* 2007 is the fourth year in a row Cycle Gear will match donations made at any Cycle Gear store up to a total of $10,000 to the BlueRibbon Coalition. Go to www.cyclegear.com/keepriding.cfm for more info.* Want to help out Ernesto Fonseca? Want to save on insurance? Progressive will give Fonzie $3 for every quote that people request. Link up at HoleshotHeaven.com.* It’s going to get quieter. The AMA is proposing sound requirements to drop from 99 decibels in 2007 to 98 decibels in ’08 and to 97 decibels in ’10. Great news if our hearing still works by then.2007 FIM Motocross
The 51st FIM MX World Championship season began on April 1 on the demanding Dutch sand track of Valkenswaard with Antonio Cairoli and Joshua Coppins taking the first GP wins. New rule changes have put restrictions on the design of man-made whoops ["rolling waves" are limited to being placed approximately 10m (33 feet) apart and should be no taller than 80cm (31 inches)], but that didn’t keep the track from getting rough and claiming its share of riders. Rule changes taking effect in 2008 will see sound levels lower further: 94 decibels for four-strokes and 96 decibels for two-strokes. Could this lessen the four-stroke displacement-allowance advantage?There will be increasing television coverage for ’07. Last year 120 countries could watch the events, with an audience of more than 600 million viewers. The FIM World rounds can be seen online for a fee on the Moto Channel at www.mediazone.com. (The buzz is the series will air in the United States on the SPEED Channel, but we could not confirm that by press time.)MX1 Class
The MX1 (450cc) class appears wide open this year with the retirement of 10-time champion Stefan Everts, and there are many riders in line for the crown. The favorite is New Zealander Joshua Coppins, who was the only rider to beat Everts in ’06. Coppins did not disappoint his new Yamaha/Rinaldi team, putting his works YZ450FM on top of the podium with 1-2 moto scores.A great performance by Jonathan Barragan of Spain got KTM the second step on the podium and a moto-two win. Barragan, having trouble with his rear brake, had to settle for fifth in the first moto.Third place went to Steve Ramon, who crashed in both motos but was still able to post a 2-6 on the day on his works Suzuki RM-Z450.FIM motocross always brings out unique machinery. At the opening round, TM made it into the top 10 via a ninth-place overall by Manuel Priem. The innovative WRM bike, with its carbon-fiber swingarm and frame, earned its first championship points with Cristian Beggi at the controls for 24th overall, and the Aprilia V-twin finished both motos with three-time World champion Alessio Chiodi aboard.American Mike Brown, back on the World Championship circuit and riding a CAS Honda, got the season going with two good starts, but problems with arm-pump relegated him to a 14-9 finish. It was good enough to keep him inside the top 10 in championship points.