Throwdown No.90 – An opener to remember…
What’s this “Throwdown”? It’s a digital home for rumour, fact and innuendo, delivered on a weekly basis. Covering a broad spectrum of the off-road world’s news, the Throwdown will touch on everything from racing to trailriding; from industry tidbits to issues facing the sport. It’s about delivering you timely information all in one place so you don’t have to scour the internet looking for it.Kawasaki has released details of their 2013 KX250F this week, with the green machine getting refinements to the engine, chassis, suspension and bodywork, plus it receives the plug and play DFI couplers - seen on the 2012 KX450F - to quickly modify the engine map. The bulk of the changes are said to increase RPM and give the rider greater control. Find out the specific updates in our first impressions online article.--- In a surprise move, Kawasaki also announced the 2013 KX450F will receive Kayaba Pneumatic Spring Forks (PSF) - basically air forks that reduce front-end weight by 750g and friction by 20%. Take a look at our KX450F run-down to find out more.---James Stewart blew away all speculation and rumours coming into Hangtown, and dominated the field with a 1-1 result. Not bad considering he hasn't committed to racing a full season of the AMA Motocross since 2008 (where he won all 24 motos) and just a few weeks earlier was riding a Yamaha! Jason Weigandt discusses Stewart's performance in this week's USA Insider.---Marking the halfway point of the 10-round series, Round 5 of the MX Nationals was staged at Murray Bridge, SA. After three top-three finishes, Motul Pirelli Suzuki's Todd Waters finally surged ahead to take victory, marking him as the first Australian to take a win in the MX1 class this season. Take a look at our exclusive online coverage from the event.---Australia's Brett Metcalfe was mixing it up amongst the front runners at Hangtown and eventually settled for 5-4, tying on points for third with MotoConcepts Suzuki's Mike Alessi and L&MC Racing's Andrew Short. He didn't have Red Bull KTM's Ryan Dungey or James Stewart's pace, but we're sure to see him hitting the podium this season.---Kawasaki's Meghan Rutledge made her debut on the world stage this weekend by winning Moto 2 in the AMA Motocross WMX class, beating the likes of former WMX champion, Ashley Fiolek, and six-times Women's MX Champion, Jessica Patterson. Unfortunately a crash in Moto 1 sent her to the back and she had to claw her way back up the field to eighth. She now sits fourth in the standings, six points behind series leader, Patterson.---Reigning Champion, Josh Coppins, struggled at Murray Bridge after crashing during Moto 2 and colliding with another rider in the final race to finish sixth. The setback cost him his 42-point lead and he's now only 21-points in front of Todd Waters. "I finished third in Moto 1," said Coppins. "I was in fourth place in Moto 2, lost the front and tucked it in the corner and finished sixth. I was ready to fire in the last race. I got a great start and was sitting in third and I just past Jake Moss before he tried to do a kamikaze move around the outside and took us both out. Unfortunately he's hurt. It's disappointing for the championship but we won't give up." Coppins will now head back to Europe during the five-week break to race select UK and Belgium events.---Reigning Champion Jay Marmont battled through the pain of his knee injury to finish 10th at Murray Bridge. With a month until the next round, Marmont has opted for surgery and hopes to be fully recovered in four to six weeks.---JDR KTM Factory Racing's Josh Cachia has stepped up and put it all together at Murray Bridge to take his first win of the season. The 19-year-old rode to a 5-1-2 and secured the top step of the podium and now sits fourth in the championship, 48 points behind MX2 leader, Luke Styke. If the JDR DVD cover-mounted on our June issue is anything to go by, Cachia is fast and has the talent to win, but needs to be consistent and keep a level head. Definitely keep an eye on him for the remainder of the season.---There has been a lot of talk about the organisation, security and dangerous conditions on the track at the Mexican World Motocross Championship round, held on May 13. Let's recap: Saturday's qualification was vetoed by riders due to complaints of dust and the shape of some jumps, Tommy Searle was unfortunate enough to witness a dead body on the road into the circuit and the rookie Mexican organisers had problems meeting the standards of holding an FIM event, to the point where local press published that the event was cancelled. Since then, Youthstream's president, Guiseppe Luongo, has defended the decision to compete in Mexico, releasing a statement that addresses the issues. It's a topical issue and worth a read.---With an international line-up, the Manjimup 15,000 will take place on June 2-3 in Western Australia at Cosy Creek track. Coming in as the favourite, Carlton Dry Honda Thor Racing's Brad Anderson will be using the event as a training ground for the MX National campaign. For those who don't know much about the event, it was first held in 1980 and its name was derived from the $15,000 prize money up for grabs at the time. The inaugural winner was actually UK's Roger Harvey who won a cool $5000. For more details about the event head to the official website: http://www.williethomson.com."All those blokes wanted to do were take photos of old buildings. Trouble is everything is old so you couldn't walk past the local deli without stopping to snap a few shots off!" - KTM Australia's Greg Chambers' take on Transmoto's Ollie Sharp while over at the 2013 KTM launch in Italy.--- Taking advantage of the wide variety of terrain at the Broadford AORC, Motorex KTM Off-Road's Toby Price picked up his sixth consecutive round win. Winning Saturday's three-hour cross-country by 8.246 seconds, he again cleaned up in Sunday's sprint. It comes as no surprise as Price has shown time after time he's able to quickly adapt to a range of conditions and come out on top. And with the venue using sections of motocross track, rolling grass hills, tight single track and trails, he's further cemented that adage.---Active8 Yamaha Yamalube Racing's Josh Green took the win in the E1 class at Round 8 of the AORC despite suffering from a broken scaphoid. The 21-year-old was the fastest rider in the class during Sunday's sprint event and took third at Round 7's cross-country. Green will spend the next month recovering and hopes to be fully healed for Round 9 and 10 of the series, held at Conondale Qld, on July 28/29. --- Green's Team Manager, AJ Roberts, suffered a chest injury in a practice crash on Friday (trying to pass Green no less). He attempted to ride the cross country on Saturday but another small crash saw him re-injure himself and was forced to pull out of the weekend's racing. "I was hounding Josh Green during practice and I hit a rock and lost the front end," recalls Roberts. "Then during the Cross Country I lost the front end again and re-injured myself." Robert's has massive bruising on the middle of his chest but suspects nothing is broken. "I did the all-night drive back from SA and then went straight back to work on Monday so I haven't had time to get a scan. I'm a bit bruised on my chest but I don't think I broke it. It's painful and I'll have to see how I go but hopefully I'll be recovered in time for Finke (June 9)."---PSC Husqvarna Offroad's Damian Smith dominating the Veteran's class once again, running away with his eighth straight round win at the AORC over the weekend. The off-road master tells us these days it's about the bigger picture, "At my age, it's more about self preservation and enjoying racing," said Smith. "I still made a few mistakes but that was because I tend to push myself to compete for good outright results and not just walk away with the Veterans podium."---The Australian round of the FIM Trials World Championship will take place at Mt Tarrengower, Vic, on May 26/27. Six Australian have entered to compete in the Junior, Open International and Youth World Championship classes while WA's Neil Price and multiple-Australian Champion, Kevin Zarczinski, will challenge in the newly-introduced Open International class. For more details and ticket information head to the official website.---The 2012 Great Australian Ride is on again this year and a team of riders will undertake the massive journey from Australia's most easterly point to the west in 20 days. Riding off on August 4, the aim is to raise over $25,000 for the Sids and Kids foundation - dedicated to saving lives of babies and children and supporting bereaved families. To donate to this worthy cause click here.---The Australian Safari has a new route for 2012 that covers the coastal areas in Western Australia's northwest. Heading through Geraldton, Murchison and Carnarvon, the course will cover over 3000km of terrain over nine days.Yedikule Dungeons in Istanbul, Turkey, will host the third stop of the Red Bull X-Fighters World Tour on June 16. Yedikule Dungeons was a terrifying castle used for imprisonment and execution. Today, the fortress is a museum, expect when the X-Fighters come to town! New Zealand's Levi Sherwood will look to redeem himself from his seventh place finish at Round 2 in the US and repeat his performance at the opening round of the series in Dubai, were he finished first.---Speaking of Sherwood, want to know how he sets up his FMX bike? Check this vid.
Honda Australia Rider Training (HART) is offering $25 off their learner, license or Q-Ride courses at their Melbourne and Brisbane locations. And if you bring a mate you’ll each receive $50 off. For more info head to http://hart.honda.com.au.
Arnette have released their Series 3 MX Goggle with scratch-resistant anti-fog UV-protected lens. Retailing for $49.95 for the basic lens and $69.95 for the chrome, they come in 19 frame colours and can be purchased from Monza Imports.