At the Houston round of Monster Energy Supercross, Aaron Plessinger showed flashes of brilliance, showing Eli Tomac a wheel while battling for the lead. He ultimately ended the night in fourth place just off the podium, lamenting that he just didn't ride the same after a red flag led to a staggered restart.
Plessinger came into the Tampa round ready to prove his performance the week before was not just a fluke. He put in a solid ride, landing him on the podium behind Cooper Webb and Chase Sexton. Here's what the seemingly ever-happy Red Bull KTM rider had to say after the race.
Aaron, tell us what this means for you moving forward. It was a great night for you.
Aaron Plessinger: It’s a big confidence booster, for sure. I’ve been working on my starts and it’s definitely showing. It felt good to get out there and run with these boys. It’s a shame that I made a couple mistakes to keep me from really latching onto these guys and hanging on with them, but third place is the best I’ve had in a while. I got hurt early in the season last year and I’m pumped on this. This just gives me more confidence to come out in Oakland and do it again.
Last week you finished fourth in Houston, and you said you were hungry to get that podium. So, what do you feel that you figured out last week that kind of helped you bring that success here to Tampa?
I just did my motos this week, really. I think if it wasn’t for that red flag last week, it might have been a little bit of a different story. I think me and Eli had a really good pace going there. We weren’t too far ahead of everybody else, but we were working on it. We had good speed in the whoops. I just had a good flow at Houston. So, if it wasn’t for the red flag, I think I could have maybe landed up here a little bit earlier. But I just did my motos and had a good time this week.
This is the second week we’ve seen sand in the supercross track being one of the major contributing factors. What’s your thoughts on having sand in supercross tracks?
I really don’t like it. You could probably see that today. I didn’t like it.
Chase Sexton answered as well: I went and walked through it after the main event, and this one especially was so deep. I felt like a C rider. Especially when you started to slow down, it was so hard to stay balanced when you’re hitting that deep sand. The beginning was easier, it was just towards the end.
Aaron: Yeah, when you let off the gas, it sucked you down like right now.
Cooper Webb: And you got supercross settings, so that doesn’t make it fun.
Aaron, you seem to be getting better every single week. You mentioned confidence. Is it that? Is it conditioning? Or you got something else going on under your hat there?
I think it’s just confidence and starts. I’m the same dude as when I started A1. You can’t get a ninth place start and come through with these champions. When you look deep into the class, you’ve got 15 champions on the track. It’s crazy to think about. You can’t get a bad start and come through these guys like you could in the 250 class. It just doesn’t happen. It’s just starts and confidence on the bike. I’m getting more and more comfy every week. Just riding with this guy next to me [Cooper Webb], it makes me even that much more confident.