Off-season? What off-season? The last few days have been busier than ever in the world of motocross, and we have a few cool nuggets of moto goodness to show off.

Vital Headlines

We've got plenty of off-season video for you to check out. Look for the links sprinkled throughout the story.

Have you seen the Vital MX video of Martin Davalos on his new Red Bull KTM? We got to watch him ride for a couple days last week, and the Ecuador native is still getting used to the new bike while living out of a motel in Temecula near KTM's headquarters. He's claiming that he's riding at 80%, and he's looking forward to heading back "home" to Georgia to start his serious training in preparation for an assault on the Supercross Lites West series. He said he's not as comfortable on the west coast hardpack as he is back home at the MTF in Georgia, but he still looked pretty darn good. Martin's also headed back to his real home soon, for a Latin American championship race.

Vital Headlines

Martin Davalos.

Actually, we saw him Martin on two different days, and on the first day he was wearing O'Neal gear, while on the second day he was in MSR garb. He's obviously still shopping his gear deal for '07.

Ohio's Michael Willard was also riding on the KTM track and make an appearance in the video. He's filling in with KTM as a test rider, since Michael Sleeter is still on the mend after his practice crash at the Jeremy McGrath Invitational. Willard will be KTM-mounted again in '07, and is looking to be on the line at A1 for the West series.

Ready to check that one out? Click here.

Another video treat from last week was seeing Jason Lawrence on his new Yamaha of Troy ride. Jason looks faster than ever on his new YZ250F, and is busily getting ready for the Bercy Supercross. Jason has taken his fair share of heat for his fun-loving nature, and that stuff's fine…as long as you're backing it up with solid results. He also knows that unless he turns in some results that this might be his last year. That's sobering indeed, but he knows what he has to do in '07. You can watch that video here.

Photo

Jason Lawrence, working on his starts with Dang.

We also got to check out a pair of intros last week. There was the '07 Yamaha YZ250F, which received a fair number of updates (you can see the video here, or the whole story here). Also very interesting was the track where Yamaha hosted the intro, an all-new facility called Milestone Ranch MX Park. The circuit used for the intro was very sandy, but looked well-designed and fun. It's also wedged between Riverside and San Bernardino, and looks like it will be equipped with lights, so there may be another option for after-work rides when the park opens for business in January. But in the meantime you can check out the video, or Milestone's web site at www.milestonemx.com.

Photo

Doug Dubach and David Pingree duking it out on the new Milestone Ranch MX Park track.

We were also pretty psyched to see longtime Yamaha test rider Doug "Dr. D" Dubach's goon session at the end of the day, and his willingness to call out David Vuillemin in a Goon Challenge. You can watch that one here. Doug's one-footed stiffie panic-rev to whiplash landing/wheelie, and roosting slide was pretty spicy indeed.

So will the Goon Challenge happen? We'll have to wait and see. Maybe after DV returns from the Sheffield SX, where he topped the big-bore field, ahead of Jason Thomas and Gordon Crockard. "Lightening" Mike Alessi was the winner of the Lites class ahead of Colton Facciotti and Neville Bradshaw.

DV's international tour will continue over the next couple weeks, as he heads south of the border for the Tijuana Open Supercross. Nathan Ramsey, Erick Vallejo, and Eric Sorby are also among those who we've heard may be in attendance. For more information, check out the Tijuana Open web site.

Following that? DV is headed for Paris, and the Bercy SX. There's nothing quite like getting paid in Pounds, Pesos, and Francs on consecutive weeks.

For those who hadn't heard, Derek Sorenson had left his old gig at KTM, and his brother (and Chad Reed's former mechanic) Darrin (AKA "Rookie), has joined the KTM squad where he'll be working on suspension components. Since Derek already had a couple team shirts with D Sorenson on them, Rookie got hooked up with those at the U.S. Open.

So where did Derek move to? A new managerial spot with an old team that has a new name. He fired over an e-mail explaining, "The Richmond Kawasaki team has officially changed it's name to Cernic's Kawasaki.  We have recently come to an agreement with Jeff Cernic that we all hope will enable us to bring the team and the Cernic's name to a new level within the motocross industry.  Our two riders, Paul Carpenter and Jeff Gibson, will be competing in the 450 class on Kawasaki's in Supercross beginning at Toronto and will both be making a run for the top privateer of the year honors."

"Our summer outdoor program is still somewhat undecided but the team's first priority is to compete in the AMA outdoors...  more on that later."

Looking for other things to do this weekend? So Cal fans can check out the White Brothers Vet World Championships at Glen Helen (www.glenhelen.com), or for a artful blend of pavement and dirt, the Duel at the Docks AMA Supermoto Finals at the Queen Mary in Long Beach. (For more see www.troyleedesigns.com/teamtld/supermoto/queenmary.php)

If you're near Fresno, CA, you could check out the start of the BooKoo Arenacross series (www.racearenacross.com for more info. Or if you're anywhere near Des Moines, IA, you could/should take in the start of the AMA Toyota National Arenacross series (www.arenacross.com for all the details). This week has provided the usual flurry of team announcements for both sides, and you can check them out in the Press Release section on the homepage.

Rants

Posted by TB Team in his blog this week…

Dear AMA,
Wow... where do we start? It seems pretty amazing how quickly the industry reacted and made the 250 four-strokes equal to the 250 two-strokes...??? And all this time, you must have been just letting us get used to riding these newfangled four-strokes with a 125-200cc advantage over the other guys. We get it now! Your plan was to let us do well on the four-bangers, and THEN take away the displacement advantage AFTER we invested all the cash. Obviously a four-stroke 250 and a two-stroke 250 are identical. Oh, now we understand.
Well, at least you don't have strict enough rules on the exhaust noise. That way the sport can be attacked by every non-rider on the planet for only one good reason. We don't even have to talk about Gopher Tortoises and other nearly extinct animals anymore. The noise is a good enough reason to ban us.

Seriously... can you actually see the inside of your large intestine with your heads wedged that far up there?

Rumors of the Week

  • We've heard that in the past, Davi Millsaps wasn't a huge fan of knee braces, and worried that that they might be a co-conspirator when it came to broken femurs. Well, he was apparently wearing a brace on that side when he recently broke his femur. He's also talking about returning in time for A1 and the start of the 2007 AMA Supercross season. Here's hoping that he can pull it off, and it's not just the painkillers talking.
  • Is it possible that Rockstar Energy's sponsorship in SX/MX world might extend to more than just the U.S. Open or WBR Suzuki team for '07?

Have you got a worthwhile rumor or news that the world needs to see and hear about? You can always get in touch with us here...and thanks for reading.

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