Team Suzuki Press Office – January 15. Team Suzuki Racing caught up with Dodge/ Sycuan Casino/ RCH Racing/ Bel-Ray/ Suzuki Racing’s Broc Tickle after the weekend’s second round of the AMA/ FIM World Supercross Championship at Chase Field in Phoenix.
What’s your thoughts after Phoenix and heading to Anaheim 2 this weekend?
“I’m looking forward in heading back to Anaheim this weekend. I really need to post some good results. We’ve been working on the bike a lot, putting the work in to get better. Everyone is stoked to get back to the track this weekend. Our Dodge/ Sycuan Casino/ RCH Racing/ Bel-Ray/ Suzuki Z450s have been fast, so it’s just a matter of getting the race results on Saturday night. I’m looking forward to the rest of the week and getting some good practice in. What I need to do is just relax and I think my performances will show a better result. I’ve been putting too much pressure on myself and I need to relax a bit on the bike and just ride.”
Is more emphasis going to be focused on practice and qualifying to get a better gate position for the Heat Race?
“For sure. That’s one of the areas that we need to get better at and that is putting down a better practice time for gate selection in the Heat Race. It all ties together: good practice time, good gate selection to your Heat Race, good Heat Race and gate-pick for the Main. Everything will flow together and hopefully score a good Main Event, but it certainly starts early in the day on track.”
You seem to pick-up a lot of positions during the 20-lap Main Event, so getting through Turn 1 must be a major focus for you and the team?
“Exactly. I need to start up front and everything else will come for me. It’s not easy to come from the back, especially with the talent level of the 450 class this season. Everybody is fast and everybody is a good rider. Giving up spots on the first lap makes it so hard to earn a good finish. The main thing is to start in front of the fast guys, start clicking off some laps; and not worry about everyone else – just race my own race.”
Will you make any changes trying to survive the start of the race and Turn 1 at Anaheim 2?
“Not really. The main thing for the first corner is to be smart. I need to line myself up on the gate to where if there is a problem I can get out of it. Last weekend at Phoenix, I didn’t have a good Heat Race and didn’t have a good gate selection for the Main. I was way outside and it put me in a bad position. Eventually I got pushed off the track. The main goal this week is to be good in practice, have good practice times, have a good gate pick for the Heat Race; and just let everything flow together into the Main event.”
Any major set-up changes to the RM-Z450 this weekend?
“No. We made a few changes yesterday to the shock, just some minor things so when we roll into Anaheim we have them in our bag in case we need to make a change to the bike. I was really happy with my bike set-up in Phoenix. I’m looking forward in keeping it going. It makes it a lot easier if everything is good with the bike and it’s consistent. Our bikes are fast. I have an awesome bike and I’m really happy with how things are going.”
You were only a 10th-of-a-second from fourth place in your heat times at Phoenix. What does that mean in a 450cc SX lap?
“It’s maybe just clearing all the jumps perfectly. Say you are the same in every corner, but you clip a jump a little bit, that could be the 10th-of-a-second that you need for a perfect lap. It can happen so fast. With the speed that all the riders have out here this year, making a consistent lap and not hopping a jump or clipping a landing is critical.”