Actually I'm not sure what this means or what I'm really trying to say because for sure Chad Reed and his camp were pretty emotionally pumped by his first win of the season at the Lucas Oil Stadium last weekend.
Somehow though, I think that Mike Alessi won a much bigger battle in the Hoosiers' State capitol. Mike has fought a few many battles in the last year, from his horrible crash at Red Bud '08, to the arrival of Reed in the team taking the #1 rider position, the rumor mills going passed the rev limiter about him during the off season and early in the year and more. Recently things were a bit up and down in his private life and this had for sure an impact on his mental strength coming into A1.
The Alessis have generated controversies and drama most of their amateur career and into their young pro life. Many people have been happy to see Mike fail at the doorstep of championships against the likes of Tedesco, Villopoto or Langston; many rivals moved to the pro class with Kime and his brother Jeff, like Millsaps or RV. Those families have a pretty heated Amateur past together without a doubt.
But along the years, from Honda to KTM to Suzuki, Mike has been working hard. Pounding lap after lap on practice tracks, races afte races, he has made his place into the top rank of AMA Motocross, finishing championships runner-up 3 or 4 years in a row. He was probably on his way to another 2nd overall in the series if not for his crazy crash at Red Bud.
For sure the guy is solid, serious, hard-working and very focused. Still, it's not easy to get away from the past sometimes and in that MX past, Mike has had a few mishaps and some are still bashin on him as often as they can. Some people are still saying that he's not a supercross rider.
So his race to 3rd at the Indy Supercross last week was an amazing achievement for Mike Alessi as he proved many wrong by riding steady, solid and surely to his first podium in the Supercross class, on the 450. An emotional victory for Mike The Hype because it was his first race s entire career, amateur and pro, without the presence of his dad who stayed in Florida, it was his first race with Daniele back in his close entourage. The first race I heard him thanked his mom on the podium, more than once.
I don't think that he can win a Supercross this season, I don't think that he'll be on the podium all next 8 rounds,but Mike made a point to the critics and to himself this weekend when he proved that he is podium material. I hope to see him again up there, it's surely freshnig to see a very happy, relieved and fullfilled rider like MA was on Saturday night.
Believe The Hype! ;-)