Today I was fortunate enough to catch up with RedBud’s Tim Ritchie on how things were going, and while it’s raining there now and early next week, the hope is that the forecast improve for July 4th. weekend. I also told him the same thing I said to my mom after Thunder Valley: get ready, because the fans are coming back, and there are going to be a lot of them! And RedBud deserves it, because last year they took not one but TWO for the team, hosting national championships on Friday and Monday of Labor Day weekend, with a limited number of spectators. , knowing they would lose money, but it would help keep the series and the teams intact during the pandemic. We had nine races and what seemed like a full series, and the only teams we lost were GEICO Honda and JGR Suzuki, although it was more about their inability to find new title sponsors after being informed in the midst of the worst time ever, 2020, that their respective previous sponsors would not return. (Fortunately, GasGas jumped into the fold as an OEM brand of motocross, under the leadership of the KTM group, and the Honda team got right back into the 250cc race, so it was kind of a push, depending on whether you had or not a half-full glass or a half-empty perspective.)
As for the High Point race, it was great to see Eli Tomac back in shape (at least in the second race) as well as Adam Cianciarulo, who almost saw his first race victory ripped off with a crazy moment in the race. the last corner. We also saw the mounting duel between Honda’s Roczen and Monster Energy / Star Yamaha Racing’s Dylan Ferrandis take another step together as they battled in both bikes, and the red plaque ended up on the YZ450F of the French. Both have been masterful so far, and hopefully they continue this back-and-forth at RedBud – and in a very respectful way, as both tend to roll on the cleaner side when they get together. fight in tight spaces. It was also cool to see Ferrandis win because in 2000 and 2001 his current coach / coach David Vuillemin also won here.
In the 250 class we saw another winner for the first time at High Point, even though it was the first time in over a decade! After a long time watching guys win their first National Outdoor Championship here at Mt. Morris, Pa., Going back to 1980 with Chuck “The Rising” Sun, this hasn’t happened since Tyla Rattray’s first AMA 250 Pro Motocross win here in 2011. For the record, the first AMA National winners at High Point include Chuck Sun, Erik Kehoe (’85), late Brian Swink (’91), Tim Ferry (’95), late Scott Sheak (’97), Kelly Smith (’00), Chad Reed (’02), Mike Alessi (’05), Ryan Villopoto (’06), Josh Grant (’07), Tyla Rattray (’10) and now Jalek Swoll (’21). The former coach of Swoll was Tim Ferry, so like Ferrandis and Vuillemin, Swoll and Ferry now have something in common!
We’ll get more on Swoll and 250 point leader Jett Lawrence below, but I want to thank a few people here who have done something cool for a privateer in the motocross family. After Alex Martin was injured at Thunder Valley National two weeks ago, Ty Masterpool found himself with no way to get his things to High Point as Manluk / Rock River / Merge Racing Yamaha was going to take their gear off the road as the team had helped rider GasGas. When word got out at the end of the day in Colorado that Masterpool needed a helping hand, several people stepped up to do what they could. Ted Parks, always there when you needed him, agreed to carry Ty’s motorcycle, and Dunlop’s Brian Fleck found room for some of Masterpool’s gear bags and parts bins. I called Larry Brooks to see if they had room on the Suzuki BarX / Chaparral / Ecstar rig, but they didn’t. However, LB suggested trying Brandon and his team at Club MX, just as they were retiring from TVR. They pulled over, found room, loaded up the Masterpool bike / frame parts, and everyone headed east – the Masterpools in pieces! Once everyone got together at High Point, the Masterpools put it all together and put Ty’s pieces together, then he came out and finished seventh best of the season. Thanks to everyone who helped the privateer and his family!