Wednesday, October 11, 2017

New Hashtags

The 2017 season is over and as silly season winds down and things begin to fall in to place for 2018, the number list has been released. The talk has been Adam Cianciarulo throwing it back to his amateur days by taking a career number 92. Malcolm Stewart didn't race the outdoor series but could his new number mean that we'll see a Team 2SEVEN in 2018? Zach Osborne had his shot at a single digit with his SX and MX Championships, but he seems to be happy with how his setup looked and will keep the 16 for the remainder of his career. We went through and picked out a few well deserving privateers who will be sporting a double digit in 2018. 

#37 Fredrik Norén
Although he only moved up just a few spots from number 40, Fredrik may have put in his most impressive season. He's had help in the past and landed fill in rides at Factory Honda. This year he managed to put a 250 into a 450 Supercross main event before making 7 of the 9 250 East Coast Championship mains. Outdoors he'd take his yellow van across country and score points in all but one moto, ending the season with 5 top 10 moto finishes.

#48 Henry Miller 
For any rider with a double digit in 2017, "The Mayor" made the biggest jump. He'd move up 33 spots from number 81. Making 6 of 9 250 East main events with a season beat 11th in Indianapolis. During the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championships, Miller would make the move to the 450 class at Round 5 and be quick to make an impact. Scoring points at every round he'd enter on his Triggr Racing Yamaha YZ450F. A 9th place finish would match his season best moto score at both Southwick and Spring Creek. 

#57 John Short
The Pilot Point, Texas native backed up a successful 2016 with an even better 2017. Riding the 250 East rounds of the Monster Energy Supercross Series, Short made 3 main events. His season best finish came in Indianapolis with a 13th. Outdoors he'd make the move to the 450 class and go on to score 70 points over the series.

#61 Heath Harrison 
After really opening some eyes last season, Harrison found himself under the Cycle Trader/Rock River tent come Supercross. Taking some time to adapt to the Yamaha 250, he'd end the series with 3 main events and a season best 10th in Oakland. With a bit of an up and down outdoors, we'd eventually see the number 68 back on his familiar KTM 450. Harrison would go on to score 55 points over the series. His best finish came early at Glen Helen with a 13th.

#75 Noah McConahy 
Although the number went backwards from his 2017 number 59, this will mark Noah's 3rd straight double digit. Even more impressive considering the season Noah really had. After a rough first 2 rounds amongst the 250 West competition, he'd find his grove. Making 5 main events before having the remainder of his 2017 season cut short. A crash left Noah in need of wrist and back surgery. Six months later and 2018 Supercross prep has begun.

#82 Cody Williams
The 677 Yamaha just always seemed to be lurking near the points. After making one 250 East main event, Williams would go on to score 23 points in the 250 class during the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championships. Making the show at every round except Tennessee, a season best moto finish of 16th came in moto 1 at Budds Creek.

#91 Alex Ray
It was for the most part a Supercross only season for the 314. A season of mass improvement, 9 main events and 17 points scored. The season started on a Privateer Husqvarna until Tommy Hahn's early retirement opened a 450 spot with Cycle Trader/Rock River. A-Ray would show up to one round of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championships and he'd soon regret that decision. He'd have to score points or be on the losing end of a bet with new training partner, Davi Millsaps. Well....

#95 Joey Crown
The 3 time Loretta Lynn's champion was fresh off a 2nd overall in the Open Pro Sport class at The Ranch when he made his professional debut at Unadilla. Scoring points in all but one moto that he'd enter would earn the Michigan native his first career national number as he preps for his rookie year. The long time Kawasaki rider said "if 95 is good enough for Lightning McQueen, it's good enough for me."

#96 Zack Williams 
After riding the 250 East class in Supercross, with a series best 16th in Detroit, Williams would make the switch to a 450 outdoors. Going 18-18 at Thunder Valley would be topped with a 17th in moto 2 at Spring Creek.  

Keep an eye on these double digits and of course #cheerprivateer

Here is the full list. Freshen up, Supercross is right around the corner.

2018 Top 100 and Career Pro Numbers for AMA Supercross and Motocross
* Career Numbers
** New Career Number for 2018
1 - 450MX Eli Tomac
1 - 250MX Zach Osborne
1 - 450SX Ryan Dungey
1 - 250SX West Justin Hill
1 - 250SX East Zach Osborne
2* Cooper Webb
3* Eli Tomac
4* Blake Baggett
5* Ryan Dungey
6* Jeremy Martin
7* James Stewart
10* Justin Brayton
11* Kyle Chisholm
12* Jake Weimer
14* Cole Seely
15* Dean Wilson
16* Zach Osborne
17* Joey Savatgy
18* David Millsaps
19* Justin Bogle
20* Broc Tickle
21* Jason Anderson
22* Chad Reed
23* Aaron Plessinger
24 Dylan Ferrandis
25* Marvin Musquin
26* Alex Martin
27** Malcolm Stewart
28 Shane McElrath
29 Martin Davalos
30 Mitchell Harrison
31 Colt Nichols
32 Christian Craig
33* Josh Grant
34 Weston Peick
35 Austin Forkner
36 RJ Hampshire
37 Fredrik Noren
38 Luke Renzland
39 Kyle Cunningham
40 Chase Sexton
41* Trey Canard
42 Dakota Alix
43 Sean Cantrell
44 Lorenzo Locurcio
45 Jordon Smith
46** Justin Hill
47 Jimmy Decotis
48 Henry Miller
49 Nick Gaines
50 Dan Reardon
51* Justin Barcia
52 Mitchell Oldenburg
53 Bradley Taft
54 Phil Nicoletti
55 Vince Friese
56 Anthony Rodriguez
57 John Short
58 Matt Bisceglia
59 Cole Martinez
60 Benny Bloss
61 Heath Harrison
62 Justin Cooper
63 Hayden Mellross
64 Michael Mosiman
65 Gannon Audette
66 Cameron McAdoo
67 Justin Hoeft
68 Justin Starling
69 Tyler Bowers
70 Jesse Wentland
71 Josh Mosiman
72 Josh Hansen
73 Brandon Scharer
74 Jon Ames
75 Noah McConahy
76 Kyle Peters
77 Ryan Surratt
78 Ronnie Stewart
79 Nick Schmidt
80 AJ Catanzaro
81 Chase Marquier
82 Cody Williams
83 Cole Thompson
84 Scott Champion
85 Joshua Cartwright
86 Dylan Merriam
87 Dylan Wright
88 Paul Coates
89 Jerry Robin
90 Dakota Tedder
91 Alex Ray
92** Adam Cianciarulo
93 Mark Worth
94* Ken Roczen
95 Joey Crown
96 Zack Williams
97 Cade Clason
98 Ryan Sipes
99 Dillan Epstein

800* Mike Alessi

-Kyle Pesci

The 2018 FXR gear line is out now. Click the banner below to browse.

The Others...Ironman

The final round of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championships came in to Crawfordsville, Indiana with a 450 Champion to crown. Three guys had a shot and one man was there to play spoiler.

Photo: Kyle Pesci
As soon as the green flag flew on practice, there was only one thing being discussed. "This Jeffrey Herlings is for real." Wow.... that's it. The guy left the Netherlands and came over just days before the round to prepare for the upcoming USGP in Florida. A last minute decision to race Ironman as a chance to acclimate himself to America turned in to a fastest qualifying and 1-1 moto score kind of day. 

Behind Herlings it'd be the Kawasaki of Eli Tomac doing what needed to be done to win his first 450 motocross championship. The daily results may not have been as liked (5-6) but the outcome remained the same and a champion, Tomac became. 

Photo: Kyle Pesci
The premier class would see an orange sweep as KTM riders of three separate teams Jeffrey Herlings, Marvin Musquin and Blake Baggett would respectively take the podium in the same order in both motos and the overalls.

Already crowned the 250 class champion, Zach Osborne was not done. The Husqvarna rider would go 1-1 for the overall victory with Adam Cianciarulo and Colt Nichols in tow to round out the podium.

Impressive rides by Nick Gaines, who scored a 10th in moto 2 onboard his Traders Yamaha and the number 105 of Steven Clarke who showed some serious speed but had lackluster results. We'd also like to note a top 10 qualifying time by Hunter Sayles on his number 367 KTM.

And now...The Others

  1. 105 Steven Clarke
  2. 231 Jayce Pennington 
  3. 355 Joey Crown
  4. 677 Cody Williams
  5. 570 Cody VanBuskirk
  6. 332 Jeremy Hand
  7. 130 Austin Root
  8. 645 Cheyenne Harmon 
  9. 904 Jarett Pesci
  10. 325 Cody Chisholm
  11. 700 Jimmy Weeks
  12. 924 Greg Durivage
  13. 716 Timothy Crosby 
  14. 421 Jesse Kirchmeyer
  15. 986 Lane Shaw
  16. 449 Dakota Kessler
  17. 202 Luke Hempen
  18. 509 Alex Nagy
  19. 657 Justin Wolf
  20. 731 Steve Roman
  21. 367 Hunter Sayles

  1. 77 Ben LaMay
  2. 125 Josh Mosiman
  3. 68 Heath Harrison 
  4. 921 Isaac Teasdale 
  5. 170 Zack Williams
  6. 718 Toshiki Tomita 
  7. 412 Jared Lesher
  8. 96 Vann Martin
  9. 606 Ronnie Stewart 
  10. 151 Dakota Tedder
  11. 351 Eric Grondahl 
  12. 993 Austin Wagner
  13. 270 Jacob Runkles 
  14. 154 Brandon Scharer 
  15. 282 Bubba Pauli
  16. 708 Joesph Perron
  17. 918 Michael Akaydin 
  18. 975 Jake Loberg
  19. 401 Samuel Redman
  20. 596 Carson Tickle
  21. 265 Nick Fratz-Orr

That's it for the 2017 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championships and now the wait is on for Monster Energy Supercross. Riders will switch teams, numbers will change and we will have some off season races starting with the Motocross Des Nations, followed up by the Monster Energy Cup.

-Kyle Pesci

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Thursday, August 24, 2017

Off the Track...Zach Eller

When the gate drops the entire race is put into the hands of the rider. No excuses, no second chances. There becomes only one form of communication. Whether it be a 20 minute Main Event or a 30 plus 2  moto, a rider only gets a quick glance at any encouragement, motivation or strategy. A rider forms a special bond with their mechanic who becomes their lifeline to anything outside of the tunnel vision it takes to perform at the professional level.

A kid growing up in Washington, New Jersey who raced quads until the age of 18 doesn't really seem like your typical moto fanatic. A love of the sport at the highest level meant Zach Eller may have to do whatever it took to be involved, even if he wouldn't be the one piloting the machine. "I figured I wouldn't be able to race on that level, so why not work on the bikes at that level." Eller would turn to the life of a professional mechanic in 2015 after always being his friends go to wrench for everything from cars to moto. 

Photo: Kyle Pesci

You'll find Zach under the MicroBilt / PRBC / Yoshimura / Suzuki rig, turning the wrenches for Ronnie Stewart. The two have formed a bond and a trust. They've had their lows but have shared many highs, including earning national numbers and a first career 450 Supercross Main Event. A feat that Eller considers a career highlight in his book.

The hectic schedule means less time to personally swing a leg over the bike however, Zach still has his 2014 Yamaha YZ250 two stroke. You won't see him twisting the throttle though, the 62 machine is equipped with a thumb throttle. It all started during his first attempt at two wheels. The lifelong ATV rider would grab to much and find out the real meaning of whiskey throttle and be sidelined with a broken collarbone. "I said screw this, I'm putting a thumb throttle on. Everyone loves the thumb throttle!"

Photo provided by Zach Eller

The now 22 year old has had another season of what dreams are made of. Supercross main events, 450 outdoor top 20's and traveling the country. Along with Nathan McNair, Zach also gets the rig from round to round. No real place to call home although he does plan on buying a camper and moving to Florida for the off season. Zach has been able to familiarize himself with The Sunshine State as Ronnie trains at the El Chupacabra Ranch of Blake Baggett. "They welcomed us with open arms." It's been a program beneficial to not just Ronnie. Having Blakes mechanic Nate around has been a great learning experience for Eller as well. 

Eller has also been treated to a season of things only a mechanic would say they look forward to. He claims there's nothing better than building a bike from scratch after a muddy outdoor race. He's had his share of rain this season! The season will also wrap up at his personal favorite track, Ironman in Indiana. 

A down to earth guy who really loves coffee and dirt bikes is Zach Eller. When you're at the races, stop by the rig and say hello. I continually learn that these mechanics are some of the nicest guys around. They've also got a lot on their plate and are for sure overlooked in the pits. Zach is one of the best but you can still make fun of his thumb throttle.

Follow Zach on Instagram: @zacheller62

-Kyle Pesci 

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