Toyota Yamaha Fox Racing
(Calgary, June 3, 2008)
Photos: James Lissimore

Blair MorganMorgan and Harvey bring home top-five finishes for TEAM TOYOTA/YAMAHA BLACKFOOT FOX at Gopher Dunes!

Team Toyota/Yamaha/Blackfoot Fox, like the weather, started off round-two of the CMRC Monster Energy Motocross Series with uncertainty. After stunning back to back victories the previous weekend, Colton Facciotti’s Ste. Julie collarbone injury was proving to be more serious than originally thought.

Gopher Dunes, regarded as the toughest track on the National circuit, is a sandbowl that’s no stranger to nasty weather. As Facciotti struggled to ride in practice on Saturday the weather also struggled to hold back a torrential downpour. When the rains came they brought with them a gut wrenching decision for Facciotti to sit out Sunday’s races. “That rain that came down on Saturday was pretty gnarly,” says Blackfoot’s Dean Thompson. “They came rushing in to tell us that a short distance away they had winds up to 100kph. It was pretty bad, and it tore quite a few peoples EZ-up tents and setups away. Colton went out and tried to ride, and then we talked to some surgeons and decided it wasn’t worth it to risk a season ending injury. It was a tough decision to make, but it was the right decision. Colton needs to stay rested and keep the blood flowing and focus on rehabilitation. It was unfortunate that Colton couldn’t ride, but it’s consistency that wins championships. The decision was made because the possibility of a major break was too great. Even a little fall could have dislocated the bone and ended his season. He has a major fracture, but it’s not displaced. We have full confidence in the training that Colton has put in for this season. His conditioning is still so far above the other riders that he just needs to take some time off and come back swinging. We just found out today that Colton won’t need surgery, just rest, and that he should be 100% by Morden.”

Colton FacciottiWith Facciotti on the MX1 sidelines, the hopes of Team Toyota/Yamaha Blackfoot Fox were pinned on the Veteran sand-master himself, Blair Morgan. “I felt really good and strong,” he says. “I was able to come up through the pack and pass a lot of guys. I felt like I was faster than a lot of them, but I didn’t get the greatest starts and the lead group just got away from me too quickly.” Morgan found himself in 18th after the start of both motos on a track that is notoriously difficult to pass on. “Both moto’s were pretty much the same story,” Morgan continues. “Not a great start and then coming up through the pack. It’s hard to pass on this track, so you end up with a lot of sand stuck to your goggles and eating a lot of it. It’s a tough place to race for sure. I have a sand track at home I practice on, and I grew up riding in sand pits and stuff so I’m comfortable in it.”

That comfort in the sand was quickly paying off for Morgan, as Thompson explains. “Blair rode super-fast, he always started at the back of the pack but he charged through. He was flying! Blair just charged and didn’t even get tired. He is in such good shape, and he’s always been really fast in the sand.” His combination of sand prowess and physical conditioning ended Morgan’s day with five-four moto scores and fifth overall, enough to put him in fourth in series points. “My Yamaha YZ450F was working great,” says Morgan. “Really I don’t expect any mechanical issues all year with the new YZ450F. Plus I felt strong. A lot of guys, well when I passed them near the end of the motos they looked like they just kinda’ gave up. (laughs) I was just too strong for ‘em I guess!”

Jimmy NelsonBacking up Morgan’s MX1-Class assault, Jimmy Nelson put in a valiant effort despite some bad luck in both motos. “I had fun,” Nelson says. “I just had bad luck crashing. In the first moto I crashed and by the time I got restarted I was a lap down. I was able to charge from there back to 17th. In the second moto I was right up there with the lead guys until I fell over and stalled my bike. I was able to get from 30th back to ninth, so I know I was going as fast as the leaders, I just had some bad luck that’s all. It happens to everyone.” Thinking positively, Nelson proved to himself that despite problems at Gopher Dunes he has more than enough speed to hang with the leaders. “I felt awesome, the second moto especially,” he says confidently. “I was catching guys so easily because everyone was getting tired, but I still felt really good. Everything is going well with the team, and I’m looking forward to getting out West to the tracks I’ve raced before. I want to win the next one. I know I have the speed, I just need a good start and to stay off the ground. For me, Gopher Dunes proved that my fitness is where I need it to be. They say it’s the toughest track of the series, but I could have gone another 10 minutes easy!”

Aron HarveyIn MX2, Aron Harvey and his YZ250F earned the top spot of any of the Team Toyota/Yamaha Blackfoot Fox squad with fourth overall. “Aron did really well and exactly what we asked of him which was to keep it on two wheels for both motos,” explains Thompson. “He didn’t get the greatest starts but was able to get through the pack to get a sixth and a fourth.” Always enthusiastic, Harvey was proud of his riding and his team. “I thought Gopher Dunes was super-fun!” he says. “I don’t have anything sandy to practice on, but I liked it a lot.” Having fun while proving himself to Canadian motocross fans is coming naturally for Harvey. “I got a bad start in the first moto. I was able to work my way up to sixth, so it was a pretty good ride, but it wasn’t where I wanted to be. Things are getting better though. In the second moto I didn’t get a good start again. I think I could have, but I started to wheelie halfway down and had to let off. I was happy I was at least mid-pack instead of dead last! I pretty much had third passed, which would have given me third overall, but we kinda swapped into each other. It was nobody’s fault, but I almost went down and by the time I started catching him again the race was over. But you know, I feel good going to Morden! I have the first two Canadian Nationals down now and I feel a lot better. I couldn’t ride before, but now I’ve got some time on the bike and I feel really good about it. The Blackfoot team is awesome. I don’t even know what to say, I mean the guys on the team all work so hard and my Yamaha YZ250F is just sick! What else can I say? It’s awesome!”

Morgan shares Harvey’s excitement about round three. “I’m stoked about the next round!” exclaims Morgan. “This is the best start of a season that I’ve had in a long time! I am so looking forward to going out West to more of my style of track, a little faster, so I’m really eager to get to Morden!” As the Toyota/Yamaha Blackfoot Fox Racing teams heads West to Manitoba for round-three, June 14-15, Thompson is justifiably confident. “Gopher was a positive race for Blackfoot for sure. This is exciting because right now Blair is sitting fourth in points, so he is right up where he wanted to be. Colton and Jimmy are tied for seventh. It’s an uphill battle for Facciotti to win the championship, but I know with his confidence and his conditioning he can plug his way up there.” With three riders in the top-10 in MX1, Facciotti on the mend for round-three and Harvey running eighth in MX2 point standings, Team Toyota/Yamaha Blackfoot Fox once again takes their place as a powerful force in Canadian motocross!

A special thank you to our 2008 Team Sponsors:

Toyota Yamaha Fox Racing
Operated by Blackfoot Racing Inc.
Contact: Dean Thompson
(403) 214-2855

Blair Morgan
Colton Facciotti
Jimmy Nelson
Aron Harvey