Michael Mosiman found himself leading the first 250 Class moto at the Fox Raceway 2 National on Saturday and he looked comfortable in that role. An untimely fall was ultimately the end of his chance at his first career moto win, but he did well to get back to second. His starts are there, his speed is there, and it’s all coming together. Now at the end of his fourth full year as a professional, Mosiman believes it’s his time and he knows it. After his second place overall at round 11, he spoke with the media via Zoom about his day and his desire to finally win at the finale next week.
Michael, you showed a lot of speed in the first moto there. Got the start, to be up front for a change of pace for you. Showed that you could lead for a while. Jett kind of put pressure on you, then you had that little tip-over that kind of probably derailed things a bit, but then you came back. The comeback from that was very impressive. Then you get back up front again. You were in the mix in moto two. Another career-best outing for you, another real breakthrough season for you all in all. Talk about your day. Talk about that first moto and how that maybe changed things for you and how you’re feeling to close out the season with such a strong ride and another runner-up effort.
Michael Mosiman: It’s been a long season, indeed. Definitely some ups and downs. My day started off pretty good. I think second lap I hit most of all the jumps and got the track down pretty close. I felt good all day. I had good speed all day. I just felt really prepared, really confident. It just kind of was clicking for me. Got up front early. I was stoked on that. Honestly, into the corner I wasn’t the best but just made some quick moves and got in the lead and felt comfortable. I felt comfortable out front. I think that’s where I belong. Just getting some time up there was really nice. Unfortunate mistake for sure. I’m just not going to focus on the mistakes, really. I think there’s so many positives to take out of this weekend. I think just building on those positives. I want to win the last round. No joke. Everyone wants to win every race, but I think I’m set up really well to do that. Happy with the bike, happy with the team. We’re all gelling so well. There’s something going on there at GasGas right now.
On the podium this afternoon you mentioned the team and sometimes you’re thankful to them for you being a little bit weird or a little bit frazzled. Can you explain that? What was that about?
Yeah. So, there were a few different moments here. I think it was the Tuesday or something. It was a little bit ago, a couple weeks ago. They were wanting to cement in a plan as far as if we’re racing or not racing. Someone brought it up. They were like, “Dude, you’ve been hitting the deck a lot. What is there to gain if you come back? Why would you?” That kind of just got my head spinning. I’m a racer, but it’s like, man, you’re right. I have missed a couple rounds here and there. Is it really worth to come back and all the variables that can happen? I kind of just got really spun out. I had so much on my plate that day. I had really honest conversations with Wil Hahn. I told the guys, “I’m just mentally not there.” I’m at this point checked out on the season. I’m not in it. Essentially, they wanted it to be my decision. That took some time. So, throughout that day it was a big deal that I could be very, very real with them, more real than I am with any team before, and just not experience judgement and just being met with understanding. It’s hard to be real. It’s hard to be real about when you’re not good, when you’re not in a good place. I think a lot of those times there of being really real with the team has led me to build a lot of chemistry, a lot of trust, and just to have a lot of honesty among all of us has been really good. Then even today, first moto I put in a hard charge, and I crashed in the race. Then after the race, I crossed the finish line, go to turn around right in front of all the fans, and tipped over there too. I was so smoked in-between motos. I was like just not here and considering not racing. I was not in good shape. So, for those guys to let me not be okay and to not look at me funny or sideways and kind of let me go through my process and then for me to lock in once in, I think I’ve proven a number of times now that I’m able to. So just having that honesty and that communication, being my own self and them allowing that has been huge.
What were the actual expectations? Even last week at Ironman you got a moto podium, and here. It sounds like you were in a pretty dark place. Did you expect to get this?
I locked in and I did expect to perform as I did at Ironman, however the team didn’t. I showed up to the podium and they didn’t have anything ready! I think I’m on the podium with a water and not a Red Bull! We gave them some crap about that. Then the team’s expectations significantly increased for this weekend. I think I certainly met and exceeded those expectations and showed a lot of heart today, just being tired but saying I’m going to go out there, get the start and manage the race, and here I am in second place. Expectations were very low. Essentially, their deal with Indiana was go there and treat this as a practice day. No pressure. It was like, you go 10-10, there was nothing they were going to be bummed on. I’m a racer, so if I’m going to be there and I’m going to race and I’m okay to race, then I’m going to race. Low expectations, but I continue to exceed. It’s been really good.
Obviously, the speed is there for you. How much does that help you in terms of belief heading into 2022 and what’s to come?
No doubt. I think I had to come to terms. I hadn't believed I could win, and I believe I can win now. I’m really, really good on a motorcycle. I am one of the best 250 racers in the world. It’s been really hard for me to say that and to admit that, and even harder to believe it. I believe it now. I’m so good. Not in a bragging way. God has given me gifts and talents and abilities and I’m just trying to steward them well. Most definitely, I’m practicing for the 2022 West Coast championship. That’s what I want. That’s what my goal is. What I’m doing on the weekends is building me towards that goal. Just learning and growing. These last three, I’ve been learning a lot. I definitely got a head of steam going into this off-season, regardless of whatever happens at the last round. I got newfound confidence and I got a lot going on. So, I’m excited going forward.