Yamaha Motor Canada Presents The Monday Gate Drop

Good day, and welcome to another edition of the Yamaha Motor Canada Monday Gate Drop. Last month, Yamaha began to release the 2021 YZ models to dealerships right across Canada and now it’s finally time for us to test them out. Next week, Yamaha has invited MXP out to Moto Park to test ride the new YZ line up. It’s going to be a great day as Yamaha and Moto Park are always great hosts.

The SXTour is back this weekend at Gopher Dunes. Photo by James Lissmore

Before we get to the Yamaha test on Monday, this coming weekend is the opening two rounds of the 2020 Rockstar Energy Triple Crown SXTour Series, as well as the final AMO OPC race on Sunday, all at Gopher Dunes. It’s going to be an exciting weekend of SX racing, as well as outdoor racing on Canada’s roughest track. The second to last round of the 2020 AMO Series was supposed to be yesterday at Walton Raceway, but sadly Mother Nature had other ideas and the race got rained out. So after the two SXTour rounds on Friday and Saturday evening this weekend, everyone will hit the main track at Gopher Dunes on Sunday to wrap-up this unique season of racing in Ontario.

Cole Thompson has been slowly getting his health back and he will back on the gate this weekend. Photo by James Lissimore

I’m looking forward to this weekend and the opening rounds of the SXTour as indoor racing (or at least racing on SX/AX style tracks) is always exciting. A few years ago Gopher Dunes held one of their annual Sand Storm events on their SX track and it ended being a really cool night of racing. They brought in lights and the racing was very entertaining. I expect much of the same this weekend as our pro riders will be looking to end the season off in style. I’m also hearing that Cole Thompson will be back for the SXTour as he’s been slowly getting his health sorted out. Having Cole back will be great for these final two rounds as he’s always fun to watch on a SX track. He’s also extremely fast on these types of tracks so look for him to challenge for Main Event wins each night. I’m not sure about you, but the thoughts of an impending Thompson/ Wright/ Goerke, Medaglia battle in the 450SX class this weekend has me very excited. It all gets underway on Friday as the amateur’s hit the track during the day and then pro racing begins at 4 pm. . Again there will be no fans allowed at Gopher Dunes, but all pro racing will air on Fox Sports Racing as well as the Two-Wheel Racing App. 

As we begin to wrap up the racing season in Ontario, out West it’s just getting started as both Whispering Pines Raceway and Wild Rose Cycle Park hosted races this weekend. The race in Kamloops went well and by all accounts the racing was excellent. In Calgary, the racing was going great on Saturday until the local health inspector showed up and didn’t like a few things that they saw. Unfortunately, the racing was shut down for Sunday and now a few health protocols have to be met before racing resumes next weekend. I’m guessing that since the Wild Rose track is located right in the city that the Covid rules are very strict. Anyway, everything is getting looked after and everyone should be back on the Wild Rose gate this Saturday.

Since the final round of the Triple Crown Series two weeks ago at Sand Del Lee, I’ve had a few days to let the results sink in. Other than wishing the series was longer, I think overall that the racing was great at all five rounds. We saw dominating performances from Jess Pettis and Dylan Wright, we saw some great battles behind Pettis and Wright, and we saw some of our young riders really rise to the occasion and perform well. As I said, it was an entertaining series and the MRC crew did a great job. I even enjoyed the three moto format and I thought the double-header events at Walton Raceway and Gopher Dunes were very received. Given what we were all faced with back in March with this Pandemic, even though all of the rounds of the Triple Crown MXTour were in one Province, it ended up being pretty darn good. Here are some of my favourite James Lissimore photos from the MXTour Series.

So as we hit the mid-way point of September, there’s definitely a lot going on this weekend. With the SXTour kicking off on Friday night, the final AMO race on Sunday at Gopher Dunes, and the continuation of the WRMA Fall Super Series in Calgary, there will be no lack of race action in Canada. Finally, did you see the latest episode of the Interlaced video series? It’s another great edit as it looks at the final two weekends of the MXTour at Sand Del Lee. Great job to the Interlaced crew and I hope they’re coming to Gopher Dunes this weekend.

I hope everyone has a great week and if you have any comments or questions please reach out to me at chris@mxpmag.com. Have a great week and thanks for reading. Make sure you follow @mxpmag on Instagram and @mxpmagazine on Twitter this weekend for posts and all of the updates from Gopher Dunes.