For over 20 years, Future West Moto has been committed to promoting and providing a safe place for our riders and families to enjoy the sport of Motocross. Through our outdoor Motocross and Indoor Arenacross riding schools, we are bringing top athletes in the sport to share knowledge, riding tips and instruction to the younger levels and new riders. From the ‘New Kid Beginner’ class to top National level Pro’s, we strive to ensure that our track officials, first aid, and all Future West staff are knowledgeable, friendly and offer an all around good experience while maintaining a high standard of professionalism and competition. Future West Moto and its winning team are now partnered with MRC Racing as the main sanctioning body for Motocross in the province of British Columbia. With two rounds of a nine round provincial Championship now in the books, seeing well over 700 hundred entries in total, 2019 looks to be a breakthrough year for Future West Moto. This years MRC Racing, Western Canadian Amateur National June 27th-30th will also be hosted by Future West at the newly revamped Whispering Pines Motorsports Compound in Kamloops B.C.
Hello again friends, it gives me great pleasure to announce that this vagabond, keyboard crooner, is again back as a senior writer here at Motocross Performance Magazine. For those that may have missed it or are new to Canadian Moto, I took two years absence from my weekly pilot’s seat here, as well as unplugging my Canadian Moto Show to pen an autobiography. I do not want to discuss too much about that process at this time, but I assure you I will have a release date shortly. I will add that I cursed daily, those who persuaded me to put pen to paper; you know who you are. Even though you may still get a Christmas card, you will likely have to buy your own book. I am also still wrestling with Facebook to try and get my profile re-activated after a two year hiatus. The bottom line is that I am back where I belong writing about what I love and could not be happier. If you see this blog on Friday and like it, please pay it forward and share it on social media. Not for me, let’s think bigger picture; how about our great sport and common love of Motocross!
Over the past two years, I have maintained regular contact with my MXP colleagues, Editor and good friend Chris Pomeroy. The decision to come back to MXP was nothing spur of the moment at all. It is something that was talked about and I have always planned on being back with this winning team. That is once the arduous process of writing a 187,000 word manuscript was completed. Yes, I said 187,000 words. I will admit when the 2017 race season started, it was very difficult for me to be housebound instead of my happy place at the race track with a microphone in my hand. At this point, I still have no idea why I did this, other than the fact that I somehow wanted to ‘write it all down and make it real.’ Sounds easy and, like, fun? Sorry, none of those answers were correct in my case. Somehow in my heart I felt compelled to do this as if it was a calling of sorts.
If I have not reached out to you in some time, I do apologize. I assure you that will likely change soon if you are a mover and a shaker in the Motocross game. That, however, may only be a half truth as the evolution of my own personal journey in the sport has taught me that you are all important. Racers young and old, promoters, sponsors, family members, other media outlets and of course all of us ravenous race fans. At the end of the day, no matter how old or young, or whatever class we race, each and every one of us is vital to our sport’s rise or fall. I am back here because I do not doubt for one second that Motocross has saved my life more than once. Pretty powerful isn’t it?
So now let us talk some racing. I may have not been able to attend the amount of races over the last two seasons that my heart has desired, but that is about to change. I guess one could argue that after 9 months of hospitalization after my horrific crash in 2011 and then jumping right back into the Moto life fray of spending 20 plus weekends at the race track over the course of next 5 years took a toll. I am not going to lie, it did and I was burnt out big time. In the meantime, I have kept my finger as tightly pressed to the pulse of the Motocross world as physically possible. I have seen many things in my life, good and bad. In that regard I am not terminally unique, no one is exempt, we all have. But when I committed to come back and started calling out to those so called movers and shakers, my heart once again began dancing to the only music it knows how, MOTOCROSS! This sport, for folks like you and I, is ‘illicit.’ We live for it, now Let’s Go Racing.
With the AX Tour portion of the 2019 Rockstar Triple Crown Series winding down this weekend in Barrie, Ontario, what are some of the bigger surprises of this still very young season? KTM, Red Bull, Thor Factory Racing’s Cole Thompson is again back in the driver’s seat through three rounds of Arenacross action. I can only imagine how good it felt for Cole this past weekend in his hometown of Sarnia. I know first hand how cool it is to win an Arenacross race in a hockey rink. Way back in 1982, the first ever province of British Columbia Arenacross was held on Vancouver Island in Lake Cowichan, which is now home to the world’s biggest hockey stick. I was fortunate enough that night to win the one-off main event on my Kawasaki. I might add that the KX125 I rode on that night was the first ever production Motocross bike with a front disc brake. I am not sure if it was the illicit drug that is Motocross or those fumes that got me hooked on Arenacross. Thankfully, there are not as many two-strokes indoors in this racing era. I cannot believe I just said that but I am sure you get the gist.
Cole being back on top should surprise no one! Cole, who is now a journeyman craftsman in the phone booth discipline of this series, has put in the time and is full value for his results. As I write this, I am immediately flooded with the memory of what I saw on Supercross Live on Saturday night with Ricky Carmichael. In the segment that I saw, I thought Ricky was spot on for his comments. He eluded to the fact that he did not think he was the most gifted or talented rider in his era of his two wheeled combatants. He then proceeded to talk about focusing on what he knew that he could control. That being effort, dedication and commitment. Nice work Ricky, your legacy speaks volumes for itself, G.O.A.T.
Cole Thompson is not alone putting in the work. The new season and amount of riders lining up that can win on any given night has shown us that. With a rejuvenated former National champ in Matt Goerke now on the Pillars Monster Energy Kawasaki team and the new additions at Rockstar OTSFF Yamaha in Shawn Maffenbeier and Phil Nicoletti, among others, this title chase is wide open. What about Gopher Dunes Racing, Honda Canada’s Colton Facciotti? You would have to think that the now five-time champagne sipping Champ only has one goal in mind. We should also remind ourselves that he has a new teammate in number 800, Mike Alessi. The likeable Alessi has re-kindled his love for racing and will pose the biggest threat for top step donors since his arrival on Canadian soil in 2014. In my opinion, this deal coming together the way it did is awesome!
In the 250 class it puts a smile on my face to see Dylan Wright come out of the gate on the right foot. Right foot, left foot? Simply put, in my opinion anyway, Dylan has had some horrible luck out of the gate, pretty much the last four seasons! He certainly has the skill set and determination but let us not discount the hand in our sport that ‘Luck’ plays. Dylan has had tons of luck early but most of it has not been good. Will this be the year his fortunes reverse and he claims the 250 class’s 10K bag of gold? If it is, there will certainly be no asterisk beside it. I believe the 250 class in Canada in 2019 will be every bit as entertaining and challenging as the 450 class. Stirring into the 250cc melting pot the likes of 2018 National Champion Jess Pettis on his KTM, Red Bull, Thor Factory racing bike along with former two-time 250cc National Champ, now on the Pillars, Monster Energy Kawasaki, Tyler Medaglia, along with MX101’s Luke Renzland, Hayden Halstead and up and coming title hopeful Marco Cannella. All of those title hopefuls and tons more. Do yourself a favour race fans, when this series comes your way, be there. I am predicting that this series will best some of last year’s dramatic moments! How could it not? If the average bear had any idea of what each and every one of these riders lined up and their families have sacrificed along the way to get here, 100 or 10K might just be looking like a million!
The top level of our sport concludes at Walton Raceway on August 17th. That is also the week of the MRC Racing, 27th running of the Walton Raceway, Grand National Championship in Huron County. Again, in my opinion, every Motocrosser that can, needs to attend the fabled ‘Lee Family Farm’ for this great event. The Walton Amateur National Qualifiers have already begun. This past weekend here in Quesnel, B.C. Future West Moto had 349 entries at their first ANQ. I can speak first hand how good it feels to go to an event like Walton or the ECAN or the WCAN with a good gate seed. Or for that matter a gate pick at all. In a sport where confidence is such a big piece of the puzzle, having a great gate pick is always a good start.
About those movers and shakers that I have so far reached out to, how about starting this week here in the West with newly appointed Future West Moto race director Ryan Lockhart. I spoke with Ryan this week from his hot seat at Atlas Brace Technologies headquarters. He was happy to hear from me and concurred now that everyone in B.C. was under one sanctioning body, that there is a definite aura of excitement and anticipation at the races. Ryan, however, was quick to point out that even though many things are new, the common thread of high energy is coming from how pumped everyone is to see the race tracks pits so full beyond capacity. I have also reached out to the president of the home of this year’s Western Canadian Amateur National, Sage Deverell. I caught up with Sage this week and he was very happy to talk about the upcoming season. He was able to tell me that there were many plans in the works to provide riders and families with one of the best Western Canadian Amateur Nationals ever. He cited that the Future West Moto team would be making their way up there to begin work on what promises to be an event held at a very well manicured and accommodating National calibre race track. As we closed out our conversation, Sage beamed with pride as he spoke of his mandate of having the Whispering Pines Motorsports Compound as grassroots, affordable and accessible as possible. Okay friends the time has come to illuminate the Fasten Seat Belts signs and launch you off into what is hopefully a great weekend.