So, another week has been and gone, and with it comes a new column to MX Vice. On Friday each week, we will be putting the spotlight on all of the news that has come out of the world of motocross in the last week, including injuries and hot rumours; we will be looking forward to what professional events are coming up at the weekend, as well! Simply, you can consider this column the motocross hub.
You may have noticed that the Monster Energy Yamaha of Joel Roelants was idle, whilst the two MX1 motos were taking place at Uddevalla last weekend. Why was this? Unfortunately, the season got even worse for Joel in Sweden, as he sustained internal bruising to his eye in the qualifying heat. Obviously, everyone knows that the Saturday was wet; these conditions prompted Roelants to throw his goggles not too long into the moto – a rock then hit his eye, which caused the internal bruising. At the moment, Joel just needs to build momentum; the problem really did not help his cause.
So, where does this leave Joel Roelants this weekend? Following the GP of Sweden, Roelants stated, “they said it should be alright in five days; I hope I will be in the paddock in Latvia.” In my opinion it could be a bit risky for him to ride at Kegums; nonetheless he will be there and hoping to ride. The Monster Energy Yamaha pilot will more than likely ride a practice session and make a decision following that. Perhaps it would be better for Joel Roelants to sit out on Sunday? Does he really have anything to gain from going out there? After all, Roelants is not really in a point’s battle with anyone.
Rui Goncalves is another rider that missed the Swedish GP with an injury, however he will be on the line at Kegums it seems. In the week break after Maggiora, he had surgery to clean up his right knee, as it had been aggravating him since he crashed in Ernée. It will surely make it more comfortable for him whilst riding. However, it might take Goncalves a bit of time to get up to speed. It seems as though the Ice1 KTM rider does not expect too much this weekend: “My hopes aren’t high since I’m just returning from a ten day break, but the feeling is good.”
Silly Season Silliness:
All of the rumours suggested that Eli Tomac was going to sign his deal at Red Bud this weekend, and he has – Eli will make his 450 class debut next year with the Geico Honda team! Now that the Eli deal is done, it should open the floodgates and allow many others to work out their situation for next year; silly season has centred around Tomac thus far. In the end, it seems as though it came down to two teams, Geico Honda or Yamaha. Obviously, the fact that he knows the guys at Geico Honda will make the transition much easier for him. It was also announced that Wil Hahn has signed for Geico Honda to ride a 450 next year, which was slightly surprising; the team usually sticks with just one big bike guy! We’ll have a full reaction to the news next week.
Ricky Carmichael University Update:
Currently Ricky Carmichael and his crew of impressive instructors are at Red Bud, completing the American edition of the RCU (Ricky Carmichael University). Of course, Ricky will return to FatCat next week for the UK version of the event. Although Tommy Searle will be on GP duty over in Finland, Carmichael will be bringing most of the same instructors with the addition of Grant Langston. It also seems as though Dean Wilson will be helping the team out now, as he revealed via Twitter that he would land in the UK on Tuesday. Currently, the RCU is not fully booked – so there is still time for you to get involved with this remarkable event!
The Monster Energy MX Nationals in Australia is a very strong series – one that is thriving. Of course silly season is going on down there at the moment also. Josh Cachia – who you might remember from his stint in America earlier this season – signed with Carlton Dry Honda. Josh joined the team prior to the motocross series; obviously both sides have decided to take the deal into 2014. Josh is currently third overall in the MX2 class, despite battling a wrist injury. The Carlton Dry Honda team have already confirmed that Ford Dale will be underneath their awning next year also.
Motorex KTM’s Todd Waters has been very good thus far this year; I honestly believe that he could contend for some top tens if he were to come over to Europe. Unfortunately, the series leader went down over the weekend, and broke his collarbone. Todd broke the same collarbone that he injured three years ago. He is attempting to get back for the Appen round of the Monster Energy MX Nationals, which could salvage his title hopes; he has a twenty-five-point lead currently, with five rounds remaining.
New Zealand News:
Usually, we start to receive some news about the Motocross des Nations at this time of year. Although we don’t have any confirmation on any riders yet, a popular team manager change has been announced. Josh Coppins will take over the role as team manager for New Zealand, for the first time at Teutschenthal in September – Josh was a rider at the event just last year! Coppins has stated that New Zealand is in a rebuilding phase at the moment, as there aren’t too many seasoned veterans available to ride for the team. All team picks should be decided six to eight weeks before the event – so expect some announcements soon!
Lucas Oil Pro Motocross, Round Seven – Red Bud
The Lucas Oil Pro Motocross series will head to the prestigious track of Red Bud on Saturday, for round seven of twelve. It seems as though they have made a number of slight changes to the track layout for this year, which will make things slightly more different for the riders. So who is the favourite for the victory? Ryan Villopoto and Eli Tomac are the riders I consider to be the favourites for the wins; the Red Bull KTM duo of Ryan Dungey and Ken Roczen will be hoping to stop them though. If you’re looking to catch the action live on Alli Sports, the first motos will begin at 6:00pm (UK time) on Saturday evening.
FIM Motocross World Championship, Round Eleven – Kegums
It really is a busy weekend for motocross fans! The FIM Motocross World Championship will tackle the second race of their three-week tour of Northern Europe this weekend at Kegums in Latvia. It seems as though the promoters have dumped a lot more sand onto the track for this weekend, which could influence the results; either way, it is quite difficult to bet against Jeffrey Herlings for the overall victory. Antonio Cairoli is the undoubted favourite for MX1 as well; I find it very hard to envision any riders beating these two guys. If you want to catch all of the action from the GP of Latvia online or on television, the first MX2 moto starts at 10:00 in the morning (UK time) on Sunday.
Phoenix Tools Premier Motocross, Round Six – Rushmead Raceway
The Phoenix Tools Premier Motocross series will head to Rushmead Raceway, in Marshfield, for round six of this year’s title fight. Rushmead Raceway has easy parking and great viewing – so, if you find yourself with nothing to do on Sunday, head on down! At the moment, Luke Hawkins has a twelve-point lead in the ‘Expert Open’ division; Shane Carless is the man who will be attempting to close the gap. There are loads of classes racing at the track on Sunday, with race one set to kick off at 10:15am.
Words by Lewis Phillips
Image courtesy of Yamaha Racing