Features 14 Jan 2017

Deadline

An all-access Australian view of dirt bikes, presented by Alpinestars.

Our official first week of 2016 operating is almost in the books and it’s been a positive start to the year. As we do, we took some time out to recharge over the holiday period and are now looking ahead to an epic 2017.

I’ve put some time during the break into developing some of our structures and am also in the final stages of completing our roster at Foremost Media, which should enable us to continue advancing with a strong mix of contributors and result in world-class content for our audience to enjoy.

As at the beginning of every racing season there is so much to look forward to and, this year, that’s particularly the case. Be it Australian motocross, supercross, off-road or all of our Aussies competing overseas, there’s a lot of stuff to cover and we couldn’t be any more excited.

It was a huge shame to see Toby Price injured and ruled out of Dakar Rally contention so soon last week, but he’s as strong as they get and already has his sights set on recovering in time for the Cross-Country Rallies World Championship.

Source: Supplied.

By the way, right before Christmas we released Issue 1 of Road Dirt Digital, which is a digital magazine Foremost Media has put together to further create exposure locally.

Since we have road and dirt bike websites, it is important for us to showcase just how interesting the sport is in Australia and we’re committed to creating content at a level unmatched by anybody else in the industry across the board.

Last Sunday’s Monster Energy AMA Supercross opener at Anaheim was a great way to start the year and with Red Bull releasing Terrafirma 94 featuring Ken Roczen this week, it was a timely reminder how fortunate we are to work in a sport as unreal as dirt-biking! Anyhow, that’s it from me for this week, here’s Spence with more…

Welcome to 2017! I hope you all had a wonderful break full of too much food, beverages and most importantly, a whole lot of fun! Here at MotoOnline.com.au we’re right back into the swing of things with the 2017 Monster Energy AMA Supercross Championship already underway. Who else glued themselves to the TV last Sunday for Anaheim 1? I know I sure did.

Ken Roczen was thoroughly impressive aboard that all-new 2017 Honda CRF450R, the guy really laid it down out there. But it’s a new weekend for round two in San Diego and you can be sure his closest contenders will be pushing to stop the same dominance from occurring again at Petco Park. In saying that though, the German rider looks really, really good, so who knows what kind of hot streak he could put together.

It was disappointing to see both Chad Reed in the 450SX class and Hayden Mellross in the 250SX class bow out of their respective main events at the opener. Mechanical issues are something we have minimal control over at times, so it will be good to see both of these Aussies return for redemption on 14 January.

The other Aussie out there mixing it up was obviously Dan Reardon. Making the step down to the 250SX class as a veteran of the sport was an interesting move, but personally I feel he fared quite well with the youngsters. Bringing home a seventh-place finish to kick-off the season is great, he can now build from this performance and hopefully climb his way through the field as the year goes on.

Source: Supplied.

This week it hasn’t all been about the international content either, as we’ve been in contact with a list of Australian riders to keep tabs on pre-season progress. We’re only two weeks into the year, but each and every racer is out there putting in the hours to ensure they’re in peak condition for round one – there’s just so little rest time for these guys.

I had to chance to chat to both Kirk Gibbs and Luke Styke this week, and although yet to be confirmed, these two riders are expected to make up the 2017 KTM Motocross Racing Team squad. Each rider is on return from injury, Gibbs with a broken femur, and Styke with that never-ending Achilles issue.

The good news is that both riders are healed up and feeling good at this point in time, with Styke planning to head to New Zealand to get some gate time in their motocross championship. I personally think this is a great idea for the New South Wales native, he’s been out of the racing scene for a long time now and that racing time is invaluable.

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