Yamaha Motor Canada Presents The Monday Gate Drop

Never mind social distancing, we’re going to be locked down again.

As I mentioned, most Regions across Canada are now either in lockdown or in some sort of restrictions. In Ontario, the news was leaked yesterday that as of Christmas Eve the entire Province will be locked down. Seeing as it’s the holiday season and people are more likely to jump in the car and travel around, this comes as no surprise. Also, seeing that lockdowns appear to be the only way that our Governments can come up with for dealing with a surge in Covid-19 cases, this is incredibly frustrating news for everyone. We shall wait and see what the rules of this lockdown are and how it will affect small restaurants, arenas, and parks. This will definitely a different Christmas than we’ve ever experienced before.

Let’s move now to some good news and the future plans of motocross in Canada for 2021. AMO Racing released their Ontario schedule for next year and it looks pretty good. Even with the pandemic this past season, AMO pulled off a solid race series that was well organized and extremely well attended by riders. In fact, the SWO Region hasn’t seen consistent entry numbers like that since the mid-2000s. It was a great season of racing and 2021 should be even better. During difficult times like we’re seeing right now, it’s always exciting to see the race schedule for the following year. It gives us something to look forward to as we get into the heart of winter.

Also last week, the MMIC released their November sales numbers and incredibly, people are still buying off-road motorcycles left and right. Thankfully for our industry, there is still a strong movement to buy anything and everything that can be used for outdoor leisure. As you can see in this photo, sales are up in almost every category of motorcycles in Canada and there doesn’t appear to be any end in sight. The only thing that may slow down sales is that dealers will simply run out of inventory, in a lot of dealerships they already have. As the MMIC press release stated, “While Covid-19 is contagious, so is getting outdoors and riding motorcycles.”

In Monster Energy Supercross news, the official 2021 schedule is now final. At the beginning of last week the series announced that they had to drop the rounds in Glendale, AZ as State Farm Stadium won’t allow any fans inside to watch events. So, Feld was forced to change dates and venue and the Atlanta Motor Speedway will now host three rounds as well as the stadium in Orlando. I’m not sure why they couldn’t use Mercedes Stadium in Atlanta as the NFL has been playing there with limited fans? Either way, it’s great the 2021 series is headed to the Atlanta market and those rounds should be fun to watch. Another change announced last week was that the opening rounds in Houston and Indianapolis would now be 250 West Series rounds instead of the 250 East Series rounds that were on the original schedule. However, since the original schedule had been out for a few weeks, a lot of the 250 East riders had already begun preparing for Houston, while the 250 West Series riders had not. So, after some more consideration, the schedule was changed again and Houston and Indianapolis are back to being 250 East Series rounds and the opening 250 West Series round will not be until February 13th in Orlando.

As you know, Jess Pettis is still down at the Baker’s Factory preparing for the opening round in Houston. So far his training has been going great and each day he’s feeling more and more comfortable on the technical SX tracks at the Baker’s Factory. In case you missed reading it last week, here is my latest Jess Pettis report: KTM Canada Presents The Jess Pettis Report- On The Grind – Motocross Performance Magazine (mxpmag.com)

One story that didn’t get into this most recent interview with Jess was one about how his knee is doing. You may recall that after his 250MX Triple Crown Championship this summer, Pettis and his team released the news that during one of the muddy motos at Walton Raceway, Jess had once again injured his rebuilt knee. At the time Jess went and got an MRI that confirmed that he had not only injured his ACL again but that he had also torn his Meniscus. This was obviously devastating news for Jess, but as we saw, he still soldiered on and won his second 250MX Championship. Pretty amazing when you think about how much pain he must have been in during those final MXTour rounds.

Anyway, once the series concluded Jess consulted his doctors and together they decided to leave his injured ACL alone and focus on surgically repairing his Meniscus. The thinking was that with him having an opportunity to race in the Monster Energy Supercross Series in early 2021, he could have Meniscus surgery in October and still be ready to race in the early part of the year. So during September and the early part of October Jess spent his time training and building the strength up in his injured knee so that his recovery would be that much quicker. Well, when the surgeon began operating he found that there was no injury to Jess’s Meniscus. Apparently, when Jess got the MRI back in the summer the technician incorrectly thought that there was an injury to his Meniscus. So when Jess woke up from his surgery the doctor said that other than cleaning up around his ACL, there ended up being no reason for the surgery. Jess wasn’t happy and for the following few weeks he was rather sore from being operated on, but it all ended up working out and right now his knee feels great. I will once again be chatting with Jess tonight to see how his week of training has gone.

Well, that is it for me this week. I hope everyone has a great week and a very Merry Christmas! I will also be reaching out to Ryan Lockhart one more time before Christmas so if anyone has some more questions, Newf will be happy to answer them. Thank you for reading and once again, Merry Christmas, and please stay safe and healthy.