Cole Thompson – Anaheim 2 Conversation
By Billy Rainford
Supercross is a tough sport that can jump out and bite you seemingly at any moment. It’s a sport that can look as graceful as any at one moment and absolutely reckless and terrifying the next. Brigden, Ontario’s Cole Thompson proved the latter twice this past weekend at A2 in Anaheim, California, this past Saturday. We grabbed Cole for a quick chat today to get his thoughts on the weekend and to find out what the damage is.
It was mainly the first set (of whoops). You had such a long run into them that you almost had to find the right amount of speed. That was my thing. I’m a little bit timid, especially coming in that fast. I wasn’t really hitting them that hard, especially first practice. They were really really big and hadn’t really broken down yet. I was just trying to get through them. Literally, I just dumped the front end for a second and just went straight into the next whoop and went down.
The actual rhythms on the track, I thought were really good. It was just that first set of whoops. The second set were a little bit more mellow but they gave people trouble too.
I think [the whoops] were a standard 10-pack, it’s just I think they were a little bit more advanced and the run in…you’re usually coming into them from a corner where you don’t have as much momentum and here you had a lot of momentum going into them so were were hitting them at a faster speed. I think that was part of it too. You could easily hit them in 4th gear. They were big whoops to hit that fast.
The Week between Sand Diego and A2:
It was a good week; we went back a did starts. I stuck to my usual program and kept up with all my training. I went into the weekend just making sure I was 100%. We made some changes on the bike.
Practice and Qualifying:
The first practice was going really good until I hit the whoops and just – it could happen to anybody – just dropped the front end really quick and they were brand new, the 3rd practice out there. I think we were the first practice to really start skimming them, so they were still really fresh. It was really tacky and I just stuffed the front end and kind of flipped over, but when I flipped over I think I hit my chest really hard and knocked the wind out of myself. By the time I got my wind back, got checked out by the doctors, I went back for second practice and was still a little bit sore and beat up but not too bad.
I smashed my nose…I bleeding out my nose. I was coughing up some blood from the impact on my chest. (It was) just a mess, pretty much. I bit my cheek a bit. It was a little bit of a wake-up call on just how Supercross can sometimes come up and bite you. After that, I was in the medical unit for maybe 10-15 minutes and they were just checking everything. Everything was fine.
In second practice, I was still kind of learning the track. Going out for the final practice, I felt really good on the bike and everything was kind of flowing. I did my first two laps and was going to do another lap that was hard and clipped a Tuff block in the sand section and, for some reason, it shoved my front end out really quick and just shot me straight down into the ground. I hit my shoulder pretty good. I got back up right away and tried getting back on the bike and riding but it was bugging me a bit so I pulled off from practice and went back and healed up.
The night show came and I went over and got some assistance form the doctors at the Asterisk Medical Unit to put some tape on the shoulder. Right away, I think like three corners in, I was feeling the pain pretty good. It was just to the point where I couldn’t really control the bike and then I couldn’t really control the throttle. I figured it was a little more serious than just a sore shoulder so I decided to call it a night early. I only finished the first lap and I pulled off.
It was hard for me to pull off but, at that time, it was just getting kind of scary where I couldn’t exactly control myself enough and control the situation so I I figured it was better to be safe than sorry, for sure.
I had put myself in a good situation [Cole rounded the first corner in his heat in 4th or 5th place]. By the second set of whoops, I was having a tough time working the throttle because my whole arm was numb. I’ve ridden before with sore shoulders and hips and knees, but it’s a little different when something’s not working.
Coming off the finish line, I landed and knew I couldn’t go more than that…I was about to fall off the bike. It was a tough call to make.
The Main Event:
There was no main event for Cole this week.
Plan for the Week:
I’m still sore today. [Are you sore or injured?] I don’t know yet. There’s not much I can really tell you. I’ve had injuries before with my shoulder. It seems decent but it could just mean that I hit it a little bit harder than usual. I go see the doctor tomorrow (Tuesday) morning. He pretty much predicted everything that was wrong with my knee before I had the MRI. He’s a really smart doctor that deals with athletes. He can give me an idea of whether I need to go get an MRI or not. That’s the toughest past – not knowing what it is. If I need the MRI then I’ll go get one and if not I’ll just start doing rehab.
My whole body is still recovering from the aches and pains. [So, no idea about this weekend in Oakland, right?] No, no idea at the moment. I’ll go day by day and know more tomorrow. I can ride a bicycle so I can keep my fitness up but, as far as dirt bikes go, I won’t practice again until I’m 100%.
Qualifying – 22nd
Heat 1 – DNF
Main Event – DNS
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