Moto News Weekly | Price awarded OAM | Hard Enduro | SX | AFT

Moto News Weekly Wrap
January 27, 2021

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What’s New:

  • Toby Price awarded Order of Australia Medal
  • Ongoing COVID uncertainty cancels WA 2021 A4DE
  • Mario Roman dominates 2021 Spanish Hard Enduro opener
  • WBR Yamaha Bulk Nutrients welcomes Malkiewicz & Andrews for 2021
  • Ivo Monticelli joins Monster Energy KRT
  • Turner Racing partner Honda for 2021 AFT season
  • Pinjar Park Wrap Rider of The Night Awarded
  • AMA Motorcycle Hall of Famer Mike Bell passes
  • AMA Amateur National Motocross Championship Trophy announced
  • 2021 Monster Energy AMA Supercross – Round Three Wrap
  • 2021 Racing Calendars

Toby Price awarded Order of Australia Medal

Toby Price has been awarded the Order of Australia (OAM) for service to motorsport in the General Division, particularly to cross-country motorcycle racing, where he holds two Dakar victories to his name, alongside a FIM Cross-Country Rally World Championship, Rallye OiLibya du Maroc wins, numerous Finke Desert Race and Hattah Desert Race victories, as just a few of his long list of accolades.

Toby Price – Image by Rally Zone

Toby Price was named alongside Craig Foster, Tim Cahill, Greg Chappell and Gai Waterhouse this year.

Price was forced to withdraw from this year’s Dakar Rally after suffering a broken collarbone in a crash while looking on track to claim another victory with a number of dominant performances across the stages prior to the crash.

Toby Price

“Honoured to be awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia in the General Division today for service to Motorsport. Blown away to be on this list, it’s crazy… thanks so much everyone for your support of what I do!”

Ongoing COVID uncertainty cancels WA 2021 A4DE

Due to uncertainty around COVID-19 and Border restrictions the Trail and Enduro Motorcycle Club of WA committee in consultation with Motorcycling Australia have made the tough decision to cancel the 2021 Australian 4 Day Enduro Championships (A4DE) planned for May.

The Trail and Enduro Motorcycle Club of WA Inc. committee (WA Australian Four Day Enduro Inc.) had undertaken significant work in preparing for this major event, however with COVID-19 uncertainly, made the tough decision to assist riders and teams planning their year ahead.

Collin Jennings – A4DE Coordinator

“We hope that this will mean that we can avoid the problems with accommodation and transport which will inevitably arise with a last-minute cancellation. The decision was made to ensure the safety of all involved: competitors, supporters, volunteers and the public. We are hopeful that the Covid-19 vaccine will have solid coverage Australia wide and people will be able to again travel uninhibited to future A4DE events. We are pleased to confirm that our naming rights sponsor Pilot Air Compressed Air Specialists have agreed to stay with us and will support us right through until the next A4DE, as are many of our other supporters and sponsors. We encourage riders to keep up to date with the latest developments via our web site as we will provide regular updates and news items.”

While the 2022 A4DE will be held in Victoria, Motorcycling Australia and the Trail and Enduro Motorcycle Club of WA committee will work on a future Western Australia A4DE which is proposed to be held in 2023.

Mario Roman dominates 2021 Spanish Hard Enduro opener

Mario Roman celebrated an outstanding victory this past weekend, at the first round of the new Spanish Hard Enduro Championship. On an extreme loop of 6 km that was designed by Alfred Gomez which had to be completed in three hours. Mario secured a crushing victory with a 30-minute advantage and more than a lap ahead at the finish over the second-place finisher, Jonny Walker.

Mario Roman

Mario Roman took the opportunity to compete in the first round which was held in La Seu d’Urgell, which is just a few kilometers from his Andorran home. He has started this 2021 season as he finished 2020 at the RedBull Override, and it is a great introduction for Mario and for the RFME in this new championship.

Mario Roman

“The feeling with the 300 SE Factory is excellent, I am perfectly at ease with the bike, the Sherco Factory team did a great job. I was disappointed that the Alestrem was canceled this year, it is one of my favorite races of the season. But we now have the creation of this new Spanish championship and this first race in January! It was close to where I live, in a place where I usually train, it was ideal. There were not many spectators, but the few people present encouraged me well, I felt like I was at home. There was no assistance possible during the race and I did the 13 laps with only a refueling in the middle where I eat, changed my mask and got fuel. It was a big fight with Jonny on the first two laps, then I managed to take two-minutes ahead and keep them. I continued to push lap after lap, until I passed him and put him a lap down the end of the race. I am very happy with this performance and it was a great way to start the season. I hope we have many more races in 2021, I cannot wait to get back to the public and a full season of hard enduro.”

Mario Roman topped the podium from Jonny Walker

2021 RFME Copa de España de Hard Enduro Results

Pos Rider Time Laps
2 WALKER , JONNY 17:29.5 11
3 QUER MOLGO, RAMON 15:50.4 11
4 LEON SOLE, XAVIER 16:36.5 11
5 ARTOLA ARTOLA, JOSU 16:31.2 11
7 PUEYO GIL, IVAN 16:12.1 10
9 QUER MOLGO, JORDI 17:40.0 10
11 HIDALGO GARCIA, ALEX 20:17.7 10
18 ECHEVESTE , PEYO 20:51.4 9

WBR Yamaha Bulk Nutrients welcomes Malkiewicz & Andrews for 2021

The WBR Yamaha Bulk Nutrients Team has grown to a four rider outfit for the 2021 season with Maximus Purvis and Alex Larwood being joined by Bailey Malkiewicz and Liam Andrews to make a massive line up for the Echuca-based Yamaha dealer. Malkiewicz and Andrews will contest the MX1 and MX2 classes respectively.

Malkiewicz and Andrews will join Maximus Purvis and Alex Larwood

Malkiewicz just returned from a season in Europe and is looking to get things back on track as he competes in Australia for the new season. The 2018 world junior champ endured a frustrating season contesting the MX2 class in the world championships but is now injury free and excited to be back on home soil and ready to mix it up with the big boys on the YZ450F.

Bailey Malkiewicz

“2020 was a hard year for everyone and while I had a great time in Europe and got the chance to race at a world level, there was nothing there for me in 2021 so it was best to come up, re-evaluate a few things and get back to my best form. My goals to race at a world level aren’t over and I still aspire to go back as I’m young and have plenty of time, but I need to ensure I got at the right time, with the right support and when I’m healthy and in good form. I learned a lot while in Europe and it has made me grow up in many ways. I think I have matured a bit both on and off the bike and can see things a bit more clearly now about where I want to be and what I need to do to get there. I’m so thankful for the WBR Yamaha team to step up and help me in 2021. We hade a great partnership in 2018 when I had my most successful year, so I know I’m surrounded by the right people and making the jump to the 450 class is fresh and exciting. I cant wait to get the season underway and I will be ready to go at round own of the Pro MX.”

A long time Yamaha rider that moved through the Yamaha Junior Racing program is Liam Andrews, but since turning 16, the Victorian based rider has had a horror run of injuries that have caused him far too much time on the sidelines.

But with the 2020 season dragged to a halt, it was a blessing in disguise for Andrews as he got the time to fully recover from his injuries and get his body back into shape. So, with a big preseason under his belt, Andrews believes he is back to his best and ready to make the next step in his career with the support of the WBR Yamaha team.

Liam Andrews

“The last few years have been tough as it’s been injury after injury and it just wears you down. But the past few months, things have been coming together and I have been able to get some continuity in my riding and training for the first time in a long time. Its awesome that Travis and Nathan of WBR Yamaha have been able to find some support for me and I look forward to giving it my all in 2021 and rewarding them for their belief in me.”

Yamaha now has a staggering 10 riders in teams to contest this year’s Pro MX Championship contesting the MX1 and MX2 championships while the MX3 class presence will be significant as Ruder Kingsford, Jackson Camilleri and Kobe Drew while chase the development class championship.

The Pro MX gets underway on April 11 at Wonthaggi in Victoria.

2021 Yamaha Racing MX Team Line-Up

  • CDR Monster Energy Yamaha:
    • Luke Clout (MX1)
    • Hayden Mellross (MX1)
  • Serco Yamaha:
    • Nathan Crawford (MX2)
    • Jesse Dobson (MX2)
  • Yamalube Yamaha:
    • Jay Wilson (MX2)
    • Levi Rogers (MX2)
    • Rhys Budd (MX2)
  • WBR Yamaha Bulk Nutrients Team:
    • Max Purvis (MX1)
    • Bailey Malkiewicz (MX1)
    • Alex Larwood (MX2)
    • Liam Andrews (MX2)

Ivo Monticelli joins Monster Energy KRT

The Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing Team has welcomed Ivo Monticelli to contest the 2021 FIM MXGP Motocross World Championship in Team Green. For the first time in its long history KRT will line up an Italian rider to race alongside Romain Febvre.

Ivo Monticelli moves to Kawasaki in 2021

Twenty-six year old, Ivo Monticelli will enter his tenth season in the FIM World Championship and his fourth in the MXGP class. After finishing in the top five at several rounds of the premier class in 2019 Ivo defied a persistent knee injury last season to regularly claim top ten results and showed resilience to end the season with top eight results during the last few GPs.

Based in Lommel, Ivo had surgery immediately after the final round of the 2020 MXGP series and is now ready to start riding the KX450-SR Kawasaki. Both Ivo and Romain will work closely with Jacky Vimond as the French coach has renewed his cooperation with the team managed by team owner Thierry Chizat Suzzoni assisted by technical manager, Vincent Bereni.

Ivo Monticelli

“I’m delighted to have the opportunity to join KRT and a factory team; there aren’t so many factory rides in MXGP so for me it’s an honour and a kind of dream-come-true. I already spent some time with the staff and everything feels perfect! I didn’t test the bike yet as I had knee surgery after the last GP; I struggled with my knee all-season-long so the doctors cleaned it up and fixed the meniscus which had a small crack. I had to rest for a few weeks but I was able to start training physically and now I’m ready to test the bike; it’s just a matter of days now and I can’t wait to ride the KX450-SR. I already start working with Jacky Vimond and the team physiotherapist; I’m so happy to work with such professional people. I have known Jacky for a long time but it’s the first time in my career that I have had the opportunity to work on a daily basis with a trainer; I’m sure it will help me to improve a lot with all these people around me. My aim is to be consistent; I really want to race for top-five results and I’m sure that it’s possible if everything runs to plan. I’m sure that I will learn a lot racing alongside a former world champion like Romain; I can’t wait to start riding with him.”

Turner Racing partner Honda for 2021 AFT season

American Honda have announced a new partnership with Turner Racing in Progressive American Flat Track. Turner Racing Honda will compete in the 2021 series in the AFT Singles division, with three riders—Henry Wiles, Cole Zabala and Trevor Brunner—aboard CRF450R race machines. The Georgia-based operation, which earned a win last year under the B&M Masonry brand, will also receive technical support from Al Lamb’s Dallas Honda, with Bryan Bigelow in the role of Team Manager and Mike Lozano serving as a technician.

Turner Racing partner Honda for 2021 AFT season

This is Honda’s third season back in flat track racing after more than 25 years away, having earned a total of six AFT Singles wins in 2019 and 2020, while finishing those seasons second and third, respectively, in the rider points standings. For 2021, Honda hopes to build on that progress.

A veteran of the sport, Michigan native Wiles was the GNC1 Singles Champion in 2009 and 2010, and he finished third in the AFT Singles final standings last year, his first aboard Honda machinery. Zabala and Brunner are up-and-coming racers returning to Turner Racing, and both posted respectable results last season aboard Honda machinery—Zabala notching two podium finishes and Brunner winning the Springfield Short Track.

Mike Turner – Turner Racing Owner

“This truly is a dream come true for our team. To follow in the footsteps of some of the greatest flat trackers of all time, like Bubba Shobert, Ricky Graham, Mike Kidd, Freddie Spencer, Terry Poovey, Hank Scott, Doug Chandler and Ted Booty is an honor. These guys were my heroes growing up, and this means the world to me as a team owner. To be a part of the Honda legacy in flat track is something we do not take lightly, and we plan to honor that legacy by working 24/7 on our program to make them proud.”

The 2021 Progressive American Flat Track season is scheduled to kick off on March 12 and 13, 2021 with the Volusia Half-Mile doubleheader.

Pinjar Park Wrap Rider of The Night Awarded

Darren Nash and Ash Shield stormed to a convincing victory in the 2020/21 Western Australian Sidecar Championship with a clean sweep of the card winning each of his four heat races then seeing off a very strong field to claim the Championship in the A Main. This precious victory must have gone someway to putting last year’s WA title disappointment behind the brilliant Nash / Shield team.

In the 2019/20 Championship event, Darren and Ash completed their four heat races with maximum points and on their return to the pit gate, disaster struck when a radiator hose fitting exploded spraying a gush of steam up under Darren’s helmet which not only ended their night but put Darren in hospital for several painful days.

For their brilliant display of Sidecar racing, Darren and Ash not only secured the WA Sidecar Title but also picked up their second Pinjar Park Wrap, “Rider of the Night” award. This is the second occasion the pair have won this Award, and not only do they pick up another new race tyre from Assured Learning Australia, but they also have two chances for the big “Rider of the Season” award.

They join Matt Marson who is the only other Pinjar Park competitor to have won the award twice this season. Matt was awarded his second Pinjar Park Wrap Rider of the Night award for his brilliant win in the Rob Woffinden Classic meeting a fortnight ago. Matt also has two chances in the “Rider of the Season” award.

The Junior Rider of the Night award was won by young Dom Colmore for his sensational riding in the 125B solo events. Dom was undefeated on the night and showed great speed and style all night long in the junior racing program prior to the WA State Sidecar Title Event. Dom now goes into the draw for the “Pinjar Park Wrap” Junior Rider of the Season award.

New Western Australian 125cc Champion, Mitch McDiarmid was also presented a brand-new race tyre on behalf of the Speedway Motorcycle Club of Western Australia, by “Talking About Speedway’s” Graeme Sinden for his marvellous 18-point maximum win in the title event. Mitch is also in the draw for the seasons end “Rider of the Season’ award.

In the Junior Rider of the Night competition, Linkin Metcalf has also completed the double and has two chances in the Junior Rider of the Season award.
Assured Learning Australia, an automotive air conditioning training company has partnered Talking About Speedway and has provided new race tyres for the winners of the “Pinjar Park Wrap” Rider of the Night award at each Pinjar Park Meeting. They have also provided a new race Tyre and a set of Maureen’s helmet colours as part of the Rider of the Season award.

Speedway commentator, broadcaster and author, Grant Woodhams has the onerous task of selecting the Rider of the Night awards, and the Pinjar Park Wrap, Rider of the Season award.

When considering the Rider of the Season winner, Grant Woodhams will also review other minor awards he has awarded during the season. These include, starts of the night, passes of the night and so on. The eventual Rider of the Season could in fact be a rider who has only a single Rider of the Night win against their name during the season.

Assured Leaning Australia, The Bennco Group, Mills Drainage, Speedway Consumables, MacTrack and Maureen’s Helmet Colours have all contributed to the Pinjar Park Wrap, “Rider of the Season” award. The total prize pool is over $3500

Senior Pinjar Park Wrap – Rider of the Night Award Winners to date
  • Darren Nash/Ash shield (twice)
  • Reece Liptrott/ Jesse Thomas
  • Matt Marson (twice)
  • Jeff Bishop/Chromie Holmwood
Junior Pinjar Park Wrap – Rider of the Night Award Winners to date
  • Chayne Rowe/Porsha Rowe
  • Linkin Metcalf (twice)
  • Adam Fewster/Thomas Grigson
  • Mitch McDiarmid
  • Dom Colmore

There are still plenty of chances on the back end of the season for other competitors to get among the winners. There have many marvellous performances so far this season and a few riders could be counted unlucky as their performances have been narrowly overshadowed by riders in perhaps more difficult heats or races. Many thanks also went to the participating sponsors of these awards.

AMA Motorcycle Hall of Famer Mike Bell passes

Mike Bell, one of America’s leading Supercross and motocross racers of the late 1970s and early ’80s, has died. He was 63.

Born on Aug. 8, 1957, in Los Angeles, Mr. Bell began riding at age 10 in the mountains near that city, but he did not start racing until he was 14. Mr. Bell’s father, Bill, was an avid racer and well-known tuner who did development work for American Honda on its four-stroke desert racing machines during the late 1960s.

“My dad didn’t want me to get into racing until he knew I was ready for it,” Mr. Bell once recalled during an interview. “I think it proved to be a good decision. A lot of kids were burning out by the time they were 16, because they’d already been racing for so long, and I was just really getting into it.”

Mr. Bell advanced from novice to expert in just six months. In 1977, he finished fourth at the Los Angeles Supercross, a precursor of future successes. In 1978, Mr. Bell scored one of his biggest wins, the Superbowl of Motocross in the LA Coliseum, beating another future AMA Hall of Famer, Bob Hannah.

“When I woke up the next morning, I thought I had been dreaming,” he said. “But my father had put the first-place trophy at the foot of my bed, and there it was – I really had actually won the Superbowl of Motocross. It was one of the proudest moments of my career.”

At 6-foot-4, Mr. Bell was known as “Too Tall,” a nickname he said originated with Yamaha public relations person Ted Otto. “They had all kinds of nicknames for me,” he said, “like ‘Granddaddy Long Legs’ and stuff like that, but ‘Too Tall’ just stuck.”

Mr. Bell raced for Yamaha during his entire pro career. His biggest claim to fame was winning the 1980 AMA Supercross Championship, but he also won 20 AMA and Trans-AMA nationals.

During the early 1980s, knee injuries began to take their toll. Mr. Bell retired at the end of 1983. He remained active in motocross and participated in legends racing and other local events. Mr. Bell was inducted into the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame in 2001. His biography is available at website (link).

AMA Amateur National Motocross Championship Trophy announced

Since 1982, the hallowed grounds of Loretta Lynn’s Ranch in rural Hurricane Mills, Tennessee, have served as the global proving ground for the world’s finest amateur motocross talent. Over the past four decades no event has left more of an impact and had more influence on the history of the sport than the Monster Energy AMA Amateur National Motocross Championship.

As this legendary race embarks on its landmark 40th running in August, organizers MX Sports, title sponsor Monster Energy, and the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) came together to introduce an instantly iconic way to celebrate the Loretta Lynn’s legacy – the Monster Energy AMA Amateur National Motocross Championship Trophy.

The Monster Energy AMA Amateur National Motocross Championship Trophy – Photo by Align Media

Commissioned by Monster Energy, the trophy was created to become an enduring symbol of the past and future of this prestigious event, and amateur motocross as a whole. Something former champions, current champions, and aspiring champions would be proud to have their name attached to.

More than 300 hours went into Robinson’s meticulous design, which includes the founders of the event – Loretta Lynn and Dave Coombs – in addition to 24 past champions, including legends like Ricky Carmichael, Jeremy McGrath, James Stewart, and Ron Lechien. The centerpiece is surrounded by three hand-brushed brass plates listing more than 1,400 names to signify every champion, from every class over the past 39 years. A list that will continue to grow as more riders earn the coveted distinction of hoisting the number one plate at Loretta Lynn’s Ranch every summer.

In the same spirit of other legacy trophies in the world of sports, the Loretta Lynn’s trophy will embark on its own journey throughout the 2021 season. It made its public debut at the season-opening stint of Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship, from Houston and will be on display throughout the remainder of the events on the supercross schedule. From there, the trophy will travel on the “Road to Loretta’s” from spring into summer before reaching its destination in Hurricane Mills the first week of August, where thousands of amateur racers from across the globe will all look to add their name to the prestigious list of champions.

2021 Monster Energy AMA Supercross
Round Three – Houston

For the full report see – Tight battles across both classes in AMA SX Round Three

Adam Cianciarulo had been quickest in 450 Free Practice but it was Eli Tomac that put the quickest lap in during qualifying to top the timesheets ahead of Ken Roczen, Cianciarulo third.

Roczen won the opening Heat ahead of Barcia and Webb while Cianciarulo was the victor in the second heat ahead of his Monster Energy Kawasaki team-mate Eli Tomac.

Cooper Webb and Eli Tomac - Image by Jeff Kardas
Cooper Webb and Eli Tomac – Image by Jeff Kardas

Cooper Webb scored the holeshot in the Main ahead of Ken Roczen, Adam Cianciarulo and Justin Barcia.

Ken Roczen took the lead from Webb and managed to pull away but late in the race Webb came back at him and took the lead on the final lap.Webb the victor much to the exasperation of a clearly frustrated Roczen.

Many were critical of Dean Wilson for holding up Roczen while being lapped, as that is essentially what allowed Webb to close in on the German and steal the win. A blue flag had been shown to Wilson here and there but obviously not enough of them and not waved vigorously enough for him to take notice. There will be many discussions after the event concerning this problem on tracks that are very hard to pass on, especially as Wilson is a repeat offender.

Ken Roczen – Image by Jeff Kardas

Adam Cianciarulo rounded out the podium positions, crossing the line 14-seconds behind the leading duo. Justin Barcia took fourth ahead of Eli Tomac and Malcolm Stewart.

The 450 Championship is so close at the top. Ken Roczen leaves Houston as the series leader but only by a single-point over Cooper Webb and Justin Barcia, who are both tied on 59-points.Defending champ Eli Tomac is currently fourth on 54-points followed by Adam Cianciarulo, Justin Brayton and Malcolm Stewart with that triumvirate all on 51-points.

Cooper Webb – P1

It was a close race the whole time and Kenny [Roczen] rode a solid race with not many mistakes. The track was really tricky, easy to over-ride and get impatient. The lappers there at the end was a bummer, I felt like we were going to have a really good battle, and obviously we did, but the lappers were really tough tonight. I hung in there and I pounced on that last lap and made it happen. I’ve really got to give it up to my team, they’re amazing.”

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