This MXA archived test was featured in the 2007 March issue of Motocross Action Magazine. It was just 12 short months ago, in this same space, that MXA said that the Honda CR125 was on its last legs for three reasons: (1) According to industry reports, CR125 sales dropped 40 percent. (2) Honda is no longer promoting the CR125 through use by its in-house race team or any of its satellite teams. (3) The 2007 Honda CR125 is unchanged from the 2006 CR125 (or 2005 CR125 for that matter). We predicted that the CR125 would get the ax. And it did. Starting next season, there will no longer be any two-strokes in the Honda lineup. No CR85s. No CR125s. No CR250s. The demise of the glorious era of Honda two-strokes, which started in 1973 and will end in 2007, makes this more of an obituary than a bike test. But test we must. Here, in short, sweet and sober tones, is what we think of the 2007 Honda CR125. Q: WHAT ARE THE BEST TRAITS OF THE 2007 CR125? A: There are two really significant attributes of the ’07 CR125. Handling: Honda learned more about aluminum frames from their early failures (dating back to 1997) than they would have if they hadn’t made any mistakes. The CR125’s Delta-Box frame is the recipient of all that Honda learned. Suspension: Every MXA test rider knows that the CR125 doesn’t have the latest suspension components, but they like the way the old-school Kayaba parts work. Q: WHAT ARE THE WORST TRAITS OF THE 2007 CR125? A: There are two significant problem areas on the ’07 CR125. Power: Statistically, the Honda CR125 makes good horsepower. The problem isn’t the amount of power, but its breadth. Honda’s powerband is short. It requires the rider to work hard to keep it on the pipe. Life span: This is all she wrote. The 2007 model is the last year for the CR125. That doesn’t build consumer confidence or help the resale value. Q: HOW DOES THE 2007 CR125 REALLY RUN? A: The CR125 powerband is not easy to use. It is short and punchy. No, make that shorter and punchier than any other engine on the track. This is a gun-and-run engine that demands that the rider be quick on the draw. To be successful on the CR125 against the wider and broader powerbands of the YZ125 and KTM 125SX, a CR rider has to stir the five-speed transmission for all it’s worth. Slamming the CR125 from gear to gear is the only way to take advantage of the shockingly short mid-and-up powerband. A CR125 rider works up a sweat just to stay even. A good rider with a can-do attitude can do wonders on the CR125, but he will be jammin’ in places where riders on other brands are just cruising. Q: WHAT ABOUT THE GEARING? A: Add one tooth to the rear. With the stock 52-tooth sprocket, the 2007 CR125 has a lot of trouble staying on the pipe when jumping the gear ratio chasm between second and third. An extra tooth on the rear closes the gap and brings the CR125 to life. Don’t spend a penny on pipes, widgets or chrome hub caps until you’ve changed the rear sprocket. Q: HOW DOES THE CR125 HANDLE? A: This is a sweet machine. It’s a shame that future generations won’t have the opportunity to ride the best-handling bike that Honda ever built. It feels light, is accurate to a fault, and is above reproach. The handling and suspension were never the CR125’s problem; the engine was the albatross around this great bike’s neck. Q: WHAT DID WE HATE? A: The hate list: (1) Consumer confidence: Except for museum owners, who is going to walk into a showroom and buy a bike that will be discontinued the following year? Honda deserves credit for being brave enough to announce that they would stop two-stroke production in 2008, but it can’t be good for the sales of 2007 models. (2) Grips: Honda’s grips last forever. They will shred your hands before they wear out. (3) Gearing: Gear it down or be prepared to burn up clutch plates. (4) Tires: We commend Honda for mounting a Dunlop 742FA/756 tire combination. The 742FA is better than the old 742, but not as good as the 739 on hard dirt or the 756 on soft dirt. (5) Powerband: Good horsepower, but don’t blink. (6) Pipe: FMF and Pro Circuit have made millions off of CR125 owners over the last three decades, but as the two-stroke era draws to a close (and the CR125 does its farewell tour), they only get one last chance to sell you a pipe. Buy it. Pipes help the CR125 make the most of what little it has. Q: WHAT DID WE LIKE? A: The like list: (1) Ergonomics: This bike is so right in so many ways that we are going to miss it. (2) Parts: Awesome accouterments: great frame, flawless clutch, powerful front brake, sweet swingarm and ultralight hubs. (3) Reliability: The CR125 is built Honda tough. Good parts, excellent quality control and no shortcuts. (4) Forks and shock: They may be as old as Sinatra, but they can still sing. Q: WHAT DO WE REALLY THINK? A: This is a love story that started in 1974. As a young thing, the CR125 was sweet, pretty and charming. As she got older and a little weathered around the edges, she still had her good moments. Now, at the age of 33, she will fade from the limelight forever. We’ll remember the good years and forget the bad ones—she deserves only good thoughts. MXA’S RECOMMENDED JETTING SPECS Main Jet: 440 Pilot Jet: 50 Needle: 27-67 Clip: 3rd from top Air screw: 1-3/4 turns out Notes: We have never found the perfect brass for this baby. Going as far back as the ‘90s, the CR125’s jetting has mystified us. The 2007 didn’t surprise us with its waffling fuel flow. MXA’S RECOMMENDED FORK SETTINGS Spring rate: 0.44 kg/mm Oil height: 350cc Compression: 12 clicks out Rebound: 10 clicks out Fork leg height: Level Notes: The forks are old, but they are fairly well sprung. MXA’S RECOMMENDED SHOCK SETTINGS Spring rate: 4.7 kg/mm Race sag: 100mm Hi-compression: 2 turns out Lo-compression: 10 clicks Rebound: 12 clicks Notes: Many Honda riders run the race sag as low as 110mm to make the bike feel smaller and closer to the ground. The post TWO-STROKE TUESDAY | 2007 HONDA CR125 appeared first on Motocross Action Magazine.
When you answer MXA’s question of the week correctly, your name will be entered into a hat to win yourself an FXR hat and t-shirt. The answer and winner will be placed in MXA’s Mid-Week Report the following day on the bottom of the post. Pick the answer correctly from the list below to enter yourself for a chance to win an FXR hat or T-shirt. Hint: You can narrow down the riders from the long pony tail. The post MXA QUESTION OF THE WEEK | THE RIDER THAT WOULDN’T CUT HIS HAIR FOR A FACTORY YAMAHA RIDE appeared first on Motocross Action Magazine.
This is just a video of the results of the 2019 MXA 450 Four-Stroke Shootout. The magazine test will go into much greater detail of what works, what doesn’t work, what breaks, what excels and why we rated the 2019 450s where we did. It should be noted that we didn’t tested them over three days (as with most of the shootouts you may have read). we prefer to race our test bikes over a long period of time to see what really happens to the bike when it is used the way it was intended to be. We also didn’t have factory mechanics follow us around during our shootout period as with other shootouts (we let them come with us for only one day to help us solve already existing issues — in large part because we like them and appreciate their feedback). For the vast majority of our time, we were on our own. MXA used the bikes the same way that any motorcycle racer in any town in America would. We worked on them ourselves (except for that one day). We made adjustments to suit a wide range of riders (starting with the six Pros in the video and working down through the talent level to Vets and Novices). We didn’t use any aftermarket products on the bikes. If a clutch slipped, as it did on the Suzuki, Honda and Kawasaki, we used stock clutch plates, but ditched the judder spring systems. If we had fork issues we didn’t call Bones, we fiddled with the clickers, changed settings, lowered or raised oil height and, in the case of the KX450, used optional Kawasaki fork springs to build a custom spring rate). We lived with these bikes and treated them with as much care as possible. When we had 130-pound test riders we changed to the optional shock springs and when we had blazing fast AMA Pro test riders we stiffened everything up. Yes, we crashed them (twice bad enough to have to get them extensively repaired). Except for photos session, all the hours on our test bikes were either in testing set-ups or racing. We prefer that you watch this video and then, when the 450 Shootout comes out in the magazine, read it to get all the details on each bike. But, that only applies to people who want to know all the details. We aren’t telling you what bike to buy, we are just giving you our assessment of what each bike does well (and doesn’t do well). The post 2019 MXA 450 FOUR-STROKE SHOOTOUT VIDEO appeared first on Motocross Action Magazine.
There is a lot you can say about Weston Peick. The guy is built like a brick house. He is one of the most underrated riders on the circuit. He has been overshadowed by flashy past and current teammates Justin Barcia and Justin Bogle. Although Weston might not be the standout guy, you can always count on him to be there. That tells you a lot about someone. Out of the current crop of factory riders, Weston had it the hardest. Weston was a full privateer rider who paid his way to the races for years. IT WAS THE JGR TEAM THAT TOOK A CHANCE ON WESTON. ALTHOUGH IT MAY HAVE SEEMED LIKE A GAMBLE, TO JGR TEAM MANAGER JEREMY ALBRECHT, WESTON WAS A SURE BET FOR CONSISTENCY. It was the JGR team that took a chance on Weston. Although it may have seemed like a gamble, to JGR team manager Jeremy Albrecht, Weston was a sure bet for consistency. And, in this day and age, consistency is hard to find. Don’t believe us? Fourteen of the top 20 riders in the 2018 Supercross season missed one or more races. Weston was one of only six riders (Jason Anderson, Justin Brayton, Blake Baggett, Vince Friese and Chad Reed) to race all 17 rounds. How were we lucky enough to ride Weston’s AMA 450 National bike you ask? We know the right people. Past MXA Managing Editor John Basher is now the Communications Manager at JGRMX. And, since MXA tests in the Carolinas virtually every spring, we were heading east anyway. So, John pulled a few strings for us with Joe Gibbs Racing. We were very interested in riding a factory 2018 Suzuki RM-Z450. We haven’t had the best of luck with them in stock trim, so we were hoping we could learn a thing or two. The JGRMX team of Rene Zapata (Weston’s mechanic) and John Basher brought the bike down to ClubMX in South Carolina for us to shake down. Here is what we learned about Weston’s Autotrader/JGRMX Factory Suzuki RM-Z450. WESTON’S FORKS: SPRING OR AIR? OR… Weston is a bulldog on the bike. There is no finesse in his riding style. And that’s okay. It is his way of getting the job done. He has the strength and genetics to go through things rather than around them. These hard impacts combined with his 200 pounds of solid muscle make Weston’s suspension setup different from that of many of the lighter riders. The initial travel of Weston’s Showa Spring air-assist forks is super rigid and stiff. If you are a Vet or lower-level rider, hitting bumps on it would be like riding a wheelbarrow down a rough mountain trail; however, if you are fast enough and brave enough to break through the fork’s crust, there is plushness to be found. It took a while for our test riders (who were both former AMA National riders) to break through the Showa’s initial harshness. It felt like a jackhammer at slow speeds, but the faster they went and the more they smashed into stuff, the smoother the forks got. Did we mention that the air assist forks had no air in them. Weston likes the feel of the coil springs without adding the buffer of air. Could we bottom Weston’s forks? We felt like we might have been able to once we got the forks in the plushest part of the travel, but the stiffness ramped up quickly in the last few inches. Overall, the MXA wrecking crew felt like they could fly on Weston’s RM-Z450. They could over-jump, smash, hit and pound into anything they wanted without any repercussions. The downside? You have to be in exceptional shape to hang on. WESTON’S SHOCK: BFRC OR NOT? OR… It is no secret that th MXA test riders had major handling issues with the 2018 Suzuki RM-Z450, especially the BFRC shock’s tendency to follow its own path in the rough. After riding Weston’s bike, we now know that our assessment of the stock BFRC shock was spot-on. As we rode Weston’s RM-Z450, it had the old-style Factory Showa shock instead of the new BFRC shock. We don’t want to throw the BFRC’s technology under the bus, because it just needs more development time. TALKING WITH WESTON’S WRENCH, RENE ZAPATA, WE FOUND OUT THAT WESTON IS CURRENTLY TESTING UPDATED SETTINGS ON A FACTORY VERSION OF THE BFRC SHOCK. Talking with Weston’s wrench, Rene Zapata, we found out that Weston has been testing updated settings on a factory version of the BFRC shock with Weston may run this year. Rene says so far Weston prefers the modified BFRC shock. Only time will tell. If you are thinking about running the stock Showa shock from the 2017 model, forget about it. It doesn’t fit in the new frame. Suzuki has heard the complaints loud and clear, and we are hoping the issue will be resolved come 2019. WESTON’S CHASSIS: STRETCHED LIMO As much as people think that MXA hates Suzukis, we actually have loved their handling for decades. And, since we have tested more factory Suzukis than almost anybody in the world, including the bikes of Sebastien Tortelli, Jeremy McGrath, Ricky Carmichael, Travis Pastrana, Greg Albertyn, Davi Millsaps and Ken Roczen, we actually know how good they can be. Weston’s triple-clamp offset was stock, although the factory SMC clamps were less rigid and had rubber-mounted bar mounts. Weston’s subframe was cut 5mm, and his sag was set between 106mm and 108mm. This flattened the seat and shifted the weight bias towards the rear, making for a more balanced feel. Although, there was one caveat—the bike had superb handling just as long as your body position was in the right spot. MXA’s test riders felt that they had to stretch out on the bike, both when sitting and standing. If they were too far forward, the front end wanted to tuck. If you watch Weston, he stays in one consistent position when riding. He doesn’t move around a lot like Jason Anderson. As far as the rest of the chassis setup, it was basically stock. Rene mentioned that the Supercross setup had many more changes to the chassis, but for the outdoors, the team riders liked the geometry, head tube stiffness and flex of the stock 2018 RM-Z450 chassis. Weston’s triple-clamp offset was stock, although the factory SMC clamps were less rigid and had rubber-mounted bar mounts. Weston’s trick $1000 titanium footpegs were lowered and brought back 5mm (which contributed to the long, flat feel). On a side note, Jimmy Decotis and Kyle Peters request that their pegs be 12mm taller due to their short stature. These pegs can be custom ordered through www.jgrmx.com, although you will have to throw down 10 Benjamins to fill the invoice. WESTON’S SETUP: IN, OUT, UP & DOWN Weston’s control setup is fairly neutral. He runs Pro Taper Factory Suzuki bend Fuzion bars that are at the same angle as the clamps. He runs half-waffle grips with the waffle placed higher than normal. His levers are in a very neutral position. He does run an ARC clutch perch mated with a CR-style clutch lever. It is on the skinny side. His rear brake pedal is low for a Pro setup. It is below the height of the already lowered footpegs. MXA’s Pro test riders come from the modern high-brake-pedal school and had trouble getting used to the low feel. Weston runs a stock shift lever with a 5mm SMC Factory extended tip. We liked the longer feel. The seat was the stock shape and height but with a Guts seat cover and ultra-light seat foam inside. On the sides of Weston’s frame, he uses Safety-Walk grip tape to help him grip the bike with his inner legs. It is a soft-compound grip tape that isn’t as hard on boots or gear. THE GEAR; Jersey: FXR Clutch Retro, Pants: FXR Clutch Retro, Helmet: Scorpion VX-R70, Goggles: EKS Brand GOX Flatout, Boots: Sidi Crossfire 2 TA. WESTON’S BRAKES: WANT ONE? OR… Weston’s Factory Nissin front brake system is a work of art. The price tag is in the thousands of dollars. How do we know? Because we asked about getting a caliper and master cylinder setup for our bikes. Is it worth the money? Yes, but it’s not for sale. The front brake is powerful yet progressive. It is a front brake that you can operate with one finger without exerting your digit to stop on a dime. It offered smooth modulation and power that was effective. Why is there so much emphasis on the front brake? Weston doesn’t really care about the rear brake that much. There was nothing special about it. It is a stock caliper with SMC works brake pads. It doesn’t feel like it works any better than the stocker. According to Rene, Weston doesn’t seem to use the rear brake very often. Weston doesn’t really care about the rear brake that much. It is a stock caliper with SMC works brake pads. It doesn’t work any better than the stocker. WESTON’S ENGINE: NO HICCUPS, JUST A TIME LIMIT The engine is a collaboration between JGR’s in-house engine builder Dean Baker and the technicians at the Suzuki factory in Japan. We easily recognized the brands of the internal engine parts (JE piston, Carrillo rod, Xceldyne valves, Web Cam cams and Hinson clutch), but it is the customization of each part that makes the secret sauce. Instead of getting into the internals of the engine, which are largely unobtainium, let’s talk about how it ran. In a few simple words, Weston’s engine is smooth and powerful. The power was not overwhelming like that of some of the factory bikes we have ridden in the past. It was power that mere mortals could hang on to. When you needed more power, it was there at the twist of the throttle. The clutch didn’t need to be used in corners, as the big power would pull you through them. The bulk of the power was from bottom to mid, as Weston doesn’t like to rev out his engine (unlike Justin Barcia). Weston likes to keep the engine free feeling. He achieves that by shifting early. The Autotrader RM-Z450 didn’t lack top end or over-rev by any means, but you could feel that the sweet spot was focused in the meat of the rpm range. The ratios from gear to gear felt spot on. We were surprised to learn that JGR uses the standard gear ratios from first through fifth gear, but the gearbox was a special unit. We loved Weston’s engine. There were no hiccups, dips or dead spots. And although powerful, it was so easy to ride that we felt like we could hang onto it at our local racetrack during long motos‚ which isn’t always the case with powerful works bikes. The downfall of owning Weston’s race engine is that it needs internal maintenance at the two-hour mark. At the 120-minute mark, it comes apart, whether it needs it or not. His less exotic practice engines can go 15 hours before needing to be switched out. WESTON’S AIRBOX: HE BREAKS WHAT? Rene told us that Weston is hard on two things—clutches and airboxes. Rene changes out the fibers and metal plates after every moto, which is not unusual for a factory-level rider. We were curious about the airbox, though. Rene said both Weston and Malcolm Stewart tear them apart with their legs from gripping the bike so hard. This is something that we rarely hear. The solution? Suzuki Japan found a Teflon-based tape that is semi-transparent to put on the vulnerable parts of the airbox. Rene said that this tape is so strong that it would outlast the life of the motorcycle. Weston’s Factory Nissin front brake system is a work of art. WESTON’S WEIGHT: NOT HIS, THE BIKE’S There is a lot of carbon fiber, titanium and magnesium on Weston’s bike. It is used to lighten the 241-pound RM-Z450. You will be surprised to learn, as we were, that the addition of spring forks, a skid plate and a few other trick doodads made Weston’s factory RM-Z450 weigh about the same as the stocker, titanium or not. We will say that the rear end felt lighter than the stocker when lifting it off the stand; however, on the track it didn’t have a light feeling in the turns or bumps. JGR’s theory behind the madness is that a heavier bike is more stable than a light bike. True. But the same could be said about a rock. Weight may make a bike feel stable, but it also makes the supporting parts work harder while lessening nimbleness. We are pretty sure that if Weston had a 220-pound RM-Z450, he wouldn’t bolt on 21 extra pounds to improve stability. But hey, these riders are super fast, and what they feel and what we feel might be totally different. WESTON’S GAS TANK: ODDS & ENDS There were some parts that weren’t ready when we showed up to test Weston’s bike. He will be running a larger-capacity, Italian-made, CRM carbon fiber tank. He’ll also run a rear mousse instead of an inner tube to ensure there won’t be any flat tires. Weston tested the all-new Dunlop MX33 tires during the Supercross season, and they were on the outdoor bike we tested as well. They are very aggressive and in dealerships now. WHAT DO WE REALLY THINK? Weston’s Autotrader/JGRMX Factory Suzuki RM-Z450 was almost everything we wished the 2018 RM-Z450 had been. It was easy for mere mortals to ride; well-suspended, especially in the shock department; and the chassis was much calmer than the production bike’s. It was fast but not scary fast. Hopefully, Weston will have luck with the BFRC shock so that what JGR learns can be transferred to the production bike. Why did we say “almost everything we wished?” Frankly, we expected a 230-pound JGR RM-Z450 (because there is no way that they would ever get to the AMA minimum weight of 220 pounds). We didn’t get that wish, but you gotta dance with who brung ya. Weston’s JGRMX Suzuki RM-Z450 is obviously a good dance partner. The post WE RIDE WESTON PEICK’S AUTOTRADER SUZUKI RM-Z450 appeared first on Motocross Action Magazine.
By Eric Johnson WHAT’S HAPPENING, HUNTER? DO YOU HAVE A FEW MINUTES? Yeah, sure, I’ve got more than a couple of minutes. I’ve got six hours. WHERE ARE YOU HEADED? I’m heading out to Kenny Roczen’s old place. WHERE IS THAT? Well, I’m at Lommel in Belgium and it’s about five and a half hours from here. It’s 550 kilometers east into Germany. They’re on the east side of Germany. That’s where Kenny grew up. There’s a track there and a gym and stuff I once lived there on-and-off for two years. It’s cool. Hunter (96) grabbing the holeshot in Argentina. YOU PLACED EIGHTH OVERALL AT THE ASSEN GP WITH 6-10. WHAT WENT WRONG? Dude, honestly, it was the most mentally frustrating weekend of my career. It was just bonehead moves. Honestly, I’ve never been so close and on the speed in sand compared to the KTM and Husqvarna boys. Ever. At Assen I had all the speed in the world. It should have been an overall win for me or at least a second overall in my mind. During the whole weekend, in the pre-practice, timed practice and qualifying, the worst time I got was a fifth and that was in warmup on Saturday. Timed practice I was second. Then, in the qualifying race I just got cleaned out at the start. I’ve seen some pretty cool photos of me being run over. I ended up going from last to ninth. On Sunday in the warmup I was third and was feeling good and wasn’t pushing over my head. In the races I was looking for two starts that I’d been praying for the whole year. In moto one I was second and passed Jorge Prado in the third corner and was leading. When I tried a different line, he got me back. I pushed to get him back and sort of forced myself into making a bit of a mistake. I picked myself up in fourth. Then I tried to pass Thomas Covington. I was faster than him, but I rushed a pass and I ended up crashing again. I ended up sixth in moto one. In the second moto I was really motivated and super-keen to get back out there and not make those mistakes again. I got another awesome start and was right behind Prado in second. From there I just fell over. I had to come from last and, honesty; it was just a nightmare with my bonehead moves. I just embarrassed myself. THE FINAL GP OF THE YEAR IS THIS WEEKEND AT THE AUTODROMO ENZO E DINO FERRARI IN IMOLA, ITALY. That will be my last GP in Europe. I really want to do well at the last one. I’m looking forward to it. I’m looking forward to moving to America. I mean, I’m super-excited to go there and to be on the Geico Honda team. Hunter Lawrence at the 2017 MXDN at Matterley Basin. LAST YEAR THE MOTOCROSS DES NATIONS PUT YOU ON THE MAP. READY TO HIT IT AGAIN? Exactly. I can’t wait. It’ll be my first race with the new team, so I want to do well. Being able to represent Australia again awesome. That’s something you dream of as a kid. When you’re a kid you think about how sick it would be to race for your country at the top level of the sport. It’s like a dream come true,. WERE YOU AT ALL SURPRISED THAT CHAD REED WASN’T PLACED ON THE AUSTRALIAN TEAM? Yeah, for sure. Everyone has their thoughts on that. I think it’s awesome that he still wants to race. At his age he still thinks he’s got it—and he does. Last year at the Motocross des Nations in Matterley, Kurt Gibbs was really good on Saturday and on Sunday in the first moto he was also really good. That was his first Motocross of Nations, so I think from his performance at that event, it was kind of like, ‘Hey, he earned his spot for 2019.’ Okay, he’s had injuries this year, which is kind of a bummer, but I’ve also had injuries. And Mitch Evans, our third guy on the team, stepped up to the 450s this year and has been the only guy to stick it to Dean Ferris in the Australian Championship. As far as Chad and the Motocross of Nations, yeah, there are mixed emotions for everyone. I’m looking forward to watching him race the Monster Cup for JGR the week after the Nations. Best of luck to him. On the podium in green and yellow. GEICO HONDA TEAM IS READY TO SUPPORT YOUR AT THE RED BUD MXDN? Yeah. My current contract is done on October 1. So it’s going to be my first race with the team so it’s cool. I’m looking forward to it. Everyone there is pretty cool. I’ll bring over my race mechanic from this year who has been killing it. We’ve had no bike failures or any problems. It’ll also give me that confidence to go an work for one of the best teams in the world. WHAT’S YOUR TAKE ON THE GUYS YOU’LL LINE UP AGAINST IN THE 250 CLASS AT RED BUD? I’m excited to race Plessinger. I’ve been racing all the other guys in the class all year long. The only guy I’ll be racing that I haven’t raced before is AP. I think it’s great that I can race him and just kind of see where I am at before we really get to work. I’m excited to see what the American level is. I want to win. I’m racing for Australia and for myself. HAVE YOU BEEN ABLE TO INVESTIGATE RED BUD AT ALL? Yes, I watched the Red Bud National earlier this year. The team had me come out to Red Bud to get a feel for the track and to just get a feel for the Nationals. The first AMA race that I got to see was pretty awesome. It was a race I watched as a kid while growing up. To finally get to experience it was pretty cool. It’s a good feeling. The track looks really cool and I like how they use the natural landscape. WHAT IS HUNTER LAWRENCE’S MASTERPLAN FOLLOWING THE MOTOCROSS DES NATIONS? I’m going to be out in the Cali sun and getting a feel for what it’s like out in California. We’re packing up the house in Europe. Yeah, it’s all happening. We’re chucking all of our stuff into a couple of gear bags and moving countries again. I can’t explain how stoked I am. This is what I’ve always wanted and for everything to finally be in motion is just unbelievable. The post HUNTER LAWRENCE ON HIS LAST GP, THE MXDN & MOVING TO AMERICA appeared first on Motocross Action Magazine.
The 2018 Motocross des Nations will be held in the United States at the Red Bud track in Michigan on October 7, 2018. Here are the Motocross des Nations teams that have currently announced their riders (and the nations that haven’t selected their teams yet). Obviously team line-ups can change with 5 weeks to go—especially with injuries. With Romain Febvre (461) out for the rest of the season, you would have thought that Marvin Musquin, who won the 2018 Red Bud National, would get called up. He didn’t. The MXDN spot went to Jordi Tixier. Financing the teams has become a problem because the race in the USA—with Denmark already announcing that they are not sending a team in 2018. However, it should be expected that every country that hosts a Grand Prix should send a team to the MXDN. It may be expected, but Turkey, Indonesia, Latvia and Bulgaria aren’t holding up their end of the bargain as being premier motocross countries. It is hard not to notice that American riders will represent Team USA, Team Guam and Team Puerto Rico. Below is a list of teams that have officially entered the MXDN and countries that should or have fielded teams in the past. USA: Eli Tomac Aaron Plessinger Justin Barcia ARGENTINA: Joaquin Poli Julian Seibel Juan Pablo Luzzardi AUSTRIA: Lukas Neurauter Michael Sandner (injured—will be replaced) Pascal Rauchenecker AUSTRALIA: Kirk Gibbs Hunter Lawrence Mitch Evans BELGIUM: Clement Desalle Jago Geerts Jeremy Van Horebeek BRAZIL: Gustavo De Souza Enzo Lopes Fabio Santos CANADA: Colton Facciotti Tyler Medglia (Replacing the injured Kaven Benoit) Jess Pettis CHILE: Nicolas Aravena Javier Vasquez Manuel Pavez CZECH REPUBLIC: Vaclav Kovar Martin Michek Martin Krc ESTONIA: Tanel Leok Hardi Roosiorg Harri Kullas FRANCE: Gautier Paulin Dylan Ferrandis Jordi Tixier (Replacing injured Romain Febvre) GERMANY: Ken Roczen Henry Jacobi Max Nagl GREAT BRITAIN: Tommy Searle Max Anstie Ben Watson GUAM: Brandon Scharer Cody Williams Sean Lipanovich HOLLAND: Jeffrey Herlings Calvin Vlaanderen Glenn Coldenhoff ICELAND: Einar Sigurdsson Andri Gudmundsson Ingvi Bjorn Birgisson IRELAND: Graeme Irwin Martin Barr Richard Bird (replacing injured Stuart Edmonds) ITALY: Antonio Cairoli Alessandro Lupino Michele Cervellin JAPAN: Toshiki Tomita Taiki Koga Haruki Yokoyama MEXICO: Tre Fierro Felix Lopez Julio Cesar Zambrano NEW ZEALAND: Cody Cooper Hamish Harwood (replacing injured Dylan Walsh) Rhys Carter PHILIPPINES: Kenneth San Andres Mark Reggie Flores Carlo Rodriquez PORTUGAL: Rui Goncalves Dioga Graca Paulo Alberto PUERTO RICO: Travis Pastrana Ryan Sipes Kevin Windham QUATEMALA Jose Fernandez Pablo Barrientos Jorge Gonzalez SOUTH AFRICA: Michael Docherty Bradley Lionnett Caleb Tennant SPAIN: Jose Butron Jorge Prado Carlos Campano SWEDEN: Filip Bengtsson Alvin Ostlund Anton Gole SWITZERLAND: Valentin Guillod (injured in Turkey-might need to be replaced) Jeremy Seewer Killian Auberson (replacing injured Arnaud Tonus) UKRAINE: Volodymyr Tarasov Dmytro Chernov Dymtro Asmanov VENEZUELA: Lorenzo Locurcio Anthony Rodriguez Carlos Badiali FORMER MXDN TEAMS THAT ARE NOT ENTERED IN 2018 SAN MARINO: TBA SLOVAKIA: TBA SLOVENIA: TBA THAILAND: TBA TURKEY: TBA The post MXDN UPDATE: FEBVRE OUT FOR FRANCE, JORDI TIXIER TO REPLACE HIM appeared first on Motocross Action Magazine.
Article from the April 2000 issue of MXA. Everybody knows that Freestyle Motocross is only a fad, right? Just like JT’s pink pants, glitter covered Scott goggles and mullet hair cuts. Okay, so maybe mullet hair cuts can’t be killed, but they should be. The real question is, why would a 40-something off road racer from the Colorado mountains set out to build the ultimate freestyle bike? The answer? Because his two teenage sons, Scott and Chris, both like freestyle motocross. Plus, Pete Denison is one happenin’ old-timer–wrist tattoo, fedora and all. HOW THE IDEA GOT GERMINATED Mike Metzger testing out the Aloop FMF freestyle bike. Does the world need a special freestyle bike? No more than handheld PCs, cell phones that work with Coke machines or automobile TV sets. So, after watching endless hours of Crusty, Moto XXX and Terrafirma videos, Pete Denison and his sons had a pretty good idea about what hindered standard motocross bikes when it came to freestyle. Their conclusion–the tank and seat had to go. With tricks like the can-can (and all its variations), Cordova, cliff-hanger, Saran wrap, bar hop and the McMetz, sleeker is better. Aloop, by happy circumstance, is one of the few aftermarket companies that is capable of popping out a totally redesigned tank and seat combo. Aloop has risen to fame with their special XR400 tank/seat combos, so coming up with a freestyle tank was no problem. HOW TO DO IT? Step one: Remove the stock 2.0 gallon gas tank and replace it with a smaller, less obtrusive and lower gas tank (after all, most freestyle events take about 90 seconds to complete). Step two: Build triple clamps that won’t break (even under Seth-style impacts). Also, make the top triple clamp with a gull-wing design so the bar mounts are out of the way. Step three: Add a rear grab bar for doing tricks like the Superman seat grab and Indian air. Step four: Bolt on a WER steering damper so the bike won’t get a massive case of headshake after the rider tries to pull off a no-hander landing with the bars not exactly straight. Step five: Create an aerobatic smoke system (using ink and the heat of the exhaust) to leave a trail reminiscent of an airplane. THE FINAL RESULT After countless of hours tinkering, the Aloop XMX Freestyle bike was ready for the MXA wrecking crew. At first glance, the Aloop XMX looked like an aluminum-framed ’99 CR250–minus the gas tank and with a seat spread out from the rear fender all the way to the triple clamps. If it sounds uncomfortable, don’t worry. Freestyler’s only spend a small fraction of their time turning and even less time sitting down. When Aloop delivered the bike to the MXA wrecking crew, the gang drew straws to see who would jump it first. Somehow, though, every test rider had the same length straw. Volunteers were asked to step forward, but instead they all stepped back. Our solution, call up our old buddy Mike Metzger. Didn’t think the MXA wrecking crew knew Metz did you? Wrong. Before Mike made his money on the jump circuit, he raced every weekend at the same tracks as the MXA gang. We like Mike–as a racer and as a jumper. Unlike the wrecking crew, Mike was anxious to fly the untested XMX through the SoCal airways. For Pete Denison’s sons, this was a dream come true. Not only was their bike going to be ridden, but they were going to get to see one of the greatest jumpers in the world test their bike on a super-secret freestyle course. THE METZ CRITIQUE What was Metzger’s initial reaction to the XMX (XtremeMotoX)? How about amazement, bewilderment and the adamant refusal to ride the bike until the rear grab bar was removed. It seems that Clifford Adoptante is the only freestyle rider currently using a bar and, on occasion, Clifford gets hung up on it. While Pete unbolted the grab bar, Metz decided to make a few practice jumps on his personal YZ250. Big mistake! Metz came up terrifyingly short on his first try. So short, in fact, that the champ had to take a quick breather to reclaim his confidence and still his rapidly beating heart. A few huge no-footed can-cans later, however, Metzger was ready to try out the Aloop XMX bike. He started off small and ended up pulling everything in his repertoire, including his newly named McMetz (which can best be described as an act of lunacy which requires the rider to put both legs over the bars going through his arms and then let go of the handlebars and swing his legs around the handlebars and back on the pegs as well as get his hands back on the bars). So what did Metzger think? He wants his YZ250 modified with the XMX kit–so much so that he’s already set up an appointment with Aloop. Not only did the XMX kit make the tricks easier and safer to do, but it created the opportunity for new tricks. Just to prove the point, Metzger pulled the first-ever surfer nac-nac (a combination of a surfer, where the rider simply stands on the seat, and a nac-nac). So there you have it. Freestyle bikes have arrived–courtesy of a Colorado enduro rider and his two persistent sons. WHAT IT COST IN THE YEAR 2000 Aloop currently has XMX kits for ’97-’99 CR250’s and ’98-99 CR125’s, but they plan to have Yamaha and 2000 CR kits very soon. Here’s what the kit will cost, assuming that you already own the bike. XMX PRICE LIST Seat/tank kit… $449.95 Topar triple clamps (complete)… $549.95 Tag Metals #1009 T2 handlebar…$94.95 FMF Torque pipe…$189.95 FMF Powercore shorty silencer… $79.95 WER steering damper…$329.95. Total Cost…$1694.70. The post ON RECORD | WORLD’S FIRST FREESTYLE BIKE appeared first on Motocross Action Magazine.
Corrado Maddii. There is a famous line from the movie On Any Sunday that says, “They don’t all make it through every season.” And they don’t. Riders get hurt in every conceivable way. The MXA wrecking crew decided to chronicle some of the most famous injuries. Tony DiStefano: While leading the 1974 500 National Championship on a privateer CZ, Tony DiStefano decided to race a Friday-night race at SoCal’s now-defunct Indian Dunes Raceway. Tony D crashed and broke his thumb. He raced the next five 500 Nationals with his hand in a cast and lost the title to Jimmy Weinert. One year later, he was leading the AMA Supercross series on a works Suzuki when the front end broke off at the Dallas Supercross, costing him that Championship. Gary Jones: Four-time 250 National Champion Gary Jones never had a chance to win five consecutive championships. At Daytona in 1975, Jones got his leg stuck in the rear wheel of Peter Lamppu’s Montesa. The broken leg healed wrong and had to be rebroken six months later. Jones missed almost two full seasons. Bob Hannah: In 1979 Bob Hannah went water-skiing at Lake Havasu with Marty Tripes. Tripes, who was driving the boat, accidentally slingshot his arch-rival into the rocks on the beach. Hannah broke his femur and missed the entire 1980 season. Corrado Maddii: At the final race of the 1984 125 World Championship, Corrado Maddii had such a big points lead that if he scored three points on the day, he would win the title. Unfortunately, during practice, Michelle Fanton did a practice start and collided with Corrado where the start straight joined the racetrack. Maddii was carried off the track on a stretcher with a broken leg. While lying in a hospital bed, Maddii heard that Michele Rinaldi overcame a 30-point deficit to win the 1984 125 World Championship by three points. Jacky Vimond: During a celebration for Jacky Vimond’s victory in the 1986 250 World Championship, he was lowered from a nightclub ceiling on a platform. Unfortunately, a cable broke and Vimond fell to the floor. He suffered a broken back. Mike Craig: After winning his first and only 250 Supercross at Tampa in 1994, Mike Craig claimed to have tripped over his shoes in his hotel room while making a late-night pit stop. Insiders at Team Yamaha professed that they never believed that Craig was seriously injured and the team dropped him in mid-season. Jeremy McGrath: In 1997, Jeremy McGrath lost the Supercross crown to Jeff Emig. Jeremy had lots of excuses. He switched to Suzuki just weeks before the season started. Steve Lamson took him out twice on opening night. He burned up his clutch in Indy. And, he got a flat tire while leading at Charlotte. But, it didn’t help that Jeremy cut his foot before the final round and had to ride with stitches in his heel. Jeremy lost the 1997 title by 15 points. Jeremy had lost 19 points at round one when he had two run-ins with former Honda teammate Steve Lamson. Jeff Emig: Following his career-defining 1997 season, Jeff Emig slumped seriously in ’98. What was his problem? Conjecture has it that the high G-loads that Emig sustained while on a demonstration ride with the U.S. Navy Blue Angels ruined Emig’s equilibrium. A year later, Jeff Emig broke both wrists a week before the 2000 season started, and five months after that Jeff’s throttle stuck while practicing at Glen Helen. He broke his back and retired. Josh Hill: Josh Hill made a blip on the 2018 AMA Supercross radar when he got a three-race fill-in ride at Team Yamaha. It was significant because Hill was once a full-time factory Yamaha racer, but his professional career was derailed in 2010 when he attempted a backflip in preparation for the X Games. On his second attempt, Hill was ejected from the bike and broke his right femur, right humerus and pelvis and collapsed a lung. He was never the same afterwards. Ken Roczen: Ken Roczen signed a multi-million-dollar deal to race for Team Honda in 2017. He won the first two rounds of the 2017 AMA Supercross season and then at round three was kicked over the bars, dislocating his left elbow, breaking his arm and fracturing his wrist. After a dozen surgeries, he returned to action for the 2018 AMA Supercross series. In the first five Supercross races, Ken went 4-2-9-3-2; but, at the San Diego round, he took exception to the way Yamaha’s Cooper Webb was riding and slid up into Webb in a bowl turn. Sadly, Ken lost the rear end and fell with his outstretched hand being sucked into the YZ450F’s spinning rear wheel, breaking and dislocating every metacarpal in his throttle hand. The post FLASHBACK FRIDAY | YOU REMEMBER THE ONES YOU LOST appeared first on Motocross Action Magazine.