Features 27 Jun 2023

Debrief: 2023 ProMX Rd6 Toowoomba

Overall winners Ferris and Crawford recall sixth round in Queensland.

Following a tough weekend last time out, Brisbane Motorcycles Yamaha’s Dean Ferris bounced back in round six of the 2023 Penrite ProMX Championship at Toowoomba to deliver a dominant 1-1 scorecard for the overall, reclaiming the MX1 red plate in the process. In MX2, it was KTM Racing Team’s Nathan Crawford who took home his second overall win of the season with 1-2 results across the pair of motos. MotoOnline caught up with both riders after the races for this Debrief feature.


Image: Foremost Media.

Dean, the win for you today, what a way to bounce back from Gillman.

Yeah, Gillman was a shocker. I got ninth overall, my worst day ever without actually getting carted off in an ambulance. So, got no one to blame but myself, I just sucked there and I didn’t deliver. We had a bit of a break, went home, made sure I was going to come here with no excuses and made sure I was going to be on pace.

What was it that you worked on in the break to come here and be dominant today?

It’s not like I went home and turned everything upside down. I just had to look deep inside myself, just ask myself some questions that I wouldn’t normally. So, I did that, improved the bike as well, but mostly myself. I was at Gillman and I was like, ‘this sucks and that sucks,’ and I was just being a cranky old man, but I was like you know what, that’s not me, I’m going to go to Toowoomba, put a smile on my face. I don’t care how things are or what the conditions are, I’m just going to run with it, own it and do the best I can. I showed up today and I did that.

When you have a result like Gillman, do you ever go back and question returning to racing? Or is that something you would’ve done in the past?

Maybe 10 years ago, when you’re really on struggle street. Like, there were times in Europe where I was like, ‘far out, I don’t know if I want to be doing this,’ but nah man, all of this year has been so fun. Only Gillman wasn’t a good day, it was a shocker. But, apart from that, I’ve been having a lot of fun and it was never a question like of course I was going to keep doing it. But, just being part of this little crew that I’ve put together and riding the Yamaha, I’m just loving it. So no, it was more just like, ‘hey man, am I the guy that makes excuses, or am I the guy rocks up and just makes it happen no matter what?’ That was the question that I had to ask myself.

Long-term for you, are you going to go again next year? If I was to say to you, ‘Dean, in five years’ time, what are we going to be talking about? And what are those five years going to look like?’ What’s the answer?

Well, if you asked me that five years ago, I would’ve told you I’m definitely not racing in five years. But, here we are. At his point, I’m enjoying it so much, for sure I’m going to go again. I think things will be even tidier next year, year two on this bike. I’ll probably change my program a little bit. But, for the most, keep it the same. I really like how I’m doing it all. So, I’m going to keep going and then after that, it’ll be year by year. So, this time next year ask me the same question. You might get a different answer, you might get the same answer.

Looking at the CDR truck today. There are a few of your championship bikes over there. Is it surreal seeing that with Yamaha and now being potentially on your way to doing it again?

No, it’s definitely always been the goal of mine. It’s a good reminder of what I’ve done when you look over there and see the bikes. But, no that’s been what I’m after.

We’ve got six or seven weeks off now. What does that look like for you?

It’s school holidays now, so we’re going to hang out and have fun for a couple of weeks. Of course, I’ll keep doing a little bit of riding, but it’s not like I’m doing last week prep going into a national. I will have a bit of fun, we’ll go camping and do stuff like that. I’ll try to look for some events to do, we get such a big break man. I don’t want to be a professional practice rider, [laughs]. I want to be a pro racer. So, I hear Connondale has a cool event coming up, then maybe Coolum will have a race, that’ll fill in two of the six-week break. Hopefully, that’s enough.


Image: Foremost Media.

Nathan, congratulations on the win. Tell us about your day.

Yeah, I’m stoked! Firstly, I was just feeling really good about being in Queensland. I love Toowoomba as a club and a track. So, just rolling in here yesterday I just felt really comfortable. I rolled that over into today, we had a near-perfect weekend, I topped free practice, topped qualifying, won the first moto and got second in moto two which gave me the overall. So, I can’t ask for much more, we sort of made up points. But, Wilson [Todd] is being consistent, so it’s hard. I was a little disappointed there at the end, but I shouldn’t be because I won. I’m trying to make up points, but it’s not that easy.

Championship-wise he’s got a bit of a points gap, what’s your plan for heading into the last two rounds of the season?

I can’t do anything more than just win and then just let the rest play out. It’s not always as easy as winning every race. But, just trying to minimise the mistakes and manage a whole lot of things and just try win and see what happens. At the end of the day, the team and I are in a great spot, I’m happy with the season and how it’s gone so far. We’ll just have to see what happens.

We’ve got quite a gap now until QMP. What does this break look like for you? Do you make a start on some supercross?

I don’t know. Supercross probably won’t start just yet, because we have quite a long break after Coolum. I’m just going to be cruising a little bit, we’ve got quite a bit of time. I’ll still keep the instruments sharp, but I’m just going to cruise a little bit, I can’t just go and beat myself for seven or so weeks. So, we’ve still got to manage the rest of the season, cause we’re nearly at the end of motocross, but we’re only halfway through the year.