In spite of teammate Christophe Pourcel taking the 2009 Monster Energy AMA Supercross Lites East Championship, it was often Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki’s Austin Stroupe that was the fastest guy on the track. With his two wins and several podiums this season, it was only his DNF at Daytona that did him in. Now over Supercross, Austin has set his sights on Motocross, where he won the series opener last year. We spoke with the 11-time amateur motocross champ on what went wrong in supercross and his plans for this summer’s 2009 Lucas Oil AMA Motocross Championship.
Racer X: Austin, let’s hear about your Supercross season. Austin Stroupe: It’s been all right, I guess. there have been some good races and some bad races. Coming into the series I really went for the title, but my DNF in Daytona cost me points, and I lost it there. Overall, it has been a good season, and now I am going into the outdoors healthy.
I noticed at the couple of Supercross rounds where you finished second that you certainly didn’t seem that happy. Yeah, the seconds weren’t just getting it for me. I wanted wins! But I cannot be bummed. My podiums were okay. As I said, it was really that one DNF that hurt me and lost me the title. Other than that, it’s generally been an okay season, and I now have some momentum carrying me into motocross.
This may be a dumb question, Austin, but is it easier to accept second in a championship when it’s your teammate taking the title? No. You know, I don’t really like someone from overseas coming over to America and taking a title! I don’t know, if I don’t win I think that I’d rather have no one win. It’s tough either way when someone else wins a title, whether it’s a teammate or someone on another team.
You were frequently the fastest guy in the East Coast Lites series. Does that give you any consolation? Yeah, you do have a point. In some of the races I was the fastest guy, but like they say “sometimes the fastest guy doesn’t win.” I would say that some of the wins went to the most “technical” rider, not the “fastest.”
You just won a big Four-Stroke race at Glen Helen. Does that give you a good gauge as to where you are for this summer’s motocross series? Yes. I’m really looking at the outdoors as a new beginning. I really want to be in there for every round, and be there at the end when it truly counts. Last year, I was pretty bummed because I got sick and didn’t get to compete at all the races. I’m really looking forward to racing all the tracks, such as Budds Creek, that I missed last summer.
At this point, then, what is your goal for outdoors? To win, but I know that it won’t be easy. Everyone on my team is going to be tough. I think that it will be crazy with five guys in the semi, but I am very excited to get it going! [Along with Stroupe, Monster Energy Pro Circuit Kawasaki’s Team consists of previous World Motocross GP champs Christophe Pourcel and Tyla Rattray, 2009 Supercross Lites West runner-up Jake Weimer, and third overall finisher Ryan Morais.]
Is there anything that you would like to add, Austin? I’d just like to say thanks to my sponsors, my mom and dad, and the Monster Energy/Pro Circuit Kawasaki Team.