By Steve Matthes, Jason Weigandt and aaron hansel
Chad Reed | Monster Energy/
360fly/Chaparral/Yamaha | 6th in 450SX
I didn’t get as good of a start [on the restart] and therefore it was just kind of a struggle from the beginning. I just kind of struggled to get going. Then I got going and then I started making a few little mistakes. It is what it is. I felt like it was nice to be back. I felt like my riding was good….
You felt good in the whoops?
I felt really good in the whoops. I feel like I got my mojo back in the whoops. At points in the main event I felt like I was a podium guy, and at other points I felt like I was a sixth-place guy. So I’ll take the points and go on to San Diego. We’re pretty damn good, honestly. Inside the truck it’s good.
No panic or last-minute testing?
Nothing. I’m actually surprised. The one thing we’re going to try is starts. Normally you’re like, “We need to be better here, we need to be better there,” and honestly, I don’t know that we’re going to make a whole lot of bike changes this week. For the most part, I need a little better feeling off the start, so that’s what we’ll work on. – Steve Matthes
Justin Brayton | BTOSports-KTM-WPS | 10th in 450SX
Racer X: You’re one of my guys that I think is going to have a much better year this year. Top ten in the opening round, you’ll take it. I hate to say deep field, but it really is.
Justin Brayton: Honestly it is. You’ve heard a lot of people say it. You look at the list and it’s pretty amazing. A night like tonight, I have a feeling it’s going to be like this a lot. It was chaotic; people everywhere. The heat races are like main events were last year as far as how stacked they are. But as a rider it’s pretty fun. It’s challenging for one. You got to be on top of your game. It’s going to be a fun year. Like you said, I’m already having a better year than I did last year. Last year was a big struggle from the time I started riding. Just I couldn’t stay injury-free. I think that’s a big thing and now being comfortable with the bike. I think having a top ten here I can only build off of it. I know it’s kind of cliché to say that, but it really is true. Excited to get this one out of the way and start building. – Matthes
Justin Bogle | GEICO Honda | 13th in 450SX
Got through the first one, really happy about that, but at the same time that was the most frustrating race of my entire life. My starts were good but I wasn’t really there speed-wise yet, and it got a little hectic. I learned a lot tonight. A lot. Main event was just tough, got a good start considering where I was at. It was hectic out there. This is a gnarly class! You saw it in the press conference on Thursday—what are there like fifteen with number one plates hanging on the wall? Coming in, the way I came in, whatever, I’ve been here before starting the season off with injuries. It’s not an excuse, but I haven’t done a twenty lapper in months. I haven’t raced against most of those guys ever. It’s okay. I feel like I can put it up there pretty soon. The beautiful thing is there are a lot more of these.
You and Marvin [Musquin] were actually battling most of the way!
Me and Marvin were battling for thirteenth and fourtheenth pretty much the whole race. It was fun. I talked to Marv after the semi and we talked about how it felt like a main event last year. It was cool.
You hurt your foot coming in? Did it hurt?
It hurt a lot! Hey, just a little broken foot. It’s not like I broke my back or had shoulder surgery like I did coming in the last two years. It’s all good. – Jason Weigandt
Justin Barcia | Autotrader.com/Monster Energy/Toyota/JGR Yamaha | 15th in 450SX
Racer X: Take us through that first start.
Justin Barcia: I’m pretty disappointed in myself. The first start was great, got the holeshot, started pulling away and was feeling awesome. Then I see the red flag and that’s kind of your worst nightmare. But then I got another good start and was second behind [Cole] Seely. But just started riding tight and pumped up, had a little crash, and went backward. Just a challenging day. Crashed pretty hard in practice, but I was riding good and I was really happy with my bike. Just need to work through some little things and we’ll be fine.
Did the restart cause the arm pump?
Man, maybe, we were talking about that when I got back to the truck. I put in so much work and I haven’t gotten arm pump in months. I don’t even remember the last time I got arm pump. I don’t want to blame it on the restart though, everyone had to do the same thing. It’s hard to say. It doesn’t happen often with me and it’s frustrating. For some reason this is one of the most nerve-wracking A1’s I’ve ever had. I don’t know if it’s because I’ve trained so much and feel so ready, I’m not sure. There were lots of positives, but the negative was pumping up in the main and not finishing well. We’ll take the good and move on. My speed was there, just need to not get arm pump. It’s just a freak thing. Sometimes you can regroup and work through it, but tonight just wasn’t one of those nights. – Aaron Hansel
Wil Hahn | Monster Energy Kawasaki | 17th in 450SX
Lots of laps for me, I think I rode every race possible. There was a lot of anxiety today and I’m happy to leave healthy, but I have to do better. The team and I work too hard to finish where I did. Just take the positives, but I need to do better.
How was the track?
I can’t believe what the Dirt Wurx guys did out there in the last 48 hours. There were some soft spots, but it was pretty awesome. – Aaron Hansel
Zach Osborne | Rockstar Energy Racing Husqvarna | 3rd in 250SX
Racer X: Jason Anderson, your teammate, just killed it but let’s talk about you. First ever heat race win, good practice times, third in the main. You kind of lost touch with the top two and it’s tough to keep that aggressiveness up, I’m thinking, when you can’t see them?
Zach Osborne: Yeah, it was a good day. I rode solid all day. I had good speed. I had fun today and that was a big thing for me. I just came here; it was easy and I’ve done the work. I just tried to keep it relaxed and I did. I actually feel a little disappointed in my main event because it’s miles off of what I’m capable of, but at the same time I won the heat race and rode solid in that. In the main it got tight right there in the beginning, the first couple of turns, and it was dicey for a couple laps. It kind of balled me up a little bit. I know that, but going into next weekend as conservative as I feel that I was I feel good about being up there in front to run with those guys. I feel like it’s a huge positive. – Matthes
Jimmy Decotis | GEICO Honda | 4th in 250SX
Never had a fourth before, this was my best. I’m happy that the best showing I had on the bike came in the main event. I’ve had good lap times in practice before, good laps in heat races, but something always seems to happen in the main events. I felt I rode strong and consistent the whole time. I had the third best lap of the race. I think I could have made a run at [Zach] Osborne for third, but he’s been in that position before and I haven’t. It’s a good step for the first round. Honestly, a few weeks ago we were contemplating waiting a few weeks and racing East! I was pushing for it, but I’m glad it came together like it did now. I’m not sure if Rock [Mike LaRocco, team manager] was ever really going to do it, but I was asking.
You were on this team a few years ago but got hurt pretty quickly. How different of a rider are you now?
I mean, I think you can see the difference! Just doing a lot of cycling and training with Racer X Virtual Trainer Tim Crytser. He’s made it fun for me, but allowed me to work hard at the same time. I came on this team and they have a guy John Weston and they’ve kind of merged and worked together, finding out my weaknesses and working on that. Overall I’m happy. – Weigandt
Jordon Smith | GEICO Honda | 5th in 250SX
Racer X: Seemed pretty good, but did you crash somewhere?
Jordon Smith: Yeah, I think it was lap seven. I tipped over coming out of one of the corners. I was having a good race, my GEICO Honda is really fast and I got a good start. It was one of the first times I’ve ever been up front in a supercross. Last year I got a fourth but it was a come-from-behind race, so this time it was good to run at the front of the pack. I just need to get used to it. I can definitely take some positives from it. – Weigandt