Rider: Axell Hodges
Bike: 2023 Kawasaki KX450
Event: Red Bull Imagination in Kansas
Photographer: Trevor Nelson
TWO-STROKE SPOTLIGHT: GILLES LAFON’S AF SUZUKI RM250
Editors Note: Please keep those submissions coming. If you would like your bike to be featured in the “Two-Stroke Spotlight,” please email me at email@example.com. All I ask is that you give a breakdown of your bike and a detailed description of the build. Please also send a few photos of your steed. By submitting your bike for the “Two-Stroke Spotlight,” you agree to release all ownership rights to the images and copy to MXA.
MXA MOTO TIP OF THE WEEK // OVER TRAINING BEFORE A RACE
MOTO TIP: Avoid over-training the week of race day. Don’t try to catch up before race day when it comes to fitness. Fitness takes time to build. So, if you’ve missed a day or two of training, don’t stress. It won’t ruin your race-day performance as long as you have been consistent in the weeks and months prior. Trying to play catch-up will overly fatigue and exhaust your body. If anything, you should be taking it easy so you are fully charged and ready to race.
HAVE YOU SEEN THE 2023 BETA 450 FOUR-STROKE? OF COURSE NOT BECAUSE THIS IS THE PRE-PRODUCTION BIKE
MISSED MXDN? DON’T WORRY, MXA HAS 20 WEB POSTS TO GIVE YOU MORE THAN YOU NEED TO KNOW
JOEY SAVATGY, SHANE MCELRATH, COLT NICHOLS, AND RYAN BREECE TO COMPETE FOR RICK WARE RACING IN FIM WORLD SUPERCROSS CHAMPIONSHIP
Press Release: Rick Ware Racing (RWR), the NASCAR mainstay boasting more than 1,000 starts in multiple premier auto racing series, recently announced its return to supercross as one of 10 exclusively licensed teams for the inaugural FIM World Supercross Championship (WSX). RWR’s entry into the WSX series is part of the team’s broader marketing initiative to expand into a global Motorsports presence.
“Joining the FIM World Supercross Championship has been a thrilling addition to our existing Motorsport programs,” said Rick Ware. “Not only does this give our organization an opportunity to cultivate partnerships globally; it also allows us to reach new fans all around the world.”
Rick Ware Racing currently competes in the NASCAR Cup Series, fielding two full-time entries. In addition, the team fields a single entry each in the NTT INDYCAR Series, the IMSA WeatherTech Sportscar Series and the NHRA Top Fuel category.
RWR’s World Supercross effort for the 2022 season will comprise of Joey Savatgy and Ryan Breece in the 450cc (WSX) class and Shane McElrath and Colt Nichols in the 250cc (SX2) class.
“I returned to supercross for one reason – to compete for a world championship, and I have every intention of winning,” said Ware. “These four riders know exactly what it takes to win at the highest level and each of them bring the skill, experience, and competitive drive we need to accomplish this goal. I couldn’t be more motivated and optimistic about our chances.”
Savatgy, a Georgia native hailing from Thomasville, has an established history in supercross and motocross dating back to 2013. His accomplishments include (10) career 250-class wins across the Monster Energy Supercross and Lucas Oil Motocross series, along with earning 450SX Rookie of the Year honors in 2019. He brings a wealth of experience, know-how and an overall winning pedigree to RWR that will play a critical role in the team’s efforts for the FIM-sanctioned World Supercross Championship.
“I’m grateful to Rick for having the confidence and belief in me to represent RWR for this inaugural pilot season for WSX, and I could not be more pumped about this chance to compete in new countries for an FIM-sanctioned World Championship,” said Savatgy. “There is enormous opportunity to expand our sport on a global level, and I’m proud to be a part of that in the WSX series.”
RWR added Coeur d’Alene, Idaho-native Ryan Breece, who brings just under a decade of professional experience. Launching into his AMA Pro career in 2015, Breece has stacked up two career Monster Energy AMA Supercross Championship 450SX Top 10’s and 27 career Monster Energy AMA Supercross Championship 450SX Top 20’s.
Breece said, “I am happy to announce I will be racing the FIM World Supercross Championship series for Rick Ware Racing in the WSX Class. I’m looking forward to competing in this new series, with competitors from all over the world. Can’t wait to see you on the gate!”
Hailing from Canton, North Carolina, Shane McElrath has been a professional rider and fierce 250cc competitor for nearly a decade, compiling eight wins in 250cc across the Monster Energy AMA Supercross and Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championships. He is a two-time 250SX West runner up in Monster Energy Supercross.
“I’m thrilled to take on this totally new and unique challenge with Rick and the team in the WSX series, fully motivated to put an FIM-sanctioned World Championship on my resume,” said McElrath. “The notion of building on the incredible success of supercross in the US and bringing our sport to new fans around the world is truly exciting and something I’m proud to be involved in.”
Rounding out the quartet of riders is Muskogee, Oklahoma’s, Colt Nichols. Nichols career in the AMA Pro category also began in 2015, where he’s collected four career wins and is the 2021 Monster Energy AMA Supercross Championship 250SX East Champion.
“I’m excited for the opportunity to compete in the SX2 class and try to chase a Championship,” said Nichols. “This year I haven’t had the opportunity to compete due to my injuries in January, so I’m thankful for Rick and the team for allowing me to get back on the bike. The global nature of this series, and the future plans for 2023, adds an opportunity to take our sport and expose it to new fans and I can’t wait to be a part of its growth.”
FORGOTTEN BIKES | JAMES STEWART’S 2006 FACTORY KAWASAKI KX450F
MXA TEAM TESTED: DUBYA CERAKOTE KTM WHEELSET
WHAT’S IT COST? $200.00 (Cerakote two hubs), $428.00 (two D.I.D. ST-X rims), $99.00/$95.00 (silver Bulldog spokes with spline drive or OEM aluminum nipples), $80.00 (lacing and truing).
CONTACT? www.dubyausa.com or (714) 279-0200.
WHAT STANDS OUT? Here’s a list of things that stand out with Dubya USA’s Cerakote wheelsets.
(1) Cerakote. What is Cerakote? Cerakote is a polymer-ceramic composite coating that can be applied to metals, plastics, polymers and wood. The coating enhances abrasion resistance, corrosion resistance, chemical resistance, impact strength and hardness. It is a spray-on compound that is applied in a sterile environment and baked in an oven between 250 and 300 degrees. There are two types of Cerakoting—H-grade and C-grade. Dubya uses H-grade, which is the most popular coating for firearms, knives, and other such items that require hardness and corrosion resistance. C-grade is generally used for high-heat applications. Cerakote creates a thinner layer than anodizing or powdercoating, which means that it doesn’t change the tolerances of the bearing pockets; however, Dubya bead-blasts the hubs, removes the bearings and seals, and tapes off the hub’s interior surfaces before applying the Cerakote. Additionally, unlike anodizing, which produces mixed results on cast aluminum compared to billet aluminum, Cerakote delivers a clean finish on cast hubs. It should be noted that Cerakote doesn’t have the bright-dip look of shiny anodizing. The colors are more muted.
(2) Colors. Dubya can take your stock hubs and Cerakote them in magnesium, white, charcoal, titanium or desert sand colors. There are actually 90 different Cerakote color options, but Dubya specializes in the four that most racers request.
(3) Rims. Dubya USA offers Takasago Excel rims in black, silver, blue, yellow and gold, or D.I.D rims in black or silver. The MXA wrecking crew selected D.I.D ST-X rims in black. This is D.I.D’s strongest rim. Dubya can build up your wheels in whatever combination of spokes, rims and nipples you choose. The Cerakoting is a service that is applied to your stock or aftermarket hubs to change their color.
(4) Spokes. MXA selected Bulldog spokes and traditional box-style nipples, but spline-drive nipples are available for the same price (although colored nipples do have an upcharge). Dubya USA uses full-length spokes that allow the threads to get a full purchase on the nipple. This reduces the odds of a nipple snapping at the stress riser caused by a short spoke.
(5) Performance. We would love to say that having our hubs Cerakoted added 2 horsepower and dropped our lap times by a full second, but that isn’t what Cerakoting does. Although there are corrosion, abrasion, chemical and UV-light advantages to Cerakoting your hubs, there are no pragmatic reasons for doing it. The primary motive is that it makes them look more “factory.”
WHAT’S THE SQUAWK? Every garage-queen project bike is outfitted with black rims. They look mean and aggressive, but they are really a very poor choice for a race bike. Why? Black rims are easily scratched by tire irons, salt-and-peppered by roost and look beat when silver rims still look new. So, why did we spec black rims? That’s the only color that the D.I.D ST-X rims come in. As for the Cerakote hub? No complaints.
MXA RATING: Cerakoting your front and rear hubs is several hundred dollars cheaper than buying Talon or Kite hubs, but when you are done getting your hubs coated, rimmed, laced and spoked, what you have in the end is a fancy stock hub.
MOTO // TRIVIA
THE OCTOBER 2022 ISSUE OF MXA IS OUT! SUBSCRIBE AND YOU WON’T MISS ANYTHING
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MXA QUOTE OF THE WEEK // JETT LAWRENCE ON THE MXDN
“It was really good. That second one I felt not too bad—not the greatest start, and had a little trouble with my goggles near the end, which was a bit of a bummer as my pace would’ve been faster. I’m happy to be on the box for my first year and happy I got the overall win in Open. I can’t wait for next year; I feel like we [Team Australia] have a really good team, and you’ll be seeing a lot of us in the next few years. Hopefully we do better and better each year.”
DAL SAGGIO COMES OUT WITH THEIR VERY OWN FORKS!
The newborn in Dal Soggio Race, the FSR-48 is the innovative and complete front fork, totally designed and created by the owner Gianni Dal Soggio. This front fork, made in ERGAL 7075T6 with hard anodizing and DLC treatment, has got inside the Sphere Kit hidraulic cartirdge. For sure the “top of the line” in Dal Soggio’s house, perfect for every type of riders and disciplines. High quality without compromises!!!
HOW IT’S DONE FSR-48 FRONT FORK: