Post Ironman MX Chat with #223 Dylan Wright
By Billy Rainford
Richmond, Ontario’s Dylan Wright just finished 2nd in the 2017 Rockstar Energy MX Nationals in the MX2 class. Instead of taking time off, he decided to head south and try his luck against some of the best riders in the world at the final two rounds of Lucas Oil Pro Motocross.
He raced Budds Creek last week and finished 13-13 for 14th overall. This week, the series headed to Crawfordsville, ID and the Ironman MX track. Dylan raced here last year and knew what to expect but in racing anything can and usually will happen.
We grabbed Dylan for a chat at the end of the day back in the pits to get his thoughts on the day.
Direct Motocross: We’re here at the final round of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship at Ironman MX and we’ve got Dylan Wright here who came down to do the race and did it the hard way – 20-18 for 19th overall. Dylan, let’s start off with the beginning of the day, you’ve raced here before, but what were your thoughts coming into this?
Dylan Wright: Ya, I came down to race last year and had a rough moto the first one and then had a decent moto the second one, so the track is pretty good. I mean, they obviously water the crap out of it and make it super deep so the ruts were pretty gnarly for practice and for qualifying. I didn’t feel too too comfortable but kind of found my groove int he first moto and really enjoyed the track. It’s got some big jumps, that’s for sure, and it flows really good and I had a lot of fun.
A lot of riders think about that big uphill triple. It was pretty wet and soupy in the first practice. Can you take us through your practice and qualifying?
Ya, like we said, there are a couple big ones here and that uphill triple is one of the bigger ones. It was a little soft in practice and I kind of went for it, came up a little short, blew my hands off the bars, and was kind of riding with my chest on the bars for 10-15 feet until I could get my hands back on, but it was what it was and then went for it a couple more times in qualifying but came up a little short, too, so I kind of saved it for the motos where they groomed the bottom of it a little bit. It dried out and we were able to hit it most of the laps throughout the two motos. It turned out pretty good.
OK, let’s talk about the actual motos. I know, going into moto 1, you wanted that spot next to the box in the middle and you got it, just on the outside. You got a good jump and looked pretty good, but then things didn’t go well in the first turn.
Ya, I actually got kind of where i wanted to be off the start, it’s kind of where I lined up last year. I got a decent gate pick and I was probably running 7-10th around the first turn, I kind of tucked to the inside. I was in the pile up in the second turn with a few other riders that went down and I had to just put my head down and try to charge as hard as I could back to the front.
I think I was passing for like 18th or something after going down off the start and then a rider clipped my front wheel so I ended up going down again. It was just a little unfortunate incident but you take the good from the bad from the moto and I feel like my riding was really good today, it’s just the results don’t show it.
You passed some of the same guys 2 and 3 times, after going down and getting back up! Did you stay positive because I know sometimes it would be easier to just give up.
Ya, exactly. It’s kind of that…I’ve got a big heart and I lay it all on the line when I go out on the track, so for sure I’m never going to give up. It’s racing and stuff happens. I had an unfortunate incident off the start and I collided with another rider. One thing that I never do is give up, so I proved that today and just charged all the way to the checkered flag, both motos.
Did you look over your shoulder and see #335 Joey Crown? You guys both had troubles and you both had to come through the pack, both motos.
Ya, he had his own problems today, too, and we kind of got together a little bit out there. I’ve raced him a couple times, here and there, so it’s kind of a familiar face out there because I don’t know toom any of the other guys. It was all right and we kind of worked our way through the pack a little bit in the first moto. I think I was able to pass him both motos and then check out a little bit, but it was good racing with him and all these other guys here.
Let’s move on to the second moto. I went down to the start and there you were second from the outside. What happened there?
Ya, we had some bike stuff to get fixed between the two motos and we came up a little short for staging. My mechanic, Kyle (Ward), and my girlfriend’s dad (Steve Gervais) they did everything they could. We have a lot less time here between the two motos than we do in Canada, so we ended up coming up 30 seconds short for staging and they gave me last gate pick. It was kind of shitty, but it is what it is, I guess, and it’s part of racing, so I had to line up second gate from the outside. I think I took out a couple pickets going up the start straight because I was so far outside.
Again, you had a great jump from way out there and then you tried the classic squeeze through the inside but that guy just took you right off the track, basically, and then we were waiting for you to come around the first turn and it took you a little while.
Ya, from the outside I got a really good jump. I wasn’t doing too too bad around the first corner and was probably about mid-pack maybe 15th or so, so I was actually kind of pumped with my start form way out there and then some guy came right across the track going over that first little tunnel thing and cleaned my front wheel out as we went up the face of it which was kind of crappy.
I went down and then I picked my bike up and the throttle was stuck a bit so it shot out from under me again. By the time I got up and got dusted off I was probably like 30 seconds behind second-last place and I was like, “Oh, here we go again!”
I just had to put my head down and charge all the way to the finish and we ended up 18th. My speed was there, I think I was running top 10 lap times, so our speed it there, we just needed better luck today, but it’s racing and stuff happens. I’ll chalk it up to experience and move on to the next one.
You went from dead last and the announcers were talking about you quite a bit, saying things like, “Wright has now dispatched with over half of the field!” Could you hear them saying your name and number at all?
No, I didn’t really hear too much going on out there, our bikes are loud so I didn’t really hear it. The only thing I did here out there with the big speakers was coming by the mechanics’ area, we get pretty close to them, I heard “5 minutes plus two laps.” That’s all I heard all day.
Well, it’s really cool that you made the effort to line up. You went 13-13 last week at Budds Creek for 13th overall. What’s next for you?
Honestly, I’m not too sure. I have a little down time these next couple weeks and then I don’t know. Maybe try to hit some more races this fall, I guess, and keep on the bike and do some riding back home in Ontario.
Wait, are you doing that Gopher Dunes Enduro sprint race?
Ya, Diggs (Derek Schuster) signed us all up for it this weekend so we’ve got to go race that spring enduro. I don’t even know what it is! It should be fun. Colton (Facciotti) is going to race it, my mechanic Kyle is going to race it, Justin (Petker) is going to race it…I think the whole staff fro Gopher Dunes is going to race it, so it should be pretty fun. It’s my first race in the bush, so we’ll see (Laughs).
Well, thank for chatting with us here in Indiana today. Who would you like to thank?
Honestly, I can’t thank my mechanic, Kyle, enough for making it out here this weekend. He did a great job and a great job all year, so I can’t thank him enough for coming out and doing this extra race with me. It’s always fun having a familiar face in the mechanics’ area when I’m coming by, and my girlfriend’s family for lending me their motorhome and trailer and stuff to pit out of. We’ve got a great set up, super comfy, so it’s good. My parents for coming out and supporting me. You know, the whole team for getting behind me and supporting me for these two nationals. I mean, they don’t technically have to do it and it’s nice of them to put some money into it. I mean, it’s not cheap for us to be able to come out here with the race bikes and stuff so it’s super nice of them to let me come down here, everybody from Derek Schuster, Colton fo all his tips and his help last weekend and even today when I was on the phone with him.
Just our whole team: Honda Canada, GDR, Fox Racing, Yoshimura, SSS Suspension, the Humberview Group, Proven Motors, Renthal, just everybody who’s got our back, it’s been a long season and it’s good to end it off with a couple of these US Nationals so I can’t thank everybody who’s got our back enough.
Well, thanks for the chat. Have a safe drive home and we’ll see you soon.
Ya, thank you very much, and thanks for coming out and supporting me and hanging out today.