Catching Up with…Cade Clason
By Jeff McConkey
If you attended any of the Rockstar Energy MX Nationals this past season, you definitely would have noticed the #761 Redemption Racing Fly Dragon KTM 450 of Cade Clason. Cade was consistently the rider chasing the top 4 in the premiere MX1 class and finished an impressive 6th in the championship. We got to know the friendly Ohio-turned-South-Carolina native pretty well over the summer; he’s an easy guy to talk to. We caught up with him at his home at Club MX to get his thoughts on the season and find out what his future plans are…and learn what his favourite Canadian dish is.
Direct Motocross: Hey, Cade. How’s it going?
Cade Clason: Hey, guys. It’s been going good. Just enjoying my off-season. Being able to relax and not travel has been really nice!
What are you up to today?
Another day at Club MX. We have gotten a lot of rain lately so I wasn’t able to ride but was able to get in a long run, so it was still productive.
For those who don’t know you, tell us where you are from and a little about yourself.
Well, I’m 20 years old, originally from Ohio where I grew up on a horse farm but never really got into it. After a childhood friend got me into riding, it became my life and now I live in South Carolina at Club MX Training Facility. I’ve been racing since I was about 7 years old and have been racing professionally since I was 18. But other than riding, you can usually find me cycling, fishing, and occasionally working on my golf game.
It looked like you were ready to compete in the AMA Nationals and then you had some issues. Can you tell us about it?
Ya, after the Supercross season ended, I was super-excited because I love racing outdoors. But the team I was signed with was having a lot of money problems. They weren’t able to hold up their end of the deal, so after Glen Helen we went in separate ways and the Redemption Racing team couldn’t have called at a better time.
You filled in for Nathan Bles on the Redemption Racing KTM team. How did that come together?
Well, Nathan, the Jeffery brothers and I became good friends during the winter while they were at Club MX. While they were there, I met Josh Snider, the team manager of Redemption. Eric Jeffery, knowing I was unhappy with my current situation in the states, threw my name in the mix for a fill-in after Nathan got hurt (Thanks again, buddy!) So, that’s really how it all happened.
How much did you know about our series, before Round 1 in Kamloops?
Honestly, not much at all. I really only saw a few rounds the past year after watching (Mike) Alessi at a few rounds.
At first it was rumoured that you would be just filling in for the West Coast. What was the deciding factor for you to continue with the team and go East?
I think it was a mixture of good results, me fitting in so well with the team, and Nathan’s healing process taking longer than expected.
You had a fantastic first season here in Canada and finished 6th overall in MX1. Did you expect to do this well?
Not at all. I was so happy with my results. I didn’t expect to love the bike as much as I did and it all just worked out so well.
What was the hardest part of our series and our Country for you to adjust to?
It was actually a super-easy transition. Living with the Jeffreys was great. Speaking to some of the people in Quebec was definitely not easy, but besides that, it was really easy!
Can you tell us your favourite track and least favourite track?
Calgary was by far my favourite and Nanaimo, I’m pretty sure, is everyone’s least favourite.
Did you have a favourite item, or maybe favourite food or drink that we have in Canada that you can’t get back home in America?
Poutine. As long as I can eat it I don’t care if I can spell it (Laughs).
As an AMA regular, what do you think our series could do to improve?
Really, the series is great. Maybe just some track prep at certain tracks and some more CMRC guys to help out! My guy, Daryl (Murphy), works hard and could use some more help.
Is the plan to come back for 2016 with a big #6 on a Redemption Racing KTM?
Heck ya! I’m so excited to come back! When they told me they wanted me back, I couldn’t wait to say yes.
You have a year of Canadian racing under your belt. What is it going to take to get you on the podium, and eventually fighting for wins?
Really, I came in super-unprepared with only one day on a KTM. With some testing and days on the bike, some better starts and now knowing all the tracks heading into them, I know I can be on the podium.
You are one of the regulars at Club MX in South Carolina. What does a usual day and week look like down at Club?
It kind of depends on what time of year it is. Right now, we are doing what our trainers call “boot camp.” We all wake up and either go cycling or running. Then, after breakfast, we will head out and ride for a few hours, working sections or doing motos. Then, a strength workout in the early afternoon and then another session of cardio, either running or cycling.
What are your plans for the off-season? Will we be cheering for the #761 in any AMA Supercross rounds?
The plan is to race some Supercross. I’m not completely sure who for yet but I will be racing the 450 class. I got cut short this past season from injury and I’m ready to make more mains and show people what I can do.
Thanks for your time, Cade. Who would you like to thank?
I really need to thank my family – they are always helping me to make the right decisions to push me forward. Also, I want to thank the entire Redemption Racing team, including the Snider family and the Jeffery family – they made my time in Canada amazing and I can’t wait to be back. Also, I have to throw in a ‘thank you’ to my guys, “MC” and Bigwave for the interview.