Monday Conversation II: Jake Weimer

February 2, 2009 9:49am | by:
Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki’s Jake Weimer started out the 2009 season really hot, winning both his heat race and the main event at Anaheim I. However, since then, it seemed like Ryan Dungey was taking over the class. But then came San Francisco, and although Dungey was fastest throughout the day, Weimer managed to hold him off for both the heat and main event wins. We talked to him after the race.

Racer X: You weren’t fastest in practice all day, but you went out and won both the heat and the main over the guy who was the fastest – Ryan Dungey. How did it come together?
Jake Weimer: Yeah, it was a little bit of a tough day. The track was – again – a little bit weird. We didn’t have any rhythm sections, and we didn’t “triple” anywhere – we doubled everything. There were no rhythm sections, and it was really slick – there were a lot of pebbles and rocks. I struggled a little bit. I didn’t feel really comfortable, and I knew I was going to have to get good starts, and I stepped up and did that and just rode the best that I could. Luckily, I came away with the heat-race win and the main event, so what more do you want?

Isn’t San Francisco the site of your first podium?
Yes sir.

So do you just like this place or what? What’s the story?
I like every place, Steve. I just like life.

Okay... So can you take me through both races, and having Dungey pressuring you both times out, and still holding on to the wins?
You know, it was kind of just one of those deals where I’ve been able to get myself to a place where my mentality’s a little bit different. I just ride the best that I can ride and focus on what I’m doing. If he passes me, then he passes me because he’s better, so I’m going as fast as I can go. Whether that means I’m the fastest, or not, I just do the best I can do, and that’s what I tried to focus on in the main – just riding the best I could ride. I knew he was catching me a little bit, and honestly I’m pretty pumped on that, that I was able to just keep running solid laps and not let it rattle me. It was really good for me.

He got on the inside of you going into a turn with about four laps to go, but then he went down. What happened? Did he actually hit you?
I don’t think he even touched me. They said that they watched the video and it looked like he bumped into me a little bit, but I didn’t feel that he bumped into me. I kind of heard him, and I knew it was coming, and he just came in there... And like I said, it was really rocky and pebbly, so it’s slick, and I think he just came in there and just lost traction, lost the front end, and I just kind of took my time, made sure I stayed really high so that I didn’t run into him and get myself tangled and go down. I don’t think he hit me. I think it was a clean pass, he just hit the rocks and went down.

At that point, you had to know that you pretty much had the race in-hand, right? So did you slow your pace down and chill out the last few laps?
Yeah, I definitely chilled out a little bit, but I tried to just stay focused and still ride fairly hard. When you slow down too much, you start making stupid mistakes, so I just tried to maintain what I was doing, and I think I might have bumped it down a little bit, and in the spots where I felt comfortable, I just tried to do the same thing and keep myself from getting in trouble.

{LINKS}Dungey actually said after winning Phoenix that he didn’t think there was any reason why he couldn’t win all of the rest of the races. Did that give you any added motivation? Or do you maybe not care?
Oh, yeah, I care, for sure. I think today was tough for me, trackwise, and I know everybody’s got to ride it, and today I think he rode it a little bit better, but I’m going to be smart, and I knew that I wasn’t riding quite as well as I wanted to, so I made sure I got good starts. I came out with the lead in both of my races, and tried to be smart and smooth and calm and just do my own deal – and I was 1-1 on the day. Hopefully, I can pick up a few more wins. He’s good, he’s fast and he’s solid, but short of anything else, I think we’ll have some good battles. I’m going to do my best to keep that [Dungey winning the rest of the races] from happening.