Mini-views with James Stewart, Ryan Dungey & Josh Grant: San Diego Supercross
JAMES STEWART after winning the 2009 San Diego Supercross
Amanda: James, you are now tied in the Supercross Championship point standings with Chad Reed after your win tonight in the San Diego Supercross. How does it feel?
James: Yeah …. it feels good, especially being 23 points down after the first supercross at A1. After 6 race wins in a row now, I couldn’t ask for anything better than that. Everything is going great!
James Stewart at the San Diego Supercross 2009
Amanda: Were you doing anything different on this track tonight that made you that much faster than everyone else?
James: To be honest … I don’t know. The track was really short tonight, so I didn’t think that the lap times would be that different. I just rode pretty smooth, … I had a lot of things working for me in the whoop sections that worked really great for me tonight. I just think everything is working good. Our team sure have made a big improvement from A1 compared to now, and its showing. So, hopefully we can keep this going!
Amanda: Speaking of the opening round of supercross A1, next weekend is much like another A1 for you now … clean slate, even on points …
James: Yes, the points are tied up now, and its nice to have some room to play with. I’ve been trying to bust my tail the last six weeks to get back into this position. Now I am able to go home knowing that I’m there, … but we still have a long ways to go. You know the season isn’t even half way over yet, and a lot of things can happen. Hopefully we can keep it rolling!
Amanda: Are you excited to really head into the true east coast races now?
James: Oh yeah! I’m so excited to go my home in Florida. I haven’t been home since December! So, I can’t wait to get back into my comfort level, and to spend some time with my family, …. just relax, and have some fun with them. No more California life for me! (Smiles.)
Amanda: James, it’s always great talking to you each weekend. Congratulations on this San Diego Supercross win, and enjoy being home!
James: Thank you Amanda!
RYAN DUNGEY the Monday morning after the San Diego Supercross
Amanda: How is your Monday going?
Ryan: It is going good. I am back in Florida now after being in California for the west coast races. Now we have a good bit until the next race so I came back to home base to start back up here. Its good to be back. I like it here!
Ryan Dungey at the San Diego Supercross
Amanda: Was this the best Valentines Day you’ve ever had? Winning the San Diego Supercross, and catching Jake in the points battle?
Ryan: This Valentines day was a lot of fun. taking the win on the day was special. It was cool to be able to take the win and at the end of the day and have my parents there with me.
Amanda: You and Jake are so close in points, after this last win, you now have a two point lead going into the next race. Can you talk about the added pressure that is put on you right now?
Ryan: It feels good to be able to rebound back on top. I felt good on the night and I needed to take advantage of that and the opportunity. Now we (West Coast Supercross riders) have a long break. So I will take advantage of that and start making more progress with everything in my program. But there is no added pressure.
Amanda: Is there anything in particular you do before a race that gets you pumped up? Like put some loud music on your iPod, do jumping jacks, watch old Supercross races?
Ryan: I think listening to music is good. I listen to my iPod down the tunnel to the starting gate. I warm up also on my stationary bike which helps me get into it and ready to race!
Amanda: Most 19 year old’s don’t have to deal with the sort of life and career decisions that you have to. What’s the secret on how you are able to deal with all the pressure that comes along with all the glamour?
Ryan: Well, for me, I came into this sport turning professional at age 16. It wasn’t until I was seventeen when I started feeling all of the feelings I did – I started winning, and with that comes added pressure to do good, then money came and that can cause problems, making career decisions which is tough.
But like with a lot of things, you get better with experience. I have learned that little problems can turn into big problems quickly if you don’t deal with them correctly. I have learned how to go about things better with racing, family, and all the people around me. I guess I’m kind of bittersweet from some things that have happened. Somethings hurt deep inside me in my heart. Moving on, a lot of people want to come into your life, and its up to you to surround yourself with good people and people that fit you best.
Amanda: There is a little bit of a break for you before the next race. What are you going to be doing during this time?
Ryan: I am going to keep doing what I have been up to this point. But I am also going to watch my brother Blake race the Texas Nationals! He is a determined little guy! So I am pumped to see him! And I will go see family in Minnesota a little bit too. I’m excited.
JOSH GRANT before the start of the San Diego Supercross night-time race program
Amanda: Josh, tell us about what your wearing this weekend and why …
Josh: I’m wearing a Chargers Jersey for the fans here in San Diego, and also if you check out my helmet you’ll see its not my usual helmet. I’m wearing a a helmet and also a butt patch dedicated to Jeremy Lusk who passed away last weekend in Costa Rica.
Amanda: That is really nice of you to do that obviously – you and Jeremy were close.
Josh: Yes, I joined the Metal Mulisha family a while ago, and I’ve been riding with those guys for a few years. It really sucks that we had to have this tragedy happen. Its still so hard to believe. We all just need to look forward and know that he is looking down on us now.
Josh Grant with part of his tribute to Jeremy Lusk