Thursday, January 24

Rain 100000 percent guaranteed (Part 2)

Focus. Block it out. Compartmentalize. Concentrate. I want you to remove all thoughts from today from your mind and think exclusively about Anaheim 1, and the weekend of Saturday, January 5, 2008. On that weekend, not one, not two but THREE storms were supposed to collide over Southern California, and the weather forecast called for a 100% chance of rain. 100!!!!

Well, as I like to say, weather must work on the same 110% scale racers do, because it didn't rain on Saturday until 11:26 pm, and by then it was too late. Yes, the track was soft and rutted and crappy. But the race was not even close to a full-on mudder, the types that makes bikes stop running. Apparent this weekend's forecast is something like 90% chance of rain. Only 90? Ha!

I told you I would start keeping a running list of "races we thought would be mudders for sure but weren't." In fact, for now on I'm calling them RWTWBMFSBW. Anaheim 1 now fits the category. Will San Francisco?

Let's say San Fran and its mere 90% chance of rain actually ends up being a mudder. A real bad mudder, like the 2006 race there. Let's start dreaming a bit. Stewart is out. Carmichael is retired. We are one bad race away from this being the wildest and most wide-open championship since, well, since last summer's AMA/Toyota Motocross Championship. Let's say Reedy has trouble in the mud and finishes 15th. If Kevin Windham wins, he will leave with the points lead.

The mud isn't a guarantee, but if it does rain, I can guarantee you the following:

Industry pundits will start using their rudimentary knowledge of geography to figure out who can ride well in mud. It's a simple formula: think of what state a rider is from, think if it ever rains there, and assign mud skills depending. In this formula, everyone from the East or Northwest "grew up riding in the mud" and anyone from California, New Mexico, or apparently Colorado did not "grow up riding in the mud." Europe used to be a key, too, but now that the French don't win races any longer it's a non-factor.

Teams/mechanics/riders will run all sorts of "it is what it is" and "you just have to be careful" lines. Most importantly, Reed will be 100000 sure to remind everyone that he likes the mud and doesn't suck in it despite previous results.

So that leads to this ridiculous hypothetical: Years ago, the Orlando Magic looked like a lock on becoming the NBA's "Team of the Future." They were still battling Michael Jordan and the Bulls, but it was only a matter of time before Shaq and Penny Hardaway took over the game. Then Shaq signed with the Lakers. The Magic were left with just one star, and I recall one sports writer saying, "They're just one torn ACL away from the lottery." Lo and behold, Penny came down with a bum knee and the Magic indeed dropped into obscurity. It only took two pieces for that castle to crumble. One of the supercross pieces is out.

IF Reed had trouble this weekend, or maybe , just imagine if Reed had some major Stewart-like problems, how do you think this championship would shake down?

Let me know.


rocky said...

Great comments Weege (I especially liked the 110% bit). I have yet to figure out why the hell they keep holding Supercrosses in San Fran and Seattle. I mean just from a financial standpoint, ticket sales are going to invariably be down because your average non-motohead isn't gonna want to sit out in the rain and watch "the best riders in the world" slip and slide around like amateurs. I guess they're hoping that most people bought their tickets ahead of time and if they don't show up, it doesn't really matter. The riders/teams all list San Fran as one of their least favorite venues also.

That's why people quit going to the Minneapolis SX. They got tired of driving through blizzards and ice storms to watch a race. It's back on the schedule this year and the promoters were thankfully smart enough to schedule it in March instead of January.

Maybe the promoters like the occasional mud race because it sometimes helps shake up the points race and that will hopefully in turn help sell tickets to the later races. With Stewart being out, the promoters are probably hoping for whatever help they can get in that department.

8pac said...

Kdub must look deep within himself, for if he wants this c-ship he has the ability to attain it. I pray he finds the strength within, for the Lord helps those who help themselves -Franklin 3:16

Anonymous said...

for the sake of all of us, lets hope something happens to derail Reeds impending domination of this series. If not, i am going to have a real hard time even bothering to check the results come each sunday morning. Reeds a great rider but who wants to listen to his arrogant victory speech every weekend? In fact I may have to start rooting for Mikey, yikes!

eric said...

if reed were to find himself out of the series by some freak scenario, my heart would pick ferry or windham as favorites to take the cake. but, i wouldn't be a bit surprised if GL were to come from way back in the points and somehow find a way to win. the guy is an animal when he sees opportunity, as he's already proven. let's face it though, the title is reed's to lose. it can't rain every weekend, can it?

Reese said...

To answer your question, K-dub has historically gotten better as the season progresses, and since he's already sitting in the #2 spot... he's got to be the favorite if Reedy ends up out of the series. Other than him, it's a crap shoot - but at the same time you'd be foolish to bet against Langston even though he's a little down in the points right now - he gets it done! Besides these two, Ferry, Alessi, Tedesco and Short would all have a shot at it. I see a Reed runaway in our future though.

Shredder said...

I'm a KDub believer myself. He's won 2 125 titles, so it's not a totally foreign concept to him. His problems usually stem from 1 or 2 bad early season races, which he's avoided. He's the guy if something happens to Reed. Could you imagine if 800 somehow wins this title? The internet would implode and explode at the same time, and BobbyM could die a happy man.

Daniel said...

It sure would be nice to see Windham get a big bore championship. Just at Nate Adams played the bridesmaid to Pastrana for all those years in freestyle, Windham has been forced into that role by Carmichael. K-dub has a lot of runner up finishes to RC, so I'm sure he would love the shot at claiming a title. Even more so since this year seems to have been so close to a wash for him.

Ferry is another guy who was forced to the background by Carmichael's dominance. He has been having a rough past couple weeks, but is only 10 points off Windham.

If Preston comes back for Kawi, he will be looking to prove he deserved a ride too. He will be gone for the championship, but still looking to score some points.

And of course Mike Alessi has been showing great consistancy so far. He is in 3rd, but only 5 points separate 3rd through 6th, so without Reed the championship is wide open.

Englishman in S.D said...

Anonymous said "Reeds a great rider but who wants to listen to his arrogant victory speech every weekend? In fact I may have to start rooting for Mikey, yikes!"

You have to remember Reeds an Australian and he's not particularly arrogant that's just they way the Aussies can be , before you say "what the **** do you know" I lived there a year.
As for Mikey, he seems like a nice enough kid , he just had some bad parenting there for a while.
If it rains bad enough and I were the KTMMDK - Bloody hell !!! - manager. I'd bring in David Knight put him on a two stroke with some lights on the front and start writing the victory speech.

Mom! Toilets blogged! said...

Let it rain! Mix it up, the best rider will win.

The best rider will pick the right set up and lines and will work his way to the podium.

Every one thought the retro track was good for a change, well mud races are even more retro, mud has been a MX racers challenge from the beginning of time, so let it rain.

The cookie cutter playschool tracks are boring to watch and race.

The most exciting racing to watch and ride? Endurocross, take a lesson from this and lets get SX back to racing.

And a word for our West Virginia natives, if you can't keep it in your pants, keep it in your family.


Peter said...

If Chad were to get injured and couldn't compete for the rest of the season, my money would be on either Kevin Windham or Mike Alessi. I wouldn't mind seeing Ivan Tedesco get some podiums either.

Anonymous said...

Past history tells me Reed is smart enough to know he is in the drivers seat right now. Nearly a race lead just 3 rounds in and plenty of time to make up for anything that might happen in SF. That being said.....playing along with IF Reed has Stewart like problems, I say it comes down to someone on red. It would be awesome to see KW14 win the crown but would anyone let him enjoy it with the current top 2 guys having sat out ? I believe part of racing is being there every week - eliminating those big mistakes and injuries. Whoever wins it, earned it. Andrew Short is still on my radar for some reason too.

I look at the gate right now and see about 90% of the guys Reed has beat upstairs. He has finished ahead of all of them consistently for the past 4 years - why would that change ? #9 & #40 are about the only guys I seeing wanting to change that and bang with him.

I said it last week, Reed needed to make a statement to Stewart at A2. Reed won it and Stewart is out. Reed is your 2008 champ. That's going out on a limb for ya.

Now if we could just get RC to see what's unfolding here and get mad enough to come back out and claim USA pride !!!!

ps - you lucky shmuck. A ride on Holley's YZ on that retro track !

Anonymous said...

Dear Weege,

Gonna keep this short.

Okay, Stewart is out and now everybody is afraid the Australian Munchkin will dominate.

If Reed were to have a problem, Windham or Alessi.

It would be awesome to see Windham have a great series.

Alessi has proven to be consistent, Roger has said he'd be happy with top Five, but with Stewart out and if Reed had a problem......


M. Brown

Fishing101 said...

There seem to be enough Windham fans posting that I don't need to jump on board also but I do have to say after hearing of Kevin's "burn out" issues during the MX season and then finding out that if he had put forth a little more effort during the first half of the season he might have come away with the championship.
Now, knowing what might have been, I think he might see a opportunity here that might give him the drive and motivation to finally get that big bike title.
Here's to good guy #14! Go Dub!

Anonymous said...

I agree that the series allowing for San Fran to hold this annual mudfest is a huge mistake. Also, why is everyone so hard on Reed taking this whole series down with a victory every weekend from here on out. The only reason he is going to walk away with this championship is because Stewart realized that he didn't take Reed's speed seriously and decided to drop out. Stewart did not need to see a "knee doctor" but rather a sports psychologist. May we all hope the "Stewart era" that never happened is over for good.

IndianDuneser said...

Josh Grant looks pretty fast hmmmmmmmmm...

endo said...

Let it rain!!! Bring out the scuba gear.... nothing like a good old mudder to even things up. With Stewart out, I'd like to see an even playing field. I hate to say it but Reedy seems to be a notch ahead of everyone else, so until they can tighten it up bring on the mud/hurricanes/fire drills/smoke bombs/lights out power shortages/ whatever it takes to bring on some excitement!!

yz653 said...

Would someone please step up and take the points lead from Reed already?? I don't think I can stomach seeing him on the podium at all. Go K-Dub!!!!!!

Tex LaBo said...

If Reed were to have an implosion of some sort, where do you start?

Kdub has been extremely consistent so far, and would have to be the favorite.

Tim Ferry would have to be a sentimental favorite, but round 2 may have sent him too far back in the points.

And the only other rider with consistancy? #800. I have never been an Alessi fan, but I have to hand it to the kid. He's come a long way since he turned pro. He's giving the other riders respect on the track now, had the nuts to move to the big boy class a little early, and obviously hangs it all out there every time he hits the track. I have to give credit where it's earned and he's earned some over the last year or so.

I would see it coming down to KDub, Alessi, Ferry and Short. But I'd have to give the title to KDub for his ability to be consistent and fast in all kinds of tracks. Alessi still has speed issues with whoops, Timmy can't get a holeshot with a 5 second head start, and Short has the speed but cant recover as easily from a bad start as the others.

Jason Weigandt said...

Awesome stuff guys, I appreciate all the bench racing as usual. K-Dub seems to be the man everyone sees as next in line, which he proved again tonight. But then again, Reed proved he even owns these guys in the wet, so it's not looking good for anyone else wanting to win races this year. But hey, it's awesome to see Windham even in contention. A few months ago he didn't even know if he was racing again. Today, Windham seems happier at the races than I've ever seen him. Good stuff.

Unfortunately Alessi had a bad one. He seems to be the other pick of everyone here, but he came crashing down to earth. You know, he's from California so he didn't "grow up in the mud." (he is usually really good in it, though)

Thanks for the help, gang.