Cycle News - Archive Issues - 1990's

Cycle News 1998 01 21

Cycle News is a weekly magazine that covers all aspects of motorcycling including Supercross, Motocross and MotoGP as well as new motorcycles

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Page 58 of 59

IN THE TAPES ' BY S O ROUSSEAU C TT n his soft-sp oken, Texan drawl, d irt tracker Terry Poovey once described su percross in a way that was perhaps most befitting at the time: "I've been to o ne of t he m s u perc ross r ac es, and I d u nno how thev can ca ll it ra cin ' . All that stuff they put in the wa y just slows everybody down ." That was in 1995, and "oovev had a point. " Everybod y" mea nt every bo dy but the H ond a- m ount ed Je rem y McGrat h - Poovey ' s seve ra l-yea rs rem oved Hond a factory brother, if you will - who basically had the entire field covered for the third s traigh t year then. It made se nse, and it was for that reason, backed by my own personal soapbox position that a manufacturer's place in an y race se ries s h o u ld be limited (p le nty of fa ctory parts, not fa ctory teams - ahh, let's not get into tha t right now ), that I was not a fan of supercross racing. A supercross fan, yes - hell, those insan e jumps a nd colorful big rigs are nough to impress an yone. But no t of upercross racing . Like Poovey said, there simply wasn't any. Until last year, an yway . That was hen McGrath jumped on "the yellow ike" - a disdainful monicker affixed to cGrath's factory /Suzuki of Tro y ride y Kyle Carruthers, the bossman's preocious 6-year-old so n. McGrath didn't vin so much, and neither did an yone lse, making for a mor e inte resting title ace than in y ea r s past. In fact , the hole 1997 season captured my interest us t a little mo re. So, for 1998, I approached the series pener with more than my us ua l "I' m on na hitch a ride to supercross and get lo wed on $450-a-sho t-glass beer wit h e rednecks" attitude. And here's wha t appened . I called Pau l Carru t hers ' h ou se ro und noon to find out when the bul k f th e CN crowd (he was bringing the hole family) was planning to head to h e LA Coliseum, and I got th e lo wown on the secre t way into and out of he parki ng lot. "Let me tell you how to ge t the re, " au l said wi th authori ty. "When you go p the _ _ freeway , stay in th e carI lan e and get off at the exit, ake a and you'll pull stra igh t n. It' s the fast est way. If yo u d o that , ou 'Il be in and out in five min utes." I You didn't reall y think I was going to tell you, did you ? It's a secret. But [ followed Paul's advice, and he was right. From what I'm hearing now, once the lot was fu ll, people we re getting nailed as mu ch as $40 per parking spot aro u nd the ou tside of th e Coliseum. But tha t was probably good news, beca use that meant they'd be hit ting the road with eight fewe r bee rs in them - six if they boug ht a hot dog. Th e much -anticipated , ser io usly dreaded rains that were pr edicted for the evening were nowhere in sigh t, but 01 Mother Nature had do ne her number ' earlier in the da y. We got to our seat s just as they were running qualifiers on th e mud -bog portion of th e tra ck. N o, wait - that was the whole track. Fortunately, th e track crew jumped on the graders and go t it into shape before the rea l, um, racing, got started. The show s ta rted with Te rr y Boyd and Ms. Supercross, the lovely Leeann Tweeden, interviewing the top riders in the series. At least, that's what it looked like on the big screen. The sound system sucked so bad that you couldn't hear anything in Section 5, Row 62, seat 113, a nd I wasn't alone. Neither could the people behind me, or in front of me, or on either side. Ahh welL . Still the king , McGrath got th e biggest ovation during the interviews, and 1 sensed that a lot of people had just come out to see how he would do on "the blue bike," although Kyle rati onal ly exp lained to everyone who would listen tha t Jerem y's success was assured if he would just pull "the red bike" out of his truck and ride it tonight. Point well taken . Then they made up for the crummy PA sys tem with a bitchin' firewor ks display that bordered on full nuk e during the National An them. Things were looking up. The riders we re getting fast er in the heat races as th e track d rie d out. Ezra Lus k loo ked brill iant on his "red bik e" en route to a w in over Kevin Wind ham in a load ed first 250cc heat, a nd I' m s u re th at th e H ond a bra ss was lickin g its cho ps . Mickael Pichon came ou t and wo n th e seco nd heat over his fac tory Suzuki teammat e, Larry Ward, a nd he d idn't even so much as sna p a fem ur. oYEARS AGO... AN UARY26,1968 im Bruns (Tri) won th e Heavyweight class a t the Bushasters' Rabbit Hare rambles in the Badands, south of Beauont, California ... A en Ma ely steel shoe as selling for $25 , hile his Flat Tra ck pecial raci ng boots .-..~-.:.';Z e re a whopping 15.95... Joe Ro se bu ry on the 90cc Expert class on a 124cc Kawasai at the Sproc kets MC scra mb les in Bakersfield , Calirni a. The ove rsize d mac hine curiously was legal for e class in District 36... In a Cycle News exclusive, Evel neivel d iscussed his recent crash at Caesar's Palace nd his plans for the futu re... Don Cast ro (Mon) wo n e Santa Rosa indoor short track opener, leading the ain event from start to finish ... You could "Move... to the Bold World of BSA " or pick up a new ree ve s for $795, "available for immediate delivry," of course. When I got up to hit the head, I was amaz ed at how I qu ickly got in and out of a rest room with fou r urin als when I can get tra pped in a 3D-toilet restroom at the Great Western Forum du rin g intermission at an LA Kings ga me and nearly miss a full period of play. These supercross fans are on the go. The 250cc semis were interesting , bu t not so much be cause of who wo n, or di d n't. Inst ead , I ha ve to ad mit th at I chuckled a little when som e gu y endo ed ove r the chasm at the bottom of the peristyl e and almost right into Cycle News contribu tor Eric Johnson's lap. Suddenly , Joh nson realized that he probably was n' t standing in the safest place near the track, and he coolly sauntered away from the area with a gait that su ggested he didn't want anyone to realize tha t he had just soiled hims elf, Then there was the case of Jimmy "Panic" Button. I've got this guy picked fifth for th e series, mainly because I know that h e won ' t be hurting for horsepower since the team has enlis ted the aid of forme r World Cham pionship road race-winning rider and tuner Kel Carruthers. Butto n was fast, bu t it was clear tha t he was fighting the bike. Then, w hen it looked like he had it made in his semi , he tried to take out Jeff Dement in th e las t turn a nd wound up in the LCQ. H eh , heh. Needs a little suspension work, eh, Jimmy? John Dowd made everyone else look like mud in the 125cc main event, which makes sense to me, him being from New England and all. It was a yawner. Roncada made a run at him but didn't have the juice tonight. I turned my a ttentio n toward the sleep ing 5-yea r-old in fron t of me and thou ght tha t it wo uld be really funny if I accid entall y d um ped my lukewarm choco late ($3 from the ma n in the fu nny apron) all over h is head . I wasn' t rea lly tha t short on enter tai nment yet, but I was getti ng there. Then came the 250cc main eve nt, and a fun ny thin g happened. All 61,884 fans (the re we re 61,885 i n a tte n da nce; I wasn' t a fan yet) got ou t of th eir seats and on the ir fee t. And so did I. Th ey s tayed tha t w a y fo r th e full 20 laps, screaming and cheering for that Dou g Henry guy on that boo min' fou r-stro ke. I did, too. McG rath a lmos t go t h im through the whoops on the first lap, bu t 2 EAR 0Y SAGO ... JANUARY 2 1978 5, C :" -,.;'::Jj l~~~~~......or" :Ui-;;e ~~ ' ;.-.~r::;;; ..""'.. .... -"'••" ;.::"."A"':':'::~ .. ~ .... .::--~ .. ~ --:::::-.:::-.--~ ':.:.... was ov er. Em ig was fas t, and he took th e full measure of McGrath, dropping h im to third on lap six or so. But man , associa te ed ito r Kit Palm er was ri ght a bo u t Henry. He wa s flyin ', and if he s tays health y, he is gonna have a terri fic year on that thumper. I hate it wh en Kit' s right. Th en , som e Kawasaki guy in some pretty flashy dud s ca me th rou gh the field . They told me that he was a European, which means he 's fro m Europe. Tor tellini or so m e t h in g like that. Mmmm , good . As sociate edito r Cameron Coatney told me that he was probably goi ng to win , and I hate it even more when Cameron's righ t. At lea st that's a rare occu rrence. He even passed up a $10,000 bet with Carruthers for a $10 one on Tortellini, which pro ves my point, I think. Anyway, Tortellini shot by Henry on the last lap . Henry tried to retaliate and instead wound up on the gro und . That tr ick fo u r-stroke went fro m coach to pumpkin as he engaged in a maniacal hot-start drill that cost him something like eight s pots. The Euro guy won , lea di ng Emig and McG ra th across the line. We d idn' t watch the rest , a s we quic kly left our seats to line u p in the blocks for the grea t Los Angeles pa rking- lot da sh , w hich follows every sporting even t in town. We used the sec ret ' exit and hit the road right behind the Batmobile in five minutes, all accord ing to the plan. And just as it started raining, the thou ght hit m e th at th is su pe rcross st uff is pretty cool after a lL In th e past two years, it h as evolved to th e point t ha t it now delivers mor e than jus t th e factory rigs and the insane leaps a nd the cool firewo rks . What ? How about genuine competition? Well, that's wha t really hap pened at th e LA Su percross. And by th e way, Terry, they was racin'! 1:\ 10Y AR E SAGO... JANUARY 20,1 988 ycle News tested the Harle y-Davidson XLCR1000 Cafe Racer and determined that, while it was fun , it was hardly a racer... We introduced a series of "h ow to ride" articles, with none other than reigning su percross and 250cc National MX Champion Bob Hann ah d oing th e tea ching ... Larry Ro eseler (H us) remained undefeat ed in the AMA District 37 desert, h avin g ca p t u re d th e Desert MC H are and r~ ,:p1';I,·..-- ~-~ T ' (~" i n :. Hound ne ar Lucerne Valley, -;J;J~ Ca lifo rni a ... We featured a -" ,_~, • ca n d id conversation with "j.;;;~ ... John Pen ton an d Jack Lehto i~E~~::=" of the newl y formed KTM .~,~ ~!...... Ameri ca, formerly known as .l:1::.!.. Hen ry twisted his wri st (I think he still ·can) and su rged ahead -d own the fro nt stra ight. By this tim e, the Honda bra ss probably went fro m licking their chops to d ry heav es as Yogi mad e a boo-boo of a start and was 'ru nning seco nd- to-last, He wo u ld finis h 16th before the n ight Pen ton mo torcycles... In the New Products sectio n, a N ikon FM camera was conspicuously s u r ro u n d e d by sever al motorcycl e new product s ... You cou ld order a Motocross Cat co m ic book for just 75 cent s... A 75 Bultaco Sherpa T3S0 could be had in the Wan t Ads for $900... XI (Mike Goodwin) failed in its legal bid to block the MTEG (Micke y Thompson) Anaheim Supercross on January 30. Shortly after the court deci - . s io n to allow th e even t to take p la ce, Th ompson announced that the even t would receive the suppo rt of I"'i"",,=,,--.._ _ factory riders Rick Johnso n and Jeff , 'i n~r;j I 'oJ . . r :: Ward by their attendance... ~,~ I j i:J Goat Breker (Hon) was back ~~_. ~ on form as he took the 500cc obnson, ._ win a t the second round of relter& th e CMC /Dodge Truck .Jan win Gol den Slate Nationa ls in I Sandhill Bren twood . Califo rn ia. Ricky Johnson (Ho n) wo n the 250cc anch class . Rick Ryan won the 125cc class aboard a 1987 Hond a CRI25 ... We interviewed 125cc Na tiona l MX Cha mpio n Mickey Dymond... Jeff Emig (Kaw ) traveled all the way from Indepe ndence, Missouri, to win the .liiiiii~~ opening round of the CMC Golden State Ama teur Nationals 0 in San Bernardino, Califo rnia . S G '.iJ.:J 59

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