Brought to you by
This time of year is pretty fun. Getting to veer off the beaten path after months of specific focused training and racing is nice.
Although MXON is a huge priority, and it’s still in the back of my mind, the muscle memory of doing lap after lap on the MX track is still there so it’s not a real big issue to dabble in some other interests. The only questionable one is skateboarding. Talon absolutely loves going to the Skate Park to rip his scooter. Uncle Mitch has been taking him at night since we are still waiting for some parts for his KTM50 making motos out of the question. When I go with them and bring my board using the obstacles and trying things for the first time in years. It gets pretty sketchy and I don’t want to be the poser dad who shows up and just sits there like a dweeb. I’d rather not have to explain that I jacked my ankle up couple days before my flight to England because I was trying a heel flip down a 6-inch step. I might have to be the dweeb for a couple more nights (some would say I look like a dweeb skateboarding anyways so it really doesn’t matter).
I did just get a new CRF450RX from Toys for Big Boys/ Honda Canada though and I absolutely love it. Since I just spent 50 hours in one week on one in France I was interested in seeing how good I could get one to feel if I had time to set it up properly. Right off the bat this one (2018 CA model) was a lot more powerful, the 2017 I rode over there was really restricted, the stock pipes had tiny holes in the mufflers, the air box was blocked off by plastic flaps and the battery was twice as big. They updated the suspension settings and I’m not sure if the valving is different between the North American models or not, but it works really good. I raced my MX bike last Sunday at Riverglade in a hare scramble and it was very harsh, my suspension is stiff, my motor is done to the nines and my gearing is super tall (14-50). So yesterday when I rode the new RX it went through my trails 100x better but also felt really good on the MX track, although it was weird hitting some of the jumps I do week in and out feeling a kickstand at my heel. So that kind of riding and Cyclocross are my extracurricular activities that I don’t feel guilty about doing. I think doing these off road races improves your bike handling skills big time, you are forced to keep your feet on the pegs, constantly hitting corners of all conditions and when you do the grass track stuff the only way to go fast is to have good technique.
One of the guys from team France from the ISDE is now also racing for them at MXON in mx2 (Christophe Charlier) and in my opinion, would be just as competitive if not more so than the original pick of Benoit Paturel. I’m pretty sure that team Spain could use the kid that raced ISDE too; look up Josep Garcia. That kid is really freaking fast; he caught and passed Sipes (who was leading with the holeshot) from seventh place in a 20 min moto which was pretty impressive.
I’m gearing up the trails at Pleasant Valley for a hare scramble team race this fall, it’s going to be teams of 2 and 3 hours long. The loop including the moto track takes me around 11 minutes but I’m going to add a few things to get my own time up to 15-17 minutes. I have a grass track section and plan to add it as a test either before the race or after. Also, I’m adding a mellow Endurocross section with logs and rocks. This kind of racing is gaining popularity because you show up, race, then leave, you don’t have to get there first thing and wait around in gear all day for your 12-minute races. It’s also less expensive and you are alone in the woods for the majority of it without the pressure of anyone watching you, for some people that pressure is a huge turn off to racing. Anyways that’s all I got for this week so until next time, get out there and ride over it all!