Will Ryan Dungey never not be Ryan Dungey? As he always does, he rode strong and steady all day, and late in the final Glen Helen moto he had something no one else could match. He passed his teammate Ken Roczen for the lead to steal the overall win with three turns to go. Here’s what he had to say in the post-race press conference.
Racer X: Take us through the motos.
Ryan Dungey: First moto, it was good, but we were not able to close the gap to [Josh] Grant and Ken [Roczen] there are the end. Would have been nice to get in there and battle for a win but I knew that we were in it for the second moto and that was going to be the tough one. It came down to me and Ken—Ken rode a great race. He was really strong. About halfway through there I was able to get on his rear wheel and I wanted to make the pass, but nothing was really allowing it. He had all the insides covered up and nothing was coming together until right there at the end. A lapper got in the way, which was no big deal, but I lost a lot of time. I was going to be bummed because the last two laps I really pushed it to make a push to get up to Roczen. With three turns to go, I had to chance it a little bit, had to hold it on a little longer on the outside. We both came out of the corner and I had the advantage on the inside so it worked out really good. Just really happy I got a pass there. I really felt like the win was there early on in the moto. I just needed to make that pass happen. But it was good to go 1-2 with a teammate. It was a good day for KTM.
We’re in Southern California, which is arguably the hotbed of motocross. How did two people from Minnesota win here on the same day?
I don’t know! It’s pretty cool though. Little Jeremy Martin has been working really hard these last few years. He’s just young and it’s like even myself, it took me a couple years to get things figured out. Once you kind of get the ball going you realize what works for you. It really seems like he finally got things figured out today, with both moto wins. That was pretty impressive, and he pulled a little bit of a gap in each one I think. So it’s good to have Minnesota win in both classes. You don’t really see that too often.
You were talking about the last lap there a little bit with Ken Roczen. Obviously you’ve been touted as one of the fittest riders, one of the most professional riders when it comes to it, but we saw some aggression out there. Is that going to be what it takes to win the title this year? A lot of guys running really close.
It’s going to be a lot of good racing, and tough racing, and it showed today. This track was tough. It was really good, they did a good job prepping it, but there was just that one good line in every corner. That’s kind of what it all came down to. So when you’re all coming into the same line, same corner, doing the same thing every lap it’s tough. You have to kind of get out of your line choice. And lappers come in the way and try this, try that, you lose some time, you make some time. It’s really just a game of cat and mouse and being right there, but I couldn’t do anything. So I just wanted to make something happen.
Trey Canard jumps in with a question:
Trey Canard: Yes, Mr. Dungey I have a question.
Who are you with?
Um, I’m with Sports Quarterly. You bike is orange. I just wanted to know your thoughts on orange.
Yes, everything I do is orange. My diet is orange. Everything I drink is orange. The more orange I have in me the happier the bike seems to be with me.
Back to the press conference…
There was some speculation during supercross that Ryan Villopoto might not be back to race outdoors this year. Did it seem to ignite a little bit of fervor around the team? There’s one guy out, now it’s easier to move up one step.
Villopoto, he’s a great competitor. Obviously he’s a tough guy to beat. He’s strong. But I think [any thing with him] is way out of my control. Wherever he’s at in his career and his life that’s where he’s at. I’ve got to focus on myself. Every time I go into a season, whoever’s there, I prepare myself the best I can. I go out there to win every time and I do my best. That’s all I can do. I can’t control who’s there and who’s not. We got a lot of flack for that but at the same time there’s a lot of tough guys you can’t underestimate either. It’s a bummer he’s not here because he adds a little bit more, but at the same time the race still moves on and you still got to drop the gate and try to win the race.