Good day and welcome to the Honda Canada Racing supported Monday Gate Drop. Now that October is upon us and in most places in this great country we’re now entering the final month of our outdoor riding season. Now is the time to get out on a Honda and do some riding before the cold weather comes. Honda Canada has a complete line of off-road motorcycles for the entire family and their ready to ride at your local Honda dealership.
Before I get to the news from the past weekend in England, I first want to thank everyone for coming out to Track 15 in Southwestern Ontario for the Jeff Hauck ride day. I was sadly not able to attend as my son had his first hockey game of the season, however, by all accounts the day was very well attended and every rider had a great time. Unfortunately, injuries are part of our sport and that will never change but whenever really bad ones like this happen, it’s truly amazing how our moto community can come together and support one another. We at MXP Magazine want to wish Jeff and his family all the best!
Now, I was not in England this past weekend so it’s hard for me to comment completely on what went on yesterday, but I can say with some accuracy that the 2017 MXON looked like one heck of a difficult race. As forecasted all week long, the weather played a big role in yesterday’s racing as it rained on and off all day long. As every racer knows, when adverse weather conditions take over an event anything can happen. Sometimes it works in your favour and sometimes it doesn’t. In yesterday’s race, Team Canada ended up with a 13th place overall finish while competing against the best riders in the world. With six moto scores all outside of the top 15, I’m not sure even how Team Canada finished so high. With Tyler Medaglia’s final moto 16th being the team’s top finish, it was definitely a tough day for our boys. One thing is for sure though, Team Canada never gave up all day long and despite bad starts, crashes, and a little bad luck, to finish so close to the top ten is pretty impressive in my opinion. When you look at the awful day Team USA had in England (they were only able to finish in 9th overall), our finish doesn’t look so bad.
If one thing came out of yesterday it’s that France has solidified itself as the world motocross powerhouse, as they were able to win again without one of their best riders Marvin Musquin on the team. With such a long and exhausting race season in the USA, which demands at least one full month of recovery for it’s stars, travelling overseas to the MXON doesn’t appear to be a priority right now for the top American riders. With the exception of Zach Osborne who I thought was one of the top performers of the day in England, the American riders never were able to get their heads above water. The good news is that no one was injured and it was also announced that the 2018 MXON is headed to Red Bud next fall. Perhaps with this event being held at this all-American facility for the first time ever, the USA riders will once again rise to the occasion and show the world that they still can win. I feel like an American team of Eli Tomac, Zach Osborne and maybe a healthy Austin Forkner could dominate this event on the famous Red Bud track a year from now. I also feel like this event, on this track will be the largest motocross event ever on USA soil. I know that I will be there, and I hope you will be there as well!
So the 2017 MXON is now history and everyone is beginning their long journey home from England. Other than the upcoming Monster Energy Cup in Las Vegas, which to my knowledge will only have one Canadian (KJSC rider Ben Kongmany) lining up, the off-season is now officially upon us. In the USA with contracts expiring on Oct 1st, some new signings have now begun to come out of the woodwork. Martin Davalos is headed to the Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki Team for another run at a 250SX championship. Also, one of yesterday’s MXON stars Hunter Lawrence of Australia has signed with the Geico Honda Team for 250SX. This is always a very interesting time of the year as unsigned riders try to find a chair before the music stops.
One rider who has yet to confirm exactly what he’s doing is Chad Reed. For the past few weeks he’s posted numerous times on Social Media that he’s been riding both a Honda, as well as a KTM. With no plans to race the Monster Cup in two weeks, I’m assuming that he might not a Monster Energy athlete anymore. He even posted a video last week of him riding his refurbished Yamaha YZ250 two-stroke on one of his grown over SX tracks. So it appears like he’s only been riding his outdoor track while he test rides these two brands. There has been talk of him already signed with the Red Bull KTM Team as their third rider for SX next year. This would make sense as to why he’s not with Monster Energy anymore, but why the Honda in his shop? There is also talk of him doing his own team again and racing KTM’s for 2018, but if Chad takes this route again who would his main sponsor be? Two things are certain, one is that I’m sure we’ll all know very soon. And two, with his home race in Australia coming up in a month’s time, he’d better get something going pretty quick and begin his 2018 preparation. As you recall last year, Chad went to Australia in tip top shape and dominated the race in front of his family and friends. Stay tune for what happens with Chad Reed in the near future.
Well, that is it for me this week. I hope everyone has a great weekend and a very Happy Thanksgiving. If you’re an old guy and you live in Ontario, Moto Park is holding their first ever War of Vet race this coming Saturday. There are A and B divisions for each age class, as well as numerous support classes. It should be a fun day at Moto Park, hopefully Mother Nature is kind to us old guys. Have a great week and enjoy your turkey this weekend! Finally, thanks to Kourtney Lloyd and Team Canada for providing so much excitement this past week and weekend as they battled hard over in wet England.