Staff Insights – Anaheim 1 and Phoenix

As usual, the hype around Anaheim 1 was big; new bikes, teams, big changes with a few top stars changing teams and more than a few, highly touted rookies making their debut in the premier class.     Sticking with a conservative track design for Anaheim 1, the track was definitely the one thing lacking excitement and widely regarded as simple, fast and only separated the top 20 qualifing riders by two seconds. The track caused the racing, in the mains to be uneventful and anti-climactic, but the racing during the qualifying races had their share of excitement.     Fast forward to week two at Phoenix - the track was definitely more technical, with more passing opportunities and more random obstacles to break up the flow, allowing more chances for mistakes as well as better competition.     There's lots to talk about after the first two rounds, so let's go over some points below.     - Ken Roczen holeshot the main at Anaheim 1 and checked out. He looked fast and looked like he was on cruise control. He will be tough this season. At Phoenix, Roczen led for the first half of the race before being passed by Eli Tomac. The question now becomes; how much has Tomac...

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James Stewart, Adderall and the Brain Game

On Dec. 17, the FIM announced that it was suspending James Stewart for 16 months, retroactive to his failed April 12 drug test. Stewart responded by saying he will race again and appeal the suspension, but it appears likely that he will not compete in any FIM- or AMA-sanctioned events until the 2015 season is all but over.   The reasoning behind Stewart's suspension has been discussed extensively by the motocross media, so there's no need to go into that here. There’s also no need to beat the dead horse that is the performance-enhancing capabilities of Adderall, the drug for which Stewart tested positive.   What’s worth talking about instead is the link between Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).   Stewart's career has been rife with crashes -- and concussions. Brain injuries in contact sports have come under scrutiny in recent years, prompted in part by well-publicized cases of former NFL and WWE athletes who have battled mental illness or even committed suicide, allegedly due to deteriorating brain function caused by repeated head injuries.   Because of the speeds and jumps involved, motocross and supercross pose a considerable TBI risk to their athletes. In a way, Stewart epitomizes the risks confronting these riders,...

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Silly season 2014

By Clifton Kump  I cannot remember an off-season so rife with rumors, half-truths and rider/team changes as this one. It has been absolutely insane.  Let's go over some of the big moves. Troy Lee Designs Honda moving to KTM to become TLD/Red Bull/KTM The TLD team will campaign next season on the pumpkins. The team infrastructure will remain the same, but some riders will not return to the squad. As of today, it looks like Mookie Stewart is out of a job. I have also heard that TLD will be marketing a new Red Bull signature line of riding gear, much like the Lucas Oil Honda gear they had a few years back. Should be cool! Rockstar Husqvarna, formerly Rockstar KTMLook, I'm a Euro nerd and and get all worked up for anything from the Austria manufacturer. They have Kiska Design to thank for their new look over the last few years and next year's bikes will be no exception. The team's inner-workings will remain the same, but Zach Osborne and Martin Davalos will join the squad on 250s while Jason Anderson rides the four-piftay. ...

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