Micky Dymond rockin' it first.
Sunday, January 18, 2009
I am so stoked I got to go to a race in 2009 already. I was out of town for Anaheim #1 the season opener, but got to check it out on the ol' TiVo. But going to a live race and hearing, smelling, experiencing the excitement of the racing and the crowd is the best and reminds me of why I so love this sport. Plus the TV coverage focuses so little on each individual rider that you barely get a sense of how someone is riding. Also if they are showing the leader and that racer has a 10 second gap and are riding on their own, at the race you can switch your focus to the back of the pack and the little races that are taking place off camera. I find this much more interesting the just checking out the races on TV.
Dungey, Dungey, Dungey what can you say he rode confident, fast, and really solid, making very few mistakes he deserved the win. It such a cliche thing to say but it is so all about the start, get a good jump, put your bike up front give yourself an opportunity to finish up front. Ryan Morais did exactly that he holeshot and lead for quite awhile he also rode really strong for most of the race, considering he said he was under the weather since Phoenix and had little practice. Jake Weimer was another stand out but he needed a better start, it took him a bit to get around Geico Honda's Dan Reardon, but once he did he made a sprint for the front and close the gap on Morais, but fell back 4-5 seconds when Morais slipped through the lap traffic with relative ease, while Weimer got held up by a couple of lappers. But your can't take anything away from Ryan M. from the Monster Pro Circuit team, he rode great and deserved his second place finish.
J-Law what can you say about this guy so much hype, potential, and excitement surrounds this guy. It seemed like he was riding really well and he charged the whole time but going to the last chance qualifier and the getting a bad start in the main is not a good combo. He slowly made his way through the pack on the seemingly one lined track. But it was a little to late and ended up 4th, now you might say this is a great improvement since he didn't make the main the week before at Phoenix, but the dude is riding with the red #1 plate, he should be challenging for the win or 2nd place every race. Ok so he might have a secret injury as sometime happens with the racers, but if not come on guy get the J-Law show together and do AMPM Yamaha justice. Will the real Jason Lawrence please stand up and race for the lead, like I said tonight I could see the potential and the guy needs to prove he is worth the hype.
Stewart wins surprise! Actually there is more to the plot and some great racing took place before Stewart got into the lead. Mike Alessi finally found his stride and his past holeshot skills it was great to see the #800 come around in the lead even though it was short lived. Windham found some confidence in his bike and his old speed, he made quick work of Alessi and then proceeded to lead for what seemed like more than half the race, he didn't look aggressive and fast, he looked smooth, calculated and fast. I think if he was in full swing and could have raced with a bit more aggression he would have lead the race up closer until the end, he just never seem to gap the guys behind him. Josh Grant from JGR looked really strong as he has since the beginning of the season, he has adapted well to the big bike class and bike. If he can keep this momentum up, he might find the stride of the Josh Grant of old. Now he is definitely riding his bike very aggressive and put a charge on as long as he could, it seemed like the 450 finally caught up with him and he faded a bit. Another newbie to the 450 class is Ryan Villopoto and he looked solid and fast, he rode really hard and charged the whole race. He has really smoothed out on this bike and he is showing patience and maturity, because I am sure he wants to rip the throttle as hard as possible and charge hard. But he seems to be holding back slightly, I think he is still feeling his way through class. But he rode really great and he seem to suit the big Kawasaki as well. Reedy really challenged himself by going down in the first turn and basically starting last, that isn't a good strategy to beat James Stewart, the odd are against you on that one. Chad Reed looked so comfortable with that bike, I was shocked, he seemed to be almost one with the bike. His fitness looked great he charge so hard the whole time even with picking up the pace in the last 6 or 7 laps. All of his testing and practicing and motivation is paying off with A. a great ride from last to 2nd B. with the points lead, I was really impressed by him, it seems like he is really gelling with the team and the bike. He will really keep Stewart honest this season and he will be tough to beat, 2009 is not going to be a cake walk for Stewart and his quest for the championship.
Monday, January 12, 2009
The 2009 SX season is off and running Anaheim #1 didn't disappoint with plenty of drama and surprises. The whole Dungey and ONE relationship dissolving was strange and there must be quite a back story behind it for RD to split from a company that made such a big entrance into the motocross gear market with it's Dungey riding dunes intro and press day. I guess I could see him upset by the hiring of his current rival Jason Lawrence, but he could have had some fun with the potential ads that ONE would generate from the rivalry. The press would've had a field day with the rivalry throughout the season. But something significant must have upset RD to go the hassle of dissolving a contract, lawyers these days have perfected the art of contractual legalese and ending the relationship with ONE had to have been a pain in the arse. But Fox Racing has pretty deep pockets and a great track record of taking care of the best of the best riders (Carmichael, Stewart, McGrath) to name a few, so they must have sweetened the deal. Dungey got the first round jitters out of the way by crashing in his heat, winning the LCQ, and following up with a 3rd place podium ride in the main. Not a bad start considering all the drama that was surrounding him. I really like Dungey, but I'm not quite sure that he will be as dominant as some of past 250 riders.
Weimer was a surprise for me, I believe in his ability, but his interviews are so subdued and understated that I have never been quite sure if he believed in himself. Obviously Mitch Payton believed in this kid because he rewarded the PC team with another "W" proving their team formula works. He rode fast, confident, and consistent, I am sure exactly how he visualized for the previous week. Kudos to Jake for proving his value to Pro Circuit!
I like how Villopoto started the season, fast in practice and he came out and won his heat race. Looks like he has stayed true to his past history and has done the work to prepare for the 2009 season. I would bet his plan is feel out the the first few rounds and get his feet wet, then once he gets a feel for the pace and the other 450 riders he will start taking chances. I really think the Villopoto has a win or two in him this year, especially if Stewart and Reed keep themselves busy chasing each other, Villopoto will be one of the riders that will sneak in for the top step of the podium.
To be continued..... still pondering