Australia's Chad Reed will launch his own team for the 2011 Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship, revealing the news to The Daily Telegraph this morning.
Australia’s Chad Reed will launch his own team for the 2011 Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship.
Reed, 28, will use Honda’s CRF450R in his all-new team, expected to be similar to the Pro Circuit-equipped bike he rode for TeamVodafone at the Newcastle round of the Super X, Australasian Supercross Championship.
The news, speculated for the last few weeks, was officially confirmed by Reed in The Daily Telegraph today.
“I am over dealing with all the teams and the rules and I want to do it my way,” Reed reportedly told the Telegraph. “I want to do it the Aussie way. This will be my team 100 percent but a lot of my friends and teams I worked with back in Australia in my younger days will be involved in this race team.”
The move is an exciting one for Reed, however it does present a massive gamble as he invests his own money into the project while sponsors are sourced and finalised.
“The way the economy is going the manufacturers aren’t selling the bikes they used to and to end up on these teams they are paying you less and less,” Reed continued. “They are also asking a lot more from you and are kind of whoring you out, for want of a better word.
“I love the sport and I am not ready to walk away but I want to do it on my terms. The risk is high. I am usually taking multi-million-dollar contracts but at this point it is me who will be writing multi-million-dollar cheques.”
Speaking of the Honda, Reed says he’s riding it by choice, rather than following the money.
“As an athlete you are always under some form of contract or obligation and I am in a position where I could rethink that,” Reed said. “I have been able to ride different bikes over the last three months and been able to find what suits me and fits my style.
“The Honda is the one that I have found suits me but I am in a position where I can use parts from anywhere. My weapon of choice is a Honda but I can get bits from anywhere and I am not getting any manufacturer’s help.”
But in speaking to high profile American magazine Racer X after the news broke, Reed expressed disappointment on the angle of The Daily Telegraph story after it set up a mega Australia vs. USA battle for Reed.
“I just read it and I’m disappointed. Normally they’ve been pretty accurate through the years,” Reed explained. “It was a crazy morning, I was making some phone calls, and then I finally sat down and read it, and I was immediately like “Oh no.” This was not the image or the storyline I was going for.
“Obviously it’s an Australian rider and newspaper and they have taken the story in a different direction than I hoped. But other than that, things are good, I’ve got awesome news coming and I’m excited to share it.”
Speculation has been rife in recent months that Reed would sit out season 2011, even recently agreeing to terms with TeamVodafone for more testing in the team’s Holden Commodore V8 Supercar.
However, Reed is adamant that he has made the right decision to start his own team, determined to go and race at his best on his own terms.
With just two months to go before Anaheim’s season opener, Reed says he will be ready and that there has been a lot of work completed already, even using the Super X round as a test bed for what it takes to run his own effort.
“I’ve been fortunate – since I didn’t have any contracts over the last few months I was really able to evaluate everything,” he continued. “Do I still have the fire to go race? Do I really want to do my own team? I feel like I got to make decisions based on facts, and not just being in a contract and making a decision off of what you’ve seen or heard.
“And I liked the Honda, and the opportunity I had with Vodafone to race in Australia was kind of a trial run. I really like the Honda, it’s light and nimble, it’s a rider’s bike. It was a lot of work, a lot of headache, packing up stuff in a box and doing that race in Australia, but there were a lot of positives, too.
“I’m creating my own destiny and that’s what I’m most excited about.”
Expect an official announcement from Reed and more details to be exposed over the coming weeks.