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Monday Conversation: Dean Wilson

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Dean Wilson is this year’s “next big thing,” having grabbed the coveted AMA Horizon Award after winning five out of six motos and two titles in his 250 and 450 A classes at the Air Nautiques/AMA Amateur Nationals presented by Amsoil. Next up: his pro debut riding for Canada at the Motocross of Nations. Or will we see him up before that?

  • Dean Wilson won 5 of his 6 motos last week.
Racer X: Would you have been satisfied with anything less than two titles?
Dean Wilson: Not really, I came here to win both. I won my first 450, and I knew I would be comfortable in that class, but the 250F class, I knew it would be stacked. And the first moto was really muddy, so I was really nervous. I knew anything could happen there and you could really throw a title away. So I got a good start and tried to ride smart, I actually was closing on second and then I crashed, just held on to third. I was pretty happy with that. Second moto I started maybe 15th, then I got up to first, then my bike started smoking so I was worried about that but held on. The last moto, I finally rode my best, just tried to put the championship out of my mind and ride like I know I can. I was really happy to get that championship.

Talk about that second moto, you started outside the top 10 but passed right into the top 5 in just a few corners.
Yeah, I think I just had better lines than some of those guys. I was really aggressive the first few laps, really took some chances and banzied it in a few corners. But that’s what you have to do—I think being aggressive in the early laps helped me separate myself.

You were born in Scotland, raised in Canada, and now you live in California.
Yeah, I was born in Scotland, lived there until I was about eight. Then we moved to Canada and I lived there for awhile. I moved to California at the end of 2005. I’ve been there ever since, and I just want to thank my parents for raising me right, and helping me so much.

Did you race in Scotland?
Yeah just for fun. Lot’s of mud races all the time! I wasn’t too serious back then, but I started racing in Canada and I was doing pretty good there. We came to California for a vacation, just to get out of the snow in Canada, and it was really nice there, so we ended up moving there.

  • Wilson has already been selected to ride for Canada at the Motocross of Nations this year
When you were five years old, this was not your goal?
No not at all. I was just a fan, I loved Carmichael, and I would have the same gear and helmet as him. I never really thought I would be doing this for a living. This is such a cool sport, and I’m so grateful for every moment of it.

What kind of work have you had to put in to get here?
The last couple of years, I’ve been working super hard. My trainer, Sam, we met a few years ago and it has really helped me out. And my parents, they were pretty strict on me at times, but it was definitely all worth it.

You’re racing Motocross of Nations for Team Canada?
Yeah I am, and it should be a great experience for me. I’ve never been to Italy, so it’s kind of going to be a vacation for me. But at the same time, I’ll take it seriously and give it my best.

So here’s the big question: will that be your pro debut, or will you race one of the last four nationals here in the U.S?
I don’t know. I would like to do one of the last four nationals, but we’ll just have to see how things go. I’ll just keep training and we’ll see how things go.

And next year?
Next year I’ll definitely be racing supercross and motocross as a pro. I can’t believe it’s going to happen; I’m really going to be there.

And what team will you be riding for? Any idea?
No idea. I mean, we’ve been talking to some people and trying to get things done, and we’re pretty close. We’ll just have to see.
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