Jussi Vehvilianen has seen it all in the sport of Motocross. Podiums in the MX1 class as a racer, a terrible back injury that nearly ended his career and finally retirement, but it hasn't stopped there for the likeable Finnish rider. The former Honda factory rider is now organizing riding camps in America.
Here is a cool interview with Jussi about his riding camps and also what else he is up to in life at the moment.
Q: What is the whole idea behind your camps?
Jussi: I have been coaching riders back in Finland for our Federation and some other riders too since I retired. During our winter period you can’t do much at home, so I was looking for the good place to keep this coaching year around thing. During my career I went to California for training first time with the CAS boys back in 2001 and kept going since that. I think it’s perfect place for riding and I just like the rest of it too. Easy decision, I like to work with riders, I like California, let’s go there then. I run two different types of trips. This boot camp is just pure training package and it has very simple idea, I try to get these riders faster and stronger! Another camp type is for the hobby riders and it’s more like holiday, always made around AMA supercross event, with lots of riding and other stuff.
Q: It's very cold in Europe at the moment and obviously great weather in California. What is your ideal day at your camp?
Jussi: I like most these training groups, enjoying see riders improving. Ideal day could be like this. Morning we go out for short run and do some stretching. Soon after breakfast we hit the road and get to the track. That’s actually bit different compare to Europe, because the tracks open their gates really early, like 8-9 o’clock or so. Because time difference it’s easy to get out of bed early. For each riding day we have a theme, it can be technique, speed or strength training with the bike. While the weather is nice, tracks are usually well groomed and watered, it’s pretty easy to have good riding day out there. We are back to house around 4pm, and there is still plenty of day left. With some bit fitter riders we go to the gym little later but with most it’s time for the rest and maybe playing some pool or go indoor karting. I enjoy my time also with this holiday guys. It’s just different, more chilling out type of thing. They ride what they like; some ride more some not much. It’s fun to see how happy they are just to ride around on famous track.
Q: You had a camp recently with some Finnish riders. Can you tell me how that went and what the riders enjoyed?
Jussi: This autumn I was sort of preparing myself and whole set up ready for January when the trips really kick of. It was good learning curve for me to see how everything works. And it did work out well and I’m prepared now and the guys did love it too. I mean, why they shouldn’t? Top of the great tracks and weather everything else is pretty cool. House is almost new, workshop is new as well as all the furniture and stuff are brand new and bikes are running great, so Finnish riders really had good time over.
Q: What are going to be the high points of the camps in the coming months?
Jussi: I’m already getting excited about these first rounds of AMA supercross series. I think it will be really interesting season. We are going to see all the Anaheim rounds and San Diego too with the riders who are over that time. I’m really looking forwards to those events.
Q: Can you give me some information about your tour packages?
Jussi: The sad thing for serious racers is, boot camps are sold out pretty much. There is some pace left just for beginning of January for two weeks. For hobby guys there are still places available from Anaheim 2 on. You can check out more info at www.jpvracing.com
Q: What is for you as a former racer the most interesting thing about running these camps?
Jussi: I still love to keep fit, ride my bike, and be involved with the sport and even travelling. Running this trips I can have them all under the sun shine, I can’t really complain at all.
Q: What is the biggest thing a rider can gain from doing your camps?
Jussi: For the serious riders I believe it’s bit of everything. I’m with the riders all the time, we live in the same house, we train together, we ride together and we do everything together and they can really see how it should be done. These all is really personal too because the group size are very limited. I believe they will be little faster when they go home, but top of that they should have clear mind for training routines and how to continue training back home. For the hobby guys I think they can learn too if they are interesting to do so. But more I wish to give them some great memories with discovering around, riding and having fun together.