In August of 2018 we talked to Jeremy Hand, after he had just earned an 11th overall finish in the 450 Class in the mud at Unadilla. Fast forward to two weeks ago in East Rutherford, New Jersey, and Hand would earn another career achievement—making a Monster Energy AMA Supercross 250SX East Region main event.
Earlier this week we caught up with the Ohio native to talk about making the main, not getting to ride much due to working full-time, his plans for this summer, and more.
(NOTE: The following interview was conducted via iMessage and has been lightly edited for clarity.)
Racer X: The last time we chatted was right after that gnarly mud race in Unadilla. What’s been going on since then?
Jeremy Hand: There’s been a lot going on since then! Finished off the last few rounds of outdoors strong. Ended up getting national #90. From there it’s been pretty much all supercross the last few months.
You even made your first 250SX main event, right? Talk about that.
Yeah! I finally made it happen in East Rutherford. Been so close all year, just missing it out of the heat and LCQ by a few spots every time. I put it all together and got a good start I needed in the LCQ, and put it in the main.
Describe that feeling. Explain to those who’ve never done it, how it feels making a supercross main event.
It’s a crazy feeling knowing you’re on the line with some of the best racers in the world in front of thousands of people. It has always been a dream of mine to make a supercross main event, and to finally make it happen felt awesome.
How about your family and supporters, were they going nuts?
Yeah, I’ve never had so many people reach out to me. My phone was blowing up after the race!
Once you’re in the main, does your mind go back to race mode or still like “Holy cow I’m here?”
It’s crazy, because after the LCQ you have no time in between. You have to get right back on the gate for the main event. You have to calm down and get focused for the main event.
Then just go do your best, right?
Yeah, that was the plan. Just do the best I could.
Going to work on Monday probably feels a little less daunting afterwards though, right? A little extra motivation to get through the week?
Yeah for sure. [Laughs] Definitely some more motivation to get though the week.
Still working in a cemetery? Anything freaky ever happen there, or just a normal job?
Yeah still working there. Haven’t seen anything yet hopefully I never do. [Laughs] It’s a pretty normal job for the most part.
Back to supercross. Can you compare at all your expectations for the season versus the reality of how it went for you?
For the most part my goal was to make a main event this year. I was so close, so many times, just had some bad luck a few times. I only had the chance to ride an actual supercross [track] one time before racing the first one of the year for me, in Detroit.
Were you able to practice at all once the season began, or just at the races?
Living in Ohio there really aren’t any supercross to practice on. The only time I was able to practice was during the week in between Atlanta and Daytona we stopped at Georgia Practice Facility [GPF] and I got to ride some supercross there. Besides that, I would be lucky to ride once during the week on an outdoor track if the weather was good.
Speaking of outdoor tracks, plans for the summer? How many rounds will we see you at?
I’ll be at all the closer East Coast rounds. I’ll hopefully try to make it to five or six of them! I’ll be going back to the 450 Class for outdoors.
And you’re good in the mud, so hoping for five or six mud races, right?
[Laughs] Yeah, hopefully! I don’t think my dad would be too happy though.
Okay, Jeremy. Thanks for taking time to chat. Want to give your sponsors a shout before we end this?
None of this would be possible without my mom and dad! Along with all my sponsors: World of Wheels, AM Motocross Gear, John Mitchell Racing, Pirelli, JYT, Alpinestars, FMF, Spitzer Ford, Pro Taper, Wiseco, Pro X, Motorex, Cometic, Works Connection, Möbius, Rekluse, Ride Engineering, 100% Goggles, Bell Helmets, Dt1 Filters, Power Seal, and GBR performance.