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Hello ThumperTalk readers! It’s been a while, and a lot has happened! My absence hasn’t been a negative time, but rather a time of building and preparation for the success I had just a few days ago. As I said in my previous entry, things are always likely to change, and I’ll talk a little about that too. Let’s get to it!
In the weeks leading up to the largest amateur national, Loretta Lynn’s, the preparation was nothing short of busy. Working three 12- hour days in the Florida heat, the other day spent either on the bike training with, Ricky Renner, in the gym or on a road bike. One thing I hadn’t thought about, I hadn’t been on an amateur national gate since November 2015, and I was competing in two of the most competitive classes at the ranch. However, a little bit of ignorance was bliss, and it allowed me to come in with a level of confidence to start the week and only get better.
Loretta Lynn's Amateur National, College 18-24 Moto 2, Photo by MEPMX
At the ranch, the usual ups and downs of competition is an understatement. However, I found myself able to walk away with my head held higher than ever, accomplishing many firsts and doing it was more awesome than I could’ve imagined! In the 250A class, if something could go wrong, it did. A nasty get-together with another racer over a jump – first moto, a fried clutch – second moto, and a flat tire in the fourth lap third moto, it would’ve been enough for some folks to give up and go home. On the opposite side of the spectrum, it seemed like everything went right in the College 18-24 class. It was in this class that I got my first ever podium moto finish, moto win, and overall podium at Loretta Lynn’s! 5-3-1 for 3rd overall!
Loretta Lynn's Amateur National, 250A Moto 2, Photo by MEPMX
This year was very different from the rest. With the guidance of Renner, and my long-time wrench, Amish Sam, we came into things with more strategy and well-thought out plans for success, rather than “just go for it” mentality. I am not an inside starter… but this week was different. The slight disadvantage of a 250 against 450s, I had to get a good start to set myself up for the rest of the moto, rather than trying to get a holeshot from the center of the starting line and putting myself in a spot to potentially get pinched off and shuffled to the back. We made a few bike changes throughout the week, different gearing, different piston, and new mapping (big thanks to Doug @ Kawasaki for helping me). More than anything, I was open-minded to achieve the success I wanted along with hard work and effort it ultimately created the scenario for success, and more confidence which allowed for greater accomplishments.
Loretta Lynn's Amateur National, College 18-24 Moto 3, Photo by Ricky Renner
I believe the most exciting thing that happened last week was the last moto of the week, College 18-24, when I had my first ever moto win at Loretta Lynn’s! Perhaps you have experienced the feeling when you are leading, thoughts of, “just stay up”, and there’s a good chance of caving under the pressure. I went from 6th to 2nd in about 3 turns, and from there I passed into the lead by the 3rd lap finishing 8 seconds ahead of second place. When I passed into the lead and started to pull away, there was no sense of “don’t go down”. Instead, I was feeling confident and pride in myself. It felt like it was another day doing 20-minute motos… just nailing the lines, clicking off laps, in control, and CALM. It was at that moment I realized, that this is what I have trained for, all the preparation, to be in first place, at the most prestigious race of the year. To feel calm and comfortable in the most coveted spot. How awesome to be at the highest level in amateur racing of the year, leading the race, and feeling like it’s another day at the office, the sense to just keep it flowing! Going forward with this new confidence, I believe is a great stepping stone for further accomplishments at other national events and even into professional racing. I just had to have the breakthrough and get the momentum going!
Loretta Lynn's Amateur National, College 18-24 Moto 3 Win & Awards Ceremony, Photos by Ricky Renner
As mentioned in my last blog, plans change. I will be staying amateur another year. This decision has been unanimous with those who support me. I have missed a full year’s worth of gate drops, training and practice, and want to give myself adequate time to fully re-integrate back into the top level of amateur racing/competition. When I go pro, I want adequate support behind me, and to have all the tools necessary to create waves, and go in with the speed to be competitive off the gate drop. I will continue to document my journey in the A class, Arenacross run, and further. Be sure to check in and click the follow button for future blogs! We are always keeping it interesting in the Meshey camp.
I want to thank everyone who helps me along this journey. Wouldn’t be able to do what I do without all of you! Jimmy, Mike, and Eddie at Cycle Springs Powersports, Chris and the whole crew at Race Tech, Erik at Boyesen, ThumperTalk, Mike at FLY, Brad at EVS, Dien at Acerbis, Rich at EKS (X) Brand goggles, Rob at Dunlop, RoostMX Graphics, Simon at Mika Metals and DT1, MotoSeat, Kevin at Tamer Holeshot Hookup, Gregg at Lynk’s Racing, Dale at Bulletproof Threads, Andrew Campo, Ricky Renner for stealing my candy, Amish Sam, Momma Meshey, Keith, Amanda, Adam, and Lauren. Also, a huge thanks to everyone at USF Health, especially Dr. Tabatabian and Dr. Welsh for bringing me back to good health! Also, I look forward to my future with Wiseco, big thanks to Al and Kevin over there!
Photo by Ricky Renner
Today I want to share some pointers on preparing new or re-plated cylinders that will help ensure your engines run stronger and last longer. Plus, I've got an update on the two-stroke book I've been working on that I'd like to share. Let's get started!
A Universal Concern
First, both new and re-plated cylinders must be cleaned prior to assembling. Normally the cylinders will arrive looking clean, but looks can be deceiving. I have no doubt that the factories and re-plating services clean the cylinders as part of their processes, but I highly recommend cleaning the bores a final time prior to use. Shown below is a new Yamaha cylinder that I extracted quite a bit of honing grit out of.
If left in place, the honing grit will ensure that the piston rings will wear out faster than they need to, so be sure to take the time to properly clean new cylinders prior to assembly.
What’s the best way to clean the cylinder bore?
Start by using warm soapy water and a brush to clean the cylinder. Take your time and be thorough.
After the majority of the honing grit has been removed switch to automatic transmission fluid and a lint free rag for one final cleaning.
As a test to check cleanliness, rub a cotton swab against the cylinder bore. If the swab picks up any debris and changes color, your cleaning duties are not over. The swab should be able to be rubbed against the bore and remain perfectly clean.
Two-Stroke Port Dressing
For two-stroke owners, the second item I want to bring to your attention is port dressing. Port dressing is a term used to describe the process of deburring/breaking the edge at the intersection of the cylinder plating and the ports in the cylinder. During the plating process, plating usually builds up excessively at the edge of the port and must be removed after honing. Proper removal is critical to ensure acceptable piston ring life.
Manufacturers and plating services will break the edge in different ways and to different magnitudes, which ends up being a whole other topic. The important thing is to ensure that any new or re-plated cylinder you use shows visible signs that the port edges have been dressed. A dressed port edge will be easy to spot because it will feature a different surface finish than the cross-hatch created from honing. This is easily visible in the image shown above. Many port dressing operations are done manually so some irregularity in the geometry will usually be present. If there is no visible edge break on the port edges, I would be highly suspicious and contact the service that plated the cylinder or sold the cylinder and confirm with them if a step was missed. Typically a chamfer or radius in the .020 - .040” (0.5 - 1mm) range is used.
Two-Stroke Power Valves
Lastly, it is possible that some of the power valve components, such as blades or drums, will not fit correctly on cylinders that have been replated. This is because the plating can occasionally build up in the slots or bores where the power valve parts reside. Prior to final assembly, be sure to check the function of the power valve blade and/or drums to ensure they move freely in their respective locations within the cylinder.
If plating has built up in a power valve slot or bore, it will need to be carefully removed. To do this, appropriately sized burs for die grinders or Dremel tools can be used. If one is not careful, irreversible damage to the slot or bore can result. When performing this work proceed cautiously or leave it to a seasoned professional. Burs for the job can be difficult to track down in stores, but are readily available online from places like McMaster-Carr. When purchasing burs, be sure to pick up a few variants, such as rounded and square edged, designed for removing hard materials.
The Two-Stroke Book
From February to March we photographed the entire book. From April onward we have been formatting and proofreading. Needless to say, we are in the final stretch! If you want to stay updated on the moment the Two-Stroke Dirt Bike Engine Building Handbook is ready for pre-order, sign up at the link below. We can't wait to get this book out the door and into your garage.
Thanks for reading and have a great rest of your week!
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"While at Machu Picchu, one of the seven wonders of the world, Ryan was counting down the days for our dirtbike tour." Todd explained just moments before heading out on the trail.
It's hard to look down upon the Andes as you fly into the Cusco valley, and not have your mind blown with the enormity and vastness of the terrain below the wings. If you are crazy passionate about dirtbikes, it's even more mind blowing to imagine riding it on two wheels. Todd and Ryan joined up with Scott Englund of MotoMission Peru for a custom three day hard enduro ride. The ride catered to their skill levels, journeyed across the type of terrain that the boys wanted to ride, and filled their minds with hundreds of unforgettable images of Peru. Each teetered on the edge of comfort as Scott managed to push them beyond their norms of riding in Colorado.
The official tour video...Check it out!
"There is something special about leading a father son duo into the back country." Englund said as he explained how his own father bred a bit of adventure in his own heart. "I get people from every corner of the planet. They are all awesome peeps, but to share this experience with Todd and Ryan, that's a thrill."
Three days of exotic dirtbiking. Beginning at Englund's home, the trail begins just minutes from the garage. "No trailers, you'll see what I am talking about. You won't even have time to warm up before we hit the trail." Englund explained.
What goes on inside of Motomission is nothing short of a dream. Scott has been running MotoMission Peru for a number of years. He is a social entrepreneur who gives 100% of the profits of the business to charity. His family is supported by a number of people and/or businesses who believe in his mission. Sponsors have supported MotoMission with equipment and gear. The marketing arm of the business are happy customers that tell others about the experience and share the included tour video via social media.
Scott does what he loves to do. Riding dirtbikes, exploring new areas, cinematography, adventure, travel, serving others, business...It all fits his lifestyle. You can see it in his smile when he hands over the bike to you at the beginning of the tour.
So many views!
"I've got the coolest gig on the planet!" Englund states. "In my wildest of thoughts, I couldn't have dreamt up a better situation. I live here with my amazing family, all who ride, and I get to do what I love to do, while giving it all away."
It's not all happy and easy. "It really sucks when you have to haul a bike out of a canyon in backpacks." recalled Englund of a time when a customer launched a bike off a ledge so steep and deep he couldn't see where the bike had landed.
Good times with Dad!
Todd and Ryan got the full package. Englund was able to lead the men into an unforgettable riding experience like they had never imagined. Beyond tired, they had to make it to the next town for the night. They rode a section that is typically a two day ride, all in the scope of one day and a little bit of night. "My hand is so tired I can't squeeze the clutch anymore." Ryan said as the cramping in his forearm curled up his hand.
When it comes to an exotic dirt bike adventure, MotoMission Peru has the holeshot. With countless untouched routes, an epic landscape, and a personable and capable guide, you owe it to yourself to check out this little gem in the Andes.
You can reach Scott at Scott@motomissionperu.com to find out more about tours and riding in the Andes. He is always ready to talk shop!
Also, don't forget to "FOLLOW" this blog if you want to have access to MotoMission Peru's new posts and videos.
It has been a few years now since Lance Armstrong appeared on TV and admitted to his, and his teams, use of performance enhancing drugs (PEDS). To say that there was an awareness of PEDS influencing the race results of the Tour de France is an understatement; however, to the extent that past racers and champions have admitted to using PEDS (both regarding the type and amounts) is frightening. In this article, I thought I would provide a recap of the most popular PEDS and how you can get the same performance results in a healthy and natural way.
Note: Your body produces these substances naturally in the body, the key to optimum health and performance is to maintain a high quality & quantity of healthy blood through clean eating and controlled training efforts (volume, intensity and frequency).
Drug: Erythropoietin (pronounced, ah-rith-ro-poy-tin, and abbreviated, EPO)
What EPO Does Within the Body
Erythropoietin (pronounced, ah-rith-ro-poy-tin, and abbreviated, EPO) is a relatively recent entry into the deceitful pursuit of glory. EPO is a protein hormone produced by the kidney. After being released into the blood stream it binds with receptors in the bone marrow, where it stimulates the production of red blood cells (erythrocytes). Medically, EPO is used to treat certain forms of anemia (e.g., due to chronic kidney failure). Logically, since EPO accelerates erythrocyte production it also increases oxygen carrying capacity.
Side Effects of EPO: Death
In the 1990s, there was a spate of sudden deaths associated within the cycling world associated with EPO: Marco Ceriani (16 years old), Johan Sermon (21 YO), Fabrice Salanson (23 YO), Marco Rusconi (24 YO), Jose Maria Jimenez (32), Denis Zanette (32 YO), Marco Pantani (34 YO), Michel Zanoli (35 YO). This negative publicity was at least part of the reason for the clamping down on EPO use, which was rampant at the time.
The reason that EPO, and transfusion blood doping, is dangerous is because of increased blood viscosity. Basically, whole blood consists of red blood cells and plasma (water, proteins, etc.). The percentage of whole blood that is occupied by the red blood cells is referred to as, the hematocrit. A low hematocrit means dilute (thin) blood, and a high hematocrit mean concentrated (thick) blood. Above a certain hematocrit level whole blood can sludge and clog capillaries. If this happens in the brain it results in a stroke. In the heart, a heart attack. Unfortunately, this has happened to several elite athletes who have used EPO.
EPO use is especially dangerous to athletes who exercise over prolonged periods. A well-conditioned endurance athlete is more dehydration resistant than a sedentary individual. The body accomplishes this by several methods, but one key component is to “hold on” to more water at rest. Circulating whole blood is one location in which this occurs and, thus, can function as a water reservoir. During demanding exercise, as fluid losses mount, water is shifted out of the blood stream (hematocrit rises). If one is already starting with an artificially elevated hematocrit then you can begin to see the problem -- it is a short trip to the critical “sludge zone”.
Additional dangers of EPO include sudden death during sleep, which has killed approximately 18 pro cyclists in the past fifteen years, and the development of antibodies directed against EPO. In this later circumstance, the individual develops anemia as a result of the body’s reaction against repeated EPO injections.
There are some other reasons why cyclists might be predisposed to sudden death - riding at high intensities when carrying viral infections (as pro athletes tend to do) is one of them. And, as Ryan Shay, and a number of other high-profile cases have shown recently, sudden death is a tragic, but not completely uncommon event. There are reports that Nolf’s cardiogram was normal, but even that are not a guarantee of health, because those tests can often miss the quite rare conditions that cause sudden death in athletes. Source: click here
How to improve the quality & production of red blood cells naturally
With a balanced diet of fresh fruits, vegetables and lean protein sources, your body will produce the blood chemistry necessary to perform at an elite level. Determining the optimal amount of protein, carbohydrates and fats that an individual need for optimal health and performance is beyond the scope of this article; however, I want you to know how to create healthy red blood cells.
Natural Eating Solution: eat high quality protein along with high quality brown bread with real butter. The protein will provide your body with iron (helps form hemoglobin which carries oxygen in the bloodstream from the lungs to the muscles & brain) and the brown bread will provide you B vitamins (also referred to as Energy Vitamins). An additional benefit of eating protein and brown bread is that the bread with improve your absorption of the iron.
Drug: Human Growth Hormone (hGH)
What HGH Does Within the Body
hGH is stored in a pea sized ball called the pituitary gland and is the primary stimulus to muscle & muscle strength, bone growth & bone strength, tendon growth & tendon strength, injury repair and mobilization of body fat for use as energy.
Warning: this gets technical, but necessary to fully understand this process.
The key to overall health and performance is to stimulate your own production of growth hormone and you accomplish this by stimulating the pituitary gland correctly. The pituitary is stimulated to release growth hormone by another hormone circulation in the brain called somatocrinin. Levels of somatocrinin can be increased by increasing levels of brain neurotransmitters. These neurotransmitters are the chemicals that carry information from one nerve to another. Their activity constitutes your mind, your consciousness and dreams. To increase neurotransmitters, you have to get the amino acids that influence them past what is called the blood-brain barrier. This concept is beyond the scope of this article, but what needs to be discussed here is an amino acid, Tryptophan, which is a precursor of the neurotransmitter serotonin. Serotonin is a compound that slows down brain activity during rest & sleep. Shortly after you fall asleep, your pituitary gland releases a burst of growth hormone. Source: Optimum Sports Nutrition, Dr. Michael Colgan.
Side Effects of Synthetic hGH
External side effects of synthetic hGH include: intense wrist nerve pain, diabetes, overgrowth of the facial bones, gaps between the teeth as the jawbone widens, development of a fatter nose, thickened bone above the eyes resembling an ape and excessive hair growth. Internal side effects include stressed liver, thyroid & pancreas symptoms, diabetes and historically die prior to the age of 60.
How to improve the production of hGH naturally
As mentioned above, the largest growth homone release occurs 30-60 minutes after falling asleep along with high intensity exercise (within moderate volume levels). To take advantage of these normal physiological functions, racers need to increase the duration and quality of sleep and monitor exercise durations and intensity levels. Ideally, racers should train twice daily, mid morning and early afternoon and take a nap immediately after training. Remember, each time you rest, your body receives a burst of growth hormone naturally.
Natural Eating Solution: consume a high-quality smoothie that contains a high quality whey protein prior to sleeping and napping. Research has shown that the production of hGH can improve by up to 300% when high quality whey protein is consumed before resting.
What Testosterone Does Within the Body
Testosterone has two distinct modes of action, androgenic (masculinizing) and anabolic (tissue building). Up to a certain level of testosterone in your body, a level that varies widely with biochemical individuality, the androgenic action produces more maleness, broader features, more hair, deeper voice, and larger sex organs. Along with it, the anabolic action produces larger muscles and greater strength.
Side Effects of Synthetic or Excessive Testosterone
If you take synthetic or excessive testosterone, the androgenic action turns nasty (aggression, violent anxiety, paranoia, and manic-depressive reactions). Additional negative side effects are irreversible baldness, overgrowth of the prostate, (which chokes the bladder and requires a catheter in order to urinate), acne (the blood fails to contain the excess hormone and overloads the sebaceous glands), impotence, shrinkage of testicles, cardiovascular disease and cancer.
How to improve the production of testosterone naturally
Sleep 8-10 hours; eat high quality fruits, vegetables and high-quality protein. Control your exercise intensity & volume to avoid over stressing your body.
Natural Eating Solution: eat foods that are high in boron, zinc, vitamin C, branched chain amino acids and maximize the release of growth hormone.
If you have any questions, comments, or suggestion for a future article, hit me up on the comments section below. I enjoy hearing from you. Oh, and don't forget to tap that "Follow" button so that you're notified when I post new tips on reaching your highest potential.
Coach Robb Beams
Complete Racing Solutions
KTM chose a paper air filter for the 690 Enduro R and Husqvarna 701 Enduro. But, is that the right filter media for your riding conditions? It very will might be! Paper flows great (when relatively clean), they are not messy to install, and you just toss em' when at the end of their useful life. But, how do they perform in dusty or wet off-road conditions compared to the more traditional oiled foam found on pretty much every dirt bike on the planet?
I decided to give a drop-in oiled foam unit a try and wrote up a review that can be found at:
Give it a read and see what you think. If you have any thoughts, ideas, or constructive criticism, hit me up in the comments section below. If you're running the same Twin Air unit, add your review! We'd love to hear your experiences with the product. Or, share what filtering system you're running and what you think of it.
Bryan Bosch, Steve Claus - #dualsportduo
Twin Air Drop-in Air Filter on a 2017 KTM 690 Enduro R
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I hope you guys haven't given up on our blog yet. In this entry I'm going to tell you guys about our first meetings and how we decided on the purpose of our club and what we planned to do. After becoming a Registered Student Organization, our original 6 members started to hold meetings to discuss the purpose of our club and the types of events that we planned to do. The first goal on the agenda was to get out and do some dirt bike riding but.... there had to be something more to the club than six members going out to the desert and riding dirt bikes, so we set out to create a purpose or otherwise a mission for our club. After lots of speculation in our first couple of meetings, we decided on the purpose of our club and what the members wanted to get out of being a part of the club. The decided purpose of the UNLV Rebel MX Club is to grow the Motocross, Supercross, and dirt bike community on campus and to introduce new students to the world of dirt bikes. Some of the events that we planned to do included: supercross viewing events, weekend ride days, camping trips and attending the supercross events in person. In addition to these events we decided that we wanted to share our passion for dirt bikes and teach new students how to ride a dirt bike! We'll touch more on how we were going to execute all of these events in later blogs so stay tuned.
Thanks for reading!! Braaaaaap!
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Sure, it's fun to put some laps in on a motocross track. But, you'll fall short of your potential if you're not using this key practice law of practicing important techniques separately. This is true for motocross cornering skills as well as motocross jumping skills. Did you know that riding really well requires mastering as many as 55 separate techniques, all laced seamlessly together?
If you'd like more of my riding tips, browse my blog here on ThumperTalk or my website. If you'd like to be notified when I post new riding tips, subscribe by clicking the "follow" button (upper right).
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