News 9 Oct 2012

70's Say: MXoN 2012 rundown

CDR Yamaha's Lawson Bopping reflects upon his weekend at Lommel last month.

We flew over to Europe and got there the Tuesday before the Motocross of Nations and just chilled out that day, since we were a bit tired from the flight and everything.

On Wednesday we went to a practice track, we got our bikes and stuff sorted out and rode there. It was good, deep sand, so it was sort of good to get used to it a bit. Everything was sweet and all of our bikes were good right away.

We had the next couple of days off and then we went out to Lommel on Friday, just to just set up there and get the bikes noise tested and do all that, so that was cool.

That was a really cool day actually because I was with Dacka and he knew a lot of the big names. I met Mitch Payton, Eric Kehoe, Jamie Dobb and heaps of other guys. All the guys at Dunlop, and all the guys off the team that were over there, which was cool.

The next day, Saturday, that was just a practice and a qualifier. So we had 40-minute practice and that went pretty good. We were out for the first practice so it was pretty smooth, but it was good.

The track was different, I don’t know if it was not as deep as I thought because it rained a lot during the week, that might have made it a little harder. But then they ripped it and it just got super rutty and it’s just different sand over there. It’s hard to say if it’s anything like over here. That went pretty good, practice was alright.

The qualifying race was pretty bad for me, I didn’t really ride very well and just getting the bike setup for it was a bit difficult. Just because the bumps were like nothing I’ve ever ridden, they were just real close together and really steep.

Bopping (7) amongst the world's best in the MX1 qualifying race in Belgium.

So I didn’t feel really good in that race, but it was alright and we got through. I think we qualified around 10th maybe, we all went pretty good, Styke went good in the Lites and Todd rode really good too.

On Sunday we had another warm-up before our motos and the track was really rough then, they didn’t really prep it at all. I was just coming in and out, in and out, trying to get my shock setting a bit better. I wasn’t really that comfortable all the way up until the first race, the MX1 and MX2 first moto.

That race was good, I felt really good, the bike felt good. I started off alright, even though I had a bad gate pick. We had gate 10 and 30, so I was outside all day. So I got pretty lousy starts, but I came through and I was feeling good in that race.

I battled with a lot of good Lites riders, I passed Baggett and Musquin actually he went down right in front of me. So I think I got up to maybe 13th or something and then I got sketchy in a section and ran off into that green fencing that they run around the side of GP tracks. I was stuck in that stuff for a little bit and all those guys that I was battling with got back around me.

So that was hard, and as soon as you loose your rhythm in that sand it’s just so hard to get back into it. I got back through and finished 21st. It was good because I felt better on the bike, but just that one mistake cost me a fair few positions.

The last moto was MX1 and MX3, I was racing Todd and had gate 30 again. Started off alright, and then pretty much just didn’t have much left in me, I was sort of just riding around and I was pretty out of rhythm. It’s just so hard, you get out of that rhythm and it hard to try and push properly.

It was all good though, I stayed on in that race so we got points. Todd rode really good, he had a couple of crashes in that one but he was up there and he still beat me.

Lommel is one of the toughest sand tracks on the planet.

So we ended up 10th overall and it was great, but it was tough that’s for sure, a really tough track. It’s hard because all of those guys just made us look like C graders really – they just grew up in it and have the technique for it. They’re just so quick in it.

It was good, we got out of it pretty good, there wasn’t too many big mistakes. 10th overall, everyone’s saying it’s good, but we’re all a little bit disappointed. It’s hard to be happy with a race when you’re being lapped every moto by Cairoli and that.

It was a good experience though and I’d definitely like to go back again. It’d be good to ride on more of a normal track, just to see where you’re at, because it was kind of hard to tell, just because of the speed difference in the sand, but all good.

We got back Monday morning, we went from Amsterdam to Singapore to Sydney. So I think we lost a day and got back here on the Tuesday night. It was alright, a long flight and I was pretty jet-lagged when I got back. I just chilled out for a day and I’ve ridden a few times this week, just riding supercross.

It’s been good just to ride some hard-pack, since I’ve been riding sand flat out for the last couple of weeks. Everything has been going good, we did a little bit of supercross testing before I went over, so that was good doing just a couple of days.

The bike’s feeling good at the moment, I’m a week out until the first round and I’m heading up to Sydney for the week with my CDR Yamaha teammate Daniel McCoy. I’ll be staying at his place and we’re just going to do a little bit more testing and run the race bikes in up there, then we’ll head off to Dubbo.

So far it’s been going good, feels a bit different than most years. Obviously because I kept riding motocross, and it wasn’t as long of a break from motocross in between the supercross. But I’m excited for it for sure, hopefully the tracks are good and hopefully we’ll have some good racing.