Erik Kehoe returns to HRC Honda, Dan Betley to Geico Honda, Mike Larocco steps down...

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8/11/2017 4:10 PM

Well, I didn't see this one coming....looks like HRC and GEICO's relationship is getting stronger in a sense.


Aug 11, 2017 - TORRANCE, Calif.
American Honda Motor Co., Inc. announced today a number of changes regarding management of the Team Honda HRC and GEICO Honda race squads, which respectively handle the company's official 450cc and 250cc AMA Supercross/Motocross racing efforts.

Erik Kehoe will return to American Honda as the Team Manager of Team Honda HRC. A former professional racer and Honda satellite-team manager, Kehoe previously managed Honda's in-house AMA Supercross/Motocross team between 2002 and 2012.

Current Team Honda HRC manager Dan Betley will move to the Factory Connection-run GEICO Honda squad, where he will serve as Team Manager. Betley replaces two-time AMA Motocross National Champion Mike LaRocco, who has spent nearly two decades with the GEICO Honda squad, first as a rider and then as a manager. A former Team Honda mechanic, Betley has considerable technical expertise that will be useful as Factory Connection helps Honda develop the all-new 2018 CRF250R, which shares much of its chassis with the CRF450R. With Honda Racing Corporation becoming more involved with the GEICO 250cc racing effort, Betley's HRC relationships will be very valuable.

All changes become effective at the conclusion of the 2017 AMA Pro Motocross series.

Takashi "Sam" Mishima: Manager of Motorcycle Sports, American Honda
"We're excited to implement these new managerial changes along with Factory Connection. Erik has close ties with Honda, having managed the factory team to five AMA Championships. By bringing our two organizations closer together, we'll be able to more effectively carry out development of new models. American Honda and HRC are both becoming more involved with the 250cc racing effort, so moving Dan to the GEICO Honda team will be a great utilization of his development skills."

Erik Kehoe
"I have a lot of history and good memories with Honda, and it's nice to be reconnecting with such a great company and team. I was fortunate enough to be able to take some time off, which gave me the opportunity to work on some family things. I'm a racer at heart though, and I've probably looked at lap times every single weekend since I left! Now I'm in a different place, and I'm appreciative of having the opportunity to come back into the team. I know how talented Kenny Roczen and Cole Seely are, and I'm very excited about getting to work with them. I'm also looking forward to working with Dan again in his new role at GEICO Honda. I can't wait to get started."

Rick Zielfelder: Founder, Factory Connection
"These changes were sparked from a technical agenda to align our two companies. Given the chassis similarities between the CRF250R and CRF450R, Factory Connection having greater technical cooperation with Honda will help us to be more competitive as a team. Dan is obviously a tremendous choice for us, and we're very pleased to have him be the guy that will lead this effort on our side. We've got a 20-year relationship with Mike, and in many ways he's responsible for putting our team on the map. We'll forever be grateful for that, and he will always be a friend and a resource."

Dan Betley
"I'm looking forward to this new challenge in my career. My goals for the Factory Connection program are no different than my goals have been with Team Honda HRC. GEICO Honda has already been an incredibly successful team, so I'd like to continue that by winning races and more championships. I also see myself as the bridge between American Honda, HRC, and Factory Connection, which will help improve the flow of information in order to make us all an even more cohesive group. I've always enjoyed working on the technical side too, so I'm excited to help develop the all-new CRF250R into a race-winning machine. Although we'll still be in close contact, I'm really going to miss the relationships that I've built with all the team members and riders at American Honda, but they're still in great hands with Erik returning as team manger. I think it's going to be a very smooth and successful transition for everyone."

Mike LaRocco
"When I took on the GEICO Honda manager position in 2010, I thought I'd give it a try and see if I could use my previous race experience to guide the team. I definitely learned a lot being on the other side of the fence. As a rider, you never really know how much goes into getting a team this size to the races. There are a lot of moving parts, and I feel like the team can get to another level by aligning with American Honda like this. When I originally committed to this position, I figured I'd give it five years and see where I was at then. It's been seven years and the team is in a great position, so I'd like to explore what's next. It was a great experience! I've been with these guys in some form since the fall of 1997. I love them, and I'm sure I'll miss it."

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8/11/2017 4:13 PM

shocked
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8/11/2017 4:15 PM

WOW. Stoked for Kehoe. Bummed For LaRocco.

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8/11/2017 4:20 PM
Edited Date/Time: 8/11/2017 4:22 PM

That is really long. But what is Mike doing now? Was it a mutual break? That is some bummer news really.

Edit : Looks like Mike wanted to leave I guess. Hmm? Another team in development?

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And there goes Jeffro. One of God's own prototypes. A super high-powered mutant of some kind never even considered for mass production. Too weird to live, and too rare to die.

Pimpin' Ho's , Rollin' fatty's......drinkin' beers , beers , beers!! ~ Ja

8/11/2017 4:25 PM

Wow big moves!

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8/11/2017 4:34 PM

It looks like Honda is serious about getting back to the #1 spot with championships in the near future. Hope Mike the best on his future endeavors as I've always been a fan of Mike... Old school bull dog riding style when he was racing.

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Speak softly and carry a big stick.

8/11/2017 5:03 PM

The Rock to a JGR 250 team maybe?

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8/11/2017 5:05 PM

I think The Rock might want to spend more time at home.

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8/11/2017 5:10 PM

I'm not surprised at all. I wish the best for Mike in whatever he does next.

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8/11/2017 5:16 PM

Larocco had a great 7 year run at the helm of Geico! Go retire Rock! You deserve it!

On another note, those Geico/FC CRF250s are going to be extra tasty and blingy next year with some more HRC involvement and the new chassis!

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8/11/2017 6:51 PM
Edited Date/Time: 8/11/2017 6:52 PM

Mike did a great job with the team, and even being a huge fan of his, I never expected this level of success for him in the management capacity. Well done, and I'm sure he's looking forward to the next stage of life.

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8/11/2017 6:54 PM

hhhmmmmmm.... Wonder if the Rock wants to race the MXDN? I here there is a problem finding healthy USA team members whistling

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My favorite rider is K.C Carlyle

8/11/2017 6:59 PM

What has Kehoe been up to since leaving Honda. Always seemed like one cool guy.








































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8/11/2017 7:02 PM

Photo
I liked his last supercross win. Pretty darned cool.
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"If you are going through HELL, keep going."-Winston Churchill
"A man needs a little madness or else he never dares cut the rope and be free"-Zorba
Blur the technicolor

8/11/2017 7:26 PM

If you go back to the interview with Dan when they signed Roczen, he said it was his job on the line if it didn't pan out. Wonder if this is the result?

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8/11/2017 7:29 PM

Sounds like Dan is a little bummed to be moved.

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8/11/2017 7:36 PM

jeffro503 wrote:

That is really long. But what is Mike doing now? Was it a mutual break? That is some bummer news really.

Edit : Looks like Mike wanted to leave I guess. Hmm? Another team in development?

It's not long. It's the whole scoop. All of the info. Rather than picking and choosing what we should know. Ever read a newspaper?

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"If you are going through HELL, keep going."-Winston Churchill
"A man needs a little madness or else he never dares cut the rope and be free"-Zorba
Blur the technicolor

8/11/2017 7:39 PM

jeeeezus, is it me , or did kehoe not age well?

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8/11/2017 7:44 PM

pete24 wrote:

jeeeezus, is it me , or did kehoe not age well?

Why do you say that? Interesting changes for sure

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8/11/2017 7:51 PM



Kehoe and Barcia were tight?

Kehoe will need to make a decision about Kenny being 100% by A1 2018 around Aug 2017?

Lot's of bonus money left on the table from Kenny's accident, maybe some budget money for Barcia to return home to Honda?

Who was the main person against Barcia at Honda? Was is Betley?

Barcia just said on DMXS he had no deal yet for 2018, I am just speculating and hoping.



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8/11/2017 7:54 PM

pete24 wrote:

jeeeezus, is it me , or did kehoe not age well?

JRT812 wrote:

Why do you say that? Interesting changes for sure

When I turned 50 I became the offspring of the grimm reaper and Iron Maiden .

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"If you are going through HELL, keep going."-Winston Churchill
"A man needs a little madness or else he never dares cut the rope and be free"-Zorba
Blur the technicolor

8/11/2017 7:54 PM

FeetUp wrote:

hhhmmmmmm.... Wonder if the Rock wants to race the MXDN? I here there is a problem finding healthy USA team members whistling

That's what I was thinking when I saw the headline.
Send LaRocco!!

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8/11/2017 7:58 PM

speed_racer wrote:

Kehoe and Barcia were tight?

Kehoe will need to make a decision about Kenny being 100% by A1 2018 around Aug 2017?

Lot's of bonus money left on the table from Kenny's accident, maybe some budget money for Barcia to return home to Honda?

Who was the main person against Barcia at Honda? Was is Betley?

Barcia just said on DMXS he had no deal yet for 2018, I am just speculating and hoping.



Kenny on a KTM.

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"If you are going through HELL, keep going."-Winston Churchill
"A man needs a little madness or else he never dares cut the rope and be free"-Zorba
Blur the technicolor

8/11/2017 8:20 PM

pete24 wrote:

jeeeezus, is it me , or did kehoe not age well?

JRT812 wrote:

Why do you say that? Interesting changes for sure

cuz he used to look like peter north, now he looks like et

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8/11/2017 8:45 PM

"changes in management" and "Larocco steps down" ? wow, that's quite the coincidence that those two things happened at exactly the same time.....i mean, give me a break.

It would appear that Larocco got shitcanned. He might be embarrassed and thats why he plays it off like he was done there. being fired is being fired, I dont care how carefully you wrap it up in a bow for the media. it sucks to know you are no longer valued somewhere. Bummed for Mike, but he's a stalwart amongst us, and I imagine he'll be just fine. I hope he stays in the moto industry though.

and about Gieco Honda...I think they certainly deserve whatever support HRC gives them, and I appreciate Gieco for being one of the greatest outside, corporate sponsors of American motocross.

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8/11/2017 9:28 PM

pete24 wrote:

jeeeezus, is it me , or did kehoe not age well?

JRT812 wrote:

Why do you say that? Interesting changes for sure

pete24 wrote:

cuz he used to look like peter north, now he looks like et

Well at least he doesn't look like a dick wrinkle.

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"If you are going through HELL, keep going."-Winston Churchill
"A man needs a little madness or else he never dares cut the rope and be free"-Zorba
Blur the technicolor

8/11/2017 9:50 PM

Ruh Roh! ermm

Don't look now, but...

Big Red ain't playin' no more!

Buy yen while it's still low. devil

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I ripped a start from Egypt and I was happy about that.

8/11/2017 9:52 PM

newmann wrote:

What has Kehoe been up to since leaving Honda. Always seemed like one cool guy.








































He's been secretly building air-cooled red 2-stroke engines.

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I ripped a start from Egypt and I was happy about that.