Connect with us
       

Pro Motocross

Thomas on: Outdoors

Jason Thomas on what could be next.

Published

on

With the news of another delay to the start of Lucas Oil Pro Motocross, the American paddock exhaled deeply. Preparations had been ramping up quickly with Indiana’s Ironman event scheduled for July 18. Testing was in full swing, flights were booked, and fans had only two more weekends to suffer through without their favorite sport. The question most often repeated in the last 24 hours is, “Now what?”

My personal belief is that we will get somewhere in the range of six to eight races, and possibly even multiple events at the same venue. I don’t think we will see the same scenario as Monster Energy Supercross, where every race is held at the same venue, because this series depends on fan attendance for revenue. That fan revenue would be completely exhausted in a multi-event run in the same area. Could the local economies handle two events over a two-month span?  I think that’s more reasonable.

Enlarge

Site-Eli-Tomac

Monster Energy/Octopi

The main ingredient for the summer’s success is state regulation on how to handle the COVID-19 resurgence. America’s state governors are making the rules on public gatherings. Things were progressing nicely in early June; states were reopening, and normalcy was on the horizon. With cases spiking in the last two weeks, that sentiment has faded a touch. States have pulled back on the optimism, souring the enthusiasm that was gaining steam nationwide. The next few weeks will be key. If cases curtail back down, things will progress very quickly towards another reopening. If cases continue to rise, fear will reign. America is a rollercoaster of emotion at the moment. The daily news is driving opinion, both good and bad.

As for how this schedule plays out, I expect the series to aim for a mid-to-late August start. That timeframe keeps the series expiration in October with six to eight rounds. The bigger question will be where these races can actually execute. A confirmed “yes” today can easily be a “no” tomorrow. That’s been the main problem thus far. The only constant has been a change in policy.

It’s difficult to place any blame as states are under immense pressure to contain this COVID-19 spread. Public opinion is all over the map. Some believe that this is inevitable, and we should face it head on. Others would prefer to go into full lockdown until a vaccine or cure is found. The majority, though, favor a measured approach. The economy (moto economy as well) is hanging by a thread after a multi-month shutdown. I don’t think another lockdown is possible, period. The catastrophic economic impact of that would be insurmountable. A complete and unabashed reopening seems ill-advised, though, too. A carefully executed balance is the only way to financially survive but also not risk a further outbreak.

Enlarge

Site-Dylan-Ferrandis

Monster Energy/Octopi

So, where does that leave moto? I like our chances of racing this summer. I think the biggest factor is lowering the fear factor. That fear factor is data driven but also narrated by the nationwide news. If cases slow, people’s nerves will calm, and the state pressure will lessen too. Look for states with the most aggressive governors to host these races. Florida, Texas, Indiana, Georgia, and Texas all come to mind as possible landing spots. Those states are all extremely hot during August and September, though. I am sweating just thinking about it.

Look for schedule news to be slow for now. The next few weeks will be a waiting game and, more importantly, a hope game. There will likely be 1000 scenarios proposed between now and August. Lucas Oil Pro Motocross will be contacting state legislators daily, getting updates and taking the temperature of the situation. I would expect several different plans to be prepared, each ready to be enacted given both positive and negative news. The most optimistic plan would be eight to 11 rounds spanning the nation, much like the original plan was in early June. A more pessimistic plan would be six rounds between two to three tracks. Let’s hope that we can get back to that optimistic sentiment in the next couple of weeks.

Words: Jason Thomas | Lead Image: Monster Energy/Octopi

Continue Reading

British MX Nationals

Thank you. It’s been a hell of a ride.

Published

on

Since buying back MX Vice in November 2019, it has been challenging. One of those crystal balls would have been handy for navigating some problematic situations. Who would have thought COVID-19 would be a thing?

Those who follow MX Vice know we started from nothing but an idea. A fan who loved the sport created a Facebook page, website, and social media presence that would become disruptive. It has made numerous talented media people who were allowed to run with it for over thirteen years. Being in the UK/Europe has always been difficult; I’ve always believed that if we were a US media company, we would have been embraced and appreciated for our work ethic and the content we produce. We always cast one eye over the US in Europe, and you can’t blame the top European riders for doing the same.

MX Vice has always tried to give people a voice, especially the riders who are not in the limelight and the teams that put so much into the sport. We love people’s passion and sacrifice to improve and challenge themselves. That, for me, was the natural pull, not the money but the passion and sacrifice. We all know we would not be in motocross if it were about the money. I always considered MX Vice the media version of Steve Dixon’s team in MXGP (which I have a huge amount of respect for), where we have always tried to challenge without the factory budgets.

We knew it would be tough this year with so many businesses and brands cutting marketing budgets and reducing costs; this was never going to be good for us. We have just had two incredible months of stats, with January and February bringing in over 1 million people to the website, which is quite bittersweet. As much as the funds are low, so is my energy and health. COVID impacted me more than I could ever envisaged. My health has deteriorated ever since I caught COVID; my immune system is not in a great place, and when I try and work to the standard I set myself, my body breaks on me, and it takes me days to recover. Ed Stratmann has been a revelation since he took the editorial reigns and has pushed MX Vice to new heights, which is incredible given the lack of resources he has had to work with and support from myself. I have been missing from the podcast show to reduce my time, as I am now self-employed and working for two companies to pay the bills.

Every journey ends, and that’s not what we want. Over the past 13 years, we have given it everything, leaving no stone unturned. We’re proud of how we have disrupted, challenged decisions, held organisations accountable, and illuminated incredible stories.

We will have an auction for signed shirts donated by riders, podcast equipment, and memorabilia to pay off the invoices of some contributors. If, however, you want to see MX Vice continue, you can donate here: https://ko-fi.com/mxvice or purchase a shirt or memorabilia. If we meet our target of £25,000, which is currently outstanding to run this year, then Ed and I will continue. However, we fully expect this won’t happen due to the large sum required.

It’s hard out there at the moment. Take care of your health and family, and never lose your passion for the most fantastic sport in the world.

Burf.

Continue Reading

Fox Feature

FOX Unveils Exciting New MX24 Mainline Refresh Graphics

Check it out.

Published

on

All eyes on you. Keep the conversation going with all-new MX24 graphics that looks to the future of racewear. 360 Volatile, 180 Interfere, this is racewear designed to elevate and amplify the next generation and those changing the sport, forever.

Visit the Fox Europe Website for more information.

MEDIA


Continue Reading

Monster Energy Supercross

Trio of Speedways Set to Host Second Year of SuperMotocross World Championship Playoffs

See now.

Published

on

During tonight’s television broadcast of the DAYTONA Supercross, Round 8 of the Monster Energy AMA Supercross Championship and SuperMotocross World Championship, lead analysts Ricky Carmichael and James Stewart revealed that zMAX Dragway at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Texas Motor Speedway, and The Strip at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway will host the 2024 SuperMotocross World Championship Playoff Rounds and Final in September.


Words: Press Release | Lead Image: SMX


Last year’s landmark inaugural season saw two of the sport’s youngest and brightest stars cement their place in the history books. At just 17, Haiden Deegan earned Rookie of the Year and captured the 250cc World Championship while Australian sensation Jett Lawrence, at 20, became the first-ever 450cc World Champion in the premier class, also as a rookie.

Showing the world this was no fluke, both Deegan and Lawrence are off to impressive starts in their 2024 campaigns. Deegan just earned his first win of the season (and his career) this past weekend at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas and sits a mere seven points back in the Eastern Regional 250SX Class Championship after two rounds. Lawrence, on the other hand is the current points leader in the very deep 450SX premier class and has two wins already in a year that has witnessed five different race winners in the first seven rounds.

SuperMotocross World Championship Playoff 1 will take place on Saturday, September 7 at zMAX Dragway in Concord, N.C. and Playoff 2 will take place on Saturday, September 14 at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, Texas. The SMX World Championship Final will take place on Saturday, September 21 at The Strip at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway in Las Vegas, marking a long-anticipated return to a city that has hosted many memorable final Championship rounds in Supercross’ rich history.

“Last year, we created a completely new off-road motorcycle racing playoff series that combined both disciplines of indoor stadium racing (Supercross) and outdoor motocross racing (Pro Motocross) that was fully embraced by the teams, athletes, industry and fans,” said Dave Prater, Vice President of Supercross, Feld Motor Sports, Inc. “Collectively, more than 110,000 fans from all over the world made their way here to attend the inaugural three round SMX World Championship Playoffs and Final and for the first time in the sport’s history witnessed the crowning of a true World Champion. The SuperMotocross World Championship is where the world comes to race.”

zMAX Dragway is situated adjacent to Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, N.C. and its world famous four-lane dragstrip and dual grandstands provided the perfect backdrop to host last year’s first-ever SMX World Championship Playoff. The Charlotte area is a hotbed for fans of the sport and is an easy city to get to from most points in the Eastern region. Last year’s playoff became the “must see” event of the year and is a primary reason for our return. zMAX Dragway proved to be a world-class facility in every way where the SMX experience was fully brought to life with a full day of fan activities on Friday, an industry packed FanFest on Saturday and a multitude of prime camping options for every budget. The “Bellagio of Dragstrips” also provided the perfect amount of width and depth to create a truly unique, world-class SMX track that surprised the teams and caught many of the sport’s star athletes off guard which led to dramatic racing and unpredictable results.

“Last year, we transformed a four-lane drag strip into the ultimate off-road playground and fans were treated to a full day of action-packed racing at the opening round of the inaugural SMX World Championships,” said Greg Walter, executive vice president and general manager of Charlotte Motor Speedway. “Building on that experience, we’re excited to once again partner with Feld Motor Sports to bring together the top Supercross and Motocross riders from around the world at zMAX Dragway to put on a high-flying, white-knuckled show for the fans.”

Texas Motor Speedway, located in Fort Worth is easily accessible for fans traveling by car or plane with its central location and proximity to multiple international airports. The 1.5-mile quad-oval superspeedway sits on over 1400 acres of land and is one of the largest sports facilities in the country. Being a world-class venue, Texas Motor Speedway is no stranger to marquee events as they are a regular stop on the NASCAR Cup Series and provide all the modern amenities motorsports fans expect when purchasing an event ticket. Last week’s Supercross round (7) in Arlington, Texas broke attendance records and this Playoff round could prove to be an even bigger spectacle with a planned Friday FanFest, and fan camping options being made available.

“All of us at Texas Motor Speedway are thrilled to have been chosen to host Round 2 of the 2024 SuperMotocross World Championship Playoffs and we look forward to welcoming an entirely new and energetic group of race fans, from across the country and around the world, to our world-class facility,” said Texas Motor Speedway Executive Vice President & General Manager Mark Faber. “Supercross and motocross fans in the Fort Worth/Dallas metroplex have proven for years how much they love their sport so we look forward to proving to them how much we appreciate them coming to Texas Motor Speedway.”

Aptly named, The Strip at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway is conveniently located just twenty minutes away from the world-famous Las Vegas strip and was a major deciding factor in bringing the SMX World Championship Final to Las Vegas.

“The Strip” is one of the most iconic dragstrips in the country and joins zMAX Dragway as being one of just two dragstrips in the nation to feature four-wide racing. This expansive footprint will allow our master track builders to get very imaginative in creating the final SMX World Championship track of the season. Situated right across the street from the Las Vegas Motor Speedway, the Strip is home to more than 50 events a year and provides an intimate viewing experience from the grandstands and suites while also offering fans the ability to “line the fence”, similar to what is done at a Pro Motocross event.

“The pinnacle of two-wheel racing is making its return to Las Vegas, and we’re thrilled to crown the ultimate champion at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, surrounded by the passionate fans of Supercross and Motocross,” said Chris Powell, Las Vegas Motor Speedway President. “In recent years, Las Vegas has emerged as the ultimate sports hub, making it fitting to include the SuperMotocross World Championship Final on the list of prestigious events hosted here.”

The SuperMotocross World Championship Playoffs and Final will feature the best athletes in the world as the top 20 in combined Supercross and Pro Motocross points are automatically seeded into the playoff rounds. As in other sport playoffs, athletes will be competing for the sport’s ultimate World Championship title, and the prestige that comes from overcoming adversity through a 28-round, dual-discipline (indoor and outdoor) season, plus two SMX Playoffs and a Final.

The SMX World Championship is the premier off-road motorcycle racing series in the world and as such pays out more total prize money than any off-road motorcycle racing series on the planet.

All 17 rounds of the 2024 Monster Energy AMA Supercross Championship and 11 rounds of the Pro Motocross Championship are on sale. Tickets for the SuperMotocross World Championship Playoff Rounds and Final will go on pre-sale, Tuesday, April 2, followed by public on-sale Tuesday, April 9. Friday FanFest, Saturday FanFest and camping options for each round and venue will be announced later in the season.

Love what we do? Please read this article as we try to raise £30,000.

Continue Reading

Latest