The fourth weekend of September, 2014, didn't go so well for Team USA at the Monster Energy Motocross Des Nations, in Kegums, Latvia. (Yes, I still refuse to go by the "OF" part of the current title, it's "DES", dammit). Sadly, we finished third (3rd). So now (still can't believe I'm doing this), I'm asking for The Man himself, Roger DeCoster, to step down as current and reigning Team USA Motocross Manager, or, be fired. Yes, terminated.

But wait, there's more, much more. I'm asking that the AMA's official rep at these events, Kevin Crowther, be fired, as well. In fact, if you've been a part or member of the TEAM USA contingent over the last three (3) years, whether it was at the recent loss in Kegums, the 2013 loss at Teutschenthal, Germany – or, the 2012 sand-blasting at Lommel, Belgium, WE, the Motocross People (the fans) – need you to step down and AWAY from the team. I don't care if you were a simple baggage handler, security, an MX Sports employee, an AMA worker or, whoever, it's nothing personal, just business. No offense intended. ("None taken!") It is high time for a change. Losing three times in a row is simply too much and we cannot go on trying the same old routine, with the same old players, expecting different results.  Essentially, when we line up on the weekend of September 27, 2015, in Ernee, France, we'd like fresh team managers, staff and crew, NOBODY from the last few years, except, possibly – the riders themselves.

The Motocross Des Nations has been around since 1947. Team USA has won it more than anybody (twenty-two times) and, we are supposed to win. We have gotten used to it. WE started a streak in 1981 and won until 1993, every year – thirteen in a row (13)! Then we had some sporadic hits and misses before launching another series of victories that lasted from 2005-2011. And, therefore and regrettably, 2011 was our last win. It was in Italy, with a Mr. Villopoto, Mr. Baggett, and Mr. Dungey leading the way, to a star-spangled celebration. Flash to 2014, a few weeks back - France won this year, as we came in third (3rd)! In 2013, on German soil - Belgium beat us and we nailed down the second spot. Both Germany and Belgium slammed us big-time at that sandy monster of a Belgian circuit in 2012, as we fell hard at Lommel. It ain't been pretty, of late.

I've had a couple weeks to chill now and, I'm really not quite livid anymore, my anger mode has been reduced a code – down to level "Furious" and, I've decided, after consulting with a whole lot of luminaries, dignitaries and common motocross folk, that WE MUST demand change in the process and procedures in which the USA Team is selected, managed and, most importantly, how that weekend in France is executed. First off, heads must roll. I've been a fan and an admirer of Roger DeCoster for better than forty years now and, that utmost respect and worship-like admiration I've had for this amazing human, shall never waver. He is, and, will always be, The MAN. Hell, I even bought LaRocco's RM-250 practice bike (titanium sprocket bolts!) off his son, Nigel, and I hope we're still friends after he reads this. But, when the ship runs aground three years in a row, we have to expect, and demand - the captain's retirement papers. This is the case here, we desperately need a fresh new culture within TEAM USA, starting with the selection process, which, always seems to be cloaked in secrecy. Is there one man or a team of individuals that chooses the Golden Three?

Before I go any further, it should be mentioned that I HAVE ABSOLUTELY NO question that I consider the riders selected the last few years to be the right choices, for the time represented. And, it should go without saying that I am NOT questioning the work, desire or effort displayed by the young men we send to these International Motocross Olympics. In fact I applaud it, often in person, as I did in Lommel, and other locales. For years, it seemed that during that fantastic July 4th weekend in Red Bud, Michigan – the announcements would be presented as to WHO had made the prestigious cut, the three brave Americans we would be sending to the Motocross Des Nations, and we could all ponder our approval of the selectees, dream or make our travel plans, regarding the event. Of late, it seems like the riders are announced rather whimsically, haphazardly- if you will, later and later on in the racing calendar, giving but a few weeks for the riders, the teams and the fans, to prepare for this momentous occasion. In 2015, we MUST announce it at Red Bud, like we used to. Red, White and Blue at Red Bud, it's a natural, man. If injuries prevent someone from going, we bring a substitute, in fact, let us start bringing a back-up rider along, just for the halibut. Yes, halibut.

For 2015, Planet Earth's PRO MOTOCROSS calendar has thrown us a whoop-de-doo – a thirteen (13) millimeter T- handle, if you will – in the form of more wacky Youthstream Euro MXGP scheduling shenanigans. The Finale of the MXGP tour is on American turf, at Glen Helen Raceway in California - to be exact, yes, at the same brilliant circuit where OUR (Lucas Oils) series starts in 2015 – and, get this – The Motocross Des Nations goes down a week later, in France. So yeah, there's that. Our AMERICAN series, the Lucas Oils Pro Motocross Championships, finishes at the Crawfordsville, Indiana round, on August 22, 2015- almost a month earlier! So now, what do our teammates do? Go on vacation in Tahiti? Nope, we must have them training. And racing. And, the obvious query arises, do we have our three top-notch dudes race at Glen Helen in the GP? Oh hells to the YES. And, then, get on a plane to France Monday morning?

Again, hell YES.

Here is what WE are going to do:

1.   This spring, before the U.S. outdoor nationals have begun, a formal committee needs to be named, convened and, besides the regular grand pooh-bahs and distinguished umm, dignitaries assemble – we need to assure that MYSELF, the D.F.R (Designated FAN Representative), Mr. Ricky Johnson, Mr. Ricky Carmichael and Mr. David Bailey, are consulted and, included in on this committee and any other decisions – regarding TEAM USA.
2.   WE require and demand TRANSPARENCY in the selection process.
3.   We need to plan NOW the logistics and attack process for France. Hotels need to be booked, trackside RVs for the riders rented and, a test facility located. Testing Tuesday-Thursday. Friday rest.
4.   No distractions, we need the riders and their mechanics in a different hotel from the fans, the entourage and the general populace. No sightseeing, no parties, no fun until victory. Limited family visitation.
5.   WE need to approach 2015 in France as a destination for victory, not simply an overseas jaunt to see how our riders compare to the Europeans. We cannot and shall not lose another one. Enough is enough.
6.   TEAM USA uniforms for riders and team personnel shall be Red, White and Blue, with the American flag prominently represented. NO exceptions
7.   Prior to the event, a track similar in soil consistency and course layout should be located in the USA and the team will practice, tirelessly, at this facility - in the weeks after the Nationals.
8.   Corporate sponsorship shall be established to ensure the team has required travel and meal expenses.
9.   Timetables and schedules shall be developed, implemented and carried out with military-like precision and execution. Details.
10.   This is a U.S motocross mission and should and shall be treated as such. No more fun and games. We are going over there to win it all. No quarter shall be given. And no excuses will be rendered.

In conclusion, let me say that I don't take these firings lightly. I do realize feelings may be hurt, but the truth is, it is simply a business decision, we need to implement some profound and severe changes to our TEAM USA and the approaches they make in conducting operations, prior to, and, during these Motocross Des Nations, complacency and "Hey, we're on the podium" – ain't gonna cut it any more.

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