Honda HRC’s Jett Lawrence quickly got to the lead in the Detroit Supercross 250SX main event with a pass on Rockstar Energy Husqvarna’s Stilez Robertson. Lawrence was navigating through lappers, which allowed Troy Lee Designs/Red Bull/GasGas’ Pierce Brown to close in—and show him a front wheel at one point—but the 18-year-old Australian picked it up and was uncontested throughout the rest of the main event, taking his third win at the fourth 250SX East Region race. After another near perfect day, Lawrence joined the media in the post-race press conference to talk about his day.
Jett, this is back-to-back races now where you’ve been able to sweep the qualifier, the heat, and the main event. It’s really coming together. At the same time, I know how much you do respect your competitive. How is that a balance for you knowing that there are guys right there, but you are starting to click things off back to back?
Jett Lawrence: Yeah. I got a bit of a reality check in the first qualifying. I looked at the tower and I was like P4. I’m like, Oh. This ain’t good! Especially this track this weekend, I felt like the times were really, really close. So, the boys kept me definitely on my toes. The biggest thing is just making sure I click my lap times off. Just make sure I focus on myself because I can never know where I make a slight mistake and one of these boys capitalizes on that. So, it’s definitely close racing but I just need to make sure I focus on myself and should be okay. Just don’t make any silly mistakes.
You had a tough run at one point in the main with the lapped riders. Came up to a pack of them. Rolled the finish line jump and then they were right there. How did you respond in that moment and get it back together and try to get that lead back up?
This man [Pierce Brown] comes up on the inside. Every guy revs it in the air. This guy was like, silent. Didn’t hear anything. Scared the living daylights out of me on the inside. All I see is a front fender. I was not ready for this. It was definitely tough. The track was pretty tight. The first few guys that I came up to lapping, it was a big group of four or five and they were going hard, battling. Then one guy got up next to me and looked over and he goes hard. I’m like, what? The track was tricky because there were so many lines and ruts. It was harder for them because they’re trying to still hit their line and not mess up anyone else. It was definitely tricky.
With the results, it seems like business as usual, but I’m curious with a lot going on into this week, obviously Kenny [Roczen] pulling out, a lot of team personnel not being there anymore, Kehoe leaving last year… How are you able to not deal with that? Is that even in your peripheral? Does any of that ever bother you, anything going on with team stuff?
No, not really because none of it has got to do with me, really. If it has something to do with me, maybe, yeah. But none of it is any of my problem, you could say. I’m not meaning that in a mean way, [it's not] like I don't care, but that’s their problem you could say. I’m focused on my racing and what I get paid to do. So no, it doesn’t affect me much, to be honest.
Can you talk a little bit about what you work on during the week? It looks like you don’t really have a weakness out there and you’re very comfortable at the top of the leaderboard.
I think just clicking off laps and always perfecting with anything, bike, technique, speed, even mentally. I can always be better in a way. So, I’m always going through that through the week. Everyone has their weakness. I wouldn’t say it was a weakness more so at round two, but you saw a little bit of a glimpse of old Jett. That’s probably what you could call a bit of my weakness is old Jett, really. Just sending it. Hopefully I can make sure I keep my head down and have to not go into that, but if I do have to, I know I have to make sure that I stay minded with that and make sure I don’t make those same silly mistakes.
There was a lot of talk this week of course with Kenny choosing to bow out and focus on his health, so instantly people start to speculate who could ride the 450. I know Daniel [Blair] was joking on Race Day Live about yourself and your brother potentially getting experience on the opposite coast. Then again, you are in the championship hunt. Would you be interested in riding a 450 when this coast kind of goes on break for a couple rounds, or even in the next year or two?
I think I’ll worry about 450 when I get to it. Anytime that I’ll have away from supercross I’ll be focusing on trying to defend the outdoor title, because that’s a whole other basket of stuff. I think I probably won’t. Maybe Hunter. I feel like he’s going to be pretty lethal on a 450. We’ll have to wait and see. In my eyes, I still think he sucks. [laughs] I think any time if I’m away from the East Coast, I’m going to be focusing on outdoors. That’s my next main goal is defending that. I know that the boys are going to come in swinging pretty hard.
|1||Jett Lawrence||21 Laps||0:45.540||Landsborough||Honda CRF250R|
|+06.459||0:45.528||Sioux City, IA||Kawasaki KX250|
|3||Pierce Brown||+10.151||0:45.425||Sandy, UT||GasGas MC 250F|
|4||R.J. Hampshire||+20.879||0:46.588||Hudson, FL||Husqvarna FC 250|
|+24.121||0:46.439||Belmont, NC||Honda CRF250R|
It looked like in that qualifying practice that you were off. Your forks looked a little bit soft to me and you couldn’t push. What adjustments did you guys make to remedy your problems with that qualifying?
Sorry to disagree, but they were too stiff! We actually went softer with the front forks. They were going all the way down going into the turn, and then when we would hit the bowl turn it was coming back really fast. So, we ended up going softer with that to keep the front down. Because that first qualifying I was struggling with my turns more so. Rhythms are rhythms. You can get through them. Everyone is pretty equal in those. The main thing on a 250 is those corners and carrying the speed, and obviously the whoops. I was more focused on those turns, because the front would go down and it wouldn’t stay in that sweet spot in the stroke, and it would come back at me. So, we ended up going a few clicks softer in the front and even in the rear after that. When the track got a bit rougher, the rear started dancing a little bit in the whoops, so we ended up going two clicks faster on the high speed and two clicks softer in the front.
Watch the full 250SX post-race press conference below: