News 28 Jun 2012

70’s Say: American Experience

CDR Yamaha’s Lawson Bopping writes about his recent trip to the US.

I’ve been in America pretty much since I wrote for MotoOnline last month and it was a really good trip for me. I left on the Wednesday after Murray Bridge and Craig Dack hooked me up with a Yamaha YZ450F, so I just had to pick that up and I was set.

I went over there with my girlfriend Rach and a buddy of mine, Andrew Wensing. He’s been over a couple of times before, so it was good to go with him because he sort of knew where everything was and has got a car over there.

We picked up my bike and I took over some parts like suspension, seat, gearing, pipe and stuff, so I just bolted that on when I got there. I pretty much rode as much as I could, the whole time I was over there – we rode quite a bit during the month!

Also while we were over there we went to Huntington Beach, checked out Vegas, which was pretty cool, but other than that we just rode and trained the whole time. The tracks are just so good in California, how they prep them and how they water them. I wish Australia could do it as good.

CDR Yamaha's Lawson Bopping has been in the US since Murray Bridge. Image: Rachael Flynn.

It was easy too, because you just go to the track, pay your 20 bucks, sign the paper and you’re on. You don’t need a licence or anything, so you pretty much just moto all day. A lot of the pros were out riding as well, so it was good to gauge myself around them.

They’re not as quick as I thought they would be, but of course they’re all really quick. I felt like I could run with a lot of them though. The surprising thing for me was the speed of the 250Fs over there, just because they were ridiculously fast.

I rode with guys like Jake Weimer, Josh Grant, Marvin Musquin, some of the Pro Circuit guys and stuff. Also, McCoy was there, Corey Lucas, and I also saw Mossy at a bunch of tracks. It was kind of like home, because I have ridden with those guys a lot over here as well, so that was cool.

It would be awesome if I was able to go over and race there for a year or something in the future, but I do know that it would be a lot different racing them compared to riding at the practice tracks. It was still cool though and I really want to get over there.

Bopping was impressed with the track preparation during his stay in California. Image: Rachael Flynn.

Everything is just so much easier when you go to do motos, the tracks make it so much more fun than over here. I’ve been back home now for a week and it’s been kind of slippery, sketchy. My place has been pretty sweet, but it is a lot more fun there.

I think it should be pretty good this weekend when we race at Hervey Bay and I feel confident that I can transfer a few things that I picked up over there. If I had stayed here the whole time, the weather’s been so bad, so that was definitely an advantage.

By the end of my time over there I was definitely faster on those tracks, but the ones over here are different and I know you have to ride different. It’s definitely been beneficial though, just the intensity that you ride at there with those guys. It was summer there too, so that helped with my training.

I’m glad I went over, it was a pretty big eye opener and I loved it. I really need to thank Dacka for letting me go and hooking me up with a bike, he helped me out a lot so a massive thanks to him. Hopefully this weekend goes to plan and it all pays off!