Hill (No. 75 Dodge/Sycuan Casino/RCH Racing/Bel-Ray/Suzuki Z450) has overcome many physical and mental obstacles since his horrendous non-racing crash nearly three years ago that left him with a severely broken femur. Years of physical rehabilitation has counterpunched the mental fatigue and uncertainty of riding at an elite level again. Hill’s comeback determination was evident last week as he led the Dodge Boys with a season-best finish of eight at Houston. . “I came into the weekend (at Houston) with a different mental outlook,” Hill said. “What I have been doing hasn’t been working so I really just tried to go have fun and ride the track as if it was a practice ride during the week. If I were to ride that track any day during the week by myself, I’d be having a blast. But for some reason on the weekends I haven’t been having any fun and I haven’t been riding well.”
Hill looks to parlay his Houston success this weekend on a track where he scored his only 450SX Class win in 2008.
“It was awesome,” Hill reflected on the Metrodome win. “I was 18-years old and it was my rookie year. Things were just clicking for me that year; I was having a whole lot of fun. I didn’t go to any of the races with any pressure on myself; I just went out there and rode.
“For me to go to Minneapolis and pull a win was pretty awesome. I ended up having a battle with Ryan Dungey. It was awesome. I just put myself in a good position and didn’t think about anything else. I wanted to race Dungey and I wanted to beat him. We started out 1-2 and I ended up getting around him, put a slight gap over him and rode the race out. It was a great feeling to win. The series hasn’t been back to Minneapolis since 2008 so I ‘m hoping to show up there and have another great result.”
Tickle (No. 20 Dodge/Sycuan Casino/RCH Racing/Bel-Ray/Suzuki Z450) continues to log Main Event top-10 finishes but the RCH rider is eager to put together a complete race and claim his first podium of the season. Currently 10th in the 2013 SX rider
standings, Tickle has shown tremendous speed but has failed to have a full day of consistent rides. The Michigan native has shown top-five speed in timed practice and Heat Races, yet has not been able to transfer his afternoon speed into the evening’s Main Event.
“For me, last weekend was a little physical and mental,” said Tickle. “I didn’t feel the flow of the track mentally and I wasn’t physically feeling the track either. I just couldn’t connect to the track.”
“It starts as soon as the first practice starts. If you’re comfortable on your bike and you feel like you can jump everything, that’s when everything starts rolling and snowballs the rest of the day. If you feel good in the first practice, odds are that you carry that over to the second practice and into the Heat and Main. We’ve been talking about that almost every weekend; I just need to do it and stop talking about it.”
Ryan Villopoto continues his stranglehold of the 450SX Class with five consecutive Main Event wins. He leads Davi Millsaps by 21 points with four races remaining in the 2013 season.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW The Race: Monster Energy AMA Supercross Series – Round 14 of 17 The Place: Metrodome - Minneapolis The Date: Saturday, April 13 The Time: 8:30 p.m. (ET) TV: CBS (tape-delayed), 12:00 p.m. (ET)