Catching Up with…#63 Graham Scott
By Billy Rainford
While traveling from round 1 in Calgary to round 2 at Popkum, several riders stopped in at Whispering Pines to get a few days riding in at the track that has held many Canadian MX Nationals over the years.
One of the riders taking advantage of the track was Vancouver Island rider, #63 Graham Scott. Graham is the smooth rider who had an impressive first round of the Rockstar Triple Crown MX Tour at Wild Rose MX Park last Saturday, finishing tied for 10th in 11th.
He wasn’t riding so we grabbed his for a conversation. Here’s what the stylish Honda rider had to say:
Direct Motocross: Hello, Graham. First of all, tell us a little bit about yourself.
Graham Scott: I’m 22 years old and I live in Victoria, BC. I’ve been racing professionally for 4 years, now. I’ve been riding for close to 10, I guess. I actually started racing go karts at a very young age. The family has always been really into motorsports.
I was also into mountain biking and dirt jumping. At one point, it just transferred over and I showed an interest in it and my dad got me a little CRF80 and from then on it’s been a pretty typical story for everyone – as soon as you get on it you’re pretty much in an addiction from then on out.
I’ve been racing for, I’d say, 7 of the 10 years. A little bit of a late start, but I’ve been loving it ever since.
You looked very competitive last season but you didn’t do the whole series. Can you take us through last summer?
Last year was probably one of my stronger years. I was a little older, a little more mature. Probably the biggest thing was just having a bit more confidence. I went into the 450 class pretty early. I was 17 or 18 when I moved into the MX1 class. It was just getting to the point where I felt like I belonged. Being confident in myself, being more mature and educated on bike set up and just the whole thing.
Last year was a turning point for me. I raced a ton. We changed things up a little bit where we didn’t go down south. We decided to stay in BC and race all the way up until Nationals. We got 13 consecutive race weekend in a row, prior, and I think that was a huge benefit for me to be used to the intensity of a gate drop.
I ended up having two top 15 overalls, both weekends, and we just decided to to the first two rounds. We took a little bit of a break and I worked all summer and kept racing some [local] races and just having fun with it. It was a nice change of pace and our plan, right from the beginning, was for 1018 do the whole series again and be recharged with a whole new attitude and a different mentality towards it. But I’d say confidence has been the biggest thing, so far.
What did you get up to for prep leading up to this season?
This winter, Ryan Lalonde and I live pretty close together and we have each other as training partners so that keeps us honest and keeps us pushing in our training. It’s super-beneficial for us. All winter, we just tried to make do with what we had and riding gravel and sand pits. We have quite a few of those on the island. With the mild weather we’re able to get quite a bit of riding done. Then in March we went down to California for about 3 weeks and stayed with Shawn Maffenbeier, Keylan Meston, and Davey Fraser for the month of March.
We got lots of riding in then and then we came home and pretty much picked up from where Ryan and I left off. We stepped it up a little bit as well and hit as many races as we could that were available to us without traveling too too far.
It was nothing too crazy. It’s not like we were down in Florida for all of winter. I still worked all winter long.
What do you do for work?
I work for my dad at Scott Plastics as well as twice a week I teach riding lessons at West Shore Motocross in Victoria.
Let’s talk about round 1 last weekend. You and Ryan actually tied for 10th in points. How did your day go in Calgary?
My day went really well, actually. I came into Calgary a little apprehensive, you could say. It’s historically not been my best round. And with it being the first round and the jitters and not really knowing what to expect – where everyone was at. I guess I was a little apprehensive.
It ended up, I qualified great, which was good for me for there. I ended up I believe 12th in qualifying, so that was good enough for me to get a good gate pick which is super crucial there.
I just got 2 good starts and actually ran in the top 10 both motos for a good portion of them. I just clicked off the laps and stayed within my comfort zone. I didn’t do anything too crazy. I didn’t go down at all. I ended up with two pretty consistent, solid finishes.
You were tied with Ryan in points, but who were you battling with out there?
Ryan and I definitely kept each other in check, both motos, but there was also Kyle Keast. He got us in the first moto and then we both managed to keep him behind us in the second moto. A few of the factory guys had to go by me both motos because I started in front of them.
There were a couple new guys on Yamahas but…oh, Eric Jeffery, I think I saw him back there too. He was pretty close. We were pretty much the next pack right behind the factory guys. It was good.
Moving on to round 2 at Popkum, what are you shooting for? You just keep going after that top 10?
Ya, that’s pretty much going to be the goal for every round. The top 10 this year is pretty heavily stacked with, I’m pretty sure there are 9 or 10 factory guys out there, so basically I’m looking for a bad moto from them or just capitalizing on one of their mistakes.
Basically, I’m satisfied with the low teens…top 15’s and every weekend I just want to be coming out with a good handful of points and two motos that I can work off of.
OK, well thanks for talking with us and good luck this weekend. Who would you like to thank?
For sure. Thank you. I’d like to thank Scott Plastics, SG Power, Honda Canada, 100%, Atlas, Mobius Braces, Factory Connection Services, Lime Nine, Moto Seat, and my mechanic, Alex, for all the hard work he’s been putting in and anyone else that I forgot, thank you very much.