Welcome to the Weekly Dirt, the best place on the Internet for all your off-road info. It’s officially the off-season but there’s still plenty of racing to go around. We feed your dirt bike cravings with some scheduling news, and a trip around the world to check in on a few of the top one-off races… and all in less than 80 days.
After blitzing his way across America, KTM extreme rider and newly crowned Endurocross champ Taddy Blazusiak took his unbeaten streak over seas where he won the opening round of the 2012 FIM SuperEnduro series (formerly the Indoor Enduro World Championship series) held inside the Genoa Palasport Fiera stadium in Italy. With Blazusiak claiming victory in all three finals he now comfortably leads the championship with 60-points to his credit. Sound familiar?
Also making a splash in Italy was factory Beta rider Cody Webb, who claimed a pair of top-five finishes while debuting the new 350 RR. On a track that was faster and more open than the American Endurocross series, Webb finished strong in all three main events with a fifth, a fourth, and a ninth place after bending his brake rotor and losing the front brakes.Graham Jarvis is making a run at Taddy Blazusiak for the title of the world’s top extreme off-road racer. The British Husaberg rider won the legendary Roof of Africa event this past weekend in Lesotho, which marked the 44th running of the race. Jarvis crossed the finish line an impressive 22 minutes ahead of previous year’s winner Chris Birch. This debut victory at the Roof of Africa puts the icing on the cake in what was nothing less than a perfect first season for Jarvis, who also won Tough One, Hell’s Gate, and the Red Bull Romaniacs, in addition the newly established Red Bull Sea to Sky race. Look out Taddy.The 2011 ISDE, which was held in Kotka Finland, is the subject of a new full-length documentary by IGNITION3 called ISDE 2011 FINLAND. The film features Team USA Trophy team on their hard fought battle for victory. The movie will premiere at the Aquarius Theater on 480 Emerson Street in Palo Alto, California on December 5th, 2011 at 7:00 PM. Two nights later, the Southern California premiere will be held at Malcolm Smith Motorsports 7599 Indiana Avenue Riverside, CA 92504 starting at 6:00 PM. Admission is free to both events. Donations to the AMA ISDE 2012 GERMANY fund are appreciated. Copies of the DVD will be sold at both events with proceeds going to the ISDE fund. Release date for the ISDE 2011 DVD is December 5th, and it will be available at CYCLE GEAR Stores, Impact Video, www.Motorsportsfilms.com and www.ISDE.TV. - Shan MooreSupercross is upon us as all the team intro invites fill our inboxes. If you’re in the San Diego area this Thursday night, Carey Hart will bringing his 2012 Hart & Huntington SX Race Team to a local casino for a 21-and-over fan meet-and-greet hour from 9:30pm to 10:30pm. Beforehand, a freestyle demo will take place at 7pm, fans 18 and older welcome. This December 1st H&H event will take place at the Sycuan Casino in El Cajon, CA. See the flyer on http://blogs.dirtrider.com/6753542/industry-buzz/hart-huntington-freestyle-demo-at-sycuan-casino/ for more details.Don’t forget the Best In The Desert Series’ Henderson 250 is this weekend, December 2nd-4th and will be the last stop on the 2011 series (maybe there is no off-season afterall). For more on the race including bike maps, schedule and more check out http://bitd.com/best-in-the-desert-races/transwest-ford-henderson.html. - Lindsey LovellThe Dirt Rider crew has been working like a bunch of EnduroCross track builders to get the DR Tech Center straightened up. This well-lit shop area (buried deep within our secret underground lair, of course) is where we shoot tech photos and perform maintenance on our ever-rotating fleet of test bikes. As you can imagine, the overhaul of the Tech Center was a massive undertaking, but it did leave us with three huge shelves full of swag to give away. We’re most likely going to donate this to the Blue Ribbon Coalition or some other deserving land use group’s volunteers. That said, if you have done an exemplary job of being a responsible off-roader or if you think you know someone who deserves a few freebies, send an email to email@example.com and let us know.Speaking of EnduroCross track builders, lead foreman Shane Schaefer sent us a very cool time-lapse video of an EX track being built. If you loved bulldozers, earthmovers or just playing in the sandbox as a kid, this will blow your mind! Check it out at http://schaefertracks.com/motocross-track-builders-video.html. -Chris Denison
Check out the schedule and the recent press release regarding the 2012 motocross season. Also notice the TBA in So Cal Sep. 8. With no Pala – our guess would be one of two facilities – Glen Helen (probably not yet maybe), or the new Lake Elsinore track located in the hotbed of the motocross world. If you have seen the videos of the track being built – you would say they are building a national-caliber track. Check out the video below the schedule. Nothing solid but just rumors right now.We got Davey Coombs to give us a few more details, or at least some clues as to where you may be standing this summer to watch the outdoor season finale – “Unfortunately, there were unresolved contractual matters with the Pala event that have caused us to seek an alternative location for 2012 and beyond. And there are now a few options in the Southern California area, which is vital to the American Motocross industry. The name at the top of the list right now is one that should be very familiar to fans of the old school who discovered this sport by watching the movie On Any Sunday. We hope to be able to tell everyone more as soon as next week.”May 19 Hangtown Motocross Classic* Sacramento, Calif.
May 26 Freestone Raceway* Wortham, Texas
June 2 Thunder Valley Motocross* Lakewood, Colo.
June 9 High Point Raceway Mt. Morris, Pa.
June 16 Budds Creek Motocross Mechanicsville, Md.
July 7 RedBud* Buchanan, Mich.
July 14 Spring Creek Motocross* Millville, Minn.
July 21 Washougal MX Park Washougal, Wash.
August 11 Moto-X 338* Southwick, Mass.
August 18 Unadilla New Berlin, N.Y.
September 1 Steel City Raceway* Delmont, Pa.
September 8 TBA* Southern Calif.
(Official Series Press Release) MORGANTOWN, W. Va. (November 29, 2011) – Just weeks after celebrating the conclusion of an epic 40th season of professional motocross racing, MX Sports Pro Racing and partners, Alli Sports, are pleased to announce the 2012 schedule for the Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship. The series will begin on Saturday, May 19, near Sacramento, Calif., at the Hangtown Classic-the longest-running event on the schedule-and will conclude on September 8 in Southern California, at the championship’s newest stop (to be announced at a later date). Throughout the summer, the 12-round series will visit such highly-regarded motocross circuits as High Point, in Pennsylvania, RedBud, in Michigan, Washougal, in Washington, and New York’s legendary Unadilla.
“We are very fortunate to have so many great, iconic motocross tracks as part of the Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship-tracks that challenge the racers and have strong, loyal fan bases that come out to see these races,” said MX Sports Pro Racing President Davey Coombs. “This series is the pinnacle of professional motocross, and the growth we’ve seen in the last three years for both the live audiences and television viewers watching from all over the world has been outstanding.”Not only does the Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship include the best tracks in the sport, it also features the fastest riders on the planet, as well as an expanded television package with NBC Sports Group. Add in a global television package that allows fans from all over the world to tune in, plus live event streaming on www.allisports.com, and the result is an unprecedented audience for motocross racing.Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto will defend his #1 plate against no less than three former 450 Class Champions in 2012. Besides the man he wrestled the 2011 title from, Red Bull KTM’s Ryan Dungey, as well as a hugely-popular Australian star in TwoTwo Motorsports’ Chad Reed, Villopoto must also contend with James Stewart, who is returning to outdoor motocross for the first time since his perfect 2008 season as a member of the Joe Gibbs Racing/Toyota/Yamaha team. There will also be challenges from such formidable programs as Team Honda Muscle Milk, the Yoshimura Suzuki factory team, MotoConcepts/Alessi Racing, the new L&Mc Racing Honda team spearheaded by legend Jeremy McGrath, and more.In the 250 Class, newly-crowned champion, and Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki rider, Dean Wilson will not only have to defend his title against the best young riders in America, he will also be pursued by the two most recent MX2 World Champions. Frenchman Marvin Musquin and German sensation Ken Roczen have each earned Grand Prix titles on 250cc motorcycles, and will now join forces at Red Bull KTM to challenge Wilson for the most-coveted outdoor title in the sport, a Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship. Add in the formidable GEICO Honda team, DNA Shred Stix/Star Racing Yamaha, Rockstar Energy Suzuki, JDR KTM, in addition to Troy Lee Designs/Lucas Oil Honda, and the 2012 season is ripe for exceptional competition.Additionally, the Women’s Motocross Championship will be included at eight rounds. Led by defending champion, Team Honda Muscle Milk’s Ashley Fiolek, who claimed her third title in four years as a pro, the world’s fastest women riders are set to bring even more excitement to the series. Fiolek can once again expect serious competition from her primary rival, and fellow multi-time champion, Jessica Patterson of the DNA Shred Stix/Star Racing Yamaha team.Following the traditional opener at Hangtown, series favorites – Freestone, Thunder Valley, High Point, Budds Creek, RedBud, Spring Creek, Washougal, Southwick, Unadilla and Steel City – all return to compose the bulk of the 2012 schedule. While some venues’ traditional dates on the calendar have shifted, they remain as part of the integral foundation of American Motocross.The season finale will feature a new venue in the motocross hotbed of Southern California. Details and additional information will follow.Tickets for all 12 rounds of the 2012 Lucas Oil AMA Pro Motocross Championship will be on sale on Moto Monday, December 5th. Fans eager to get a head start on plans for next summer can simply log onto the official website of American Motocross at AlliSports.com/motocross. Special holiday promotions for advance purchasers will be available. - Scott Hoffman