Monday Conversation III: Jeff Gibson

Struggling through the later stages of 2008, Ohio’s Jeff Gibson is now on a roll.  First capturing “King of Stuttgart” honors at a November Supercross in Germany, now he’s taken the 2009 AMA Arenacross points lead after round one. Minutes after receiving his trophy, we caught up with the 26-year-old Team Thor Honda Tuf Racing rider.

  • Jeff Gibson
Racer X: Congratulations Jeff; your now leading AMA Arenacross points!
Jeff Gibson: Thanks, I couldn’t be happier right now. I’m walking out of here secure; the Lord blessed me and kept me safe. To be the points leader, I’m pretty pumped right now. Of course, it’s only the first round and it’s a long series, so I have to stay smart and consistent – and keep it up on the box like this.

You recently won a big supercross in Germany, and now this. 
Yeah, I have had some things go good for me. I won the Stuttgart Germany Supercross, so my racing is going in the right direction. I guess it’s a snowball effect.

I have to tell you that coming into this race – especially being here in Grand Rapids, Michigan – that I thought Kelly Smith or Chad Johnson from the Monster Energy/Babbitt’s Kawasaki Team would take the win. 
You know, the competition out on the track is simply unbelievable. Guys from first in lap times, through thirtieth in lap times, were all very close. Not only the Babbitt’s Team, but everybody is riding extremely well. I had a little bit of good luck this weekend. I stayed out of trouble and it paid off.

I agree that everyone looked very close in speed. With that said, what will be the key to winning this championship?
I don’t know, man. All you can do is stay consistent, smooth, and keep out of trouble. Consistency always pays off – especially in Arenacross, because it’s just so tight. You’re probably going to see a lot of different winners this year. 

  • Jeff Gibson
Rewinding a bit, 2008 was a bit tough for you. What was going on?
Well, things really snuck up on me. I was training very hard but just wasn’t getting the results on the weekends. When I would come home, I would train even harder, but still wouldn’t do better on the weekends. Things started going so badly that I went and saw a doctor, and he diagnosed me with Epstein Barr. So, I took a couple months off after the Canadian Nationals to recoup and let me body rest. Later, I started training a little bit and began feeling better. After that race in Germany, I got my new bikes and started to feel much, much better.

Obviously your focus is now on Arenacross, but do you have anything planned for later in the year?
Not at this point, but I might think about doing a couple more local Supercrosses, like the one in Toronto. But we’ll see later when that time gets here. Now I just want to think about Arenacross. 

{LINKS}Wrapping up, Jeff, who do you want to thank?
I would definitely like to thank God, first and foremost, and then Bad Boy Power Drink, Tuf Racing, Thor, UFO, Wiseco, Cernic’s Honda, FMF, Dunlop, Fulmer Helmets, Smith Optics, Hinson, NGK, N-Style, MDK, RG3, RK Chains, Pivot Works, DP Brakes, Memphis Car Audio, Sunline, Sunstar, Hot Cams, KG Clutches, Factory Connection, Hickman Racing, Engine Ice, Motosport Products, Works Connection - all my sponsors.  Also, very big thanks to my wife, all my other family, and my fans.