Welcome to Monday Kickstart, presented by our friends at One Industries. It’s been a nice, long and relaxing weekend for the TransWorld Motocross crew, as we all got to spend Christmas among our families and friends. It certainly seems like time flies when you’re having fun, and it’s a known fact that we have a lot of fun putting together the world’s best-selling motocross magazine. It seems like just the other day that we were handing out candy to trick or treaters, and now, Christmas is a fading memory and Anaheim 1 is a mere two weeks away!
Swap sent out a text message to some of the contacts on his phone, asking, “What was the best present that you gave or got this year?” Here are some of the responses we got…
“I bought a new mountain bike for my girlfriend, so that we can go riding together. We can stay in shape and ride the dogs around at the same time!” – Todd Potter, X Games Gold Medalist
“My favorite gift that I gave this year was a wine refrigerator for my mom. The best gift I got was from my girlfriend: she gave me Anaheim Ducks tickets.” – Travis Baker, Lucas Oils/Troy Lee Designs/Honda
“I got me a pet wombat!” – Blake “Bilko” Williams, X Games Gold Medalist and Reknowned Ostrich Seducer
“I got my parents a new Apple computer for Christmas. Their old one was stuck on struggle street!” – Tommy Hahn, Motoconcepts/Yamaha
“I got a sweet new fishing pole! I gave my parents fresh new kicks and flights to come watch me and Tommy race at Anaheim 1.” – Wil Hahn, Geico Powersports/Honda
“I bought Vincent an electric quad and a work bench. Mini thinks he is a quad god and a mechanic, all in one. He’s only one-year-old, so he is going to be trouble. We’ve also been tearing up the hills by our house on a sled. Check it!” – Nick Wey, Valli Motorsports/Yamaha
“No great gifts, but Carter and I did enjoy perfect conditions up in Phelan for some moto and trail riding. Carter said, ‘This is the best gift ever!'” – Doug Dubach, Dubach Racing Development
“Matching PJs for the entire family!” – Mitch Payton, Pro Circuit
“iTunes gift cards are the best presents to give and receive, because everyone can use them. And, if you forgot anyone on your list, you can pass the ones you got, right along to the next person.” – James Stewart, San Manuel/Yamaha
“I gave a box of wine and a Snuggie. I got a personalized putter from Paul at Scotty Cameron!” – Sean Hamblin, retired male model
“I got a University of Florida Snuggie!” – Jessica Patterson, DNA Shred Stix/Star Racing/Yamaha
“I got Evan a Squared BMX bike. The kid is pumped!” – Tim Ferry, retired MX Legend
“I gave an iPad, and I got an iPad!” – Nathan Ramsey, JDR Motorsports/KTM
“We just did gifts for the kids this year, so no gifts for me except my little boy who is expected to make his debut any day now! Emma’s favorite gift from Momma and Daddy is her little girl camera. I did win the famliy domino tournament, though” – Andrew Short, Red Bull/KTM
“The best gift I gave was a Louis Vuitton purse to my girlfriend Courtney, and she gave me a massage at the day spa. Massages never get old!” – Lance Coury, FMX Hero and Motogate Peddler
“I got tickets to the Lakers game on January 4th!” – David Vuillemin, Motoconcepts/Yamaha
“I got this in Japan and gave it to my dad as one of his gifts from me! It was so sick that I wanted to keep it for my house, though! Haha!” – Ronnie Faisst, FMX Legend
“I gave my brother a Honda CRF450R, and my championship jersey, all framed up.” – Trey Canard, Team Honda
“My favorite stuff was informercial presents! I got a Fushigi and a Shake Weight!” – Sean Borkenhagen, Team Rockwell
“I got a pair of Ugg Boots from Australia, and I gave away a cool guitar.” – Dan Reardon
“I have a ‘Tuggie,’ which is a Snuggie for your weiner, at my family’s Christmas exchange. Brit’s parents got Brit and I an iPad!” – Kyle Chisholm, Motoconcepts/Yamaha
“I gave my nephews (6 and 7 years old) some bmx bikes this year. They love them! The best present I ever got was a 2000 Suzuki RM250 two-stroke when I was 15 and just starting my FMX career. My pops got it for me and it was the first brand new bike I ever had. I don’t have any pics, sorry, but I’d probably be doing a can can or a no footer, so it’s for the better!” – Nate Adams, FMX Gold Medalist, Deft Familie
“My favorite gift that I gave was to my step dad, whose last name is Moore. He’s done everything for me since I was 10, so I framed three jerseys for him with a special message at the bottom.” – Justin Brayton, JGR/Yamaha
“My mom and dad got me a ping pong table!” – Justin Barcia, Geico Powersports/Honda
“The best gift I got was time to spend with the family. The best gift I gave was a special kind of wine for my mom.” – Andy Bakken, Answer Racing
“I gave the wife some Frye boots and I got Apple TV! Here’s some of the other stuff I got.” – Michael Byrne
“I gave my parents and brother a ping pong table, and I got hot pink my rims for the truck!” – Ashley Fiolek, Team Red Bull
“The best gifts I gave were hug coupons! The best gift I got was a new puppy!” – Adam Cianciarulo, Monster Energy Kawasaki
“I got a humidified glass case to have up some of my guitars in, inside my house!” – Adam Jones, FMX Hero
“I got a sweet Christmas sweater!” – Kyle Regal, San Manuel/Yamaha
On Sunday morning, just as the haze of Christmas past was beginning to wear off, we got an invitation to join TransWorld Motocross test rider Ryan Beat, Scott Champion, and Team Honda’s Josh Grant for an afternoon trail ride in the hills. With all of the recent rains (and more of it on Christmas night), all of the private Supercross tracks in SoCal, and most of the public motocross tracks, are flooded. Swap loaded up his bike and loaded his backpack and joined the boys for an hour or so…just long enough to snap a few photos and whip up a short video with JG33.
CATCHING UP WITH JOSH GRANT
iPhone and iPad users, go to page 3 for a version that is compatible with your mobile device.
CATCHING UP WITH JOSH GRANT [youtube version for mobile device]
I guess it’s my turn. Steve Matthes here, and it was a little slow week in the world of motocross for me, since I went out and finished some X-mas shopping and tried to stay off the computer. The calm before the storm if you will. Soon it will be non-stop traveling, typing and talking for me so I really tried to take it easy this past week.
I did manage to pump out a SX Pre-season Podcast with privateer for life and BTOSports.com/BBMX Suzuki's Jason Thomas and journalist Jason Weigandt. It's something that I've been doing for a few years now and at the heart of it, it's just three guys bench-racing about the upcoming season. It's on my site Pulpmx.com or you can also find it on Itunes.
What a season it's shaping up to be as well. With so many guys capable of winning races (never mind the title), it should be an exciting season. I compared it to the 1990 season in my column a few weeks back but after thinking about it, the 2011 year in SX could be even better! In that '90 season, we saw five different winners but look at it this year- James Stewart, Ryan Villopoto, Chad Reed, Ryan Dungey, Josh Grant and Davi Millsaps have all won races in the recent future. Then there is Andrew Short, Trey Canard, Justin Brayton, Ivan Tedesco, Brett Metcalfe who are all capable of winning races. That's eleven guys who, in my opinion, could win a race.
The questions are plenty, can Stewart come back from a wrist injury and dominate once again? Will Ryan Dungey be able to build on his incredible '10 season and become one of the greats or is it one and done for the Suzuki kid? What about Reed, now on the bike he wants to be on, can he make it back to being a winner? We all know Villopoto is mega-fast but can he keep it on two-wheels an entire season?
I would love to talk about the 250 west series but I, and many others, have no idea who is racing it. The insane practice of the teams keeping the official rider list secret continues on. It's like they are scared that Wikileaks is going to get a hold of which rider is riding which coast and the population of the world is going to freak out. I don't get it but this much I do know, Wil Hahn , Ryan Morais, Christian Craig, Cole Seely and Tommy Searle are all on the west and I heard that Dean Wilson is as well. After that, I have no idea!
I'd love to talk about it but I can't intelligently make a comment about who is going to win but just to make me look super smart, I'm going to predict that a Monster Energy Kawasaki or a GEICO Honda rider will take the crown. How's that?
The news that the folks at Feld have canceled the SX Live webcast wasn’t a shock to me, I had heard for months that it was on the chopping block to due to costs to produce. I think this is definitely going to hurt interest in SX and isn’t a good move but then again, I’m not paying the bills. For all of you international fans, I suppose you’ll have to tune in right here on Monday’s for the shake-down on what went down on the weekend.
I don’t play those Fantasy SX games because I suck at them and can’t always remember to update my line-up but for those of you that do, here is a little sleeper for you at the first round.
My sources say that Kyle Regal is flying at the Yamaha test track and will be a top ten guy “for sure” and when I asked about top five, the source who is a guy that knows things, said “possibly.”
ANDY BELL – AL FRESCO
Andy Bell’s Al Fresco video series on etnies.com goes out with a bang – literally – with Part 3. Check it out to see how three feet makes all the difference to avoid making a nosedive into a trailer…
For part one and two of Bell’s Al Fresco video series, click HERE