Prologue: Another one that I’m a broken record about…Probably the only time I am not for the American version is with the title of MXdN. Fuck that Motocross of Nations garbage (pronounced “garbaj”). It is and always will be Motocross des Nations. And that’s “des” pronounced like “day”. If you pronounce it “dez”, I want to stick a ka-nife in your ignorant fucking chest. Ok, on to the blog.
I’ve always thought the Motocross des Nations was the coolest race. Probably because it’s the one race that combines two of my favorite pastimes: motocross, and rooting for America/hating place that aren’t America. At MXdN, I’m not xenophobic; I’m a goddamn patriot.
Let’s just Tarantino this and start with the end: USA did not win. It’s the fourth straight year that we have shown up and not taken the trophy, our worst losing streak since the first year we won the race in 1981 (since USA didn’t show up in 2001 or 2004). But I’m not jumping off any bridges anytime soon, so sorry to spoil your party, commies. This year was different; different from the shellacking we got in Belgium, and the losses in Germany and Latvia, too. This was the best American team we have seen in a very long time. They rode like champions, and deserve to be champions.
USA scored 16 points for second place, which has not happened in I don’t even know how long. 16 points would have been good for the win at every MXdN from 2006-2014. The last team to score better than that was USA in 2005, at the same track, with 15 points. I said it before that 9 times out of 10, this team with that performance would win. This just happened to be that one stupid, idiot outlier.
Somehow, France took a break from their crepes and cigarettes to score 14 points, the best Motocross des Nations performance since 1996, when USA won on 9 points. But I don’t know if there has ever been an MXdN where two teams performed so well. It’s almost always a matter of limiting the disasters at this race – with three riders, one suffering through two motos against 450s on a 250F, having five moto finishes in strong position is a hugely tall order.
I knew coming into this race that France was the favorite, so I had actually made piece with Team USA not winning before the race started. Not that I didn’t believe in them, but with Paulin, Musquin and Febvre on home soil, a win honestly didn’t seem possible. When Barcia won the first moto and Martin scored a fifth, my patriot boner definitely started to rise. The chants were beginning in my head, whispers at first, but growing louder: “usa…usa…Usa…USa…USA…USA!”
But then came Febvre. Having just watched him run circles around Glen Helen, the only Euro not only near our boys, but passing them, I knew he was essentially unstoppable. And he was, although Cooper’s valiant effort in the Open+MX2 moto deserves a medal of honor. When he went for that block pass, I almost passed out from blood rushing out of my head to lower portions of my body. That was not a dirty move; that was the move of a young man who wants to bring gold home to his country. A lot of the Euros are all butt-hurt about block passing. Eat shit, that’s racing. He didn’t deliberately go for Febvre’s wheel; he just went for the block. Any real racer understands that. Webby, the stars and stripes has your back, kid.
My hat goes off to all of Team USA and Team France. Those were the statistically-best performances at the MXdN in this decade. Barcia wins MXGP, Martin takes a 5-5 on the 250F, and Webb jumps up to the 450 and sticks a wheel in on the world champion. Hold your heads high and your middle fingers up, BROs, for you are the best Team USA we have had in the last four years.