My two cents on the first three rounds of Supercross
There are 17 rounds of the 2010 AMA / FIM Supercross Series. It is a long season … and as so many people say, it’s a marathon, not a sprint.
So far in 2010, it has started off GREAT!
Why? Lots of reasons! Controversy! Drama! New stars! Changing of the guard????
Lets talk about Ryan Dungey for a moment shall we? I just have three letters. One word – W O W. Pretty much sums it up so far doesn’t it?
This is Ryan’s first full season riding in the 450 Supercross class. And he is riding better than anyone in recent memory that’s new full-time to the premiere class. He’s won two of the three races, and is leading the championship series. Ryan works hard, trains hard, and man – does he have talent, and it’s very evident on the big bike.
Now on the topic was has been the ‘old guard’ of supercross – James Stewart and Chad Reed. With Chad out with a broken hand and surgery, and now James out with a broken bone in his wrist and surgery, there looks to be a changing of the guard.
Don’t get me wrong – its been great seeing James and Chad back on the track together, finally dukeing it out! Its been too long! But man, it sure does seem like those two guys do have it out for one another, doesn’t it? They are racers at heart and don’t settle for 2nd place. That’s the bottom line once you’ve been a multi time supercross champion as they both have, and there is a lot of pressure and responsibility when you are in their shoes. In Phoenix they both pushed themselves so hard it caused them to make a couple of mistakes. The last one causing both of them to crash …
And after Chad and James little get together on the track in Phoenix … there was some ‘getting together’ in the pits. We’ve heard all kinds of stories. We even saw parts of it. We’ve seen the post PR releases and videos. I believe the fact is that both riders were issued at least verbal warnings about on and off track behavior.
Lets play a game … if Jason Lawrence had done what James Stewart or Chad Reed did during and/or after the race in Phoenix (based on what we have all heard : ) do you think he would have had the same punishment or lack of? (A verbal warning?) I’m simply pointing out what I see as a potential flaw in the system of rules and fair play and punishments.
Jason Lawrence is not, and would not be viewed by many as a ‘model citizen’ in our sport. His run-ins have been numerous. J-Law is now out of jail, and back training, … and he’s a different person. After speaking to him at the first round in Anaheim, I could see his recent experiences have truly got to him. In a good way. He has a different outlook on life now, he is very grateful for everything. He’s happy and excited and wants to be competitive on the track. He does have a little feeling like he almost doesn’t belong on the starting line. When I asked him “Why?” he said “Amanda, I’ve been in jail for half a year and I just got out, I’ve only been on the bike a few times, and truly, this is all a new and unique experience for me. I want to make the most of it!”.
(Jason didn’t race in Phoenix or Anaheim 2 – he’s had Mono and is waiting until he’s 100% to be back on the track. But welcome back J-Law!)
OK, back to my question – if Jason Lawrence had done what James Stewart or Chad Reed did during and/or after the race in Phoenix (again, based on first hand, second hand, and third hand reports) and with Jason’s ‘history’, would the punishment have been the same? I’m not sure. I honestly don’t know. But I can take a guess that James and Chad help sell more tickets and put more “butts in seats”.
What do you think? You can post a message here in the Message Boards on your opinion of this
Chad and James are both out with broken bones and surgeries. The top two names in our sport, just starting the season, are out for now. That makes for opportunity for others. One thing if I was in their shoes … errrr …. boots. Take your time and get well. Don’t let pressure, fans, friends, family, sponsors, or even yourself come back too soon before you are healed. The hand and wrist are tricky area sometime for healing, and coming back too soon has ruined some riders’ careers in the past ….
That’s my two cents!