Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Ride, Record, Repeat...Jeff Walker

A friend from the baseball world told me “if you are not taking video regularly, you are wasting a huge opportunity to make improvements.” We are lucky to live in a time where there are great amounts of technology at our disposal that are aimed at training. Heart rate monitors, cameras and GPS devices such as the LITPro, Polar and GoPro cameras have all become the norm is motocross riding.

Ottawa Lake, Michigan native Jeff Walker is a privateer taking full advantage of the resources at hand. Entering his fifth year at the professional level, Walker is looking to build off of a career best season. The 23 year old has made a second home in Estero, Florida while attending Florida Gulf Coast University. Holding down a 3.8 GPA in Pre-Professional Biology and minoring in Chemistry keeps Walker busy. When he finds time to train and ride, it is often alone. This had him looking for advantages he’d be able to utilize himself.

Jeff Walker navigating the mud during the 2018 Ironman Pro National | Photo: Diffysmooth

Chasing a dream that began as a 4 year old kid on a Yamaha PW50 and grew as an amateur spinning laps on his favorite track, RedBud, Jeff wasn’t always the fastest Walker at the track. His brother Tim was leading the way before hanging up the boots to chase his love for aviation and begin a career with NASA. Jeff must have been watching big brother closely as he would quickly progress on big bikes. He’d work his way from a mid pack C rider to one of Michigan’s top A class racers.

With the launch of the latest GoPro model, it just made sense to have one as a training tool. “I could watch back some footage and see what I was doing right and where I could improve.” As riding footage piled up on his memory card, Jeff would post videos to his YouTube account before deleting so he’d still have them accessible. As YouTubers started searching riding videos, the Jeff Walker page was seeing more and more clicks. The number 841 Honda was gaining attention in a way that he had never imagined. Requests began to pour in for more videos and the page subscribers started to rise and rise. Recognition is one of the hardest things to get in this sport and for Jeff Walker it nearly happened over night. A Vlogger was born and  his page is now over 25,000 subscribers, while videos see views in the hundreds of thousands.

A familiar view from Walker's vlog 

Building off of 2018 and his 11th place Moto 1 finish at the Ironman Pro National, Walker has set his goals on racing the entire Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship Series in the 250 class. He’d like to prove his consistency as a top 20 guy and score enough points to earn a double digit number. Even with the aggressive nature of the 250 field, Walker looks smooth at speed. “I can push my edges while being in control and not getting sketchy.” It’s a strong suit that tends to remind you a lot of Kevin Windham or Cole Seely. 

You can follow Jeff Walker on Instagram @JeffWalker84 and of course subscribe to his YouTube at www.youtube.com/c/jeffwalkermx

Jeff Walker has figured out a niche that may have been missing from the sport. Yes other top riders like Adam Cianciarulo have taken to vlogging to give us fans a behind the scenes look, but Walker is nailing it with content that the weekend warrior riders and fans can relate to. His tech tips, consistent lap times and bike comparisons are great content. We urge you to #cheerprivateer for the number 841 Honda this coming season. Backed by Championship Powersports, Yoshimura, Bell Helmets, MGX Unlimited, Pro Taper, 100 %, MX Locker and Mobius Braces. Jeff Walker will be one to watch on YouTube and on the track! 


-Kyle Pesci
#cheerprivateer







Tuesday, February 26, 2019

The Others...Motor City Triple Crown

Detroit, Michigan played host to Round 8 of the Monster Energy Supercross Championships and it was a bittersweet one for me. Triple Crown action provides possibly the most entertaining races of the season and it’s my hometown race! The downfall for me...it’s a real struggle for privateers.




A top 18 time is what you need to transfer directly to the 3 Main Event format. The LCQ race provides the final 4 spots in the show, the rest of the field will be heading home before opening ceremonies even kick off. On a good note, FELD does payout the LCQ’s as they do in the standard racing format. 
Probably the biggest victim to the Triple Crown qualifying was hometown favorite Joey Crown. The number 89 CTR Yamaha rider was looking for his first Main Event of the 250 East series and would miss out on time by .002. A bobble in the LCQ would then end his night early. Surely not the night he’d been hoping for, but a step in the right direction during his rookie Monster Energy Supercross season.

Rider: Joey Crown | Photo: 309 Photography

Austin Forkner continues his season of dominance in the 250 class. The Pro Circuit Kawasaki rider has lead every single lap of Main Events thus far. His 3 Main Event sweep has extended his points lead to 13 over KTM rider Jordan Smith. Smith would finish with 2-2-4 scores for second overall. Geico Honda’s Chase Sexton had the speed and starts to give Forkner a run but small mistakes and constant struggles with the double before the finish line cost him more and more with each passing lap. He’d go on to finish third overall.

The 450 class seemed to be under the control of Eli Tomac’s Kawasaki for the night until the third Main Event. After going 1-1, Tomac would find himself outside the top 10 at the start of Main Event 3. Rocky Mountain ATV/MC KTM backed Blake Baggett got out front early before a move by Justin Barcia. Baggett would then put down the the fastest lap of the night with a 47.520 as he made a charge back towards the front and close in on eventual winner, Cooper Webb. It got good towards the end of Main Event 3. A couple of last lap moves would secure the overall for Tomac and third overall for JGR Suzuki’s Chad Reed. Cooper Webb would finish second overall and extend his points lead to six.

Chris Bloss had been competing in the 250 West Championship but decided to stay in race mode as a full privateer and contest the 450 class. The number 111 has seen success in the former Arenacross series and seemed comfortable with the faster paced races of the Triple Crown. After qualifying 17th fastest, Blose’s  consistency aboard his Husqvarna earned him 15th overall.

A practice injury to Honda’s Cole Seely would see him sitting this week out and allow 5th place 450 LCQ finIsher Cole Martinez a transfer into the nights Main Events. A little luck for the Leatt and GoPro backed privateer.

And now...The Others

250
  1. 401 Samual Redman 
  2. 90 Jeremy Hand
  3. 725 Richard Jackson 
  4. 407 Ben Nelko
  5. 125 Luke Neese
  6. 305 Hunter Hilton
  7. 914 Brice Klippel 
  8. 332 Dustin Winter
  9. 285 Marshal Weltin
  10. 795 Aaron Leininger
  11. 700 James Weeks
  12. 434 Parker Fleming
  13. 392 Michael Fowler  
  14. 996 Preston Taylor
  15. 89 Joey Crown
  16. 986 Lane Shaw 
  17. 116 TJ Albright
  18. 197 Dillon Cloyed

450
  1. 71 Cole Martinez
  2. 383 Casey Brennan 
  3. 723 Tyler Enticknap 
  4. 348 Joan Cros 
  5. 211 Tevin Tapia
  6. 412 Jared Lesher
  7. 282 Bubba Pauli 
  8. 313 Kyle Swanson
  9. 471 Logan Karnow 
  10. 393 Casey Brennan 
  11. 97 Adam Enticknap 
  12. 509 Alex Nagy 
  13. 606 Ronnie Stewart 
  14. 941 Angelo Pellegrini 
  15. 976 Josh Greco 
  16. 501 Scotty Wennerstrom 
  17. 62 Alex Ray
  18. 214 Vann Martin 

-Kyle Pesci

#cheerprivateer




Thursday, February 21, 2019

The Others...Arlington

Everything is bigger in Texas and that held true as Monster Energy Supercross took to AT&T Stadium I’m Arlington. This might be the most impressive stadium on tour and the racing inside was just as impressive.


I’m admittedly not a huge Ken Roczen fan, but how can you not be a fan of his story. His returns to racing after two possible career ending injuries has been nothing short of amazing and I am looking forward  to a Main Event win to put the glass slipper on his Cinderella story. Roczen took his Heat Race win and was looking comfortable early in the 450 Main Event. A bobble by Eli Tomac left Roczen in control of the race until the very end. Cooper Webb spent the Main Event working his way towards the front and made a last ditch effort stick in the final turn. Webb claimed his fourth overall win of the season, while Roczen will have to wait a little longer to stand on that top step.

Alex Ray has now made 6 of the 7 450 Main Events aboard his HEP Suzuki. This week he led early in the LCQ and would finish behind Justin Barcia to stamp his ticket in to his sixth consecutive Main Event. Alex is currently sitting 20th in the points standings.

Rider: Alex Ray | Photo: Brandon Schlegel


And now....The Others

250
  1. 49 Henry Miller 
  2. 725 Richard Jackson 
  3. 112 Thomas Covington 
  4. 332 Dustin Winter
  5. 161 Justin Thompson 
  6. 89 Joey Crown
  7. 407 Ben Nelko
  8. 996 Preston Taylor
  9. 986 Lane Shaw
  10. 98 Wilson Fleming
  11. 125 Luke Neese
  12. 131 Jayce Pennington 
  13. 700 James Weeks
  14. 96 Chase Marquier 
  15. 914 Brice Klippel 
  16. 401 Samual Redman 
  17. 305 Hunter Hilton
  18. 434 Parker Fleming

450
  1. 97 Adam Enticknap 
  2. 184 Scott Champion
  3. 54 Dylan Merriam 
  4. 383 Casey Brennan 
  5. 393 Daniel Herrlein 
  6. 313 Kyle Swanson
  7. 412 Jared Lesher
  8. 330 AJ Catanzaro 
  9. 282 Bubba Pauli 
  10. 214 Vann Martin 
  11. 471 Logan Karnow 
  12. 211 Tevin Tapia 
  13. 509 Alex Nagy 
  14. 137 Nick Desiderio
  15. 118 Cheyenne Harmon 
  16. 86 Ryan Breece 
  17. 43 Tyler Bowers
  18. 99 Austin Politelli

-Kyle Pesci

#cheerprivateer