MCR Suspension and Performance, Metamora, MI — May 21, 2021
The Lasco Press readers tell us they love motocross and want to read more about the sport they enjoy, as well as participate in. During the short downtime between AMA Supercross and the outdoors Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship we decided to bring you some feature stories digging behind the scenes of this wildly popular segment of motorsports.
Supercross fans will recognize the name of Joey Crown, he rides the #61 Club Mx Yamaha YZ250F in the 250 SX Class. Joey’s hometown is listed as Metamora, MI, he is a young rising star in the sport. That story we will cover later, right now we want to jump back a generation.
Joey’s father, Matt Crown, raced motocross professionally in the 1990s. In those days you often were your own mechanic and Matt learned the workings of his bike from every aspect. He became adept at “setting up” his motorbike with a suspension that responded the way he, as the rider, wanted.
Every racer will tell you horsepower is important and you need it to compete in any class of motorsports. But, if your machine won’t negotiate the track for its driver/rider, your chances at victory are slim. Tuning the suspension is just as important as tuning the engine.
A stock motorcycle direct from the factory is no more ready to ride competitively than a showroom stock car from a dealership is equipped to handle the high banks of a NASCAR speedway.
Metamora, Michigan, The Home of Motocross Performance
Located a few miles south of Imlay City off Interstate 69 in Southeastern Michigan is the sleepy little town of Metamora. Drive through the short blocks of the downtown portion of the village and you could be in any of the thousands of hometowns that dot this country. A place many people would consider an ideal locale to live and raise a family.
Drive just to the edge of town and you will find a comfortable home amidst the trees on a hill off a dirt road. Up the dirt path that runs adjacent to the house sits a workshop with a sign near the door announcing the location of MCR, Matt Crown Racing.
You have probably heard the saying “find a job that you love and you will never work a day in your life.” Not everyone is successful in that quest. However, it is exactly what Matt did when he retired from his professional racing career.
The wisdom of a lifetime and its practical application is the product sold out of the shop behind the house.
The formal business name is MCR Suspension & Performance, lets talk about suspension first as that is a basic key to performance.
Watch a NASCAR race and you will hear a lot of talk about handling, tight or loose, grip, the ability to make it stick in the corners and run free on the straightaways. Teams make adjustments on every pit stop to improve those conditions for the driver.
Watch a Supercross event and there are no pit stops. Riders jump incredible heights and distances over obstacles, their bikes must launch and land precisely. They must take the pounding of a series of mogels, negotiate different track surfaces, power out of a rut, and lay the bike almost on its side without slipping in a corner.
Motocross riders don’t wear safety belts, they have no roll cages. The bump and run tactic applies to this type of racing and crashes occur. Tumbling over the handlebars, sliding off the narrow seat, being bounced into the air out of control are all real hazards that occur regularly on the dirt tracks at every level of competition.
Do you think a well-tuned suspension might be important for a motocross rider? Matt says a dirt bike comes out of the factory with a basic balance set up, front to rear. But what if your riding style is seated more towards the rear of the bike or you like being more up on the handlebars? How do you ride corners and take jumps?
I have never ridden a lap of motocross and I can see where the “set up” is vital.
Inside the shop at MCR is where the magic takes place. Workbenches surround the floor space, tools hang on the walls, fabrication equipment speaks to the amount of work that goes on inside.
The mechanical hub of MCR Suspension and Performance / Lasco Press PhotoMatt and his chief mechanic Alex Locke can do anything to a bike. Rebuild it after a bad crash, overhaul an engine, custom modifications, or regular maintenance.
What makes the place a location that riders from all over the country send their bikes is Matt’s expertise with shocks, struts, springs, and hydraulic valves.
Nobody shares trade secrets, but Matt explained how small adjustments change the pressures in struts to make them perform differently.
With the number of bikes lined up waiting for their turn on the rack where Alex does his part, it’s obvious the success of Matt’s techniques produce satisfactory results.
Where does the business come from? Word of mouth alone, a sure sign of a business that delivers what customers expect.
There Is More
The performance part of MCR is where the tires grab the dirt. Every dirt bike rider would love to have enough property to step out back, climb on the bike, and ride. Matt does, it’s not all just for fun, it’s another facet of the business.
Matt likes keeping his hands in the motocross business, he loves keeping his head focused on expanding the sport with the next generation of riders. His son, Joey, was tutored on a bike since shortly after he was able to walk.
Matt shares his years of “on the bike” experience training MX riders to hone their craft. Mostly focusing on young people, Matt conducts individual and group classes on the particulars of competitive riding. From the starting gate to the final jump, a motocross track provides a number of different challenges. How a rider approaches those mentally and physically has a big impact on their success.
Kids as young as 7-years old drive to MCR for weekly instructions on rider improvement. If you are closer to the mid-life crisis age than the teenagers, Matt can make you a better rider also. As long as you are not intimidated lining up next to a 14-year old that will likely spray you with dirt while accelerates past.
Oh, do you need a mechanic at the track for a big race? Alex was hired by Joey’s team to be his pitman during last year’s Supercross season. Look for the MCR trailer at select events throughout the year. Find out why so many riders trust them with their equipment.
Interested in finding out more about MCR Suspension and Performance? Give them a call at (810) 678-2617, email email@example.com, or stop by the shop at 4185 Blood Rd Metamora, MI 48455. It will improve your ride.