Sunday, June 1

Hangtown Practice 2

The track is running in reverse this year, and I'm not sure if the riders actually like it this way. There were a few odd transitions yesterday, such as where the track hooked back onto the first turn. There was an odd little jump to get the riders over the berm on the outside of the first turn. But the AMA picked up on that and removed the jump, and now the section flows much better. My colleague Steve Cox would like to take credit for this because he told the AMA the section would be better without the jump. However, Cox thinks removing the jump will open up passing opportunities. I say he hasn't won, then, until someone makes a pass in that section.

The fine tuning of the track after yesterday's practice has led to faster lap times. Way faster. Lites riders were a good 4-5 seconds faster than they were yesterday, and then James Stewart came out and went so fast that I think he actually went faster than the speed of time, and we're now operating on Eastern Standard Time. James has actually won the first moto now, two hours before it starts.

Okay, he was four seconds a lap faster than everyone else. But that is a time zone in motocross terms.

Everyone else is closely matched on times, Mike Alessi, Ferry, Millsaps. Except a podium battle between that gang, while Andrew Short and Ivan Tedesco look a hare off of that pace, and Ben Townley should basically wear a suit of ice packs after taking yet another big header in practice yesterday. If you're counting at home, Townley now has a bad shoulder and ankle, and he sliced his elbow open pretty bad during the week. Dude.

In the Lites, this is another chance for the field to either A) prevent Ryan Villopoto from walking away and building confidence or B) piss off Ryan Villopoto by running with him again and then really making him work hard and kill everyone for the rest of the summer. At some point last year, Townley had gotten into RV's head a bit, and RV responded by digging deeper and getting stronger. So it's a dangerous game to play with him out there--beating him now may only make it worse later.

Still, you're looking at six big faves in the Lites, RV, Stroupe, Metty, J-Law and Canard, and a bunch of riders desperate to hook onto that.

Tune into our webcast at 12:30 Pacific (unless Stewart really did ruin our time zone). We'll have interviews with a ton of big names on our pre show, including Millsaps and Short, as well as surprise speedsters from like week like Ryan Sipes and Matt Lemoine. Be ready.


Clash said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Clash said...

Did you mean "Hangtown Practice 2", or did Stewart make us somehow go back in time?

Either way, keep these reports coming!

MIKE D said...

(Matthes you owe me one)