Monday
Nov192018

Works Connection Black Friday Sale!!!

 

 

Monday
Nov192018

Jason Anderson On His Recent Success

 

Jason Anderson took on quite the challenge when he signed up to race in Australia and then Paris a week later. It was all worth it in the end, however, as he picked two overall victories and added the ‘King of Paris' title to his impressive list of accomplishments. Anderson discussed that in this exclusive MX Vice interview from the event and cleared up what was going on with him during the various practice sessions, among other things.

MX Vice: You won in Australia a week ago and now you are here, on the other side of the world, and you won again. I guess that is what you came here to do, so happy days.

Jason Anderson: Yeah, it has been a world tour. We have been making it happen at all of the races and was able to get the win in Australia and get the win here. It is good times and close racing. It has been crazy.

Jason Anderson took the overall in France with a gap of fourteen points (Jey Crunch)

Can you compare the two events at all? Anything you liked about Australia compared to here or vice versa? 

They all have the three-moto format deal going on, but I will say here I think we did a lot more racing in one day and we had to do it two days in a row. Australia was pretty good, but it was only one day. Here you get worn out doing the two-day deal, but it was good. Both of them… The tracks were awesome. Very similar to what we race on. Maybe a little bit tighter in Australia and maybe a little bit bigger here, so you get the best of both worlds. Kind of helps us prepare for our season.

I know a few guys in the past here have complained that there is too much track time. Did you feel like it was getting to that point a little bit? 

I didn't get too tired, but I was just on the verge of getting worn out that last moto. I could see how, if you are not prepared for it, it could be a tall order, but I have been in so many different time zones I think I'm more jet lagged than anything.  

You won a lot of the races and that all went well, but practice was… Not a nightmare, but it did not go as well as the races. Talk about that process and what you figured out before the night show each time.

The first practice on the first day, I was losing my mind. I was going off the wrong jump. I thought the finish was off the other one, so that was bad. This morning I didn't really care too much. I just did two laps, two fast laps, and just made sure I got into the Superpole deal. Then Superpole I got third, but there was no doubting Justin Hill and [Dylan] Ferrandis' speed. Those guys were going to be fast, but when it came to the races I was ready to go.

Was there any point through practice that you started to freak out a little bit or did you kind of know in the back of your mind that you had the situation under control?

Practice never stresses me out. If I'm like fourth, fifth, tenth or whatever, I'm good. I was nineteenth though. I felt like I was going pretty fast and I didn't know what was happening, but I was going off the wrong jump. That's my mistake.

A lot of the guys were doing the same stuff out there. Was there anywhere that you felt you were making a difference? I thought the end of the whoops was kind of your spot, but then you got [Justin] Brayton at the end of this rhythm section each time. I guess that was good for you? 

Yeah. I feel like I had pretty good speed everywhere, but as far as the rhythm section and the whoops… There was really no other spot to make speed to pass. I feel like just maintaining your momentum around the whole track is key. I feel like I was able to do that. When I needed a spurt of speed I feel like that little rhythm section and the whoops were really good for me.

Jason Anderson won the overall in Australia, then France a week later (Jey Crunch)

Did you have any sketchy moments with backmarkers? Something that made you kind of sit up and go, "Wait, this isn't my main thing. I need to be safe here." 

No, not too bad. Towards the end I didn't need to pass a lot of them, so I kind of just took my time with them and just kept it going.

Finally, is there anything you learned from this race that's a bit of a breakthrough for you with testing for next year or anything? 

Yeah. I actually feel like my bike's pretty good. I came into here and there was a couple of sets of forks that I was undecided about and, the ones I'm on right now, they feel really good on the hard-pack. We are going to try them on the softer dirt when we get to Florida and then we'll see how they work there.  

This has been good for you then. Obviously you are tired, have done a lot of travelling and racing, but you have actually learned something from it. It's been worth it.

Yeah, for sure, and the racing. You can learn a lot from racing and I think you just get better. Your race craft, your speed and how to manage a race. It's just good to race all these different events, whether they are different schedules or whatever.

Interview: Lewis Phillips | Lead Image: @Crunch724

Sunday
Nov182018

Fast Thoughts: Chad Reed

Australia's GOAT on a range of topics following AUS-X Open Sydney.

On return home for the annual Monster Energy AUS-X Open Sydney, Australia’s greatest-ever Chad Reed put up a strong fight aboard his JGRMX-prepared RM-Z450 to land fifth overall. With a heat race win and leading Australia to victory over Team USA in the ‘Showdown Relay’, it was an admirable effort from the 36-year-old even though a fall in the first SX1 final and a misunderstanding surrounding the Shannons Shortcut in final three potentially denied him of a better overall result. MotoOnline.com.au tracked down Reed post-race to get his take on a variety of topics from the weekend.

Image: Supplied.

An overview on Saturday night…

We got good mileage here this weekend and every gate-drop is always a good thing even if the end result isn’t always what you expect or what you want. The reality is that you have to remind yourself it is only November and you’re here to put on a show. I feel that my show was a little less than what I wanted it to be, but honestly, the electricity, the excitement and the feeling of coming here and performing in front of the home crowd… in some ways it’s a lot of pressure. I take it personal and, for me, I want to give back [to the fans]. You hear the cheers and I seriously feel the love, so in return you want to give them something to cheer about and to be super-stoked on the performance of myself. I don’t really think that I fell short on that, but obviously I want my results to be better.

Taking the Shannons Shortcut twice…

Honestly, in the last race I kind of have to laugh, because what else do I do? I never even knew that you weren’t allowed to take the joker lane more than once and, truthfully, because of my crash in the first one nobody was around me and I didn’t have to take it. Otherwise I would have taken it three times [laughs]! So, you know, I mean it was only two or three weeks ago I did Monster Cup. At that race the whole time you’re thinking ‘don’t forget the joker lane, don’t forget the joker lane’ because typically their joker lane is longer. Here, you self-penalise yourself if you don’t take it, but in the Vegas they obviously penalise you if you don’t take it – I think the same penalty, around five places or something like that. That thought process and whatever, me not hearing or knowing, I wasn’t aware of the rule. A little bit of a rookie move there.

Leading Jason Anderson in final three…

Obviously I got to the front because I took the joker lane, which was something I shouldn’t have done, but you know what was funny is that I knew I passed Jason in the joker lane and I was just expecting that he would re-pass me back there. So here I am, with a completely different thought process thinking that Jason was just riding around until he took the joker lane on the final lap or something like that. When he didn’t come by, I didn’t know what happened because we don’t have pit-boards here, so maybe he was doing calculations. He knew the rules, he had the heads up [laughs].

Image: Supplied.

Slick track conditions…

It was sketchy as, that first start in the finals into the first turn… I was backing ‘er in [laughs]! I think my supermoto skills and flat-track days came into play there. I was pushing in there with, I think it was [Justin] Brayton on my inside and I was like, push, push, push, push then suddenly the rear just went. Obviously at that point you pretty much just have to stay in it, stay committed to it and yeah, the big girl got loose. And then I was in third, you know, struggling on certain parts of the track kind of moving around and then, yeah, the crash happened. I felt like a complete goon doing what I did, but then Brayton and something like four other guys in front of me did the same thing, so I didn’t feel so bad [laughs]. I’ve been racing indoors since I was 12 and I don’t know that I’ve ridden a tougher, more slippery and challenging indoor event than tonight, so it was really, really tough.

What to take out of the 2018 edition…

Though my result wasn’t… you know I didn’t come here and win or I didn’t come here and get on the podium, I think that it was really good data for us to take in and learn from. My riding and my fitness, everything felt like where I kinda wanted it to be, so we just need to continue on a little bit feeling in the front-end and we’ll keep working on that.

Sunday
Nov182018

Anderson King of Paris

 

 

AMA Supercross champion Jason Anderson racing for the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna team is the King of Paris after winning the Sunday main event, to add to his Saturday night victory. Anderson, who win in Australia last week, will now go into the opening round of the AMA Supercross Championship with a lot of momentum, and time on the bike.

Anderson-corner-paris.jpg#asset:12319

Frenchman Dylan Ferrandis started the evening off by being the quickest rider in the field, and also won the Superpole. Zach Osborne won the first sprint, with Anderson winning the second and then adding the main event to his night. Second in the main event was Ferrandis with Justin Brayton third.

Main Event

1. Jason Anderson

2. Dylan Ferrandis

3. Justin Brayton

4. Vince Friese

5. Justin Hill

Sunday
Nov182018

Australia Wins ISDE

ISDE 2018 Notebook – Day 6, Aussie rules

 

Our digest from day six soaks up the whole week at the 2018 International Six Days Enduro in Chile where Australia have dominated, USA put up a fight and Italian Juniors impressed.

 

The smell of burning engine oil was hanging in the air for the sixth and final day’s action at the 2018 ISDE. After a week of hard work, engines were blowing through their backsides as riders gave it everything for one last time on a sandy final motocross test. 

Alongside glorious rolling Pacific waves on the beach at Concon, it was a dramatic and frantic end to the 2018 ISDE.

For a select few machines the party wasn’t over there either. Rattling off their rev-limiters through podium celebrations, Italian Juniors and Australian Seniors showed no mercy.

 

livai.lancelot ISDE 2018 15936 Enduro21 560

 

The Australian Women’s Trophy were more sympathetic with their celebrations, leaving the bikes to rest while they sank beers and swapped stories with runners-up team USA and the delighted Spanish Women’s team. 

Those triumphant Italian Juniors, headed by E1 individual winner Andrea Verona, put on the kind of collective performance needed to win this prestigious ISDE prize. “We are really happy for the win today because last year we lose the Junior Trophy by just 15 seconds so to get the win today is really good for us.” Says Verona. 

 

italy.junior ISDE 2018 Enduro21 560

 

Conditions were fast all week in Chile and that clearly suited the TM rider who has played second fiddle to his Italian team-mate, Matteo Cavallo, all season in EnduroGP. Turning the tables at the ISDE, Verona has taken the E1 individual win, Junior Trophy winner and sixth overall in category 1 (E1, E2, E3).

Italian riders placed fifth though ninth individually, Giacomo Redondi taking the best performance in fifth. None of them, however had the answer in the E3 race for a whippet-like performance from Zach Bell who bumped the trend for four-strokes on the final day, making his 300 Husky sing in the sand. 

 

zachary.bell ISDE 2018 Enduro21 560

 

If it was a good week for Italy then was it a bad week for France? It is hard not to think otherwise for the out-going ISDE winners who dropped well below the bar: third in the Juniors was their best team result with the World Trophy team dropping to fourth at the finish after a yo-yo week in Chile. 

Third for the Junior team is a prize of course but at 18 minutes adrift of the Italians it wasn’t where they wanted to be. The best placed French rider in the scratch class was Loic Larrieu in 12th, one place ahead of Christophe Charlier. 

Loic ended his 2018 ISDE and his time racing for Yamaha (that’s another story) with a win on day six. In fact he made it look easy. As did Livia Lancelot taking the final test win in the Women’s category – Lancelot finished third overall in class (C2).

 

livia.lancelot ISDE 2018 Enduro21 560

 

USA could feel disappointed, “our goal was to win” explains team manager, Antii Kallonen. “We were hopeful that we would put it to the Australians, but you got to take second in every class as a positive.” By any measure the World, Junior and Women’s Trophy runners-up positions is the model of consistency needed to win the ISDE. The trouble is they came up against a super-dominant Australian team. “It shows we have the talent and the depth in our team in every category. We’ll build on that.” Antii concludes. 

 

Antii Kallonen usa ISDE 2018 Enduro21 560

 

Did Australia have it good in the hard and dry conditions? Milner says it suited them because the Aussies have had a dry year domestically but that belittles the performance of himself and Daniel Sanders particularly who’ve romped the results all week long. 

“Chucky (Sanders) has pushed me all the way here and all season and that’s why I knew we had a strong team for ISDE." Says Milner. "It’s been kind of like back home a lot of the time, even down to racing between the gum trees, so it suited us and we did our homework and it paid off.”

 

daniel.milner ISDE 2018 Enduro21 560

 

How did it feel to cross the finish line on top of the Enduro world? “Awesome! Last night was one of those sleepless nights thinking about stuff so to get through that clean was a relief. But I tried to ride a smooth and consistent race and make no mistakes and I did that. 

“This is the first time I’ve won outright – I’ve been close two years where I was the first loser twice so be able to win the scratch I’m absolutely stoked. I’ve done eight ISDEs now and haven’t had the best record, I’ve had a lot of DNFs and a lot of stupid stuff that went wrong so really this year it couldn’t have gone better.” Amen to that to that Daniel.

 

tayla.jones ISDE 2018 Enduro21 560

 

It’s impossible not to be impressed by the Aussie Women’s Trophy team too. Six wins on the bounce at ISDE – six! “It’s been a long week but I’m so happy right now” Tayla Jones told us after taking victory at the Concon MX test on day six. “I got the overall but winning the team trophy is obviously what we’re here for. All three of us finished, we had a good week and we made it six in a row!” 

You’d expect Jones to find the last day’s MX test a nerve-wracking race on the sandy track. Though she had a 2m:44s lead after day five, errors are so easily made in the race format on a track surface like this. Cool as a cucumber, Jones shoots down the idea, “not really, I had a pretty big lead coming in to today and I was confident I just had to finish really so I had a lot of fun out there, Livia smashed it, but it was cool and a fun way to end the week.”

It is a statement which says plenty about the confidence of Jones but also about the way Australia have gone about their business this week in Chile.

 

'Till the next one, over and out...

 

Friday
Nov092018

2018 ISDE...Chile

 

Thursday
Nov082018

Red Bull Knock Out 

 

World Enduro Super Series set for dramatic championship final round at Red Bull Knock Out Beach Race in Holland. 

It’s crunch time for the World Enduro Super Series with Billy Bolt holding the points lead as riders head for the Red Bull Knock Out this weekend in Scheveningen, Holland. 

All will be decided this Saturday, November 10, as this new enduro series makes another twist in its plot: the eighth and final round of the 2018 championship will pitch riders onto the beach at a Dutch coastal town for a typically tough northern European sand race.

At the top of the standings, Bolt holds a 275-point advantage over Manuel Lettenbichler, with Josep Garcia close behind in third. 

A feature of the WESS championship is the size of entries and the Red Bull Knock Out is no different with 1000 competitors ready to battle at the sixth edition of this event. 

The Knock Out event format sees two, one-hour morning qualifier races reduce numbers to 750 for a place in the afternoon’s two-hour main event. An added twist to Beach Racing sees the inclusion of a technically difficult ‘X-Loop’ during the final hour of racing.

 

Knockout WESS Enduro21 1200

 

Bolt sitting pretty

Billy Bolt has proved himself more than just a master of Hard Enduro in the WESS championship this year – consistency has been the key to points topping position with such diverse events in the calendar. Billy will look for another strong finish in the Dutch sand after recently dipping a toe into Beach Racing and finishing a very impressive third overall at Weston Beach Race in the UK. 

 

billy.bolt WBR 2018 01899 Enduro21 560

 

Despite a late race crash during round seven at the Gotland Grand National, dropping him to 43rd, Manni Lettenbichler maintains second overall in the championship. ALettenbichler has come of age this season and is certainly capable of a strong result in The Netherlands.

Third overall and gaining ground on the leading duo during the second half of the season, Josep Garcia is within hustling distance of Bolt and Lettenbichler. Beating both championship rivals at rounds six and seven, Garcia reduced his points deficit in this year’s title chase – though he had hoped for better result in Gotland. That said, the sizeable entry at Knock Out could well play to the Spaniard’s advantage if he picks up valuable points while his rivals falter. 

Lying just 25 points behind teammate Garcia in fourth, Taddy Blazusiak sadly will not race in Holland. The Polish legend exacerbated an already injured finger at round seven and looks set to become an unfortunate spectator at this weekend’s finale.

 

Watson Hawkestone WESS Enduro21 560

 

While Bolt, Lettenbichler and Garcia are favourites to decide the outcome of this year’s championship, Britain’s Nathan Watson (KTM) who starts with his sights set on a debut WESS victory. Sixth overall in the standings, Watson has been patiently waiting all season for the Red Bull Knock Out. Already twice a runner-up in the Dutch Beach Race, Watson is a contender for the podium and a win could also see him leap dramatically up the final classification.

Arguably one of the most versatile riders in the series, privateer Paul Bolton currently lies seventh overall heading to Holland, while Lars Enockl completes the top 10. 

 

Knockout WESS Enduro21 560

 

Wildcards in the mix

Notable wildcards ready to ruffle the championship contenders include MXGP rider and home favourite, Glenn Coldenhoff and Red Bull Knock Out winner in 2015, Axel van de Sande, is also well in the mix.

France’s Camille Chapeliere, Milko Potisek and Yentel Martens are all Beach Racing specialists who are sure to shine as will former MXGP champion, Steve Ramon who’s another former winner. 

Todd Kellet – three-time winner of Britain’s Weston Beach Race – will also jump right into contention as will EnduroGP E1 World Championship runner-up, Jamie McCanney.

Red Bull Knock Out will be broadcast in a live show on Red Bull TV from 13.15hrs CET on Saturday, November 10. Available in four languages - English, German, French and Dutch - Jonny Walker and Antoine Meo will be guests for English and French speaking viewers.

 

Thursday
Nov082018

2018 ISDE

 

The International Six Days Enduro ready to celebrate its 93rd edition in Viña del Mar in Chile, November 12-17. 

The enduro world will fix its sights on Viña del Mar in Chile for the 93rd FIM International Six days Enduro (ISDE) kicking off with the opening ceremony this weekend.

Regarded as one of the world’s most prestigious off-road motorcycle competitions, this year’s ISDE will see over four-hundred professional and amateur riders from twenty-five nations compete. 

At the head of the entry, France look to defend both their FIM World Trophy and FIM Junior World Trophy titles, while Australia are aiming for a record-breaking sixth consecutive FIM Women’s World Trophy class win.

Returning to South America for the first time since 2014, the FIM’s longest sanctioned race will base itself in the picturesque city of Viña del Mar, just two hours west of the nation’s capital Santiago.

 christophe.charlier ISDE 2017 3344
  

Can France retain their crown?

Ready to successfully defend their FIM World Trophy title, France arrive to Chile with a win clearly in their minds. Following victory on home soil in 2017, they will be pushing hard to shine again in 2018 while honouring their team-mate, Mathias Bellino – recently seriously injured in a Rally accident.

Eager to end their eleven-year drought, Italy’s last taste of FIM World Trophy success came in Chile in 2007. Looking strong on paper with a team peppered with Enduro World Championship contenders, they will use that as added motivation to return to the top step of the podium.

 

australia ISDE 2017 0822
 

USA and Australia ready to make amends

Following their debut FIM ISDE victory in 2016, the United States Trophy Team know they have the speed to challenge for top honours and after they ducked out of the Trophy competition on day one in France, when Thad Duvall got injured, they will surely be keen to make amends. Likewise, 2015 champions Australia will be equally determined and arrive with a super-strong rider line-up ready to challenge for team and individual honours. 

The Czech Republic, Spain, Germany, Sweden, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina and Chile are among those who will fight for a place inside the top five.

Thursday
Nov082018

Rewind: Chad Reed’s AUS-X Open heroics

 

Reflecting on Reed's appearances at the AUS-X Open ahead of the 2018 edition.

After cruelly missing out on last year’s Monster Energy AUS-X Open Sydney due to an ankle injury, Australian supercross legend Chad Reed is making his way home for the 2018 edition of the prestigious event this weekend.

Reed’s attendance is always special at the AUS-X Open, although the famous number 22 has indicated this Saturday night could very well mark his final professional race following an illustrious career, and he’ll have his entire family – who have also travelled from the US – by his side to witness it.

While a contract for the 2019 Monster Energy AMA Supercross Championship still remains up in the air, we’re taking a look back at Reed’s heroics at the AUS-X Open since its inception in 2015.

Image: AUS-X Open.

The two-time supercross world champion has starred on multiple occasions inside Qudos Bank Arena, but nothing compares to the stunning victory he captured at the inaugural night of the event, which saw him light up a sell out crowd.

The opening SX1 main event in 2015 was all about the then Yamaha-mounted Reed, who made a popular six-second victory upon return home for the first time in three years, using the fly by lane early on to sprint away. He didn’t it have it all his own way on night two, and was forced to accept second to youthful American Cooper Webb. It was a phenomenal display from the duo, as just 0.268s after 20 gruelling laps.

The year 2016, Reed’s last AUS-X Open appearance, proved to be an incredibly powerful performance from the in-form New South Welshman. Once again mounted aboard Yamaha machinery, Reed stalked Justin Brayton for the lead throughout the first half of the race and seized on the opportunity of a mistake made by Brayton on lap 16 to take charge.

Image: AUS-X Open.

That enabled Reed to take off at the front for a 6.191s victory, which welcomed an overwhelming roar from the crowd inside the arena. He shone on night two, delivering a commanding display of riding, this time taking the win ahead of then teammate Webb 1.804s. The fan-favourite capped off a stellar weekend with a celebratory shoey, engaging a welcoming response from thousands that packed out Qudos Bank Arena.

Regardless if this weekend ends up being his last ever professional outing, Reed will lay it on the line in an effort to go out on top in front of a supportive home crowd. Equipped with an Autotrader Yoshimura Suzuki Factory Racing RMZ-450, he just the right machinery to do it.

Thursday
Nov082018

KTM Head to Knock Out

 

 

Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Josep Garcia and Nathan Watson are set to take on the eighth and final round of the World Enduro Super Series – Red Bull Knock Out – held on the beach of the Scheveningen region in The Hague, The Netherlands. The one-day event will see the winner of the inaugural WESS season crowned the Ultimate Enduro Champion.

The long, picturesque beach at Scheveningen is normally host to water sports such as windsurfing and kiteboarding but on Saturday 10 November, 1000 riders will take to the sand to contest the sixth edition of Red Bull Knock Out. Following the morning’s heat race, the top 750 riders will go on to contest the two-hour final.

Returning for his third Red Bull Knock Out, Nathan Watson will be aiming for his first win at the event. Runner-up in 2015 and 2016, Watson will be going all-out to claim his first WESS victory of the season. The former GP motocross rider has endured a steep learning curve in 2018, riding many events for the very first time. However, due in part to several strong results in the latter half of the season, Nathan now lies sixth overall in the WESS standings, less than 600 points from the top three. A win in The Netherlands could catapult Watson higher up the championship top-10.

Nathan Watson: “I am really looking forward to the Red Bull Knock Out – in fact, I’ve been looking forward to it since the start of the season. 2018 has been a challenging year for me, I have experienced a lot of new races and have had to tailor my riding to suit them. All-in-all I am happy with how my season has gone but I would really like to finish it off on a high with a win in The Netherlands. I’m quite confident coming into this final event, I’ve got a lot of experience with beach races and have finished second at Knock Out twice. I know it’s going to be tough, but I am eager to get stuck in, give it 100% and hopefully finish on the podium.”

Sitting third in the championship, Josep Garcia will also be hoping for a strong result at Red Bull Knock Out. Competing at the event for the first time, the 2017 Enduro 2 World Champion is still in striking distance of the overall WESS title – if his nearest competitors have a tough race and Garcia takes the win, the title could be his. Since the previous round in Sweden just two weeks ago, Josep has been concentrating on his sand riding technique and is keen to impress at the Dutch beach race.

Josep Garcia: “I have been doing a lot to prepare for this final race of the WESS championship and I’m feeling really good. My speed in the sand has improved and I’m hoping for a strong result on Saturday. I know it will be tough as there will be a lot of sand specialists racing, but if I can find a good rhythm I know that I can challenge for the podium. The last race in Sweden was really tough for me, I had a bad start and was hit by another rider that caused me to lose a lot of time. I was still able to fight back to 12th and was pleased with how I rode. Hopefully at this last round I can have a good, clean race and maybe improve my overall position in the championship.”

Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Jonny Walker and Taddy Blazusiak will not be competing at round eight due to injuries. Walker will be at Red Bull Knock Out, aiding the commentary team at the event.

The 2018 Red Bull Knock Out – round eight of the World Enduro Super Series – takes place at The Hague, The Netherlands on November 10.

World Enduro Super Series Standings (After round 7 of 8)

1. Billy Bolt (GBR), Husqvarna, 4420 points

2. Manuel Lettenbichler (GER), KTM, 4145 pts

3. Josep Garcia (ESP), KTM, 3700 pts

4. Taddy Blazusiak (POL), KTM, 3675 pts

5. Wade Young (RSA), Sherco, 3220 pts