I’ve learned to never say you are finished, to never say you have turned the page until you physically can’t do something anymore. This was my thought on racing Supercross style events up until I had the opportunity to race the 2017 Red Bull Straight Rhythm. The Red Bull Straight Rhythm is the brain child from Red Bull’s Jeremy Mallot who essentially built this event based off a favorite motocross game from kids who grew up in the 80’s and that game is Nintendo’s Excitebike. This ½ mile Supercross style course with no turns has quickly became one of the most exciting events of the 2017 season. You get dark horses like Josh Hansen who clearly has never lost his talent, but he makes it known he would rather get his hair done then train for a 20 minute Main in SX, so hoping to beat Marvin Musquin head to head isn’t out of the question in Josh’s mind. This year they added the two stroke class and with that it brought in the Social Media star Ronnie Mac to talk a bunch of shit to all the riders who were set to race this class. The list of riders set to race this class was pretty outstanding with Chad Reed and Ryan Villopoto set to race this very unique race on unique bikes.
It had been 11 years since I raced a supercross style race but how ever I’m very comfy on a two stroke so I thought I should feel pretty confident on the bike out of the gate. Well this gate was elevated two stories up and we had a to launch off to a table top for the start. There was 10 of us that were set to qualify in the two stroke class to get to the final 8. To be honest I knew my role in this event and I was set up as a alternate that could possibly qualify my way in if I was fast enough. After a few hours of practice over two days the two stroke Gods have spoken and had taken out two riders, Jon Ames and Chad Reed. Jon Ames had to step off on the finish line gap breaking his femur and Chad Reed over jumped a section and broke his ankle. This is where I had stuck to my plan and worked my way very slowly through the ½ mile course until my race run in heat 1 with Ryan Villopoto. I wasn’t willing to risk two of the sections that the top guys were doing. I just flat out wasn’t feeling comfortable to do those sections with out possibly making a mistake and crashing. You see I’m not paid to race I’m paid to develop motorcycles for KTM. They do like me to stay relevant and fit on the bike but taking risks for race wins is not needed. I made it into the top 8 and I was quickly eliminated by the legend Ryan Villopoto. I made the ride of shame back to my Van where my oldest son who is 6 said straight away Dad you won’t be getting a trophy if you ride like that! Mason was right, but what he didn’t realize is he got to see his Dad race at a very high level and that made me proud because most riders start families after their career was over. I can tell you that having both of my boys at the this big of a race excited to watch Dad ride was on of the most fun days of racing I’ve ever had.
The nerves, the excitement, and the sound of the fans was something that I missed but there is a few things that Red Bull does that much better then other events that I have attended and let me tell you I have raced in all sorts of events all around the word. You are welcomed with open arms, they are happy that you came to support the event and they entire crew is willing to listen to each and every rider to assure everyone is happy and will be able to ride to their potential. The main driving force behind this was Trey Canard and his platform to be a voice between the riders and the promoters. This new venture is called The Standard. Having a rider like Trey Canard speaking for all of us riders and showing interest in our safety is a huge thing to us riders when we are risking so much for so little. Jason Baker and his crew from Dream Traxx were a pleasure to work with and I think the way they make obstacles is a little more refined then what Dirt Wurk has been doing for years. So at the end of the weekend I will say that I’m very grateful to Red Bull, Trey Canard, Jason Baker at Dream Traxx and Jeremy Mallot for letting me race an event that should be a bucket list type of event for so many riders coming up.
Bonanza Plumbing KTM 250sx
- 91 Ocatane Pump gas with Motorex 2t 40-1