Welcome to Weekly Dirt, you alternative for off-road news from around the world. This week Kris Keefer takes a look at new Alpinestars gear, Jeffrey Herlings wins MX2 championship, RC to race a Traxxas TORC at Red Bud and the US Trial des Nations team is selected. There’s a lot to get into so let’s get started.
A line of fresh knee and neck braces await the loam-hungry media.
This week, Dirt Rider got a chance to head down to Milestone Motocross Park in Riverside, CA for the 2014 Alpinestars product launch. Also spinning laps around the track and trying the 2014 product were Alpinestars athletes Justin Barcia, Josh Grant, Marvin Musquin, Jake Weimer, Darryn Durham, Tyla Rattray and a host of others.
“What better way to introduce our new line of products and get to try it out the same day than at the motocross track?” Director of Outside Communications Nic Sims queried. While there were many Alpinestars products on hand for us to try, there were a few that caught our attention: The newly redesigned fourth generation Tech 10 has an updated closure strap system, an all-new dual compound removable anatomic footbed plus a whole host of new colorways for 2014! Just from the first day on the new boot we can already feel a difference in break-in time, and it’s evident that there’s even more comfort than last year’s Tech 10. Alpinestars also introduced the new Tech 7 boot, which has a new dual compound sole that is integrated into the base structure for better durability. The sole and footpeg insert are still replaceable, while a new TPU ankle protection system and all new colorways keep the Tech 7 fresh.
Alpinestars might not be well known for its knee braces but also on hand to try was the all-new Fluid Pro knee brace. The Fluid Pro is a versatile CE-certified knee brace that provides support and helps from hyperextension of the legs. It’s lightweight, ventilated and fully customizable with combine buckle and Velcro closures. Alpinestars is also a huge player in the neck brace market, and their BNS (Bionic Neck Support) is engineered to help prevent neck injury and minimize the risk of collateral damage. Keeping weight down, the Bionic Neck Support (BNS) Tech Carbon is constructed from an advanced carbon polymer for optimized frame strength and lightweight performance. The BNS Tech Carbon functions when the rider’s helmet makes contact with the frame at the moment of a crash, thus providing a clean, solid surface which is said to instantly channel damaging, compressive impact energy away from the neck and on to the BNS. Justin Barcia is still one of the few riders that wear neck protection on the AMA circuit. “I just feel safer when I ride with it,” Barcia commented. “And it also doesn’t hinder my movement on the bike.”
All of the editors on hand were also outfitted with some of Alpinestars trick pant, jersey, glove combo for the day, but those are still not available to the US market in 2014. Overall, Alpinestars is continuing to expand their protection line for 2014. We will be there to put these products through the ringer, so check back to the pages of Dirt Rider magazine in the near future for upcoming DR Testeds on these products. –Kris Keefer
The GOAT To Race Traxxas TORC Truck
Legendary motocross racer Ricky Carmichael will boot up at RedBud MX one more time, but in an altogether different ride as he gets set to contest the PRO Lite off-road truck racing division on the Traxxas TORC Series, presented by AMSOIL, stop at America’s Motocross Track.
The Aug. 10-11 event, run on the RedBud motocross track and adjacent property features the world’s top short course off-road truck racers. Familiar names include another motocross great from RedBud’s yesteryear – Ricky “RJ” Johnson – along with Wisconsin’s Johnny Greaves and son CJ, west coast great Rob MacCachren, former RedBud TORC winner Scott Douglas, the high-flying Jenkins brothers – Mark and Mike – and Michigan’s own Chad Hord.
Carmichael will contest TORC’s PRO Lite class, more of an entry level-style truck to short course off-road racing, but still capable of high speeds as well as handling similar jumps to the larger and more powerful PRO 4×4 and 2WD trucks.
Basically back to square one in terms of racing, Carmichael’s record at RedBud puts him atop the field of all the motocross greats in terms of wins – nine total (seven in the premier 250cc/450cc class and two in the 125cc support class). Carmichael also ran the table at RedBud from 2001 to 2007, winning an unprecedented seven consecutive premier class races. Following his retirement from competition motocross in 2007, Carmichael raced the NASCAR Truck Series for a number of years and was voted by the fans as the 2009 Most Popular Driver.
For more information on Ricky Carmichael, hit up his website at: www.rickycarmichael.com
US Trial des Nations Teams Announced
The 2013 Trial des Nations is coming up on September 8th in La Chatre, France, and the AMA has announced the men and women who will be representing the Stars and Stripes at this year’s event. The men’s squad will be comprised of five-time US MotoTrial champion Pat Smage, of Wisconsin. Joining Smage will be Arizona’s Bryan Roper, Karl Davis Jr. of Florida, and California’s Eric Storz. The U.S. Women’s team is made up of Rachel Hassler of New Mexico, Carline Altman of Maine, and Caroline Allen of Massachusetts. Spain has won the event for the past 10 years.
Herlings Wraps Up MX2 GP Title
Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Jeffrey Herlings was crowned 2013 FIM MX2 World Champion this weekend in Loket, Czech Republic, after he dominated both heats with superb authority. The 18-year-old Dutch rider was very happy to have won his second FIM MX2 World Title and he was extremely happy to have it won surrounded by so many Dutch fans who had travelled to Loket to support him. Herlings said that he will keep on racing in the MX2 class until the end of the season and he is fully motivated to win all the Grand Prix and set another record in the History of the sport.
“Everything is going so fast … three years ago I took part in my first Grand Prix and now I have already won 30 Grand Prix, two MX2 World Titles and I’ve been on the podium so many times … it is an amazing feeling, but maybe only when I’ll be older I’ll realize what I have accomplished.”
Herlings now has the same number of World Titles as John Van Den Berk, but Herlings has already won 30 overall victories – 21 more than the former World Champion – and he still has a long and promising career ahead of him. With this MX2 World Title, Jeffrey Herlings has contributed again to KTM’s win streak in the MX2 class and the manufacturer has now celebrated six FIM MX2 world titles in a row since Tyla Rattray was victorious in 2008.—Shan Moore
That’s all for this week, be sure to check in next week for more news from the off-road world.