with all of the top contenders healed up and ready to roll. Anaheim 1 can’t come soon enough! Photo courtesy of KTM.

MUST ATTEND EVENT: BERT’S MEGA MALL

    Click on the image above to view the invitation to this can’t-miss event.

COMING ATCHA! JUSTIN BARCIA NEW YEAR’S VIDEO

REFLECTIONS: INTERVIEWS OF THE YEAR
    According to my notes I’ve done 52 interviews for the Mid-Week Report in 2012. That’s a good amount of talking, typing, transcribing and editing for the purpose of making you happy. Hopefully I have succeeded. Plan on a wider variety of interviewees for 2013, and feel free to let us know what you think about the Mid-Week Report. Simply email us at mxa@hi-torque.com.
    Below are a collection of questions asked throughout the year that I found particularly interesting. Take a look.

BROC HEPLER

MXA: You were very smart with your money while you were racing. Having made some quality investments, such as a residence in California, it seems like you’re doing pretty well.

Broc: Yeah, I’ve made some good choices. I have been watching that Inside the Outdoors TV show on Fuel, and I’ve seen how things have ended badly between racers and their parents. I’ve watched the show with my parents. It makes me more thankful for how well my parents treated me. They are still letting me live at home, and they never asked for any money while I was racing. My Mom quit her job so that she could live with me in the winter out in California while I was racing. That show really made me thankful for my parents.

CHAD REED

MXA: You’ve mentioned that you’ve had some time riding the 2013 Honda CRF450. Were you able to take some of ?12 parts and put them on the new bike?

Chad: The 2013 bike is all-new, so a lot of the parts don’t actually fit. We’re lucky enough that we can change engines. We’ve put 2012 engines in 2013 bikes, but there are modifications that need to be made. With the way the new transmission is beefed up and wider, the countershaft sprocket sits differently, so it requires a different rear wheel. With that said, there are definitely a few things that we have to do to accommodate a 2012 engine in the new bike. It’s not a perfect world. We wish we could use 2013 bikes and 2013 parts, but we just don’t have enough to go around right now. We’re piecing together what we can.

TREY CANARD

MXA: I’m a proponent of neck protection, and to me it looked like that neck brace really saved you from greater injury. Do you feel the same way?

Trey: Yes. Me personally, I’m very thankful that I was wearing it. He [Ryan Morais] landed square on my head. Everyone has seen the pictures and the video. To see my head end up in my lap and to see that nothing was wrong with the tissue or structurally was pretty amazing. He basically frame cased my head. I don’t know if we can say that the Leatt cures neck injuries, because I don’t think that’s the case, but I can say that was the perfect situation for a neck brace to work. It did its job 100 percent. I’m thankful that I wore the Leatt, and although I can’t say for sure, I believe things could have been a lot different had I not been wearing it.

COY GIBBS

MXA: What have you thought of all the speculation the last few months about James Stewart and his bike issues, and how did you not go crazy?

Coy: I focused on Davi and how well he was doing. I had never stopped focusing on Davi, and you can ask him the same thing. He was the first one that I talked to after practice sessions and races. We’ve had a pretty long relationship, and I feel like I can be honest with him, since I’ve known him quite a while. Obviously having James on the team didn’t work out. The deal didn’t work out for either of us. I like James. It was good getting to know him. At the end of the day, I sleep well at night knowing that we gave it 110 percent. We did all that we could do. We drove down to Stewart’s house multiple times, and that’s a long drive. We did that week in and week out. My guys were grinding through it. And I know that James rode as hard as he could ride. Things just didn’t work out. There are no hard feelings. I enjoyed the whole Stewart family, and we had some fun times.

ROGER DECOSTER

Roger (left) and Jon-Erik Burleson.

MXA: Can you explain the slew of injuries that occurred in Supercross?
Roger: It’s more than a fluke. I don’t really understand it, and I cannot pretend that I have the solution. I have been thinking a lot about it, though. If we can find a way to keep our guys healthy then it’s going to be a big advantage. You’re not going to win if you can’t race. I think one of the reasons for the injuries is because these guys have to be ready to race year round. There’s no real break. I follow tennis, because I have a son who is involved with it. Tennis has never had more injuries before than in recent years. You would think that it’s not a sport where there would be a lot of injuries, but there are. Tennis and motocross have two things in common. First, the season is pretty much all year long. There aren’t any breaks. They play a lot and there is a lot of travel involved. I think there’s something about every human’s body that needs a break, and if the body doesn’t get a break then it will take one by injury. It’s important to take one month out of the year away from racing. Second, we need to do a better job with studying the tracks. It’s not easy to build a track. Sometimes tracks are made that are really difficult. They might be safer, but then only three guys can get around the track. There’s a big difference in ability between the top five guys and the guys from 20th and after. You need more than 20 people to start the race program.

ELI TOMAC

MXA: In regards to you and Dean coming together for the final time after the finish line at Seattle, there are so many different ways that it could have played out.

Eli: When you watch what happened, you can see that Dean was fully committed to that corner. He didn’t let off at all. I think most guys would have known that I was going to go inside in that corner. When he passed me in that corner a few laps before, I checked up because I knew where he was going. I guess his thought process when I went inside of him was he was either going to make it through or crash. Pin it to win it!

JUSTIN BARCIA

MXA: What’s your mentality as you approach the starting line before a moto? I’ve noticed that you have a fire in your eyes, while other guys are laughing and joking around. You look like you have your eyes on the prize.

Justin: Everyone has a different way on how they approach a race. There’s certainly a time and a place to joke around. That time for me is before the race. I like to relax and have fun, but when I get on the bike and head down to the starting line my mind switches. I’m ready for war. The 250 class is war. That’s the best way to explain it. You never get to rest in the 250 class. I’m not saying that the 450 class isn’t gnarly or fast, but it’s showing this year that the top guys in the 250 class are ready to kill.

MIKE ALESSI

MXA: What’s it like to continue working with your Dad, but now in a more official capacity?

Mike: As of right now my Dad is overlooking the 450 program, but I think for next year he’s going to be the team manager. He’s doing a great job for the whole team. Having my Dad at the races, and also my wife, is a great thing for me. Racing is what we love to do. It’s a family sport, so we stick together and do the best that we can.

MITCH PAYTON

MXA: Why did you decide to sign Martin Davalos?

Mitch: Martin is a guy that I’ve always had a belief in. I watched him for a long time, and I spoke to him a few years ago about racing for us. He was already talking with another team, and he decided to stay there. That was fine. I think that Martin has a lot of speed and talent. Obviously he needs to close the deals out when he’s doing what he’s doing. So far in our testing we’re really impressed with him. He’s really fast, he’s fit, and he’s happy with the bike. I expect really good things from Martin.

HONDA ANNOUNCES 2013 CONTINGENCY PROGRAM

    Torrance, CA: American Honda proudly announces the continuation of the Red Riders Rewards program for 2013, with more than $5 million in earnings available to racers. For the upcoming racing season, the Red Rider Rewards program will provide Honda owners with thousands of opportunities to earn payouts at more than 1500 race events across the United States including motocross, off-road events, dirt track, ATV and road racing. There’s even contingency for the exciting new CBR500R. Riders on CRF150Rs will benefit from industry-leading payouts in both off-road and MX events.

    Winnings will be issued through the Red Rider Rewards Card and can be used anywhere that Visa? is accepted. All results and rewards are processed electronically via XTRM Performance Network. Just sign up once and then go racing; we’ll automatically load your earnings onto your Visa Red Rider Rewards Debit Card. For program details and a list of all eligible units, visit HondaRedRiders.com.

JT RACING GEAR INTRODUCTION

MORE JT NEWS: JT RACING MOBILE APP NOW AVAILABLE

Press Release: JT Racing is happy to announce the brand new JT Racing mobile app which is now available through the Apple iTunes store. This is a free mobile application which delivers JT Racing’s 2013 catalog and will provide our fans with the most up to date info possible throughout the year from anywhere with the simple touch of a button on their mobile devices. By downloading the app, you will be able to see all the latest JT Racing products with exclusive video content, and the latest product news. Product and catalog updates will become immediately available to our fans through push notifications throughout the year, keeping you up to date on the absolute latest with JT Racing. An added benefit for our consumers is that this app will be pushed to all our sales representatives in our distribution channels here in the US and in many countries worldwide which will help our dealers stay more up to date and knowledgeable to better serve their customers.

    Daniel Sandstedt, CEO of JT Racing states “This is just a small step in the direction we  are heading to ultimately create seamless accessibility to the brand and serve our customers in every way we can.  As we continue to add exciting new product segments to our portfolio, it is essential we support our global network by giving the consumer ground floor visibility to everything we have available worldwide.”  To learn more about JT Racing USA please visit us at: jtracingusa.com.

    Simply go to the iTunes app store on your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch and download the free app today. Download the App here.

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