Last night Justin Barcia released a statement regarding a wrist injury that will keep him from making the start of the 2017 Monster Energy Supercross Series, and today the AutoTrader/Monster Energy/JGRMX/Suzuki team has tapped Jake Weimer to fill-in for the necessary time. Steve Matthes of PulpMX first reported the news last night, and in the time since a few more details have emerged.
Weimer started 2016 aboard a Tedder Racing Kawasaki, but when Broc Tickle sustained an injury early in the season, the RCH Suzuki squad pulled Weimer onto the team for the remainder of the Supercross series. Weimer sat out the Nationals in favor of surgery that removed old hardware from his arm, and returned to riding aboard a fully built RCH Suzuki RM-Z450 later in the summer, which he used to take the win at the 2016 TransWorld Motocross SLAM Head-To-Head Pro Race. Since September Weimer’s future has been completely uncertain, as no there were no signed contracts for the 2017 season. RCH let Weimer continue to prepare aboard a spare practice bike from their stable, but when the team announced their 2017 lineup, there was no spot for Weimer.
The JGRMX team is known for having Phil Nicoletti serve as their fill-in racer during the SX season, but since Nicoletti has been tasked with the 250 West Coast SX region for the new portion of the team, he is unable to fulfill the role. Going from prior knowledge of the JGRMX fill-in role, Weimer will work with mechanic Ben Schiermyer and will race what was to be Barcia’s full race bike with minor modifications to suit his style.
We spoke briefly with Weimer this morning and know that he is currently shaking down the bike with the JGRMX team in Southern California and will line up for the opening round at Anaheim this weekend. Donn Maeda, our Editor in Chief, is set to conduct a full-length interview with Weimer about the new deal later today on our Facebook page, TransWorld Motocross.