A Matthes Report: Seattle

Steve Matthes chats to Dean Wilson

· 8 minutes read

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Who's got Triple Crown fever? The last one of the year is coming up this weekend in Houston and I know we have written about these things before, but they are pretty good entertainment. I feel for the privateers that don't get to race at night when the fans are in the building for sure but, overall, having six races that all mean something and are shorter is good stuff.

Will Feld expand on these for 2020 or more of the same? Maybe even contract them? I'm not sure but from what I gather the people in the pits, who were against them to start with, have come around a bit. It is more work for the teams and there are more chances for things to go wrong, but I think even the hardened critic of these realises that they provide good entertainment.

(KTM Images/Simon Cudby)

I can't see them expanding the amount of them though. It's a bit much to ask for the teams and riders to prepare the spare bikes (by the way, I don't like the new rule that allows teams to have a back-up bike. It's just more work for everyone, it allows for big dollar factory teams to have more of an advantage and, sometimes, sh*t goes wrong. Why do we have to try and dummy-proof it?) for all seventeen races of Triple Crowns. I get that, but maybe we need to adjust these a bit?

What about if the 250s did two motos and the 450s did three? That way it wouldn't be as much stress on the 250 teams and riders. We need to stretch out the time a bit for the work needed between the races for the 450SX guys so, again, I'll propose a B-main for the riders who didn't make the night show. It'll be like another 450SX LCQ and who doesn't love that? Maybe we can add that sixth race to the programme at the very beginning with the real 450SX LCQ?

It's so obvious to me to do this – I'm not sure how it hasn't happened. What better way to start the night off with telling the fans that top four go to the real show, the rest go home. Think about how many great races we have seen in the 450SX LCQs? Yes, this would mean the LCQ guys that do make the mains have to race four times instead of three. Guess what though? They'll all agree to that in order to race in the big show.

Let's put some tweaks into the programme and it'll be a bit better. I applaud the folks at Feld for switching it up, as it is. Triple Crowns are here to stay I think and that's a good thing.

(Husqvarna/Simon Cudby)

There's a cool story going on with Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing's Dean Wilson right now. He won a 450SX heat the other week and in Seattle he qualified fastest and jumped this big rhythm as well. Not too bad for someone who started out the year in a van, albeit with factory bike under him. Wilson's not been able to make it on the podium yet this year but he's been the next best guy for many weeks. He's coming off an injury and being dropped by the team he rides for now, but he's shown a lot of speed, heart and fight in making 2019 SX season one of his best.

There was a question mark on what he's going to do for the upcoming motocross season and he talked about that after that race in Seattle.

MX Vice: You killed the whoops. Qualified fastest. How was that rhythm? I think you were one of the first guys to do that two, four and then three. Man, was it easy for you? At least it looked easy.

Dean Wilson: It was easy. I did it the first practice and I was like, "I think I can do that." The second practice…

Were you the first guy to do it?

Yeah. I knew I could do it but it was real sketchy, because there was no room for error. You couldn't over-jump. You couldn't case, so the last lap of my first-time qualifier I just went for it and I greased it good. I was like, "Whoa, that's good and it's fast." I tried to kind of keep it real… Like the next practice, I did it on my fast lap and maybe once or twice more. When the dudes were behind me I wouldn't do it. I was trying to save it. I was really trying to save it. In the heat race…

(Husqvarna/Simon Cudby)

You can't save it anymore, right?

I know. Ain't no Bubba days anymore. It was just so fast and easy, it was just intimidating for the first time. Then a couple dudes followed me in the heat race and then they got it. Then pretty much in the main a few of the guys were doing it. It was just easy.

It looked like no problem for you.

Yeah, it really was. There was that. It was scary, but it was definitely beneficial for sure.

What about three onto that table? I thought in track walk maybe someone would do that.

Yeah, that was something everyone was eyeing up but I just don't think the consequences were worth it.

Qualifying fastest… That's really good. You got a heat race win last week. That's all really good. It's got to be really helping your confidence.

It is. I feel like my riding has been really good the past four to five weeks. I' m always real close in timed qualifying. My speed is good. Heat races are getting pretty good. I'm in the battle. Starts are pretty good. Today main event was a lot better. I was probably sixth off the start and then was just kind of in a battle, rolling some stuff because we're stuffing each other. The guys got away, then I got passed on the red cross.

I wonder what's going to happen with that.

I don't know. It's already posted, so it's done. I think Marv got the win. I don't think they're doing anything.

(Husqvarna/Simon Cudby)

That's odd. [Blake] Baggett was on you. You were trying to catch Joey [Savatgy]. You guys made some contact a couple times. It was a good little race within a race.

I ate Joey's roost the whole main event, because we had a gap and in the whoops I would catch him. I tell you what, skimming the whoops it was faster but it definitely took some energy out of you. I would skim them and I would get so close every time to passing him and just not enough. Every lap it was like that. I fought to the finish. Decent main event. I feel like just keep going, keep working hard and keep trying to improve.

You're doing well. Like I said there are the small, little things that are making this season pretty successful for you. Whoops were really big in practice. Mowed them down a little bit. [Tyler] Bowers was upset. I'm talking to a few riders about it. Obviously you kill the whoops. You always have. What's your take on that though, on that move?

I don't know. They were big in practice, but I didn't think they mowed them down that much. I didn't really pay attention.

It looked pretty good.

I like the whoops. I love the whoops. Obviously I'm a bigger guy. Being taller in those kind of whoops is good, because when you get huck-a-bucked you have the leverage. I love whoops sections like that. I wish they had more of them, because they were long. It took speed and it took technique. You just had to be good in the whoops.

You're okay with knocking them down a bit then?

Well, in the main event, look at them. It was still faster to skim. If you could ride the whoops, it's faster to skim them. People were jumping them. I don't know. I wasn't stressing on it too much.

(Husqvarna/Simon Cudby)

Do you have a line that you liked for skimming?

I had a good line that was like right to the middle, but as the main event went on, about midway to the end, it started getting grooved so that's when it was getting sketchy. You'd catch one.

[Cole] Seely was just telling me that it got sketchy. He was also pretty good through them and he said it got really scary.

Yeah, I just kind of sent it every lap. I'll tell you what. Whoops is my strongest point and after our main events the past few weeks we had a sit down with the team and they are like, "Dude, you're one of the best in the whoops. Why are you jumping them? You're not a jumper. You're a skimmer." I say, "You're 100% right." If you took that main-event track to Milestone, what would I do? I would skim those every lap. You know in the main event you kind of try to save your energy and jump them.

Outdoors, what is the plan? [Jason] Anderson's coming back. Will you be back in the sprinter on a Husqvarna for outdoors or do we even know?

Still working on it, but I believe I'm going to be staying where I'm at. Still got to work out some kinks, but I think we're going to be okay. I'm really happy with that. Andy got off the hook.

Yeah, he did. Outdoors sucks for mechanics.

Oh, my god. You can get away with supercross. It's not too much wear and tear, but outdoors is gnarly. That would be tough. So, very happy. Just loving it. In a good spot.

Words: Steve Matthes | Lead Image: Husqvarna/Simon Cudby

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