Has there ever been chatter in the mechanics areas during motos?
I think so. Much of it is stubbornness. Nobody likes to lose, and if you ever feel like winning, it changes you. I’ve competed against a lot of mechanics in the past, but purely on competitiveness, I didn’t really like this person. I was jealous. I was just at that place in my head where I was like, ‘Wow, I’ve invested so much in this since 2006, I’ve given my life to the sport and we’ve failed yet again.’ You’re so invested that you think you’re the one riding the bike. But you are not. You are essential, yes, but only 10-15% realistically. It takes so much for everything to line up. But yeah, the tension is usually high, and usually me, or others, can come across as an asshole, but that’s just focus. And for me, passion.
I guess other examples would be lazy mechanics lying on the Tuff Blox in supercross. There are over 20 mechanics stacked in an area with only a few good starting points. Most mature mechanics signal, then walk away from the Tuff Block to let someone else in. Then keep turning off. Other mechanics pick a spot and lie on the Tuff Block like they’re sunbathing at noon, which isn’t fair.
Not that I lived. Honestly, there’s a ton of respect in them! If your guy doesn’t make it, go to the back of the line. [Laughs]
In supercross, everyone is nervous and focused because the show goes so fast! In motocross we have two minutes of nothing until they come back. We see them for a corner, and they’re done for another two minutes. We tend to hustle each other with all the waiting time, but often we just talk about the track. What most don’t realize is that mechanics leave the track at the end of the day without even seeing 90% of the track. We go to the end and look at the track and think, “Okay, now I understand what they were talking about on the helmet.”