Ask Ping!Friday, March 8, 2013 | 5:00 AM
I have heard such an outlandish rumor, a story so raucous, that it is on par with that urban legend that Jamie Lee Curtis used to be a man. There are always stories of ex-racers that get non-moto related jobs after their career is over like construction, auctioneers, mushroom farmers, or encyclopedia salesmen. But what I heard about you is about as unbelievable as a home-schooled C rider winning Teen Jeopardy. I just have to ask…..are you trying to live out a childhood dream to live with a bunch of men and cook them dinner by becoming an Orange County fireman? One of my many sources passed on to me that you recently took the OC fire test. Why would you go and do a thing like that? Don’t you know that fireman have to be in shape? They have to be able to scurry up ladders, carry lifeless bodies over their shoulders, and play with powerful hoses. I just cannot see you doing any of those. The only thing I see you using fire for is to burn your marshmallows for your s’mores. Isn’t the real reason you want to join is that you are so desperate for a championship you are willing to become a fireman so you can race in the Fire & Police MX series? The only way I can see you getting into the fire department is if you spray-paint black spots all over your body and start barking.
I’ve been holding on to this letter for about three years now, waiting until I was hired on somewhere so that I could write back and tell you to “suck it.” For four years I’ve been testing and interviewing everywhere; I even went through the whole process right in your hometown of Chandler. It’s been a long road. But now that I’ve FINALLY gotten a full-time firefighter/paramedic spot with a great department I don’t really feel like coming at you. I actually used this letter as motivation at times. Instead, I’m bummed for the riders who have closed the racing chapter in their lives and don’t have the motivation, support or courage to find another dream and go after it. Motocross racers are trained to be persistent, hard-working and goal oriented. Those qualities along with a good plan and good people around you will take you just about wherever you want to go.
What about the Fire and Police World Championships? That isn’t going to be as easy as it might seem with Damon Huffman now on the force with LAPD, Mike Kiedrowski working as a reserve with a Fire department, Joe Oehloff going through paramedic school and a pretty fast group of current cops and firemen. But, you know, I’ll probably take a crack at it anyway. I’m not sure if Jamie Lee Curtis really was a man but the rumor you heard about me was true. And I got the job without spraying spots all over myself.
I’ve been riding motocross, then off road, for 40+ years and due to meniscus removal and cartilage wearing out in my knee (knee surgery in the early 70s wasn’t as good as now) am facing the need for a total knee replacement within the next couple of years. Total knee implants have improved some in the last few years, but still not to the point where they could take the impact from riding dirt bikes.
Trying to look out for you guys too here, but if the dirt bike manufacturers put some effort into designing a knee replacement implant, they could keep quite a few of us on bikes longer and sell more bikes. Closed chamber or open chamber or even air shock technology for the knee would be kewl.
It would also save my sanity and that of my family! I do not look forward to riding a “goon buggy” (UTV).
Grand Junction, CO
So, what you are suggesting is that the major motorcycle manufacturers of the world, none of whom have any experience or expertise in the medical field, attempt to design and produce an artificial knee joint in an effort to increase rider longevity and therefore extend the number of years they could sell to a small number of consumers with knee injuries? Have I nailed all the pertinent points as you have presented them? If so, I have to tell you that is the most absurd suggestion I’ve actually read through in its entirety in a long, long time. If the best medical corporations in the world can’t figure out how to make an artificial knee better than it currently is, how in the world is a company that specialized in heavy equipment, bikes, watercraft and pianos going to bring something new to the table? I appreciate your enthusiasm and out-of-the-box thinking but I’m afraid growing up in the sixties might have negatively impacted your cognitive function to an extent. Have fun on that UTV, pal.
First off the ego stroke… yes, you are funny, clever, mischievous and apparently a bada$$ on a bike. (hope that was enough to get me printed). Now on to my question. After reading the article by Jason Weigandt about changing things up to model what they do in NASCAR it got me thinking, maybe the time is ripe to throw out an idea of my own. What if the main events were 40 laps? Yes I know lappers would really get in the way, but maybe they get flagged off the track at 20 laps and 1-15 continue on. This would make guys pace themselves and no more "I didn't get a perfect start and could not make a pass" excuse's.
Also more entertaining to the fans (longer moto's) and I think it would really force teams to work on strategy, which would make things very interesting. Now tear it apart as only you can do!
You’re the best!
Sincerely Double D
If you just ran a straight 40 lap final two things would happen: Intensity levels would come way down [boring racing] and the riders would spread out and you would have very little dicing for the lead until you were down to the last few laps. By that point it is unlikely that riders would be close enough to one-another to attempt a pass and most fans would be in a Budweiser coma or asleep on their couch. Another thing you aren’t considering is rider safety. Forty minute finals on a supercross track are a bad idea. Fatigue is a common factor in big crashes and leaving guys out there for that long would kill off so much of the field that a spode could win a title just by staying healthy. Personally, I think they should continue to play with different formats at events like the Monster Energy Cup but leave the racing as it is when points and championships are on the line. This sport is amazing in its present form. We don’t need gimmicks to make it more interesting.
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Check out THE MOTOCROSS OF 40 NATIONSin our Latest issue of Racer X available now.
The 2013 FIM Motocross of Nations at Teutschenthal, Germany, hosted teams from a record forty countries. Here’s how it played out for each of them. Page 90.