March 28, 2008

News of the Weird

So, Supercross' version of "spring break" ends this weekend, with a trip to the Great White North for the Toronto Supercross. And some, um, let's say "unique" things have happened over the past two weeks. Here are some of them in no particular order...

- Chad Reed has partnered with the promoter of the "Crusty Demons Live" shows to launch his own supercross series in Australia. You know, that sentence just doesn't look right without an exclamation mark. I mean, this is BIG NEWS, but it didn't seem generate all that much heat on the fan boards when it was dropped. Or maybe I hang out at the wrong fan boards. In any case, Chad's partner, a guy named Mike Porra, has some pretty big plans. He told Amanda at, "We created a new company, with its major objective is to re-invent and recreate supercross in this part of the world."

Now some of you might think that's a joke. If you do, read Amanda's interview. and you find out that this guy Porra is for real. He was a general manager for IMG, the international sports and entertainment marketing giant, heading up the Australasian Region. And check these chops: the "Crusty Demons Live" show was the top-grossing touring entertainment event in Australia in
2005/2006, beating out the Rolling Stones and U2 tours.

Looks like Superbad done good.

- History was made in Lake Whitney, Texas at the Parts Unlimited Spring Classic when Michael Young won the 65cc (7-9) Modified championship on his Cobra CX65. It was the first major national amateur title in the 65cc class for an American manufacturer. Cobra President and CEO Sean Hilbert laid it all out there when he told Racer X's Billy Ursic, "
Our whole mantra or reason for being is being the best company in the world at the youth competition segment. So the 65 and other bikes in that segment is certainly fair game for us now and in the future. "

- The Superhero from Annapolis, Travis Pastrana, decided to drop another mindblowing trick on us, by riding ACROSS THE TOP OF A LAKE to a floating freestyle ramp, and then hitting the jump and tossing a trick. Ever the savvy marketer, the trick will be featured in the next installment of "Nitro Circus" (he's up to v6 now). Here's part of the call in the press release: "TP then accelerated down the 40 degree slope to the final flat piece of land and entered the lake. The bike “skimmed” (hydroplaned) across the lake with a good rate of speed, but the waves hit Pastrana’s left foot and he was suddenly riding the bike over 5 feet deep water at 70 mph, with one foot on the bike..." Did he make it? Read the release and find out!

- Team Rockstar Makita Suzuki's Ryan Dungey has called it quits on 450 racing this year, pulling out of the Toronto round to focus on the West Region 250F title chase. I have to say that makes sense, but Dungey brought a lot of excitement with him to the big boy class, so he will be missed this weekend.

- The American Motorcyclist Association jettisoned a number of employees on Thursday, according to this article by Dean Adams at Still waiting to hear what that's all about...

- And finally, just what we've all been waiting for... NIGHT MOTOCROSS. No, that sentence did not need an exclamation mark. Looks like the Lakewood Colorado round of the outdoor national championships will be run under huge Musco temporary lights on SATURDAY night, June 28th, at the Thunder Valley facility.

Now, if you're like me, you're probably wondering why this is even considered a "good idea." Well, consider what Thunder Valley's promoter, David Clabaugh, had to say in this press release: "Hosting the race at night brings a new element to AMA Motocross and gives fans a new perspective. And in this ever-changing marketplace, we’re constantly looking for ways to improve our event and night racing seems like a perfect fit for our regions’ fans.

“We’ve met with officials from the Bandimere drag racing facility up the highway and we’ve done studies on local trends on event attendance in our area. We strongly feel that our greatest area for growth at Thunder Valley is to hold our national at night.”

Hope it works out, David. I salute you for taking it to another level with Thunder Valley MX.

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