T-Dog’s Takes: We Need To Show More Riders on the Broadcast

Notice that this column now has a sponsor? That’s right! Troy Dog joined the Blu Cru and you should too! I have one in my garage right now and I can’t wait to go shred it! Thank you to Yamaha for believing in my ELITE columns on this dirt bike website enough to sponsor me. What a dream come true! BTW: Have you seen the all-new YZ450F? OH. MY. GOODNESS. I can’t wait to test that bad boy.

For the most part I try to stay away from complaining about the TV coverage, since I’ve never been in the broadcast, nor have I any clue what goes into the job each week. I realize that they can’t and won’t make everyone happy. However, I’m seeing an issue that was really brought to light in Daytona and it needs to be addressed.

Sure, the race in Daytona was a banger with Cooper Webb and Eli Tomac up front as well as Chase Sexton and Justin Barcia battling for third. I understand that these guys need all the attention because they are in fact going for the lead and podium. That’s where all the glory is. Yet, the Daytona broadcast made no mention of any other rider in the race other than a quick cameo from RJ Hampshire on his maiden 450 voyage. 

It’s not like I want the camera panning and cutting around to get everyone on the screen so they can get their just desserts. I do feel like they should be getting a mention, especially if that rider is having the best race of their season/career. Is it possible to get a rundown of the top 15 as we watch Tomac and Webb battle out front? Daniel or Ricky could even throw a little extra zest by commenting on the fact that Justin Cooper is in sixth and that’s his best 450 result thus far. We don’t necessarily need them on camera to do this, but it’s definitely a storyline to follow.

This truly is the reason why you need to go to the races on the weekend if they are in your neighborhood. You see so much more being at the race. You can tell who is catching who as well as how the different lines shape up. Yet, if you’re stuck at home you might only think that the top four are the only riders in the race. I’m here to tell you that riders in positions 5-22 matter. They are a huge part of the race and I feel robbed not being able to watch any of them on Saturday nights. How do we fix this? I’m not sure you can since the races don’t have blowout leads anymore. There might not be much time to visit that battle for 12th when Webb could make the pass on Tomac at any second. And God forbid that the battle for ninth be on the screen when a pass for the lead happens. You fans would absolutely crucify the entire series. So, in a way, I think that the production crew is very scared to shy away from the lead riders because of the backlash that they might get from you: the fans. In essence, this is your fault. 

I’m mildly joking that it is your fault. T-Dog is here for you. Yet, I can’t be the only one thinking that it’s a strange deal that only five riders were shown during the main event at Daytona. We missed a ton of great storylines with the rest of those other guys at the gate. You know, the guys not named Tomac or Webb. Let’s see what we can find back here in the results. 

Okay, some guy named Jason Anderson got fifth. Cooper as we mentioned earlier was sixth. The TV coverage showed heat winner RJ Hampshire in his first 450 main event for a few seconds. He ended up eighth. Christian Craig’s results are coming around and finished 10th. Oh look, Dean Wilson finished a season best 11th on his Fire Power Honda. The fact that Dean is still even racing after the horrific footpeg injury he had last season is truly remarkable. Justin Hill, who wasn’t even racing last year keeps getting closer to the top ten. He was 12th at Daytona. McElrath on the HEP Suzuki/Twisted Tea ride put in his best finish of the year in 13th. Some 21-year-old 450 rookie from Hawaii by way of Texas finished a career best 14th on his Cycle Trader Yamaha. His name is Grant Harlan and apparently the broadcast stopped doing 450SX rookie updates this season because he’s not a big enough name yet? I’m not sure what that’s about. Josh Cartwright works during the week crunching data and finished 17th at Daytona. Justin Starling has been battling a knee injury and stitches in his jaw, yet fights through it for 18th. Chase Marquier made his first ever 450SX main event at Daytona and finished 21st. All great things to mention on the broadcast. 

I don’t know how to fix this other than a shoutout on the broadcast. Yet, I don’t think the talent in the booth is allowed to comment on anything other than what they see on the screen. The racing at the front has been unreal, so I understand that the broadcast might have no choice. I’m not saying that I can do a better job than them by any means and I understand that all of them have a tough job. I just think that some of these other storylines need a place on the broadcast. If not…well, at least I have job security by being their story teller.

Main image: Husqvarna

Written by Troy Dog

Faster than Slaw Dog. Editor-in-Chief

Tyler Bereman Freerides MotoSandbox on way to Day in the Dirt Down South

Inverted Perspective: The Vicki Golden Story Trailer