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October 23, 2006 at 1:40 am #25620
Got an email from someone today asking a good question.
Why do the older guys just leave?
Ya know….18,19 to about 30 or so?
Yea….I know, college, girls, boys…(for the ladies, I ain’t prejudice), marriage, kids, etc…
Problem is once those fast local heroes leave..it creates a vacuum.
That cannot be replaced for years…sure some faster old…OLD, lol 35+ guys can step in and race and show the kids you can still ride, but we need the fastest of the fast to show how its done, how you can stay with it and race a couple times a month, have fun…etc.
Has anyone ever sat down with the older guys classes…not my class, I mean the above mentioned fellas, asked them what would help keep them coming to the races to keep interest alive?
I know it’s not easy when an 8 year old beginner can be national #1….and hate me as you may but when the nbl gave out those beginner and novice national plates you took away a very important part of BMX racing.
In our time, the words, I wanna be Stu, or Greg or PK or Gary, or….on and on were spoken all the time. Nowadays the older guys know the pros but not with the thrill of the old times.
Stu Thomsen was sponsored at one time by
HUFFY, in it’s day the LARGEST bike manufacturer in the world.
He was a hero to many of the freakin’ PROS! Let alone the ams.
Carol Gleason told Bob Tedesco when he announced his plans to give out those plates that he was going to kill the sport.
Bob, she said, “You’re taking away the heroes, when anyone can be #1…then what is the point of being #1?”
She was right.
I would like to have a meeting just with the top fastest maniacs in the state at the state awards in November to see what we can do to generate interest in the top level guys.
I care, does anyone else?October 23, 2006 at 2:17 am #35714RaidenHaydenMember
Not only do those plates take the prestige of being an Expert, or all that went into getting there to get a plate at that level, but it takes incentive away. I mean if you get to Nat #8 novice, and you are comfortable, why turn Ex, stay another year and go for #1, meanwhile all the newer riders that are really novice, are now racing someone that could race Ex and getting discouraged.
Bottom LINE, it doesn’t promote rising to the top!!!!! Let alone the fact there really aren’t heroes the way there used to be in the sport. Mike Savage and I had this conversation last night. Used to be go to the Nat, and see all the guys you would read aout in the mag, now it’s go to a Nat, and it’s like an overgrown local!!!October 23, 2006 at 2:49 am #35715
If you’re over 18 you should be taking an active interest in the future of BMX racing…
OTHER people who will not have the best interest of BMX at heart,
WILL take an interest after 2008 and they are getting their paws in it right now…
(and for all those who are gonna read this and think I am implying something about those involved in NJ…I’m not talking about you! jeesh!)October 23, 2006 at 3:13 am #35716CavemanMember
Mike Savage! Can I get a hell yeah?! He’s my hero. Anybody that gets a BMXA cover is a g-d icon!
I’d like to think BMX appeals to people that want to challenge themselves in life. Always looking to do better, not people that need an easy win to feel better about themselves. That’s why I never understood people that wanted to be #1 novice. #1 novice? That’s an oxymoron. The fastest novice doesn’t become #1. He moves up to expert. When I started racing I had my eyes set on expert. I wanted that so bad and I wanted to EARN it according to rules.
But perhaps I shouldn’t praise myself so much. Perhaps the only reason I wanted that was because I joined a sanction that gave you no choice. There was every incentive to become expert and no incentive to stay down. What would have happened if my local track had been NBL? Would I have strategized to be the #1 rookie? Would I have short changed myself and be satisfied with an easy win?
Well the point is moot because my local track was ABA so that’s all I knew. All I can say is I was lucky I had no choice but to shoot for the top and I believe it has made me a better person. That’s why I believe the ABA’s system not only makes better BMXers, it makes better people.
Enough preaching. Phil Delizia, Tim Sullivan, Stosh Dawejko, and Brett Snyder have all just turned pro. That means we can have a genuine PRO class at the state qualifiers next year. Hell, I’m still delusional enough to think I can do at 36 what I could at 18 so I’ll race it too. I’ll contribute to the Delizia Foundation. 🙂 Add Mabin and that makes six local pros.
Do you think seeing a pro class would give the older kids a reason to stay with it? What does everyone think?October 23, 2006 at 3:56 am #35717SullivanMember
im down. Caveman your my hero everytime i make u flip the gate! And thats been quite a few times, i might add.October 23, 2006 at 5:19 am #35718October 23, 2006 at 11:39 am #35719bmxmom156Member
what about the local pros racing at locals? what do you guys ( esp the ones who have been around a while) think about the “local pros” racing at locals in open on a weekly basis? money or no money(if tracks cant contribute) just to show the young ones what they have to look fwd to? it seems that they just dont want to race anymore locally and i feel that kills the spark for the younger ones when they see them come and practice and leave.
a situation for example…local pros come to a track and practice. then they decide not to race.. so then the older experts or 17-19 decide no one to race/ no open so they decide to leave.. then you have no one over 16 racing at all at a local?? does this make sense?( not talking about your faster 35 and over crowd/ cruiser…haha
i remember when my son started marcus and a bunch of “local pros” would race fleminton every week, stick around and give tips to the younger riders and the open was a big deal. it made for exciting racing plus you had your local heros…the fence was lined with kids staying to the end to watch the mains.. dave im sure you remember this…
i dont understand the logic of the fast experts who go pro then decide not to race on a reg basis. esp when we have a decent amt of fast guys in that class ( as you mentioned names above). its not like they dont have anyone to race… and if there are races where there are no pros encourage the other 16 overs to do opens to get them ready… give back to the sport alittle…its not always about winning first to get the bucks the young ones need something to look fwd to..
jmoOctober 23, 2006 at 11:44 am #35720
SIX local pros?
Man that is Christmas time for promotion!October 23, 2006 at 12:13 pm #35721CavemanMember
Tim, am I still gonna be your hero after I launch you off the first turn? You’re on the list now too, mr. 😆
Four of those six pros live in Philly but I consider that local. Speaking of which I forgot Bob Whipple. Seven.October 23, 2006 at 12:16 pm #35722
We takes em where we can gets em…
Where have I heard the name Mr. Whipple before?October 23, 2006 at 12:20 pm #35723bmxmom156Member
or bensalem track ( memory is shot?)
take your pickOctober 23, 2006 at 12:33 pm #35725
man, promotional BONANZA!October 23, 2006 at 2:10 pm #35726SullivanMember
Dave, 1st turn no thanks 🙄 .. how bout 3rd turn for last place in a moto, then you would really really be my hero! 😆 Veterans Day bring it..
Now back to the point, I would enjoy racing opens every week regardless if they are for money. But money would be an extra insentive.October 23, 2006 at 3:40 pm #35728CrazyCraigMember
Brett and Dave and Tim, and everyone else should try to see how many of the local pros we can get out to EHT for the Nov 11th race and then the Ironman on the 19th. Then make sure someone videotapes the whole thing including motos so the little guys can watch it over and over.
To comment on some of the previous posts – I never had designs on being #1 National Novice this year – I just wanted to get better with every race and then set the goal to win the Grands. But, I’m back in expert and looking forward to chasing the big guns now. Heck, I’m #6 in the country right now. 😀 But thats’s only because I got one last Nat as a nov (Reg Championship). I’m with Dave – racing ABA BITD there was only one motivation – and that was to turn expert. I never got a top national ranking in the ABA – but just making the 17 Expert main at a National made you feel like a rock star.October 23, 2006 at 4:14 pm #35729CoughdropMember
This would be my first post on this website, so take it easy on me! The Heroes of the day is something that I remember vividly. In the early 80’s the large manufacturers created heroes from all over the classes. It was not just the pros that were gods. There was an add with Greg Hill and Geoff Scofield when Geoff was maybe 10 years old. The manufacturers built up all their riders as larger than life, and we loved it! I know that when I worked at Powerlite we tried to bring this back into the mix with promoting our younger riders. Running ads, creating signature bikes, and giving them the same kind of promotion as our top pros. There are a number of reasons why this doesn’t happen anymore. One reason is the fact that the large BMX companies are all but gone. Replaced by larger companies that now just own brands…think Pacific Cycles who owns Schwinn, GT, Mongoose, and killed Powerlite, Auburn and Robinson. They put their money into a few pros and call it a day. They are not investing in the future of the sport, but rather concerned about selling that $99 bike at Wal-Mart today! The other issue that was brought up was the fact that every kids that races can pretty much get National Number. The first year that I raced the nationals they gave National Number Plates to the Top 20 Experts only. That season I ended up National #21! Did it make me want to quit…no…instead I wanted it even more because it was prestigious. They try to make everyone happy, but in the long run have killed the prestige and removed the desire to try and obtain that elite status. I would rather work 5 years to get a top 20 National number in Expert than get my National #40 Novice plate in the first year. In the end heroes are just ordinary people doing extraordinary things. You or your very own son or daughter could be the next hero! So look to fill that void and and give it everything you have!
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