PHOTO OF THE WEEK
The Troy Lee Designs "Press Day" at REM this past Saturday was a huge hit. Not only did the trio of Cole Seely, Jessy Nelson and Christian Craig show up to race, but there was great racing all day long. And, as you can see, spectator turnout was quite good. To read about the race, click here. Photo by Scott Williams
MINI-VIEW: TRENT PUGMIRE
Trent (far left) earned one of those really cool supersized checks on Sunday.
Trent Pugmire joined the MXA ranks about six months ago. Years ago I watched as Pugmire blew around tracks in the southland, and this was back when he was stretching cable on an 85. Shortly after he jumped up to a big bike I lost track of Trent–he seemingly vanished from the moto scene. Then, like Patrick Swayze in "Ghost", he reappeared (only he didn't try to mold clay with me on a potter's wheel).
The World Two-Stroke Championship is a one-off race for diehards to fly their flag and chirp about the good old days when two-strokes ruled the racetracks. I'm not going to lie, I'm a believer that two-smokes need to make a return to dealerships. The MXA wrecking crew had six entries in the pro classes. Trent Pugmire proved most fruitful, thanks to two-two scores in the 250 class for second overall. He pocketed $1250 and one of those cool oversized checks for his efforts. I wanted to hear more about his experience racing the ring-ding.
MXA: You weren't actually going to race the World Two-Stroke Championship, as you had prior obligations. What happened?
Trent: I was supposed to go to Costa Rica so that I could test suspension and get time on the track that I was supposed to race. However, everything got postponed. Racing the two-stroke event was something that I had initially planned on, but then this trip came up. Then, once it got pushed back I decided to give you a call and see if the offer was still on the table to race an MXA bike.
Talk a bit more about Costa Rica.
There is a nine-round outdoor series going on, with one race a month. I'm not committed to racing the whole series. Inquiries have been made about me racing the series, but I haven't signed anything. We're taking it race by race.
Have you received any calls from the factory teams after finishing second in the 250 class at the World Two-Stroke Championship?
[Laughter] No. I wish! It would be awesome if factory teams still had a two-stroke program.
Trent leads the field into Talladega.
What was it like hopping on a KTM 250SX two-stroke without any practice whatsoever and lining up to the gate?
The bike was quite comfortable, to be honest. When I first started riding big bikes, when I was 16 years old, I rode a CR250 for Honda. The bike suited me really well and the KTM kind of resembled the Honda in some ways. I don't know if riding a 250 two-stroke came back to me, but I was comfortable on it.
Did you meet, exceed or fall short of your expectations for the World Two-Stroke Championship?
Of course I wanted to win, so I would say that I fell short slightly. However, I didn't have time on the bike, so second place isn't too shabby. I hadn't raced a two-stroke in probably six years. That's crazy to think about!
Did riding a two-stroke conjure up good thoughts?
It did. It reminded me of my roots. When I was younger the only thing I rode was a two-stroke, because that's all there really was. I had such a good time racing a two-stroke on Sunday. It really made me miss two-strokes.
Do you think the sport could benefit from better representation of two-strokes in motocross?
I think it would. Two-strokes are our roots. I think that we should keep two-strokes alive. The turnout this weekend proved that two-strokes are still popular, and not just among fast or slower riders. People own two-strokes, and they're still riding them. The bikes are relatively cheap and easy to maintain. It would be good for the factories to keep the production of two-strokes going, or even bringing them back.
You raced our 2013 KTM 250SX, and in both motos you didn't get a very good jump out of the gate. However, halfway down the start straight you were leading. Our bike doesn't have any engine work, aside from a pipe, silencer and Dick's Racing Intellajet carb mod.
That bike was fast! I couldn't believe it. Once I hit fourth gear the bike pulled away from everyone else.
Are you planning on racing any Nationals?
Yes, I intend on racing all of the west coast rounds–Hangtown, Colorado, Washougal, Utah and Elsinore. It depends on whether I get enough support and have the funds. It's a race by race deal. I'm hoping that everything falls into place.
VIDEO OF THE WEEK: ANOTHER DAY @ MILLSAPS TRAINING FACILITY
WHAT THE MXA TEST RIDERS DID THIS WEEKEND...
Robby Bell raced the 125 class on a KTM 125SX. The offroad ace got a flat rear tire in the first moto and bent up his shifter in the second moto. If Robby didn't have bad luck then he'd have no luck at all.
Broc Armbruster tried to channel his inner Jean-Michel Bayle (actually more like Jeff Ward) as he tamed the mighty KX500 two-stroke (which is wedged inside a KTM 250SX chassis).
MXA Assistant Editor Daryl Ecklund was rip-roaring around the track on a YZ125. Unfortunately the bike suffered electrical issues, but he didn't let that dissuade him (and still finished inside the top ten).
Austin Politelli won the first 250 Pro moto, but a fall in the second moto while battling with Sean Collier (not to mention getting taken out by Tyler Bereman a lap later-and yes, I have the GoPro footage to prove it) ruined his chance at a podium finish.
Dennis Stapleton (184) double classed it, racing a YZ250 and a Husqvarna CR144. He bit off more than he could chew, but he still had a great time.
SPY PHOTOS: YAMAHA'S 2014 YZ450F?
Check out this little gem from "MOTO" magazine.
WORLD TWO-STROKE CHAMPIONSHIP VIDEO
JAMES STEWART HOUSTON REPORT
"I washed the front end out right before the finish line on lap ten. It was a bummer."
JIMMY DECOTIS’ GRAND PRIX EXPECTATIONS
A realistic view of Jimmy D’s chances at the 250 Italian Grand Prix this weekend
Jimmy D., go east young man.
When Jimmy Decotis was picked last week to join the CLS Kawasaki team in the 250 World Championships, Europe was all abuzz that an American would be racing in the GPs. Jimmy will start his first-ever GP this weekend in Italy. But, since Euros know very little about American racing, they just assume that since Decostis was in the top ten in the 250 East Supercross points, that he would be an immediate threat to win. Maybe, maybe not.
Jimmy Decostis has never finished in the top 15 in an AMA National. Supercross is his specialty and he has several top fives indoors. Unfortunately, his best ever outdoor National finish was a 16th at Southwick in 2011. Even if you go to moto scores, Jimmy only made the top ten once in 36 tries (a ninth at the 2011 Southwick National in moto two). Over three seasons (2009-2011), Jimmy’s average AMA National finish in the 250 class is 23rd place. Jimmy didn’t race any AMA Nationals in 2012 due to injuries.
But, sometimes having people believe in you, and getting a fresh start, can invigorate a career. There is no doubt that Jimmy has talent. This is his chance to shine. We're pulling for the nice kid from New England (even if he might be a Patriots fan). Zach Osborne revitalized his career by going to Europe, and perhaps racing the GP circuit is exactly what Decotis needs.
BLAKE WHARTON TRADES PAINT WITH MARVIN MUSQUIN
BRING BACK THE TWO-STOKES!
By Daryl Ecklund
Daryl Ecklund at warp speed.
After racing the Two-Stroke Wordl Championship this weekend at Glen Helen I feel the motocross community needs to come together, go on strike or demand the comeback of two-strokes. If you have to ask why, you’re either too young to respect the two-stroke era, or haven't ridden a two-stroke in a long time. Don’t get me wrong, I like to swing my leg over the technology-driven four-strokes–which is what I ride the majority of the time. But for some reason, I feel that I’ve been tricked over the years to adapt to the four-stroke craze. Let's get real for a moment, four-strokes are heavier, more expensive, need almost double the cubic centimeters to compete with the two-stokes and, after this weekend, I realized “the fun factor” is off the charts. So I ask myself, is this some government conspiracy or coverup, because the idea that a whole industry (save for KTM and Yamaha) can ignore low-cost racing equipment is fishy. You think they would want to sell the lightest, cheapest and fastest bikes (per cc) instead of having trouble selling heavy, expensive and hard to work on four-strokes.
I still remember the day I was forced into changing over to a four-stroke. I was riding for American Honda as an Amateur racer, they gave me the option of choosing between a two-stroke or four stroke. The year prior I remember being 5th gear tapped on my CR125 and having 250 four-strokes blow by. At the time I was angry! I thought having to race against bikes that had engines twice as large was blatant cheating, but I knew to be competitive, I had no choice but to choose the four-stroke. The decision left me nothing but headaches and withdrawals. I felt as if I just broke up with my girlfriend and traded her in for a more complicated upgraded version. As if girls aren't complicated enough!
Enough with my rant. My long lost love and I were reunited this weekend once again after a long separation. This weekend's race was a blast and had tons of competition. Bottom line? Tthe crisp sound of the two-strokes needs to make a comeback. Two-stokes, if you make a comeback I promise not to turn my back on you again.
FOX BRIGADE AMATEUR SPOTLIGHT: MICHAEL MOSIMAN
WHAT DO YOU GET WHEN YOU PUT HOT SAUCE AND A GOAT TOGETHER? RCU!
Ricky Carmichael University is proud to welcome former champion and teammate Ivan Tedesco to the 2013 Ricky Carmichael University faculty lineup. Tedesco will join the recently announced Grant Langston and returning instructors Jeff Emig, Jeff Stanton and Ricky Carmichael in teaching students at the Red Bud Campus Wednesday, July 3, as a part of the Independence weekend celebration of moto at the famous motocross facility.
As a three-time champion, Tedesco's addition to the RCU lineup now brings the championship total to 32 amongst this year's faculty. Led by 15-Time champ, RC, the accomplished panel of instructors bring years of racing and training expertise to the lesson plan, while also providing classroom-based knowledge to students. "The RCU setting is a great way to help riders of all levels who want to learn and improve their riding skills," Tedesco said. "Ricky has assembled a great group of instructors and I am proud to be a part of the team and can't wait to get back to Red Bud and work with the students."
Tedesco will join RCU's founding instructors Ricky Carmichael, Jeff Emig and Jeff Stanton, along with the school's newest faculty member Grant Langston, as an on track instructor. "Having all of our instructors in gear and riding with the students as part of the school experience really helps our students learn," Carmichael says. "I think it's great that we have this caliber of talent that can actively participate with the students and help them achieve their goals of becoming better riders and racers."
Additionally, students will learn everything from proper body positioning, to utilizing organized drills focusing on flat turns, improved braking techniques and even personalized one-on-one training from the instructors. The students are also given the opportunity to ask questions of their instructors in an exclusive question and answer period as part of the school.
RCU is an exclusive and unprecedented opportunity for motocross riders from the Midwest to learn from The-Greatest-of-All-Time and his accomplished faculty. For more information on RCU RedBud, or to register for the event, please visit www.rickycarmichaeluniversity.com. For more information on the rest of the motocross events being held at Red Bud over the 4th of July weekend, including the American Motocross pro race on Saturday check out http://www.redbudmx.com/
DUBYA USA GOES BIG
Press release: In order to accommodate the increasing demand for high performance wheels and components, Dubya USA has expanded to a larger facility at 2175 N. Batavia St. in Orange, California. The new location features an expanded workspace for Dubya’s wheel builders, an R&D shop, and a larger warehouse area to allow Dubya to keep more components in stock for quick turnaround on custom orders. We're very excited about the move," said Dubya co-founder Kristin Anderson. "We're growing as a company, and our new location will give us the space we need to provide our customers with the very best service possible"
Since its founding in 2011, Dubya has built a reputation as a leading name in high performance custom wheels. Each Dubya wheel set is constructed by hand, using only genuine components from top brands like Talon, Kite, D.I.D and Excel. Their reputation for quality construction and dependable performance makes them the choice of top competitors in Motocross, Supercross, Endurance racing, Supermoto and Freestyle around the world.
To learn more about Dubya and its products, visit their website at www.dubyausa.com. You can also download a copy of their catalog through the itunes app store by visiting https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/dubya/id501993969?mt=8
For the latest updates about Dubya’s products, sponsored riders, fan only promotions and giveaways, be sure to like Dubya on facebook at www.facebook.com/dubyausa, and follow user @dubyausa on twitter and instagram.