INTERNATIONAL RIDERS GROUP INTERVIEW: Part 2
11 June 2012
by MX SA
MXSA: Where do you now call 'home'? (ie:
Where are you currently staying)
Michael Docherty: South Africa
will always be my home, but I'm currently living in the U.S.A in
Greensboro, North Carolina.
Kerim Fitz-Gerald: I am
currently in Murrieta California but home is Johannesburg SA. Proudly
Brandon Hinton: Home for
me will always be SA, but i am currently staying at my sponsors
house in Hesperia, California and absolutely loving it. Its a riders
haven, with endless amounts of trail riding up in the mountains
all right from home, and over 10 mx tracks within an hours drive,
closest being Comp Edge only 5min away.
Shannon Terreblanche: South
Africa will always be home for me, but at the moment i live in The
Damon Strydom: I currently
live in the UK in a town called Rugby in Warwickshire in the Midlands
, so fairly central for all the racing.
Matthew Beers: I'm currently
staying at MTF (millsaps training facility) in Cairo Georgia.
David Goosen: Fareham, Hampshire
Calvin Vlaanderen: I am currently
living at Bodo Schmidt Motorsport in Schmelz, Germany. I have settled
in nicely and this is where I now call home.
MXSA: What is your current 'home' track?
Michael Docherty: Well there's
a bunch of tracks close by, but the one we @ most is a Private track
on someone's property, we call it (Liberty) coz that's the name
of the town it's in.
Kerim Fitz-Gerald: I have
a few tracks that I ride during the week with Gareth, Competitive
edge,Pala,Lake Elsinore,Glen Helen there allot of tracks here.
Brandon Hinton: Being an
off-road rider we switch up between MX and off-road riding regularly.
Comp Edge could be considered my home MX track due to how close
it is. But when we do our off-road training we have a place called
Honda Valley thats been around for years and is known for being
some of the roughest riding around. We have a couple tracks in the
valley that are just huge waist deep sand rollers that are around
7min lap times. Then when we do EnduroCross training we have a track
at our house, or we'd go down to Glen Helen's EX track to mix things
up a bit. So its hard to pick a specific "Home Track"
when we have so much variety to chose from on any given day.
Shannon Terreblanche: Veldhoven
is my home track, but the area where i live has around 20 tracks
within 30km. A well known track that is almost a home track to me
is Lommel in Belgium , where the MXON will be this year, its about
20min from me.
Damon Strydom: Milton Malsor
is the closest track , where I raced the Maxxis British Championship
this past weekend , but unfortunately we cant practice there. We
have a practice track Moto 45 just 10 min from our house where we
go and several others scattered around the area.
Matthew Beers: The home track
i guess is the MTF track.
David Goosen: Langrish
Calvin Vlaanderen: I would
say my current home track is Hoxberg, its about 5km's from where
I live. Its a nice track, lots of jumps but not very long.
MXSA: What series or championships are
you competing in?
Michael Docherty: I'm not
competing in anything right now because I'm injured with a Dislocated
shoulder, but when I'm healthy again I'm going try some AMA Pro
Kerim Fitz-Gerald: The SA
national championship and the AMA Motocross National championship.
Brandon Hinton: Im currently
competing in the WORCS (World Off-Road Championship), EnduroCross
and local MX races, and one or two Outdoor Nationals. Adapting to
all of these different kinds of racing styles is hard, but im working
on improving my overall riding skill and aiming to be a good all-round
rider and am great-full to have this amazing opportunity.
Shannon Terreblanche: For
this season, i just ride in a few strong National championships.
ADAC Mx Masters in Germany, Open Nederlands Kampioenschap in Holland
and then some international races in belgium, as well as supercross
races in the winter.
Damon Strydom: British Supercross
series which is done until November 2012 where I finished 7th overall
in the Pro MX2 class , the Maxxis British Championship , the British
Masters Championship where I am currently lying 4th overall in MX2
Pro , and I am a reserve for the Red Bull Pro Nationals due to the
class of 250 and 450 combined makes it quite difficult to get an
Matthew Beers: There's not
really a series that goes on through out the year. We do these championships
that are a week long all over the country for example Oakhill national,
Millcreek spring classic, World minis in Las Vagas, MiniO's and
the biggest race of them all is Lorreta Lynns. It's the most protégés
amateur national in the world if u win there you are the best!!!
David Goosen: Maxxis British
Championship and Red Bull Pro Nationals.
Calvin Vlaanderen: I am competing
in 3 championships at the moment. The main championship is the European
125 championship, also known as the EMX125, this championship is
on the same day as the MX2 and MX1 world championship, which is
really nice for me because I can learn a lot watching some of the
best riders in the world. The second championship Im doing is called
the ADAC Masters, its a German championship. The ADAC does not have
a 125 class so I compete in the Youngster Cup, but it is really
difficult because most riders are on 250's. I was racing a championship
called the ONK championship, being the Dutch championship, but the
team I am staying with does not do the ONK's and I have missed 3
rounds already. Pity as I was doing really well there!
MXSA: What bike/s are you riding?
Michael Docherty: Kawasaki
250f and 450f
Kerim Fitz-Gerald: KTM 250
Brandon Hinton: I'm currently
riding a YZ250F, but hoping to move onto the 450 for WORCS and MX
Shannon Terreblanche: KTM
Damon Strydom: Currently
I am on a Kawasaki KX 250F.
Matthew Beers: I ride a 2012
David Goosen: Kawasaki KX250F
Calvin Vlaanderen: I am riding
a KTM SX 125cc.
MXSA: Who are your current sponsors?
Michael Docherty: G2-Trading,
Paintmax, Thor, Parts Unlimited, Total Control Suspension.
Kerim Fitz-Gerald: Red Bull,
KTM, Oakley, Thor, Motorex, KTM_Powerwear, Pirelli, KD Tube.
Brandon Hinton: I ride for
ZipTy Racing. He's been a huge help in mentoring me and getting
me onto a championship winning program and cant thank him enough
for the opportunity he's given me. My personal sponsors are VonZipper
USA, Wethered Clothing, DirtPunk MX but my biggest sponsor still
being my dad, and so without him non of this would even be possible.
Shannon Terreblanche: In
the Netherlands i ride for KTM NL and they support my team ( Mx
dreamteam), and then in Germany i ride for KTM Kosak, which is a
really big Dealer in Germany.
Damon Strydom: My current
sponsors are the guys we have been with since I started racing in
the UK , REVO Technik , GET and Athena , Mark and James and the
whole REVO family are amazing to me and are behind me 100% ,my mechanic
Sam is amazing and I have taught him some South African lol , and
a big thanks to Ryan Frerichs at Racestrong Performance Solutions
back home for supporting my fitness program , and I have just acquired
a clothing sponsor Getting Dirty for all my casual wear , and my
dad for making me lekker braais in summer to give me energy to race
and a roof over my head.
Matthew Beers: My biggest
sponsor is mom and dad of course!! Smith goggles, Fly racing
David Goosen: Maxxis LPE
Calvin Vlaanderen: I am riding
for Bodo Schmidt Motorsport KTM Racing team. Scott has been a huge
help this year and I have signed a contract with them for next year
already. Wayne and Matthew King, HGS Exhausts and VHM also sponsor
me and the team has a lot of sponsors including Twin Air, Michelin
Tyres, Rock Oil, Dekra, NGK.
MXSA: What BIG name riders live near you,
Michael Docherty: Broc tickle
is from North Carolina and Jacob Hayes lives about 2 miles from
Kerim Fitz-Gerald: There
so many, Bagget, Wiemer, Wilson, Gareth, Tyla, Broc Tickle and so
Brandon Hinton: Ty Davis
is one of the most winningest riders in the history of our sport
and has won in every form of dirt bike racing possible (including
Supercross, Motocross, WORCS, Hare & Hound, National Enduro
and Baja), so living with him defiantly takes the cake. Another
current Pro living at Ty's is my team-mate, Gary Sutherlin. He has
been my mentor and taught me a lot of secrets in making it pro and
so he is another major influence on my racing.
Shannon Terreblanche: Well
almost all the GP riders are around this area, I used to live in
Balen, Belgium, and around Balen and Lommel all the GP riders live
during the season.
Damon Strydom: Well Rob Herring
is not too far from where we live , and Nev Bradshaw is down the
road in Northampton about 20 miles from us , and I'm good mates
with Gordon Crockard and his Manager Steve Dagger , and pretty much
see all the big names when I go out in the week practicing , Nicholas
Aubin , Mattiss Karro , Martin Barr , Elliot Banks Brown and now
and then I see Tommy Searle when he is not away for the GPs , and
I talk to Dave Thorpe quite allot , he is really an awesome guy.
Matthew Beers: We have Justin
Barcia, Kyle Peters, Gavin Faith, Martin Davalos, Davi Millsaps.
David Goosen: All the top
British riders....Zac Osborne and Arnaud Tonus are just around the
Calvin Vlaanderen: My teammate
Romain Febvre is living with me at the moment, he is the European
MX2 champion from last year. He rides in the MX2 world championship
MXSA: What do you like about MX in your
Michael Docherty: It's much
bigger than SA, more variety of tracks and competition.
Kerim Fitz-Gerald: It's
very professional and popular but at the end of the day I just love
being on my bike.
Brandon Hinton: The thing
i love most about the WORCS series is the format its run in. The
racing is intense, fast paced, exciting and spectator friendly.
It's taking me a while to get used to the intensity as you sprint
at a motorcross pace for an hour and a half on the most demanding
tracks you'll ever come across in your life. But thats what is so
fun about it!
With the Endurocross i love how spectator friendly it is, and is
awesome to see enduro come into the spotlight and attract the same
amount of crowds as supercross races do. It's easy to see that EX
is the future of our sport and is defiantly where all the money
and sponsorship's are going.
Shannon Terreblanche: I like
how big motocross is, and almost every person on the street knows
what mx is.
There are so many races to choose from each weekend, for example
in Belgium alone (Which is a very small country) you can choose
from maybe 10 different federations, and in each class there will
be full gates.
Damon Strydom: It is extremely
professional with all the big teams and setups here and always a
full gate of riders and spectators are awesome here , I have never
signed so many autographs and the fans love it.
Matthew Beers: The best thing
about motocross here in America is that it is so big and serious
there are so many good riders and tracks its impossible to not be
good riding with such good riders and the track are just out of
David Goosen: The competition
is a lot stronger and a lot more variety of races and venues and
Calvin Vlaanderen: Motocross
is so much bigger here, I really like that there are lots of fans
and spectators at the races.
MXSA: What DON'T you like about MX where
Michael Docherty: The only
thing I can think of is the heat & humidity. It's so hard to
breath when you ride.
Kerim Fitz-Gerald: Not much,it's
pretty good here.
Brandon Hinton: There's not
much that i could possibly complain about, everything is run so
well over here. The biggest negative about racing here would be
the economy. The bike industry is defiantly feeling it here, making
it almost impossible to find sponsors and receive any support and
from what i hear, numbers at races are dropping too. But that isn't
anyone's fault and unfortunately it's just how life goes, and all
we can do is hope for it to improve again to the level it was only
a few years ago.
Shannon Terreblanche: I don't
like all the rules and how strict the countries are, for example
on Mondays all the tracks are closed. In Holland the tracks are
open on Wednedays and the weekends, so if you want to go riding
on the other days you have to go to Belgium to train. Also the tracks
only open at 1, but that's not such a big problem.
Damon Strydom: The weather
is very unpredictable.
Matthew Beers: They are so
David Goosen: Practice fees
are expensive, group sessions give limited riding time.
Calvin Vlaanderen: Sometimes
when we go training at a track there are many beginners riding,
which is dangerous when we are jumping big jumps and don't know
if they've crashed on the other side or have stopped on the jump.
MXSA: What do you miss about SA?
Michael Docherty: My family
Kerim Fitz-Gerald: Haha
everything, family, friends, girlfriend and biltong!
Brandon Hinton: I defiantly
miss my family and having them all at the races each weekend helping
and supporting me. It's pretty tough being 19 and living on the
other side of the world to all your friends and family and has been
a huge learning curve for me. Ive always had someone to go to when
i need help or advice, but being here all on my own has forced me
to learn how to be independent and what it takes in order to be
successful. Other small things that i miss are having braai's, going
to the bush, biltong, all the South African culture pretty much...
But sacrificing those things in order to be successful and doing
what i love is all worth it and i'd do it in a heartbeat.
Shannon Terreblanche: Everything,
haha. I just miss SA as a country, i have been almost everywhere
already in my 8 years in Europe and 4 years riding Grand Prixs,
except the states which I'm sure is a lot like SA and really nice,
but everything else has nothing on home to me.
Damon Strydom: The Weather
lol and family that are in SA and my mates.
Matthew Beers: I miss all
my friends and family its pretty tough sometimes but they support
David Goosen: Friends, easy
way of life and all round good weather.
Calvin Vlaanderen: I miss
my family the most, but thats obvious. I miss Cape Town as a whole.
I really miss surfing, and I miss the beach.
MXSA: Why did you leave SA?
Michael Docherty: It's always
been my dream to race in America and make a name for myself.
Kerim Fitz-Gerald: That's
a hard question and ask myself that every time I leave home but
I guess I'm living my dream racing my bike and want to make the
most of it.
Brandon Hinton: My entire
life i've always wanted to go and race in America, i'd live on the
internet following every race, watching every MX DVD 100 times over,
it was the only thing on my mind. And then after finishing school
last year my dad gave me the opportunity to go over for 2 months
to train and gain as much experience as possible before coming back
and racing the rest of the year in SA. But i was lucky enough to
meet the right people that saw my passion and desire to race in
the US and gave me the opportunity to live and race for their team.
I've been extremely lucky with that and i often have to pinch myself
to remind me im not dreaming and that this actually is my life.
Shannon Terreblanche: Well
i wanted to follow my dreams with Motocross.
Damon Strydom: To race overseas
and further my career.
Matthew Beers: I left SA
to try make a career out of motocross.
David Goosen: Emigrated as
a family, to further my career.
Calvin Vlaanderen: I left
SA because I want to do motocross as a career and I found in SA
that I wasn't really getting anywhere with my career and what I
want to do in life.
MXSA: What are your goals for 2012?
Michael Docherty: Well, my
goals where to qualify for Lorretta Lynns and do the last couple
AMA outdoors, but unfortunately the first week I was here I crashed
and dislocated my shoulder, so I won't be able to do Lorrettas.
I should be healed to do the last AMA outdoors.
Kerim Fitz-Gerald: I
want to win at home and score some AMA national points. Sounds easy
but it's far from that!
Brandon Hinton: My goals
for 2012 are too make a name for myself in the US. I want to continue
to improve my results in the WORCS and place top 5 in Sundays Pro
For EnduroCross i want to podium the Amateur class and qualify for
the Pro race before the end of the season.
For Outdoors i want to try and qualify (top 40) for the weekends
And i'd like to end the year off with a top 10 result at the Roof
of Africa Extreme Enduro.
Shannon Terreblanche: At
this time id like to get some top 5 results in both the ADAC and
ONK races, and to try win the Dutch Supercross Championship, last
year i finished 2nd with the same points as the champion.
Damon Strydom: To finish
top 5 in the British Supercross series at the end of the year ,
to score points in the Maxxis British Championship and to Podium
at the British Masters Championship .
Matthew Beers: My goal was
to go to Lorreta's but i broke my foot pretty bad so that's finished
now but I'm just going to get strong and healthy for MiniOs in November.
David Goosen: Just to mention,
I was injured and had to have reconstructive surgery on my knee
in May for the second time which has put me out of most of the 2012
season, my team are very supportive though and are looking forward
to my comeback. To recover from my second ACL knee operation, going
well, and to return to racing in September in top form.
Calvin Vlaanderen: My goals
for 2012, I would say to finish top 4 in the european championship
is a realistic goal and to get top 5 in the world championship.
I know that its not going to be easy, but I will always try my best.
MXSA: What are your long term goals?
Michael Docherty: To make
motocross my career.
Kerim Fitz-Gerald: I don't
think i've thought of that really, I want to race till I'm grey
and old for sure but I'll go where the road takes me.
Brandon Hinton: My long term
goals are to live and make a carrier out of racing in the US. I
am loving what im doing at the moment and couldnt imagine myself
doing anything else. I am totally committed to making it Pro and
being a championship contender in the WORCS and EnduroCross series.
I am confident that im on the right program to get me there, the
big question is just how soon. Money is also tight at the moment,
so thats another factor that comes into it all. But ultimately it
all boils down to how badly you want it, and how hard you willing
to work for it.
Shannon Terreblanche: Most
of the people don't know the situation in motocross at this time
here in Europe, Its so difficult to get good sponsors or a good
team and if you want to ride GP's you need to pay to ride for a
team, almost always. Most of the riders in the GPs are paying an
average of 50 000 euros for a season with some teams charging up
to 150 000. My long term goals are just to work as hard as i can,
and to get a good team with good support so that i can make progress.
If i got a good offer to go back to SA and race i would consider
doing that, i would also love to get the chance to go over to the
states and try racing there, that is
actually a big dream for me, but its hard as i know no one there
who could possibly help me.
Damon Strydom: Well, to win
the British Championship would be amazing so I'll work on that for
now. It's gotta be one of the toughest domestic championships in
the world at the moment with all the GP riders here and Nev is doing
us all extremely proud.
Matthew Beers: Ultimately
my goal is to become pro and win titles like Grant langston and
Greg Albertyn. It's a long shot but i just want to be the best rider
i can be!
David Goosen: To be happy
in whatever I am doing, and to be a successful motocross rider.
Calvin Vlaanderen: I will
always want to be world champion, until that day comes, that is
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