Catching Up With...Jared Allison
Interview by Billy Rainford
Photos by James Lissimore
Catching Up With...Jared Allison
The Allisons must be the busiest family of motocross racers on the Canadian circuit. Jared and Parker are identical twins, and younger brother, Bryton, is about to join them full-time as a pro in the MX2 series this summer. We caught up with the engineering student between classes to find out how the recent Lethbridge arenacross went and to find out how his preparations are coming for his return to the 'little bike' class this year.
DMX: Hey, Jared. How are you and what are you up to?
Jared Allison: Hey, I’m good. I’m at the university (of Calgary) on lunch break right now.
What are you taking?
I’m in my second year of mechanical engineering.
Excellent. What’s the long-term plan with that?
Probably, finish off my degree and maybe minor in petroleum engineering so I’ll have both of them. Who knows where that’ll take me.
Somewhere making the big oil money, is that what you’re thinking?
Ya, probably the big oil money. I don’t think I can get anywhere in dirt biking!
Ok, so you just finished racing at the arenacross in Lethbridge, Alberta last weekend. Tell us how that went for you.
They haven’t had that race in a couple years so we decided to go down to it. I haven’t been to it since we were on 80s in 2004. A lot of fast guys showed up for it. George DeGraff, a few guys from Manitoba including Josh Penner, Ryan Abrigo from Washington, Kevin Urquhart even came up on a KTM, Maffenbeier was there, and Parker and I. There was some pretty good racing. It was pretty rough. They had a pro riders meeting and the ref pretty much said to leave everything on the track. “As long as that’s cool with you guys, do whatever you want on the track.” That just sparked everything!
I think the best race was the Saturday MX2 main event. It was off the wall! I ended up with a 3rd and a 4th on Friday. On Saturday I was leading and then in the second-last corner, Kevin Urquhart hit me. I tried to do the next double, landed sideways, and flipped over the bars. I went from 1st to last in the second-last corner. In the second moto, I think I was in 2nd place behind Kevin and DeGraff took me off the track. It was a lot of fun. We all had a lot of fun. We were all laughing when we got off the track. It was all in good fun. I don’t’ think there are any arguments going on. We were all pretty good about it. I think we all enjoyed it. It was a nice break from the winter. A lot of us hadn’t ridden all winter and we got a lot of practice time on the track. It was +10 degrees so we were all pitted outside. It was awesome.
Did Parker and Bryton also race?
Ya, Bryton raced his first pro race. I think he went 8-8. Parker was consistently in the top five. On Friday, Abrigo swept all four motos.
Did they do a ‘Dash for Cash’ race?
No, they had a whip contest. Josh Penner killed that. They also had a Big Dawg race. Dustin Hayes showed up for that one. Everyone races a 50 for three or four laps in the Big Dawg race. Frankie Berry won it. He used to race pro in Alberta. He did a few nationals. He just showed up out of nowhere.
What are your winter plans to get ready for next summer?
All three of us ordered Yamaha 250s and we should be getting them pretty quickly. There’s no snow here in Calgary and the weather is supposed to hold like this. We were riding in Calgary last Sunday. I don’t think we’re even going to bother going anywhere to ride. I think we’ll be able to ride here pretty early in the season.
Let’s talk about your decision to drop back down to the MX2 class. How did that decision come up?
When we went to 450s last year, I don’t think me and Parker are built for them. We’re pretty small. We’re only 145-150 pounds! There’s Dusty Klatt who has a good three sacks of potatoes on me and Parker! You can’t expect to compete with those guys. I don’t think my whole season on the 450 was wasted. I’m happy with how I did there and I feel like it’s made me ride a 250F a lot better. I can throw it around way more and use all the power in it.
You realize that having three riders on the line at once is going to kill your mom?!
Ya, we haven’t really figured that one out yet. So far we just have my dad as a mechanic. It’s just tough to have a mechanic to go to all the rounds. My dad will be coming but maybe not to all the rounds. He may be skipping Nanaimo and Moncton, so we’re sort of looking for a mechanic right now. It’ll be pretty stressful. Yamaha has a lot of 250 guys out there this year so that’s going to be good.
What is your program? Same sponsors as last year?
Yep, the exact same sponsors. Yamalube and Yamaha Canada, Troy Lee Designs, and Blackfootdirect.com.
You guys finished 11th and 13th. There’s a number between you guys this year. Is that going to freak you out?
No, we’re all good with that.
Where do you think you can finish in MX2 next year?
I’m going for top three in the series, for sure! We just have to stay consistent all year. We’re working hard. We’re already in the gym. I think if we work really hard and focus, we can do it. This year, me and Parker are coming in with a lot of motivation.
What’s your long-term plan for racing?
We’re just taking it year by year. I don’t want to stop racing the nationals—I love it! It’s the most fun ever. You get to go out all summer and hang out with the guys during the week and do what you love on the weekend.
What’s your favourite track on the circuit?
It’s now Edmonton, for sure. I love Edmonton! It’s exactly like my track at home—just wide open, black soil, and big ruts. I don’t like Morden. The only reason is that every second year it’s a mud race. You can do good in a mud race, but you can throw your whole season away in a mud race too. I didn’t like Morden, for that reason.
What are your thoughts on intermediates on 250 2-strokes being in with the MX2 class?
I don’t think I’d ride one. I don’t know what to think about that new rule.
Tell us something that separates you and Parker.
I’m not sure. We go to the gym together. When we’re riding, we’re always riding together. This is a tough question. Every night we sit at the supper table and that’s all we talk about is moto. We share ideas about it. We both want to do well and I don’t know what’s going to separate us this year. When we go to the gym we do the exact same things. We mark each other on the track and just go back and forth. It gets pretty intense and our learning curve is growing at the same rate.
How about just in your personal lives? Do you both like all the same things?
Parker is a big science geek! I always have to learn about his biology and his chemistry stuff and it gets pretty boring. I think he’s a little bit more of a nerd than I am. He might say the same with me.
Ok, great. He’s going to love that. Thanks for doing this and who would you like to thank?
No problem. Thanks for the call. Yamalube. Yamaha Canada, Blackfootdirect.com, Troy Lee Designs is helping me out big time with gear this year, SSS Suspension, CTi, Lime Nine, Gaerne Boots, and my parent for helping me out with everything. Now that I’m in school, I need their help a lot more.