Monday Conversation: Trey Canard

February 15, 2010 10:00am | by:
GEICO Powersports Honda’s Trey Canard had his best race, start to finish, since 2008 last Saturday night in Anaheim, California. Now, fresh off of that success, he’s getting ready to make his 450cc debut on board Andrew Short’s vacated factory Honda CRF450R, possibly as soon as next Saturday night in Indianapolis. We talked to him yesterday about his weekend, and what’s coming up.

Racer X: You ended up losing in the heat race at Anaheim III, but you were battling it out head-to-head with Jake Weimer in that race before it was red-flagged. Then, obviously, you won the main event. How do you feel?
Trey Canard: I was pretty happy with the weekend. I was bummed that they red-flagged that heat race, but it made for an even better heat race, I think, from a fan standpoint, because that heat race, after the restart, was pretty crazy to watch. I think the three of us had a really good pace going, so that was cool. The main event was awesome. To get around Wil Hahn, who was riding awesome all day, and to put in a solid race was good for me. I was stoked with it. I was a little bit bummed, actually, on how I rode, because I felt like I wasn’t going that fast, but I think sometimes you’re that much in the zone that everything seems kind of easy and it felt like I wasn’t pushing that hard. I’m not saying the win was easy, but on those good nights, the riding comes kind of easy. It was a good night. I was stoked with it.

I think a lot of people can identify with that race where everything seems like it’s happening in slow motion, but you win...
Yeah, it’s weird, because it didn’t start that way. The second practice, especially, was not good for me. I didn’t even make the board. I just felt clumsy. But we made some good changes, and going into that second practice, I felt tons better, and I felt good about the races. I think actually the red flag in that heat race was a good thing for me, too, because I felt really good after that.

Those guys weren’t all that far behind you – Broc Tickle and Wil Hahn – but on the last lap, you were pumping your fist over the triples... You looked really happy, but more than anything, really relaxed. Does that seem accurate to you?
Yeah. I’ve never been known to fist-pump it before the race is over, but it just felt so good that I didn’t know what to do. The race was good for me. I felt calm and I was really in the moment the whole night. I was stoked on it.

You we wearing some pink gloves, boots and goggles at Anaheim III for the Breast Cancer Awareness night. What did you think of the night?
It was awesome, man. I’m glad they had that race. I think some people thought it was more of a fun or funny thing so they could say “boobies” and “ta-tas” and everything like that, though, and that kind of bummed me out a little bit, because I don’t think that stuff’s that funny when you're talking about Breast Cancer. It’s a serious matter. But it’s a big deal to see the support that was given to the cause, and the amount of money that was put into it. It was a cool thing. As the motocross community came together for that cause, it made it a very special night. I was stoked. Fox stepped up with some cool boots and gloves. It was cool. I was really happy to be a part of it, and to see everyone come together for the cure.

So, how is this working in the next few weeks when you’ll be racing Andrew Short’s bike? Are you going to be out of the factory semi? Are you going to be running your GEICO graphics, or the Red Bull ones? How is it working?
The only part that’s really sort of left out is Amsoil, which is a bummer, because those guys have been such a huge part of the GEICO Powersports Honda team for so long. But they were really cool about the situation, and basically I’ll be kind of a hybrid rider. I’ll have my same gear [same logos], but with the Red Bull stuff, too, and then the bike will be all American Honda Red Bull Racing. It’s a pretty cool opportunity to be able to do this right out of their semi and work in that environment, so I’m looking forward to it. I feel bad for Shorty, but hopefully I don’t loop out his girlfriend and treat her too bad.

Yeah, he made a comment about that this weekend. But he’s going to be bummed at you if you end up abusing his girlfriend. It’s one thing if his girlfriend cheats on him, but it’s even worse if you abuse her. You can’t be mean to her, even if she is cheating on him.
I know. It’s sad that she’s cheating on him, but it’s almost like way back in the old days and it’s like he’s giving her to me. “Here, take my wife. You can have her for two days.” (Laughs) It’s only for a few weeks. I don’t plan on marrying her, to be honest. I mean, I know she’s Shorty’s, so... But we’ll see where things go.

You guys might get along really well. It might be a match made in heaven, and then what are you going to do? You’ve got to just let Shorty know, like, “Sorry, dude. We’re together now. She likes me more.”
We’ll let him down easy if that’s the case, but I just plan on getting to know her. I think she’s beautiful, so that helps out a lot.

But I understand she’s a little harder to handle than the girls you’re used to...
Yeah, she’s hardcore. She’s kind of a big girl. I mean, she has a few more pounds, but it’s okay; I like big girls. (Laughs)

How much testing time are you actually going to get? Is this the first week coming up?
Yeah, Monday and Tuesday will be days one and two, so we’ll make the call as to whether or not I’m ready after those two days, and then we’ll go from there.

It has to be kind of exciting. Have you ridden a 450 at all? Like even in your amateur career?
Yeah, I mean, I won a 450cc championship in the B class, so... I mean, I guess I’m totally ready. I mean, I’m practically already there. (Laughs) No, I’ve ridden a 450, but to be honest, these things aren’t even really close to what you buy out of the dealerships. Compared to what I rode last time, it’s going to be a whole different thing. My expectations are hopefully to get into the main and put in a solid 20 laps, learn some things, and just try to get some good experience out of it.

Since you found out you’d be doing this, did you change your training regimen at all to put on some more muscle or anything like that?
It’s hard to gain any kind of muscle mass... in a week. I mean, I have put on a couple pounds just to have a little more gas in the tank, but as far as the training goes, it’s hard to do a whole lot different. And tomorrow [Monday] will tell a lot more of the story, I think.

When you do hit the track for the first time on that bike, you have a teammate now in Kevin Windham that probably used to tell you lines and things on the track...
I know! It’s going to suck. I can’t be like, “Hey, dude, how’s the track?!”

Now, you’re a competitor, so how are you going to deal with that?
I’m hoping my Lites teammates Brett Metcalfe and Justin Barcia will be able to lend a hand... I don’t know, K-Dub’s such a nice guy, that he’d probably help me out anyway...

Until you beat him, and then he’s not going to help you anymore.
I don’t know. Kevin’s the man. I think he’d still give me advice.

After this whole hiatus while you’re riding a 450, you have 14 points to make up on Jake Weimer if you want this title. Is that something you’re holding out hope to do? Or are you just going to go race and see what happens?
Obviously, I have hope for it. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t. It’s possible. A lot of things are possible. But it’s still a pretty big deficit. But that’s kind of where I went wrong last year, where I was racing with the championship in the front of my mind, so I wasn’t focused on just the task at hand. That’s why I lost it. My main objective now is just to put in a solid race, and if it happens, it happens, and if not, then it will go to a good candidate, because Jake Weimer has been on it all year, and he’s been basically perfect up until this point. My hat’s off to him either way, and we’ll see what happens at the last couple of rounds.