WHAT DOES A TYPICAL TRAINING
DO YOU RIDE WITH ANDERSON,
OSBORNE AND MUSQUIN AT THE
BAKER FACTORY? No, we do not
train with them. I am on the track
at the same time with Shane, Dean
Wilson and some Amateur kids. We do
our motos, and then when we are on
a break, Jason, Marvin and Zach are
on the track doing their thing. We have
alternate track times. We do ride the
same track, so it is actually good.
THE 2014 YAMAHA YZ250F WAS
GREAT; HOW IS THE KTM 250SXF?
The Yamaha engine was so good.
Luckily, at KTM, they were able to find
some things in the engine over the
past winter that really boosted it even
more. I have gotten more holeshots
on the KTM than I did last year on the
YZ250F, so it worked out for me. The
KTM is fast and, chassis-wise, handles
really well. But, the Yamaha definitely
has some grunt; there is no doubt
By Jim Kimball
TELL US ABOUT YOUR KTM
ORANGE BRIGADE DAYS. In my first
year as a Pro, KTM had the Orange
Brigade program, and I was the first
rider on that team. It lasted for two
years, and then the program went away
when Troy Lee Designs took over the
250 program. It was a bummer deal
to see the whole program fade away
and be left with no ride. But, that’s the
way it worked. KTM had an opportunity
with a bigger and better team, and they
went with it.
WHY DIDN’T YOU GET MOVED TO
THE TLD KTM TEAM? My two-year
KTM Orange Brigade contract was
up. Alex Frye had one year left on his
Orange Brigade contract, so he automatically went to the TLD team.
YOU WERE A 250 RIDER; HOW
DID YOU END UP RACING THE
450 NATIONALS? After the St.
Louis Supercross, Davi Millsaps decided to get his wrists fixed when the
Supercross season ended. The team
needed to find a fill-in guy for the 450
Nationals. I had never ridden a 450
until three days before the first National
at Hangtown. I am really pumped
that they approached me with the
GETTING PICKED UP BY THE
ROCKY MOUNTAIN KTM TEAM
MUST HAVE FELT LIKE A WEIGHT
OFF YOUR SHOULDERS. It was a
great opportunity for me to ride this
bike. The bike is amazing. It is really
fast, and the suspension is based on
testing and my opinions, so that was a
huge help. The biggest thing is having
the support on race day. The team
takes care of everything.
AS JGR’S SUSPENSION
TECHNICIAN, WAS IT HARD TO
MAKE THE SWITCH FROM YAMAHA
TO SUZUKI THIS YEAR? This year has
actually been the easiest of all. Looking
back at the team’s history, we started
with KYB, went to Showa and then built
the JRI shock. Now we’re back with
Showa. Being an ex-Showa employee, I
tend to favor Showa anyway.
WHAT PERCENTAGE OF RACERS
WOULD YOU CONSIDER TO BE
REALLY GOOD TEST RIDERS? I would
say 5 to 10 percent. In my experience,
the phenom kids don’t offer much feedback. They have gotten catered to and
are taught how to complain about a
bike. On the other hand, a rider that
didn’t get support and had to do his
own adjustments at the track is more in
tune with what’s going on with his bike.
They learned how to diagnose the problem and come up with a solution.
WHAT’S THE NUMBER ONE
PIECE OF ADVICE YOU CAN OFFER
SOMEONE WITH REGARD TO
SUSPENSION? Bleed the air out of
your forks every time before you ride.
Check your sag regularly so that it’s set
up properly. Learn how your suspension
works. In almost every component a
clicker is essentially a needle closing
off a hole. If you figure that oil is flowing through a hole and you close that
hole off, the oil doesn’t flow as easily.
Understand that going in on the clickers
makes things go slower. Keep notes on
where the clickers are at. Make small
adjustments, and always take notes on
where you’ve been. Don’t be afraid of
your suspension. I find that a lot of riders are scared to touch their clickers.
By Jim Kimball
By Jim Kimball