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Reunited and it feels so good – with home that is. The 10 day run out west is over as well my bone chilled body from the crazy damp called that happened on this trip. I swear it’s a different type of cold out west. I can handle -20, I can even handle -30 but, though it only reached zero at times the dampness that chills you to the bone is tough to handle. Of course, I wasn’t totally dressed appropriately but my feet just started to warm up today I think. I’m quite the sissy as I get older apparently.
Well, the biggest news from the weekend of racing in Chilliwack BC for Future West AX is also the worst news from the weekend. Jess Pettis was battling with Adam Entiknap and ended up coming short on a tricky on-off section and is now sitting in a hospital waiting for surgery on a severely broken right arm. I was on hand for all of these 6 rounds of AX and I was really enjoying what I was seeing from the reigning champion. His speeds, skill, aggression, whoop speed – though much smaller than anything built at Supercross – and overall look was on point. My excitement for a Canadian racer going into Supercross has since Darcy Lange and Cole Thompson. Yes, we’ve had a few others and not discrediting them, but Jess has that edge, that speed needed to be a main event guy. I even had bets if he could manage to get in the first three maybe four mains that at RD5 on the west he would grab a top 10. Yes, maybe a stretch but I good see Jess getting better and better with the comfort of making mains and feeling like he belongs when reaching A group practice. I felt all of this had a high percentage of happening. Now, this is all over with the snap of an arm just as quick as thinking a top 10 was a possibility. This sport can be such an amazing feeling at times and in that same breathe can be the worst. It has happened in so many race careers that it’s hard to imagine how great racers have had random injuries happen at the top of their game and able to bounce back. Jess Pettis will do the same but this couldn’t have happened at a worse time. The other crazy thought in all this is Jess doesn’t have a ride for 2018 yet. Neither does his teammate, newly crowned 250 Motocross champion Shawn Maffenbeier. The MX101 team I’m sure is trying but things have seemed to slow apparently. I don’t know all the moving parts of this scenario but for a racer coming off a season like Jess had and an even better one by Maff, not having a ride yet for 2018 would make one think the blood would boil a little with frustration. So to sum all this up: no Supercross, a broken arm and no team yet for Jess Pettis could make for a very Un-Merry Christmas.
Over the last two weekends, the Future West crew has had record numbers for entries, fans, and all the while delivering a program that ends prior to 10 pm. There a lot of moving parts when it comes to promoting and a pat on the back needs to be handed to the crew at FW. There will always be complaints, there will always be unhappy customers, and most of all, there will be circles that just chatter about how much better it could be with their guidance. Like anything in this world today everyone else that sits behind the gate thinks they can run the front of the gate better. It doesn’t matter if it’s motocross or McDonalds. Just know FW, your gang is doing right and doing it well.
This is my favorite time of year and not just because it’s Christmas (which I’m a wacko for). Our industry, or should I say our members/racers are so anxious about the new season they want answers. I’m usually the guy giving the answers and I’m a big fan of giving them when the racer/member wants them. Sometimes waiting is ok. I personally hate it but if it’s for the greater good then waiting can be a good option, sometimes the only option. With the new plan from MRC, the Triple Crown series, and the Amateur Opens the sport is heading in a great direction. For so many years we were good but small parts were missing. One of them being an option for amateurs to feel as if they are getting something for the money they spend. Walton, Deschambault and even Madoc did a great job of that but with this new plan, Amateurs will be seen way more by the brass on the pro teams. The teams that spend the money to hire the top guns to make their team a winning team will now have eyes on the top racers every MX weekend as well as Supercross and Arenacross. We will never, ever reach what the US has to offer Amateurs. It’s just not possible and if you’re one of those crazies that thinks it should then do you a favor and sell everything you have pertaining to moto and get into rollerblades or ballet. This sport is not for you and your unreachable dreams. The reality is we are small in our own little world but we can have a great sport for us all to flourish in. This new structure gives us a bigger, better reason to purchase dirt bikes. The window of a future which was always small has now gotten bigger and better with options to be the best thing to ever happen to our sport if we just allow it. For the first time ever we can sit back and relax, if you allow it. If you can’t then your impatience will ruin what’s important at this time of year: family, friends, and the holidays.