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Southwick Official Press Release

Motocross338

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8/11/2013 3:34 PM

American Legion Post 338 Official Press Release
August 11, 2013

We have some great news! The legendary sand motocross track at the Southwick American Legion Post 338 is not closing. After months of working overtime, the Legion has finally selected a new partner to help bring our historic facility to a whole new level of performance. After considering 6-7 very qualified potential offers, one offer clearly stood above the rest. The Legion's board has unanimously selected the offer from Michael Grondahl. Mr. Grondahl has many ties throughout the business world and most importantly he has direct ties to the motocross industry both as an avid past motocross racer and a current partner of the GEICO Honda race team. In addition, Mr Grondahl has brought Gary Yellin along as a consultant to his team. Gary is the son of Southwick legend Bernie Yellin, the original founder and successful operator of MX338 for many decades. Our expectations for MX338 are sky high!

Michael Grondahl is the co-founder and former CEO of Planet Fitness, a fitness club chain which he grew from one gym in New Hampshire to the largest fitness chain in the world. Planet Fitness currently has over 675 locations and serves 4.6 million members. This business experience will prove invaluable to support his plans for MX338. But we believe the key to Mike's future success with MX338 lies in his passion for the sport of motocross. Mike raced his first NESC moto at Southwick in 1979 and earned his AMA professional motocross license in 1981. His grass roots knowledge of motocross and love for the sport made our decision an easy one.

Luckily for MX338, Mr. Grondahl became a better businessman than rider, and over the last 5 years he has proudly been a partner in the GEICO Honda race team which boasts numerous AMA 250 championships. This year the GEICO team will take a big jump by filling departing 450 rider Kevin Windham's boots with Eli Tomac, who will race both SX and MX in the 2014 season. In addition to the GEICO partnership, Mike recently started the ALIAS clothing line with longtime industry veteran Jeff Surwall, Jeff Makrzak, and the legendary Factory Connection suspension guru Rick Zielfelder.

Mike Grondahl is obviously a very busy guy and when we asked him what drew him to want to get directly involved in the success of MX338, Mike responded, "The thought of Southwick closing was just not an option that I could sit back and do nothing about. I remember when I was only 15 standing at the fence at the old finish line jump screaming for my hero JoJo Keller. So many motocross legends like Bob Hannah, Doug Henry and John Dowd have graced the sand whoops at Southwick. For me, getting involved was an obvious step for the luckiest guy alive!"

Mike continued, "Very soon we will negotiate Southwick's 2014 schedule and there are some new ideas that we need to agree upon with the Legion. I want to express my sincere thanks to the Southwick American Legion Post 338 for choosing me and for being absolutely fair and very open-minded to all of the various issues that have surfaced. At the recent Amateur Nationals held at Loretta Lynn’s ranch in Tennessee, Carrie Coombs told me in no uncertain terms there will be no 2014 National held at Southwick and there probably will never be one in the future. American Legion Southwick Post 338 has saved Southwick and it is now my job to bring some BIG races to this legendary sand track!"

RonSkj

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8/11/2013 3:41 PM

Paging DC..

bd

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8/11/2013 3:42 PM

"At the recent Amateur Nationals held at Loretta Lynn’s ranch in Tennessee, Carrie Coombs told me in no uncertain terms there will be no 2014 National held at Southwick and there probably will never be one in the future."

Will there be a sand track in future?
Any other legendary MX tracks such as Red Bud, Mount Morris, Unadilla on the chopping block?

Not a fan of SLC MX layout nor the last few Southern CA national tracks.

bd

MXR

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8/11/2013 3:42 PM

Keep Southwick on the National Schedule

Chuck Norris puts the laughter back in manslaughter

bd

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8/11/2013 3:43 PM

MXR wrote: Keep Southwick on the National Schedule

x2

bd

burn1986

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8/11/2013 3:44 PM

That's all great, but according to DC - No national at Southwick.

Unfortunate, but reality. I'm sure it will become a fun local track.

velocitygear

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8/11/2013 3:45 PM

"At the recent Amateur Nationals held at Loretta Lynn’s ranch in Tennessee, Carrie Coombs told me in no uncertain terms there will be no 2014 National held at Southwick and there probably will never be one in the future"

X 10,000--------------- PAGING DC!!

THANK YOU Michael Grondahl x 1,000,000,000




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DC

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8/11/2013 3:46 PM

It's great news for NESC racing in New England to have someone like Mike taking over the track, I hope he can work with the Legion and become a good race promoter and can get some big races back in there. We met and spoke at Loretta Lynn's as well. He's been very successful at his other ventures and could turn this place back around, keeps things going the way Ralph and Dianne wanted to do, then we'll see how it all fits in down the road...

DC
MX Sports

RonSkj

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8/11/2013 3:48 PM

How could you turn down the Geico/Planet fitness/Kevin Windham/Southwick National ?

velocitygear

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8/11/2013 3:49 PM
Edited Date/Time: 8/11/2013 3:50 PM

DC wrote: It's great news for NESC racing in New England to have someone like Mike taking over the track, I hope he can work with the Legion and become a good race promoter and can get some big races back in there. We met and spoke at Loretta Lynn's as well. He's been very successful at his other ventures and could turn this place back around, keeps things going the way Ralph and Dianne wanted to do, then we'll see how it all fits in down the road...

DC
MX Sports

Appreciate the response, any chance you can elaborate as to the "issues". If the Wick has been saved, whats the problem with the Wick for you?

I would think part of Mike getting involved is to ensure Nationals continue to visit the legendary track, not to just "exist".




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DC

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8/11/2013 3:55 PM

Nothing to really elaborate on: the 'Wick has been saved for local racing, but the national promoters that we knew and worked well with for many years were forced out, and that's never a good thing. They did a lot for the sport and the series.

We will see how things go with this new promoter and the Legion and revisit the idea down the road. I know Mike wants to do big things there, and I am sure he will get himself sorted and moving forward soon.

DC
MX Sports

velocitygear

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8/11/2013 3:56 PM
Edited Date/Time: 8/11/2013 3:59 PM

Thank You DC for your promptness

Does that mean Dowd has to come out of retirement! lol Awesome....




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BAMX

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8/11/2013 4:04 PM

it sounds like Southwick will be back on the schedule about the same time Glen helen is. Cue up another parking lot track....

dboivin

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8/11/2013 4:16 PM

I don't know what you guys expect Davey to do. They forced out his promoter, he's sticking by his word...gotta respect it. Coming from a promoter aspect of it, I think Davey is 100% right with his choice to move on.

velocitygear

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8/11/2013 4:23 PM

dboivin wrote: I don't know what you guys expect Davey to do. They forced out his promoter, he's sticking by his word...gotta respect it. Coming from a promoter aspect of it, I think Davey is 100% right with his choice to move on.

Agreed, at least there's some hope now... I'm sure DC doesn't want to see Southwick permanently disappear...




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DesertRat13

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8/11/2013 4:29 PM

Great, first Glen Helen now Southwick. Heard Colorado is next on the chopping block. WTF is going on???

Sounds like this guy has plenty of $ to do what ever DC wants done so what the problem?

Didn’t I read somewhere ralph and diane were payin $20 grand per year and they had around 20 events a year? Sounds like the legion was getting ripped off. So its there fault theres no national because they wanted fair $$$?

Does not add up.

maxc811

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8/11/2013 4:31 PM

im not sure offering less than 1/2 of market value for southwick is (being forced out )...DC would you take 40% for market for mxsports??

dedi684

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8/11/2013 4:37 PM

Atleast this guy knows motocross unlike what's going on there now, it's went to hell. Hopefully the sand gets put back and the direction goes back to the original way. The nationals appear to be a joke these days.

bigcat

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8/11/2013 4:40 PM

DC wrote: Nothing to really elaborate on: the 'Wick has been saved for local racing, but the national promoters that we knew and worked well with for many years were forced out, and that's never a good thing. They did a lot for the sport and the series.

We will see how things go with this new promoter and the Legion and revisit the idea down the road. I know Mike wants to do big things there, and I am sure he will get himself sorted and moving forward soon.

DC
MX Sports

it didn't seem work out so well for some of the other national promoters you have worked with for years at keeping their nationals either now did it... hhhmmmmm Seems the only one forcing tracks/promoters out is you.

DBB

velocitygear

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8/11/2013 4:52 PM
Edited Date/Time: 8/11/2013 4:52 PM

DC wrote: Nothing to really elaborate on: the 'Wick has been saved for local racing, but the national promoters that we knew and worked well with for many years were forced out, and that's never a good thing. They did a lot for the sport and the series.

We will see how things go with this new promoter and the Legion and revisit the idea down the road. I know Mike wants to do big things there, and I am sure he will get himself sorted and moving forward soon.

DC
MX Sports

bigcat wrote: it didn't seem work out so well for some of the other national promoters you have worked with for years at keeping their nationals either now did it... hhhmmmmm Seems the only one forcing tracks/promoters out is you.

Does anyone have any solid information on these issues? I can't assume DC is the root cause and I won't make assumptions..

ANYONE?




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Hut

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8/11/2013 5:54 PM

MXR wrote: Keep Southwick on the National Schedule

THIS!

MX455

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8/11/2013 6:24 PM

maxc811 wrote: im not sure offering less than 1/2 of market value for southwick is (being forced out )...DC would you take 40% for market for mxsports??

Absolutely. It's crazy how many people can't understand this.

IWreckALot

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8/11/2013 6:37 PM

Is it purely a buddy decision? As in, DC's buddies were forced out so he wants to remain loyal to his friends and not hold a national there any longer?

I could see it from a loyalty issue on a friend level. If his friends built the track and put all of their hard work in, and the land owners yanked the land, I'd probably side on my friend's side too. There's got to be a way to make it a win win for everyone though.

And I'm not here to bash on DC. Southwick was my favorite track on the circuit basically because it's different from all other tracks. Like everyone else, I want to see it stay. If not, at least find another sand track that is that caliber.

velocitygear

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8/11/2013 6:40 PM

maxc811 wrote: im not sure offering less than 1/2 of market value for southwick is (being forced out )...DC would you take 40% for market for mxsports??

MX455 wrote: Absolutely. It's crazy how many people can't understand this.

So, the promoter who was "forced out" offered 1/2 of market value for the Wick, was turned down and that's the reason theres no Southwick?

It can't be that cut and dry, can it? Please provide details....




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BigMX

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8/11/2013 6:45 PM

All I want to know is: Does this mean John Dowd is un-retiring?!

velocitygear

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8/11/2013 7:07 PM

DC wrote: Nothing to really elaborate on: the 'Wick has been saved for local racing, but the national promoters that we knew and worked well with for many years were forced out, and that's never a good thing. They did a lot for the sport and the series.

We will see how things go with this new promoter and the Legion and revisit the idea down the road. I know Mike wants to do big things there, and I am sure he will get himself sorted and moving forward soon.

DC
MX Sports

In hopes of getting some real answers and not garnering more negativity; DC can you elaborate on the 1/2 of market value quote above? Is this true in Any Way, Shape or Form?




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MX455

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8/11/2013 7:12 PM

velocitygear wrote: So, the promoter who was "forced out" offered 1/2 of market value for the Wick, was turned down and that's the reason theres no Southwick?

It can't be that cut and dry, can it? Please provide details....

There are many reason that there is no National but the "promoters being forced out" is NOT the reason. They had a great deal for many years and didn't want to pay up when the lease ended. If the lease was that bad why were so many people lining up to take over? I think it's BS that DC puts it out there the way he does. Aside from the pits being moved the track hasn't had any major changes or improvements. Yes the track is ok for the national but I would rather ride my local sand pit than race there for any of the local events. IMO it was the worst maintained track on the local circuit.

velocitygear

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8/11/2013 7:25 PM

MX455 wrote: Absolutely. It's crazy how many people can't understand this.

velocitygear wrote: So, the promoter who was "forced out" offered 1/2 of market value for the Wick, was turned down and that's the reason theres no Southwick?

It can't be that cut and dry, can it? Please provide details....

MX455 wrote: There are many reason that there is no National but the "promoters being forced out" is NOT the reason. They had a great deal for many years and didn't want to pay up when the lease ended. If the lease was that bad why were so many people lining up to take over? I think it's BS that DC puts it out there the way he does. Aside from the pits being moved the track hasn't had any major changes or improvements. Yes the track is ok for the national but I would rather ride my local sand pit than race there for any of the local events. IMO it was the worst maintained track on the local circuit.

I'll give DC a chance to give it to us like it is, otherwise I'll call it like it is! Not responding will speak volumes, so we'll see.

In terms of normal track days, I can't go there. I think that's common? I visited Hangtown last year and was utterly amazed at how the facility "is". Our local track up here in the middle of nowhere (in relation to the Industry) was to my surprise, superior. We have a great facility, grass, benches and overall much better looking than Hangtown doing "normal days".




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Trav138

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8/11/2013 7:52 PM

I would say the new promoter is more than qualified. So DC is buthurt that ralph and diane didn't want to pay a fair price to the legion and were "forced out". as a result the new promoter won't even be considered for years.

This is such a big FU to motocross fans. So much of this Southwick story is complete bullshit. What it comes down to is mx sports wants another facility. One that will "grow the sport" and this was a perfect opportunity. His game he can do what he wants. Why not just say what the intentions were from day one of this bullshit.

dboivin

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8/11/2013 7:59 PM
Edited Date/Time: 8/11/2013 8:00 PM

velocitygear wrote: So, the promoter who was "forced out" offered 1/2 of market value for the Wick, was turned down and that's the reason theres no Southwick?

It can't be that cut and dry, can it? Please provide details....

MX455 wrote: There are many reason that there is no National but the "promoters being forced out" is NOT the reason. They had a great deal for many years and didn't want to pay up when the lease ended. If the lease was that bad why were so many people lining up to take over? I think it's BS that DC puts it out there the way he does. Aside from the pits being moved the track hasn't had any major changes or improvements. Yes the track is ok for the national but I would rather ride my local sand pit than race there for any of the local events. IMO it was the worst maintained track on the local circuit.

velocitygear wrote: I'll give DC a chance to give it to us like it is, otherwise I'll call it like it is! Not responding will speak volumes, so we'll see.

In terms of normal track days, I can't go there. I think that's common? I visited Hangtown last year and was utterly amazed at how the facility "is". Our local track up here in the middle of nowhere (in relation to the Industry) was to my surprise, superior. We have a great facility, grass, benches and overall much better looking than Hangtown doing "normal days".

velocity, you need to search up the other thread. all the details were debated over there with DC also posting in it multiple times. Heckling him in this thread to answer your questions isn't really doing anything besides stating how uninformed you on the situation. theres a multipage thread on southwick with all the details in it, just search for it.
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