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5 Minutes with... Troy Herfoss

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After four years of trying, Troy Herfoss is the AMA/XTRM Supermoto National Champion. He’s come a long way since his introduction to motorcycles in Australia, and if it’s up to him, he still has a long journey in front of him. He raced with Casey Stoner as a kid and he hopes to be racing against him again soon. For now, he can take comfort in knowing he is the best Supermoto racer in the world.

  • Troy Herfoss is the AMA/XTRM Supermoto National Champion
Racer X: How did you get into racing motorcycles, Troy?
Troy Herfoss: My dad raced, so I was born into it. I got a bike when I was five and by the time I was nine or ten my dad took me to the local dirt-track races. As a junior, I just followed Casey Stoner around and got my butt kicked by him. I’ve always wanted to go road racing my whole life, but we didn’t have the money for it. That led us to Supermoto and we got into that back at home. Before long, I was winning races at home and I got a chance to come here to America and race for Husqvarna. I did well and got a ride for the following year. So, I’ve put the road racing aside and focused on Supermoto.

It seems like you’ve always had the speed but lacked the consistency. What changed this year?
I just finally put the effort into it that I needed to. I needed to fine-tune my dirt skills. I started riding motocross only when I came here to America. So, it took a while to get up to speed there. It has also been great to have Chris Fillmore as my teammate. He and I are very close in speed and we push each other hard in testing and practice. That has helped us both. KTM has also been behind us a bunch this year.

You and Chris have consistently been the fastest two guys all year. It seems like you have a good thing going on over there.
Yeah, I’ve never had a teammate that beat me and it has really pushed me. Whether we are riding motocross, mountain biking, running or whatever, we are very close. It pushes us both and makes the races seem like what we do every day.

Tell us about the weekend. There was some drama for you, wasn’t there?
I had to work for it. I had an eight-point lead coming into the weekend and I knew it would be tough. I hadn’t ridden the Supermoto bike since the last round. We came to a test session on Monday and my bike broke in the second session so I didn’t get much riding in. In the first final, I stalled the bike on the opening lap. I thought I had just blown all the hard work I’ve done all year. I took off and, actually, you were the first guy I caught up to. I don’t know if you got a bad start or what. But I got by you and [Ben] Carlson and I thought I had a chance to get back up there. Then [Mark] Burkhart blew an engine and it put me in second. So, it was stressful but it worked out for me. The second day, I had some problems in my heat and I had to start the final from the very last row. I knew I only had to get tenth to wrap it up but I wanted to do well in my last race here. I worked my way up to fourth and when Mark crashed I got the third spot on the podium. It felt amazing to get that championship.

  • Troy Herfoss
  • Troy Herfoss
Is it true that you are going road racing next year?
Yes, I have a deal with Joe Rocket Suzuki in Australia. It is the factory Suzuki team down there. I’ll be riding the 600 Supersport class down there and it is a big step forward for me. That series is growing down there and hopefully it goes well for me. Testing starts next week, so I am actually on my way to the airport right now to head home.

That seems like a dream come true for you.
Yeah, I told my dad that I wanted to win this championship in three or four years and then I wanted to go road racing. It took four years but now I’m going road racing. It is a dream come true.

What are your goals in road racing?
Obviously, MotoGP is the pinnacle but I am going to start in Australia and then try to get back here or to World Superbike. I’m only 21, so I have some time but I just don’t know how far it will go.

Who do you want to thank this year?
Red Bull, HMC/KTM, Shoei, Sidi and Scott have been behind me. I want to thank my mechanic, Uli, for putting in the big hours for me on the bike. Also, Kurt [Nicoll] and Mitch Hansen have been great to work with and I can’t thank them enough. Everyone here in America has been great and it has really felt like a second home.

{LINKS}Well, we are going to miss you in Supermoto but we wish you the best of luck on your road-racing career.
Thanks, Ping. Maybe I’ll get back here on a road racer sometime soon.
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