The off season is in full effect this week. While there has been plenty of buzz around the SX test tracks lately, if there are a few days when riders will be able to relax, they will be this week. Turkey Day is right around the corner and hopefully this will give riders the chance to take a breather (in between mouthfuls of stuffing and pumpkin pie) before the final stretch leading up to A1. What will the TWMX crew be doing on this holiday weekend? Racing of course!
That’s right, the 12th Annual “A Day In the Dirt” kicks off this Friday and continues on to late afternoon on Sunday. ADITD has become somewhat of a tradition among the TransWorld staff and this year the event looks like it will be bigger and better than ever. Put on by Kenny Alexander and Troy Lee, ADITD is not your average race by any means. Run Grand Prix-style, the Los Angeles County Raceway course is anywhere from eight to ten minutes long, with 45 minute races. Sunday is the real kicker though, with the 75 minute long Coup de Grace, followed by the always fun Moto-A-Go-Go team race (the main point of rivalry here in our office). If you have never taken part before and are in the area with a few free days, we strongly encourage you to check it out. Learn more about it at www.adayinthedirt.com. If that isn’t enough to get you excited, here are a few shots of the trophy the guys over at Troy Lee Designs came up with for the winners of the Coup de Grace. We think it’s the shit!
The pieces are beginning to fall into place for 2010. It's hard to believe we are only a month and change away from the season opener at Anaheim I on, and there are still some riders out there who do not have deals as of yet. Nonetheless, news is slowly getting around about a signing here or there. No matter if is with a bigger team or a more modest one, the positive news is that there are still racing organizations willing to put in the effort to compete.
One rider who has had his bright moments, but perhaps was not talked about much this silly season is Matt Lemoine. Matt just finished up a three-year stint with the Star Racing/Yamaha team (who picked him up out of the amateur ranks) and is now moving on. He has relocated back to his home state of Texas and is looking forward to being on a new team and riding some new equipment.
So let's talk about your 2010 ride a bit. It's been speculated that you were about to wind up at Suzuki City, and in the end that's who you are riding for. Is it true that Darryn Durham is following you over there, too?
Yeah, I'm off Star Racing for 2010 and I got my deal lined up with Suzuki City. I think Darryn is coming over, I'm not one hundred percent sure that his contract is finished but I know he is riding a Suzuki right now.
How do you think your 2009 season went as a whole? You had some good rides, but were just never able to claim the top step.
It had its ups and downs for sure. Supercross started off good because I would be in the top three in qualifying or the heats but I couldn't put it together for the mains. Something would go wrong on like my front brake or my rear brake, things that shouldn't happen were happening. I'd be running in the front for the whole race until it would start to fail, and I'd just drop back spots. Outdoors, I just wasn't motivated after having all that happen. It just made the year drag on.
You were on the Star Racing team for numerous years, so did it come to the point where you needed a change of scenery?
I have nothing bad to say about those guys because they took care of me and got anything I asked for. I grew up as a kid riding Kawasaki bikes, so the switch to Yamaha makes me think that my riding style doesn't work on them as well as it does the Kawasaki or the Suzuki, because the two feel similar. The bikes weren't bad, I actually always thought they were pretty good, but I think it comes down to my background on the Kawasaki that threw me off. We've tested on the Suzuki and it's already dialed in, because it turns so well and everything is comfortable.
So now you feel like you are back in familiar territory?
Yeah, I feel like I'm back to where I started. When you jump on a bike that you aren't used to and there is a problem you have to tough it out, because they can't really change the steering or the frame to get it to handle exactly how you want it.
So now that you are back to where you feel at home you are fully focused on 2010.
That's the whole goal, just put my head down and keep training every day until the East Coast series starts up.
Are you staying in Texas during the entire time off, or do you plan to migrate to the Corona test tracks like everyone else?
I'm not really sure. I'll probably wind up out there at one point in time, but I know my mechanic Tim is bringing some things to test here to Texas after this weekend, so we could just wind up here for the whole deal.
So is the whole operation for Suzuki City based out of Mississippi?
Well, that's where their dealership is, in Biloxi, Mississippi, but after that I have no idea about how we are doing everything else (laughs).
Did you take some time off after the season to wind down and stay away from racing?
Yeah, we took a cruise for a week to Mexico with my family; we went to Cabo and two other places I can't pronounce. I didn't have bikes to ride or much training to work on, so I just hung out with my family and enjoyed the time off.
The Rossi Project Web site has been launched to aid Ross Maeda and his family. Ross’ recent injury has left him paralyzed, but he taking on rehabilitation head on. Unfortunately, the cost attached to his recovery is astronomical. The Rossi Project is designed to both raise money for his cause as well as keep all of us updated about Ross and his progress. Definitely check out rossiproject.com when you have a chance.