I have got myself involved in a new series – the MX Nationals. Once I witnessed the end of the British Masters (which was a very popular series) I knew that 2014 was going to be tough on the sport, with the loss of this series and the Pro Nationals reducing to just five rounds.
Pro riders and teams are the ones that suffer the most. They would have tried to earn some sort of living on thirteen rounds of bonuses, and we would have seen even more riders turn there back on trying to create a career in British Motocross. Behind the pros would be the forty or so privateer riders that need those high level intensity races that bring the best out of them and spur them on to the next level. We all know that your speed improves by riding with faster riders.
On an equal footing to the above you have to think about the entire industry. The knock on effect that this has on brands, distributors and independent shops could knock motocross back significantly, at a time when good people are really trying their upmost to push the sport forward.
Paul Irwin from Race FX and Neil Irwin from Culham MX Park were the guys that approached me to get involved in the MX Nationals, after sharing the same concerns as myself, but from a different side of the industry.
Personally I am hoping that the MX Nationals offers something different to what is out there at the moment. My four biggest issues are:
• Ridiculous ticket prices for spectators
• Lack of transparency and lack of consistently on entry to a championship
• Zero promotion or just a board on the last roundabout
• No one listens, its their way or no way
It was my passion that got me involved; hopefully I can make a difference. MX Vice started because I was a fed up fan who got bored of reading the same old rubbish (with no focus on youth and amateur), no behind the scenes information and reading fluffy PR stories that never opened up to the truth. I am a frustrated fan. Through the past four years, as I got more involved in the industry through MX Vice, I then started to have my eyes opened to how things either worked or did not work.
The Pro Support and Pro class will work at the MX Nationals, as you have eighty riders fighting for their right to be in the #Fastest40. The riders that don’t make it still run the same length classes and the same amount of races. So, they have a platform to perform on, plus they will be racing against thirty-nine other riders all trying to win as many points as possible along with prize money. Next round they get to start from scratch and try again to qualify for the #Fastest40!
What is the criterion to get in? Pay your registration and turn up. If you qualify in the top forty, you are through. If you qualify on a four-year-old bike and turn up in a Ford Sierra with a trailer – you are in. If you have no graphics and you are not on a team and you qualify in the top forty – you are in! I think you get the idea.
By making it affordable for family and spectators to come in, it will improve the atmosphere, and by promoting to schools, colleges, universities, businesses, radio, magazines we will reach a wider audience and hopefully bring new people into the sport. I actually saw more Castrol flags in 1986 with NRSC (Norton and Radstock Schoolboy Scramble club) on than some of the major championships in 2013.
This series is all about getting bums on bikes, getting people back watching and having an affordable day out watching the most exhilarating sport in the world. We want to give the clubman riders the chance to ride the best tracks that the UK has to offer, we would like to create a series where riders can evolve, improve and have fun. We want this series to help push British Motocross forward and as long as covers it’s costs, that is good with me and everyone else involved.
As much as we want to go all guns blazing this year we’ll have to work to a strategy to make sure we build a series that will span generations. So, as much as we would love to roll in with a new artic, and a 100ft video wall, it’s not going to happen. We have to make sure that start gates, timing systems, camping facilities and all the basics are covered first. We know that the glitz and glam will come, but only when the hard work has paid off.
What we will have is live tweets, videos and updates on race day, at every event. We will be working hard to make this the most talked about series in Europe in 2014.
Rather than type all of the above out I probably should have added these Facebook status updates which pretty much sum up everything we are trying to achieve! The idea with the Fastest 40 is about see how far you can push yourself and Luke and Richard below will be giving it everything in 2014.
So, if you’re up for something a little bit different like Luke and Richard above next year then registrations are now open to the public on a first come first serve basis (240 places). I am already looking forward to seeing you on the start line.
Get registered now http://www.mxnationals.co.uk/