FOR A WHILE IT LOOKED LIKE YOU COULD
WIN THE 250 WORLD TITLE. A lot of the credit
for that goes to my trainer Yves Demaria. Plus, I
felt good on the Yamaha. The team switched from
KTM to Yamaha for this season, so at the beginning
of the year we had to do a lot of work. The bike was
already pretty good, but we kept working to make it
better. I had some great races in the middle of the
season and won some GPs. After the Czech Republic
GP at Loket, Jeffrey Herlings was still leading the
championship, but he was injured, so I basically was
leading. I had the opportunity to fight for the title, but
I had some bad luck at a few races and the title didn’t
work out for me. I am still pretty happy with the year.
HOW DID YOU DEAL WITH THE BAD LUCK? I
don’t actually believe in bad luck, because I think that
we make our own luck. When I tried to analyze every-
thing to figure out why things happened as they did,
I couldn’t find any reasons. I did all my training,
practicing, and was as professional as possible but
still had some bad stuff happen. I did all the right
things and didn’t do anything wrong, so it was very
difficult to accept.
HOW DID YOU MEET YVES DEMARIA? I
started working with Yves in the beginning of 2013.
My dad met him and asked him if he could train me.
Yves helped me a lot, and I became the European
Champion that year. Later, when I signed with the
Standing Construct KTM team, he continued working
with me. This season he worked with me and my
teammate, Julian Lieber.
WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THE GRAND
PRIX TRACK PREPARATION? The tracks can
definitely be prepared better, but they weren’t all bad.
You cannot really compare the tracks in Europe to
America, because everything is so different. Maybe
I should say that the GP tracks are okay, but it’s the
preparation that needs improvement. The track owners
in Europe are old school. They still put water on the
track even if it’s not dusty. The track doesn’t need it,
but it’s just the way they have always done it. They
need to water the track on Wednesday, Thursday and
Friday before the race, not the morning of the race.
I think that even some small changes can make our
tracks better, which will make for better racing.
WHAT’S THE MOTOCROSS SCENE LIKE IN
SWITZERLAND? We really don’t have that many
tracks. Still, there are a lot of Amateur riders and a
lot of races. The races are held on temporary, quickly
produced tracks that hold a race just on that weekend.
They make the track on Friday, and then on Sunday
evening they make it flat again. There are a lot of
Amateur races done this way. The competition level
is not that high, so it’s difficult for a Swiss rider to
make the jump to racing the European Championships.
There is no Supercross in Switzerland, either, other
than the Geneva Supercross once every year.
NOW THAT YOU’RE 23 YEARS OLD, WHAT
ARE YOUR PLANS? I did have some proposals from
the U.S., but I just feel like I can build something up
pretty good with Yves and with the team here, so I
want to stay in Europe and do the 450 class. In 2012,
I had a difficult time getting a team to show interest
in me. At the end of 2013 nobody wanted to sign
me. Then, Yves took a risk to train me and Standing
Construct signed me. Now we have shown what we
can do on the bike. Thus, I want to stay in Europe and
show them the respect that they have shown me. In
the future, I would consider coming to America.
SO YOU’LL CONTINUE WITH THE STANDING
CONSTRUCT TEAM? Yes. Next year it will be
Julien Lieber in the 250 class, and I’ll be in the 450
class with the help of Factory Yamaha. I’m excited
about racing the 450, because I feel like my riding
style is very smooth. Even on the 250 I never use
the clutch, in spite of the team always telling me to.
I had ridden a 450 a little bit during the end of the
GPs, because I knew I would be riding one in the
Motocross des Nations. The USGP was my last race
on a 250. ❏