Since returning from Germany I had 2 weeks between returning and getting back on the road to Rockford. I had a small crash and a near wreck in Berlin keeping me off my bike over this whole period and only enabling me to get into the gym a couple of times leading in so I spent most of the time on the couch resting up. Moving into Rockford I struggled to be able to put the power down in a sprint so I knew racing was going to be interesting especially on a very flat/uphill first straight. After swallowing some good amounts of pain killers I racked up for practise then into racing. Racing didn’t go as I would have liked all weekend and I struggled to place anywhere decent only making semis. The weekends racing was a very big mental battle for me pondering and thinking a lot of things outside of the square. In sport and especially BMX, when you’re racing the best in the world, one step sideways mentally or outside thoughts starting to creep in and take over can mean 10 steps back results and performance wise.
I then met up and jumped on the road with the fox family as well as Ryan Lewis and Donald Ross. We hit the road and headed out to South Park. I’d have to say I haven’t laughed that much in a while (mainly thanks to Junz) and can’t thank them enough for opening their door and allowing me to travel with them. South Park is one of my favourite tracks out here in USA and still to this day with the first straight being wide open and all engine where after the first turn its super fast and all downhill.
Racing on Friday felt like I went ok but didn’t qualify out for the big show once again. Saturday I felt more on top of my game and turned up to race mentally since Berlin. Come main one I felt good down the first straight but all it takes to get shut off and someone else to get an elbow in front halfway down the straight is a matter of inches. Main 2 I ran up the back of the hill while everyone was on the gate still getting changed with no warm up as mains rolled around quicker than I was expecting pretty much writing that one off with none of my normal race routines being ticked off. The inches cost me big time finishing in 8th overall over 3 mains. Happy to have made the top 8 but know there is still a lot of progression to be made moving forward especially at this level over here in the U.S. If I’m going to be completely honest, this last 2 weeks of racing I struggled to find the hunger and mental game I usually have leading into a race which felt really strange for me but glad I could finally muster it back from the last day of racing (ironic really) before heading back home to New Zealand. Patience as an athlete is a good virtue to have which sometimes gets the better of me and as a wise man continues to tell me, good things take time. As always I learnt a lot about myself these past 3 weeks as well as how I function under certain training conditions/races to work on moving forward.
I’ll be heading back home to have a couple of weeks off and relax. Play some golf, catch up with family and friends, hit the slopes on the snowboard, and work out a plan for the 2015 season and get back on the wagon to figure out the recipe to build and engine again and chase those inches. I also received my overall marks back from my semester one papers through university and thankfully I passed so onto semester 2 when I touch down back into New Zealand.
Lastly a big shout out to my buddy Marc Willers for putting me up for the last couple of months in Murrieta once again and bending over backwards for me to get me out here to race and train. Couldn’t have done half of what I have without ya! Also thanks to all the support of my sponsors, support staff and people who continue to support me in my quest forward on and off the bike. Also a massive shout out to all the riders going to represent New Zealand at the world championships in Holland. I missed selection on this one so ill be eagerly watching for those results as they come in! To all the riders’ I’ve been coaching, tear it up and stick to the race prep plan we’ve worked on from day 1 J.