Features 28 Apr 2016

Q&A: Reed's 2016 MXGP plans

Taking a closer look at the Aussie's upcoming European adventure.

Chad Reed began his international career on the FIM Motocross World Championship circuit 15 years ago in 2001 as a fresh-faced kid from Kurri Kurri with endless amounts of talent and determination. Still a teenager at the time, Reed turned heads in European motocross before bursting on to the American scene and establishing himself as one of the all-time greats. Now in the latter stages of his career, Reed has confirmed he will make a return to the MXGP circuit for two select events this season.

Image: Simon Cudby.

Image: Simon Cudby.

Q: Has Reed confirmed his plans for guest MXGP appearances?

A: Yes, he certainly has. The iconic Australian motocross racer has confirmed he will contest two rounds of the 17-round series after the 2016 Monster Energy AMA Supercross Championship finishes up on 7 May in Las Vegas. Rumours of Reed’s MXGP return made their way around before confirmation such as this post from his Twitter account made it certain: “When trying to pick a number for MXGP and the two numbers that mean anything are gone #bugger”.

Q: Where will he race the world championship events?

A: Reed intends to contest the British Grand Prix at Matterley Basin on 18-19 June and the Grand Prix of Lombardia in Italy on 25-26 June. The decision to contest the 11th and 12th rounds of the championship makes sense for the now US-based rider with back-to-back weekends of racing keeping the Euro trip short and sweet.

Q: What team will he ride for in Europe?

A: The team Reed will ride for is yet to be confirmed, so at this stage we can only speculate. However, for the Monster Energy/360fly/Chaparral/Yamaha Factory Racing rider it would make sense to ride under the Monster Energy Yamaha Factory Racing awning in Europe. The factory Yamaha relationship and Monster Energy sponsorship work perfectly for Reed’s current program and the opportunity to utilise settings from defending world champion Romain Febvre would surely help Reed a tonne.

Image: Simon Cudby.

Image: Simon Cudby.

Q: Why is he doing these select races?

A: Being on a supercross-only contract in 2016, it’s clear the thought of a full outdoor motocross season wasn’t something Reed was interested in. He has publicly stated that he hasn’t thought too much about the racing itself, he’s actually looking forward to seeing old faces and new fans on the world motocross schedule. It looks like the 34-year-old former MXGP regular is making his way over with plans to race his motorcycle in a low pressure situation and have some good old fun.

Q: When is the last time Reed raced a grand prix in Europe?

A: In 2001, at just 19 years of age, Reed contested the 250cc championship, which at that time was the premier class, finishing an impressive second overall at the end of the year. He also captured a grand prix victory in the sands of Lierop during his one and only European season. Reed then promptly made his way to America where he took continued to rack up a long list of impressive results both indoors and outdoors.

Q: Could this lead to a fulltime switch to MXGP in the future?

A: At this stage in Reed’s career, a fulltime switch to the MXGP championship would be a long shot. Reed did begin his career in Europe, maybe he wants to finish it out there? Or maybe he wants to show his three children more of the world at a young age? You never know what Reed could do, but at this stage in his life, with all of the things he has already accomplished, it’d be quite surprising to see the Australian make such a drastic change in his life and career. A couple more years in supercross seems more likely.