2010 Kawasaki Supercross and Off-Road Team Announcement

Alfonse Palaima
by Alfonse Palaima

You don’t often see race coverage on Motorcyle.com, especially not of the motocross variety, but where there’s a free lunch, you’ll find one of us MOfos. We’re not proud, and you’d be there if you could, so we hope you enjoy the season to come and the photos from the rally. I had the pastrami sandwich on rye, btw. Good stuff! Now, on with the important stuff.

It’s twenty-ten, 12 days in, and Kawasaki has officially introduced its SX and Off-road teams to the press and already sunk its teeth into its first win in the 2010 Supercross series, but first the introductions.

Kawasaki kicked off the race weekend with its annual team introduction and pep rally, held last Friday at the corporate offices in Irvine, California. The 2009 title-winners were introduced to the attending crowd, as well as new entrants to the Kawasaki brand.

Emceeing the event this year was Racer X’s Jason Weigandt.

The Team Green spirit gathered together for a 2010 team introduction rally last Friday at the corporate offices in Irvine, California.

Monster Energy Kawasaki - Off-Road

Under the leadership of Jason Smigel, the team hopes to once again dominate the podium with nearly the same team as last year. World-class champion Destry Abbott comes into his seventh season this year and Justin Soule replaces Damon Huffman on the team.

Monster Energy Kawasaki (Off-Road) (Mgr. Jason Smigel)
• Destry Abbott
• Ricky Dietrich
• Justin Soule
Noticeably absent from this year’s rally were the road racers, but that didn’t quell the spirit in the room.

Monster Energy / Pro Circuit / Kawasaki

Legendary Mitch Payton’s Pro Circuit team of rookies and returns will keep Kawasaki atop many podiums across the U.S. in both the east and west divisions.

Monster Energy/ Pro Circuit/ Kawasaki (Mgr. Mitch Payton)
• Jake Weimer – West Coast Series
• Josh Hansen – West Coast Series
• Christophe Pourcel – East Coast Series
• Dean Wilson – East Coast Series
• Tyla Rattray – East Coast Series

Monster Energy Kawasaki - SX/MX

The big show on stage starts all over again this year for Kawasaki, with the introduction of Australian Chad Reed to the team. Once the rival of Team Green racer James Stewart, Reed along with teammate Ryan Villopoto will run with the new KX450F you read about last year on Motorcycles.com.

Monster Energy Kawasaki (Mgr. Mike Fisher)
• Chad Reed
• Ryan Villopoto
Following the team introductions, fans lined up to gather a fresh new set of autographs from the attending riders.

This year’s party landed on the calendar ahead of any actual racing, unlike last year where we met the teams and riders a few days before their second stop at Anaheim, and third stop on the tour. This year we got to cheer on some of the riders the day before their race, wish ‘em luck and share the anticipation of a new season.

With eventful riding, exciting crashes and live commercial-free coverage on Speed TV, the excitement was delivered directly to the viewers at home for the first time this year. While not every SX event will be broadcast live, many of them will broadcast the same weekend. Check your local guides for actual coverage.

Every coin has two sides, and unfortunately for Kawasaki’s newest team rider, Chad Reed had a terrible start to the Supercross main event on Saturday and was out of the race in the very first lap with what appeared to be broken front wheel spokes, having gotten pinched between lead rival James Stewart and Ryan Dungey. Bubba managed to pull out a season championship after a similar start at Anaheim 1 last year, so don’t count this one out just yet, Chad!

For the second year in a row, Jake Weimer (#12) took the SX Lites win on Saturday at Anaheim 1, stacking 25 points in his pocket for the season ahead. Teammate Josh Hanson (#100) finished in eighth place.

On the coattails of news about Kawasaki’s pull out from AMA pro racing this year, last year’s season opened without a MotoGP presence yet there’s still a lot of green blood pumping through the company’s veins. American roadracer and longtime Kawasaki associate Roger Lee Hayden will be riding a ZX-10R in the World Superbike championship.

Racing is a big part of what they do at Kawasaki and their current SX & MX riders are pumped up and ready to bring home the hardware and greenbacks in their respective 2010 seasons.

Related Reading
AMA-SX: 2010 season preview
AMA-SX: 2010 Anaheim I results
2010 Kawasaki KX450F Review
2009 Kawasaki KX250F Review

Alfonse Palaima
Alfonse Palaima

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