February 01, 2007

AMA: Just give them their points back already…

No doubt you’ve heard all the noise about Fuelgate 2007. Here’s my very unpopular take on the whole mess:

Either give Nick, Josh and Jason their points back or take away Carmichael’s 2006 supercross title. One or the other.

The first fuel “offense” affected Chad Reed. Penalty? The AMA took away points. Impact on the SX title? None.

The second fuel penalty went to James Stewart. Penalty? The AMA took away points. Impact on the National MX title? None.

The third fuel fiasco was last year with Rick Carmichael. Penalty? The AMA took away 25 points, then re-instated them. Impact on the SX title? RC won by two points.

For this year’s brouhaha, it’s too early to tell what, if any, impact there will be on the SX title chase in either class, but an ugly precedent has been set, either knowingly or unknowingly: when things get out of hand, just give the racer(s) the points back. That’s what was ultimately decided last year, and that’s what should happen this year. If not, then it throws the 2006 decision back into an unflattering light, and opens the door for accusations of favoritism.

On the face of it, it seems ludicrous to believe that MDK, Butler Brothers Racing and Team Yamaha deliberately “juiced” their fuel for an unfair advantage. Certainly in 450 racing, a stock bike with pump gas already has too much power for today’s supercross courses, so cheating with fuel just doesn’t make sense. So the questions turn to the AMA’s testing methods and the fuel supplier, VP. Who messed up? Will we ever know?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I agree 100% with your comments about this crazy AMA fuel situation. I believe that the AMA needs to allow for some interprtation of this particular rule, since there is no standard testing procedure.

In this case because all of the racers purchase their fuel from VP and the additionl content of additives does not make much difference, the AMA should look at the intent of the racers involved. Were they trying to cheat? Did they indeed add illegal additives to their fuel? Or did they just purchase the fuel from VP and pour it in their bikes in order for their bikes to start?

It is bad enough that you can not use pump gas from your local station and you must purchase fuel from VP and pay dearly for it. But the AMA insists that the racer be responsible for the additive content in the fuel. It is VP's responsibility to ensure their fuel passes the AMA standards.

Instead the AMA should be working towards queiter four strokes instead of playing around with this nonsensical fuel rule. We are losing riding areas and race tracks due to the unbelievably loud sound output of the 4-stroke race bikes.

This is a serious problem that should have been addressed at the beginning when the AMA first approved the four-strokes for competition.

Don't even get me started on the fact that the AMA allowed double engine displacement so that they could eliminate the two-stokes. If the rule was fair and a 125cc four-stroke raced against a 125cc two-stroke it would be a completely differnt story.

Plus there would be no silly names for the classes. Lites can be a 125cc two-stroke or a 250cc four-stroke. What in the world is that? Even using a name like 250cc can be understood, even by my mom.

The AMA needs to get a clue before they destroy MX altogether!