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20160813092359_Scott Mallonee_Dean WIlson_Practice_Unadilla_2016Dean Wilson has have a bad two years with knee surgeries. He tried to prove that he was healed by racing at the end of the 2016 National and GP season, it wasn’t enough to convince team managers that he was healthy. What strategy should he take now?

You may think that unemployed riders, like Dean Wilson, Jake Weimer or the Stewart brothers, should take whatever kind of ride they can get. At least they would be racing and earning money. But this isn’t always the best path for a rider hoping to get the first factory fill-in ride to take, for a couple reasons: (1) The idea of waiting for someone to get hurt is kinda macabre. Because, in truth, deep down inside you are hoping that someone gets hurt—even though you can’t say that out loud. (2) If you got a ride with a privateer Kawasaki team, and started racing for them in Supercross, you probably wouldn’t get any offers from Team Yamaha to fill in—they’ll look for a Yamaha rider first. (3) If you signed any kind of contract with a privateer team, and then got a call offering you a factory fill-in ride, could you get out of the privateer contract without making enemies of the only team that volunteered to help you? There are ethics issued involved in squelching on a deal. (4) If you sit at home on Anaheim 1 night, you risk being out of sight, out of mind. When Malcolm Stewart decided not to race the AMA Nationals in 2016, it made several team managers think that he wasn’t serious — that he’d rather be out fishing — so sitting at home on A1 night, when you could be racing, sort of reinforces that belief. Weston Peick sat at home for several years because he couldn’t afford to do the Nationals —and he watched fill-in rides go to riders that he knew he could beat —but he wasn’t there when they looked around the pits to find someone. It helps to be there, in person, walking, talking, breathing — because sometimes those are the only criteria that a desperate team has. (5) Most teams have sponsorship deals that require them to field a full team of riders (if the contract says 3 riders, that means 3 riders)…and if the team loses a man, they are expected to find a replacement for the injured man, or start giving money back to the sponsor in huge chunks for every week that the team isn’t up to the contracted size. (6) It’s no secret that riders on factory teams get more lucrative sponsorship deals for everything from helmets to goggles to toothpaste than privateers. Why? Because they are more visible, not just at the races, but in advertising, promotion, magazine coverage and dealer events. The longer a potential fill-in rider can wait before securing his 2017 sponsorships, the better chance he has of making more money if he gets a fill-in ride (and sponsors come knocking). Plus, some fill-in rides require you to wear what the team says you have to wear—which means you would have to talk your way out of another contract before you could take the fill-in deal. (7) Beggars can’t be choosers. What if some rider at Suzuki gets hurt and you get that fill-in ride, only to have someone at KTM get hurt the next week…and that’s really where you wanted to be. Sorry Charlie. If you skip taking a ride you don’t prefer, you may be passing up the only fill-in ride to come around for a long time. It’s a tough life being a fill-in rider, but its even tougher being on the waiting list to become a fill-in rider.

photoftheweekWith most of the country locked in a bitter cold snap, we wanted to elicit some sympathy for SoCal by showing this shot of Terry Varner powering through a thunderstorm. It’s an awesome photo, except for one thing — the water is coming from Glen Helen’s fire hose system (as you can probably tell by the sunshine in the background).

The race is this Sunday. For more info go to www.glenhelen.com

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KURT CASELLI RIDE DAY
Dec.10 …………………………Glen Helen, CA

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2016 REM MOTOCROSS
Dec. 10………………………..Glen Helen, CA
Dec. 17…………………………Glen Helen, CA

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2017 HUSQVARNA WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP
March 5-6…………………….Cahuilla Creek, Anza, CA

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2017 MTA WORLD TWO-STROKE CHAMPIONSHIP

April 15……………………….Glen Helen, CA

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charnoneaughFormer Geico Honda rider Tristan Charboneau will race in the USA and Europe in 2017.

Bud Racing, the French team that races in the USA, France and the EMX series in Europe, has finalized its 2017 teams. The youngest rider on the team, 14-year-old Brian Moreau, will race the 125cc EMX Championship. Moreau was runner-up in the 2015 World Junior 85cc Championship. American Tristan Charboneau will race the 250 West series. Then, Charboneau and Michigan’s Marshal Weltin will fly to Europe to race EMX 250 series and the French Elite 250 series. Finn Kim Savaste had two 125 EMX second place finishes last year, but crashed at the MXDN while racing for the Finnish National team. He will miss the start of the 250EMX series, but will join it in progress.

maximedesprybudMaxime Desprey.

Maxime Desprey will race the French Elite 450 series for Bud Racing, but will race the 450 MXGPs for the Dutch Gebbens Team. Additionally, Ryan Surratt, who had been part of the team originally, will not be on the team in 2017.

BUD RACING 2017 TEAM RIDERS
Tristan Charboneau…250 West, EMX250, French Elite 250
Marshal Weltin……….EMX250, French Elite 250
Brian Moreau………….EMX125 , French Elite 250
Kim Savaste……………EMX250
Maxime Desprey…….French Elite 450

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timbersledsnowbikeA Timbersled in the trees.

The AMA will begin sanctioning snow bike racing—not snowmobiles, but snow bikes. The inaugural series sanctioned by the AMA will be called the AMA Championship Snow Bike Series.” The first round of the AMA Championship Snow Bike Series will be held at ERX Motorpark near Minneapolis, Minnesota, on December 18. The snow bikes, which swap out wheels and knobby tires for a ski up front for steering and a high-performance snowmobile-style track in the rear for traction, will compete on a motocross-inspired half-mile track of jumps, banks, right and left hand turns, and whoops and dips.

“The AMA is excited to be getting involved in the new and innovative sport of snow bike racing,” said AMA Motocross Manager Kip Bigelow. “We have been watching it with interest for several years and decided that it makes sense to embrace this interesting new competition segment.” For more information about the Dec. 18 event and the AMA Championship Snow Bike Series, contact Ron Dillon at (208) 573-4255, or visit www.amachampionshipsnowbikeseries.com.

2017 AMA SNOW BIKE CHAMPIONSHIP
Dec. 18……………………….Minneapolis, MN
Jan. 14……………………….Morgan, UT
Jan. 28……………………….McCall, ID
Feb. 11……………………….Detroit Lakes, MN
Feb. 19……………………….Denmark, WI
Mar. 12……………………….W. Yellowstone, MT
Mar. 25……………………….TBA
April 8…………………………Boise, ID
May 13……………………….TBA

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jan2017cover002Interested in getting a new bike this year? The January 2017 issue of MXA is on the news stands now and includes the long-awaited 2017 MXA 250 Shootout. You should be reading MXA, and if you subscribe now you get a $25 gift certificate from Rocky Mountain ATV/MC which more than pays for your subscription.

Do you subscribe to MXA? You should. We know that you think that print magazines are dead and that the internet will fill the void, but most of the stuff in the current issue of MXA won’t appear on the web for several months, if at all. Luckily, you can get all of MXA on your iPhone, iPad, Kindle or Android by going to the Apple Store, Amazon or Google Play. Better yet get the Digital desktop version at https://hi-torque.com/product/motocross-action-digital-edition/ for $9.99 a year.

The MXA test riders prefer the print version and not just because it is delivered by a uniformed employee of the U.S. Government, but because right now you can get 12 issues for $15.95 and a free $25 Gift Card from Rocky Mountain ATV/MC. That means that there is a profit to be made in this deal for you. For the Print magazine go to: https://hi-torque.com/product/motocross-action/

Jeremy-Mcgrath-Anaheim-1-2000_0002With 72 wins, Jeremy is 22 wins ahead of his closest competitor. Only James Stewart, Chad Reed and Ryan Dungey are still chasing SuperMac.

1. Jeremy McGrath…72
2. James Stewart…50
3. Ricky Carmichael…48
4. Chad Reed…44
5. Ryan Villopoto…41
6. Ryan Dungey…31
7. Ricky Johnson…28
8. Bob Hannah…27
9. Jeff Ward…20
10. Damon Bradshaw…19
11. Kevin Windham…18
12. Jeff Stanton…17
13. Mark Barnett…17
14. Jean-Michel Bayle…16

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MXA has considerable experience with the Switch Hauler from All-Jacked-Up Inc. It is the strongest, most durable, bumper carrier on the planet. Not only does it come with footpeg restraints, strap eyelets and the ability to carry a 300-pound load, the Switch Hauler is a modular package, that breaks down to a nice, easy to store package when you get home.  After all, who has room in their garage for a big bulky ramp or awkwardly configured contraption that doesn’t fit anywhere? With the Switch Hauler you’re not limited to the trailer speed limit, a few lanes on the road, prohibited from the carpool lane and it doesn’t need a ramp because it lowers itself down to bike height. If you don’t want to pull a trailer, mount a Switch Hauler on the back and take what you need to where you’re going.

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This Switch Hauler comes in three drop heights: a straight tongue design with no drop, 2 inches of drop and 3-1/4-inches of drop to insure that it works with every size truck and Class III or better receiver. The modular design means that the Switch hauler is amazingly simple to install right out of the box. The retail price varies from $449.00 to $479.00. For more info go to (760) 500-3397 or www.alljackedupinc.com.

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BENTOWNLEY400
Dec. 9…Ben Townley 1984
Dec. 10…Earl May
Dec. 11…Darrell Shultz

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Dec. 11…Lance Smail 1970
Dec. 11…Keith S. Johnson 1970
Dec. 11…Wally Deicken 1937

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Dec. 12…Marty Moates 1956

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Dec. 13…Ron Lechien 1966
Dec. 13…Brian Fleck
Dec. 13…Mike Buckley

BBBLOSE
Dec. 13…Chris Blose 1987
Dec. 14…Bill Butcher
Dec. 15…Doug DeHaan

KTMLINKHIresThe Pro Circuit KTM linkage is not just a link arm, but a complete bell crank system that changes the rising rate.

Press release: The new Pro Circuit linkage system for your new model KTM or Husqvarna brings the bike’s handling performance to an entirely new level. The  2016 and 2017 models come equipped with a redesigned OEM linkage system that causes the bike to have a feeling that is much too harsh and stagnant, whereas the preceding bike models had an OEM linkage system providing an unwanted lazy and soft feeling. Both of these OEM designs made it difficult to reach optimal handling performance and forced the use of shock springs on both extremes of the spectrum in order to compensate. The new Pro Circuit linkage system utilizes some of the mechanical advantages of both designs, along with additional Pro Circuit research and testing, to allow for the use of a more true-to-weight spring rate and to reach the ultimate sweet spot in handling for your new model KTM or Husqvarna. Complete linkage (bell crank and link arm) $349.95. Go to www.procircuit.com for more info.

mecumsuzukiwolsinkusgpxAt the South Point Hotel on January 25-28, Mecum Auction House will be selling Gerrit Wolsink’s 1977 United States 500cc Motocross Grand Prix winning Suzuki RM370. For more info on all of the motorcycles in the auction click here.

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RC16motogpengine1KTM’s four-cylinder MotoGP engine. Currently in testing for the 2017 MotoGP season.

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KTM’s 250cc, single-cylinder Moto3 road race engine. It is one of the fastest engines in the class.

KTM65_SX_EngineKTM’s 65cc two-stroke engine from the 2016 KTM 65SX. It bears a resemblance to the Moto3 engine—except in displacement, size, type, use, horsepower and cost.

KTM450Rally-Motor_04KTM’s single-cylinder 450cc Rally engine with air intake attached.

ktm-450-smrKTM’s V-twin, 450cc Supermoto engine.

HondaNeowingthreewheeler1Just what the world has been waiting for — a three-wheeled, shaft-drive, four-cylinder, boxer-engine, leaner with both internal combustion and electric power. This is the Honda Neowing concept.

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anaheim3copyNone of these schedules are set in stone; check before setting off on a journey.

2017 AMA SUPERCROSS CHAMPIONSHIP
Jan. 7…………………………Anaheim, CA
Jan. 14………………………San Diego, CA
Jan. 21………………………Anaheim, CA
Jan. 28………………………Glendale, AZ
Feb. 4……………………….Oakland, CA
Feb. 11………………………Arlington, TX
Feb. 18………………………Minneapolis, MN
Feb. 25………………………Atlanta, GA
Mar. 4………………………Toronto, ON
Mar. 11………………………Daytona, FL
Mar. 18………………………Indianapolis, IN
Mar. 25………………………Detroit, MI
Apr. 1…………………………St. Louis, MO
Apr. 8………………………..Seattle, WA
Apr 22……………………….Salt Lake City, UT

2017 AMA NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP
May 20……………………Hangtown, CA
May 27.…………………..Glen Helen, CA
June 3..………………….Thunder Valley, CO
June 17..…………………Mt Morris, PA
June 24.………………….Muddy Creek, TN
July 1.…………………….Red Bud, MI
July 8..……………………Southwick, MA​
July 22.…………………..Millville, MN​
July 29.…………………..Washougal, WA
Aug. 12..………………….Unadilla, NY​
Aug. 19..………………….Budds Creek, MD​
Aug. 26.…………………..Crawfordsville, IN

2017 FIM MOTOCROSS WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP
Feb. 25…………………….Qatar (Saturday)
Mar. 5………………………Indonesia
Mar. 19…………………….Argentina
Apr. 2………………………Mexico
Apr. 16……………………..Italy
Apr. 23…………………….Holland
May 7………………………Latvia
May 21…………………….Germany
May 28…………………….France
June 11…………………….Russia
June 25……………………Italy
July 2……………………….Portugal
July 9……………………….San Marino (Cancelled)
July 23……………………..Czech Republic
Aug. 6……………………..Belgium
Aug. 13…………………….Switzerland
Aug. 20…………………….Sweden
Sept. 3………………………USA (Monday)
Sept. 10……………………Holland
Sept. 17…………………….France

2017 MOTOCROSS DES NATIONS
October 1…………………..Matterley Basin, Great Britain

2017 SMX RIDERS & MANUFACTURERS CUP
October 7………………….Gelsenkirchen, Germany

2017 AMSOIL ARENACROSS CHAMPIONSHIP
Jan. 7-8…………………….Cincinnati, OH
Jan. 13-15…………………Grand Rapids, MI
Jan. 20-22…………………Baltimore, MD
Jan. 28-29…………………Nashville, TN.
Feb. 4-5…………………….Louisville, KY
Feb. 18-19…………………Kansas City, MO
Feb.y 25-26……………….Tampa, FL
Mar. 3-5…………………….Southaven, MS
Mar. 11-12…………………New Orleans, LA
Mar. 18-19…………………Portland, OR
Mar. 24-26…………………Reno, NV
April 1-2…………………….Sacramento, CA
April 21-23…………………Denver, CO
May 5-7…………………….Las Vegas, NV

2017 WORLD OFF ROAD CHAMPIONSHIP (WORCS)
Jan. 6-8…………………….Taft, CA
Jan. 27-29…………………Primm, NV
Feb. 17-19………………….TBA
Mar. 10-12…………………Lake Havasu, AZ
Apr. 1-2…………………….Las Vegas, NV
Apr. 21-23…………………Hurricane, UT
May. 19-21…………………Cedar City, UT
Jun. 9-11…………………..Adelanto, CA
Sept. 8-10…………………Glen Helen, CA
Oct 13-15…………………..TBA

2017 ITALIAN NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP
Jan. 29…………..………..Riola Sardo.
Feb. 5………………………Malagrotta.
Feb.12………………..……Ottobiano

2017 MAXXIS BRITISH NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP
Mar. 12……………………Culham
Apr. 9………………………Lyng
Apr. 30…………………….Canada Heights
May 14……………………Hawkstone Park
June 18……………………Desertmartin
July 16…………………….Blaxhall
July 30…………………….Preston Docks
Aug 27……………………..Foxhill

2017 BELGIAN NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP
Mar. 12……………………Moerbeke-Waas
Mar. 26……………………Kruishoutem
Apr. 2……………………..Genk
Apr 10…………………….Mons
Apr. 18……………………Axel
Apr. 30……………………Wuustwezel
June 11…………………..Comines
June 18………………….Genk
July 22……………………Axel
July 23…………………..Hasselt
July 30…………………..Gooik
Aug. 15…………………..Balen
Aug. 20………………….Wachtebeke
Aug. 27………………….Orp le Grand

2017 DUTCH NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP
Mar. 26…………………..Oss
Apr. 9th…………………..Harfsen
May 14……………………Emmen
July15-16t………………..Lichtenvoorde

2017 ADAC GERMAN MASTERS CHAMPIONSHIP
Apr. 9……………………….Muhlberg
Apr. 30…………………….Jauer
May 14…………………….Molln
June 18……………………Bielstein
July 16…………………….Tensfeld
Aug. 27……………………Gaildorf
Sept. 24…………………..Holzgerlingen

2017 AUSTRALIAN NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP
April 1-2…………………….Wonthaggi, Victoria
April 23…………………..Appin, New South Wales
May 7……………………..Connondale, Queensland
May 21……………………Horsham, Victoria
May 28……………………Murray Bridge, South Australia
July 2……………………..Nowra, New South Wales
July 16……………………Shepparton, Victoria
July 30……………………Port Macquarie, New South Wales
Aug. 13…………………..TBA, Queensland
Aug. 19-20………………Coolum, Queensland

2017 AUSTRALIAN SUPERCROSS CHAMPIONSHIP
Sept. 9…………………..Queensland
Sept. 23…………………Queensland
Oct. 14…………………..TBA
Oct. 26…………………..South Australia
Nov. 4…………………….Victoria
Nov. 11-12……………..New South Wales

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Photos: Daryl Ecklund, Brian Converse, Massimo Zanzani, Scott Malonee, Debbi Tamietti, Tom White, Dan Alamangos, John Basher, Yamaha, MXA, Honda