Feb 27, 2009

The Indianapolis Supercross is a special one for me

This weekend the AMA Supercross circus is in Indianapolis where it will be hosted in the new Lucas Oil stadium, the new home of the Colts, after 17 years of SX magic at the RCA Dome. 17 years of great racing where legends of SX have battled hard for this very successful Supercross stop in the Midwest. This weekend many families, fans and Industry members will converge from all part of the US but especially from the East and Midwest. Indy is an easy town to travel to and such an easy and visitor-friendly place to get around. Lots of good restaurants, bars and some interesting tourist attractions like the International Motor Speedway and its very rich museum.
It is there by the way that, on May 30th 1911, the first motorcycle race in the United States was held. Actually the first race ever at the IMS. The museum has some photos and bikes from the past, worth a visit.

For me the Indy SX has a particular significance too...
When I moved to the US, having sold my KTM back in east Africa, the first thing I really wanted to do was get a big American pick-up truck, a Harley-Davidson and go riding motocross. Of course being in the Chicagoland, the only type of off-road riding really accessible is motocross. we have a pretty good number of very decent MX tracks in a 2 hours radius from town. I missed the off-road riding from Africa and the ultimate feeling of freedom I had, riding my orange bike forever, through mind-blowing landscapes, but I was pretty happy with my CRF450 and riding at places like Byron, Mt Carroll, Walnut and others.
So when I moved here, one of the first thing I did was convert wife and kids to the religion of MX and Off-Road. A quick 4-hours drive to Casey, IL, to watch a Hare & Scramble got them hooked but nothing compared to the first trip to the Indianapolis Supercross. By the time we were driving the 3 and a half hours back to Chicago they were converted. The car was filled of Ricky Carmichael, Chad Reed, Mike Larocco and Kevin "K-Dub" Windham. The #4 and the #22 found their way on the back of my, ours, beautiful black Ford F150 FX4.
And then, that night, my new family and I became a Motocross family.
Very quickly the garage filled up with a CRF50, a CRF100, a CRF150, a KX125 and a CRF450. We were driving every weekend to spend time with other families at Byron, at Buffalo Range in Ottawa, IL; we have attended most of the Nationals at Red Bud, Milville, High Point and the SX around the Midwest, took the boys to the U.S. Open and Cheri and I go on our Vegas SX pilgrimage every year, to meet with our SX friends from all over the country.
Right after that, we then go on our favorite MX trip of the year, to Morgantown, WV and the High Point Mount Morris National. Probably one of the best weekend of the year, with great racing, a great track, dinners with friends and the traditional and un-miss-able Racer X Party.

All this started with a trip to the Indy SX :-)

I hope that despite the dramatic economical situation we are facing in the US at the moment, a few families will leave Indianapolis converted and all excited about supercross and motocross. When they drive out of town on Sunday morning, I hope that the kids will be dreaming of riding YZs, CRFs, KXFs, RMZs and wear a #7, #22 or #2 number plate. Because Supercross and Motocross racing are magic.

Fast forward! The series comes to Indy with some continuity at the top of the 450 class. James Stewart has established his domination and is an amazing rider to watch, Reed is sttling in 2nd but is having feeling more competition from RV2 and Grant as the season matures. Unfortunately Josh grant has been pretty unlucky in his last 2 races. Hopefully the JGRMX rider will get his mojo back at the Lucas Oil stadium.
The 450 class will be interesting this weekend with the arrival of a few West Coast Lites riders, including the oh-so controversial Jason Lawrence, Ryan Sipes, Justin Brayton and the return to SX, for a quick part-time stint, of Mike Brown. Indy could be really good and I believe J-Law will make the Main and can do Top 10.

In the 250F East seres, it will be good to see Christophe Pourcel for the first time, as well a sa few other good rookies.

To bad this race isn't live on TV because after the great job Speed did for the Atlanta SX, this could have been a great race to show.

This weekend will be my first Indy SX without the Cobra. Too bad, DV was always great fun and we had fun hanging out in the Indiana capital. Good luck in the MXGP mec!

Aloha and Brap brap!!