THIS WEEK AT DIRT BIKE
I’m serving notice to the guys at KTM. I’m not giving this test bike back. You can have the motocrossers, the 450 big maulers and the rest, but I’m keeping the 150XC-W. Forever. I don’t actually have much time on it yet, but I think it’s love. This is an electric start version of the 150 MX bike with PDS rear suspension and a coil spring fork. The power delivery is very different from the 150SX. too. That bike is very hard hitting and doesn’t rev out the way the 125SX does, and to be honest, I actually prefer the 125 over the 150 for moto. But for off road, the XC-W is excellent. There will be more on this bike coming in later weeks, so stay tuned.
We’ve been quietly working on our 2017 250 Motocross shootout for a couple of months now. Actually, the process goes back to when we got the first of the six bikes. That was the Yamaha, which has more changes that you might expect. Then came the entirely new Kawasaki, followed by the KTM, Honda and Suzuki. The last to arrive was the Husky, so that’s the bike that we have the least amount of time on. Luckily, we have considerable time on the KTM, and those two bikes are more alike than they are different. On Monday, we re-serviced all the bikes and gave them fresh Dunlop MX3S tires. Then came the video, which is already published on our home page. Tuesday was testing at Competitive Edge and Thursday was Glen Helen. Before it’s all over we’ll hit a couple more tracks. Which bike is winning? Honestly, I don’t even know. I poled the riders involved and three different bikes were tied for first place. More testing.
Justin Jones is more of a 450 guy, but he’s so good a carrying speed through turns that he’s a natural on a 250.
RJ Wageman has been racing Suzukis and Yamahas for the last year, and is finally coming to terms with the KTM. The new fork, he says, is a huge improvement.
Sean Lipanovich is one of the riders who doesn’t have any trouble screaming a 250F motor. When some other riders complain that the KTM and Husky don’t have enough bottom end, he doesn’t understand.
GOOD NEWS FROM DESTRY ABBOTT
We’ve been waiting to hear good news from Destry Abbott in his battle with leukemia. On Thursday, we finally got some. He posted this on Instagram:
Amazing News (health update)!!! I’m back here in Houston, Texas (@mdandersoncancercenter ) and just met with my amazing doctor. He just gave me news that things are looking really good and I won’t need a bone marrow transplant. This means after the first week of December I’ll be done with my treatments and can get back to everyday stuff (riding ?✊?). I’ll still have to do two years of maintenance once a month, which will be easy compared to what I’m doing now. It’s always a possibility I’ll need a transplant if it comes back but I’m praying it won’t. Thank you everyone for the love and support. You’ve made this tough road a lot easier ❤️?? Hope to see you guys soon! #da8strong @da8training #endcancer #fcancer#leukemia #leukemiasucks
BURSON WINS HARE SCRAMBLES WEST
We’ve been hearing rumors that the Purvines off road team will switch camps in 2017. The team, which is owned and managed by Ron Purvines, is said to be mounted on Yamaha next year. Additionally, the team might have a new member in Gary Sutherlin. Jeremy Purvines, Axle Pearson and Nick Burson will probably return. There might also be involvement with Cooper and Destry Abbott. Justin Wallis, who has been Beta’s rising star in the WORCS series, will probably say on a Beta because his arrangement is directly with Beta, not with Purvines. There might also be some new blood in the off-road world, as Suzuki and Honda might be coming in with new teams in 2017. There has been some talk that Robby Bell will be on a Suzuki. In Big Six news, that series is said to be increasing its Pro purse at most rounds, and is considering a two-race format. Nothing is solid yet.
The ISDE will kick off Tuesday in Navarra, Spain. This is the fourth time that the event has been in Spain. Here are some fast facts.
Last year, the results were a mess at the end of the event. Several riders had missed a checkpoint, including American and French Trophy team members. Those riders were penalized, then the penalty was overturned, then, weeks later, the penalty was reinstated. That had a profound effect on the winning Trophy Team. In the end, Australia was declared the winner.
Ryan Sipes was above all the controversy. He became the first American to win the individual overall. Several Americans had previously won a class (Bud Ekins and Kurt Caselli), and the U.S. had won the Junior World championship in 1991, in 2006 and again in 2014. However, the U.S. has never done better than second in the World Trophy, which is the biggest honor of all. Last year, we were down two riders in the end.
For 2017, new rules are in effect. The Trophy Team from each country will consist of four riders instead of six. The Junior Trophy now has three members instead of four. Club teams will remain at three. The original plan was to have Kailub Russell, Thad DuVall, Taylor Robert and last year’s champion, Ryan Sipes on the U.S. Trophy Team. That fell apart last week when Sipes was injured. There has been no official announcement yet, but the expectation is that either Steward Baylor or his brother Grant will be moved up to the Trophy Team from the Junior Trophy Team. Layne Michaels will probably be added to the Junior Team, joining newly crowned XC2 Champion Trevor Bollinger and the remaining Baylor brother. The banner above will take you to the official website of the promoter.
24 HOURS OF GLEN HELEN
Gary Jones and I got together this week to lay out the 2016 JBC 24 Hours of Glen Helen. Each year we set up the course, which is actually fun, mostly. It will be just under 10 miles around, and will use the National track, the REM track, the Lucas Oil Stadium and part of the Glen Helen Regional park. This is a particularly difficult year because of the lack of rainfall. We can only made new trails on the ridges that surround Glen Helen after we receive the gift of moisture, which hasn’t happened. So much of the course will be similar to the 10 Hours of Glen Helen, from last spring. It still should be a fun race. The reaining champion team of Ox Motorsports will be back with Colton Udall, Justin Jones, Mark Samuels and Ryan Dudek. Dudek, by the way, has been on more winning 24-hour teams than any other rider.
See you next time,