Racer X: Hey Bobby, can you tell us about your new deal and how it went?
Bobby Kiniry: Man, it came together real quickly. I got a call on Monday to ask me about joining the team and I flew to Texas on the Wednesday to Tommy Hahn’s to ride the bike there. That went ok, I tried to get it set up the way I want it. I then drove up to the race with the guys and went at it.
I didn’t get a very good start in the heat and tried my best to get up there and missed the qualifying spot by one. But then in the LCQ, I got a good start and rode behind Wey the whole race. In the main, I was on the far outside so of course I was screwed and got a bad start. I tried to tuck under everyone. I felt like considering the situation I was in, I rode pretty well. It was good, it was a lot of fun to get back with a team because I was really doing it on my own there in the other rounds. It was easier to focus on my racing. I stayed with the pack until about lap fifteen and lost some focus. I just lost some intensity and maybe because I have been riding outdoors lately, I just lost some aggression I don’t know. I got into it with that (Fabien) Izoird guy also. Other than that, it was a good night.
Kiniry made the late-season switch from Suzuki to Kawasaki when he signed with Ti-Lube Kawasaki team.
Photo: Andrew Fredrickson
Yeah, I heard about this deal with Izoird- what happened and what did he do to you?
Well, he had it coming. It’s been going back a while now, he’s cross-jumped me a couple of times now and a lot us in the class don’t race like that. We all respect each other. On top of that he was arguing with me on the starting line in Toronto because he thought I kicked a rock in his line. He started yelling at me and his mechanic kind of separated us. His mechanic knew that it was a bit of a weird deal I think. So he was going off on me and then this weekend, he came up on me and no big deal. He tried doing me dirty the first time, I squared it up and got him back.
So we were going at it for a couple of lanes and he had me fair and square, he passed me. I was going to honestly give it to him, he was going faster and he had it. Then on the last jump on the rhythm section, he hung a left and cross jumped me again! Then he looked right at me. That got me fired up and I had enough of his shit. So I nailed him really good. Kawi’s team manager Mike Fisher came over to talk to me and he said that the dude was really mad at me. I said hey, look at my track record, I'm never in fights with anyone, I don’t have any controversy and every week, someone isn’t happy with him. There are a few people that have had issues with him.
We’re racing back there in fifteenth and sixteenth, we’re not in the running for the championship and there’s no reason to ride the way he does. A few AMA guys I saw on Sunday morning told me that he had it coming. I don’t have a reputation as being that guy but I can only take it so much you know? Racing is racing, I’m ok with bumping here and there but this is cross jumping and that’s dangerous.
So anyways, how was your team up in Canada as far as you switching to the Kawasaki away from the Suzuki?
You know at the beginning of the year we were talking about what we wanted to do and I turned down an arenacross ride because they (OTSFF) were going to help me for the east coast races. So we were committed to doing the east coast and when this came up, we had already decided that we were calling it quits on supercross. Andre (Laurin) had come up with some funding for me to do the east coast so that was good but Toronto was the last round. We started testing outdoors and that was that.
So when this came up, it was good for me to make some money and get some racing experience which I think helps out when I start up there. I think that some of my competition doesn’t race beforehand and that may hurt them a bit. So Andre said to go out there, make some money and don’t get hurt! It’s all good.
Kiniry will be heading north of the border this summer to compete in the Canadian Nationals.
Photo: Andrew Fredrickson
What about switching from your Suzuki to Kawasaki? How was that?
It is different, I feel like I’m pretty good at putting things out of my head like that. I think I can just jump on a bike and be competitive. I think I would do better with a bike that I was 100% comfortable on but it is what it is and I have to try my best. It’s a challenge and I love to race. If I have to ride a Kawasaki one week and a Suzuki the next, then that’s what it is. The goal is to make a living at racing and this helps me do that.
So thinking about this summer for you, you won your first national and you’re national number 3 again up there. What’s it going to take for you to win up there?
I’ve been focused on outdoors most of the winter to be honest. That’s my main goal this year, to win. This is my third year up there and I know the deal, I know the tracks and I think I can win. It’s going to be tough like every year, everyone is going to come in prepared but I feel like I’m a little more prepared than in years past. I’m on the same team, the same group of people, I know the tracks and I’m more confident than ever before. Getting that win last year was huge, I always knew I could win but to go and do it, to prove it to yourself gives you all that confidence.
We’ve been testing for a while, we have a good set-up and we’re ready. I rode a Lites bike last year in SX and we only had four weeks to get ready and I still got some top threes right off the bat. Whereas this year I’ve been preparing for this for a while now and I’m ready.