Ken De Dycker took victory last weekend in the opening round of the Belgian Championship and will be one of the big favorites heading into the Grand Prix of Valkenswaard this coming Sunday and Monday. We caught up with the Belgian giant and asked him about his win and his opinion on coming weekends race.
MXlarge: Ken, how are you, its beautiful weather isn’t it
De Dycker: Yep, it’s warming up for sure.
MXlarge: Explain your weekend, because you had a win?
De Dycker: The weekend went okay; from practice I still had some problems with my hip, from my crash from Bulgaria. Once the first heat started though I didn’t have too much pain from it. The first moto pretty good start, fourth or fifth, but then on the second lap already I was in the lead and then did a nice pace and lead the race the whole time. Second heat the same start, had to pass Ramon after one lap and over took him and rode away. Took a gap and it was the same as the first heat. Third heat I almost had the holeshot, but shifted into neutral on the start line and was sixth or seventh. I came back after two or three laps and passed Desalle and Ramon. Once I passed them I made a gap on them. Then I started feeling tired and my back started hurting so I slowed down to finish in second.
MXlarge: How long are those motos in the Belgian Championship?
De Dycker: They are 20, 25 and 30 minutes.
MXlarge: Obviously you still have memories of that win in Valkenswaard a few years ago when you totally dominated everyone. Does this give you confidence that you can do it again?
De Dycker: Yes, but that was like two or three years ago and a completely different track than what it is now. It was really muddy that year and technical and the Belgian Championship race last weekend was similar. You had to pick good lines and be really smooth. That is where I am almost favorite, but Valkenswaard is now harder and it will be bumpy, so it’s going to be completely different to the old Valkenswaard and last weekend, but it is still a track I can win at and that is what I am hoping for.
MXlarge: Are you pretty confident to come in and win?
De Dycker: Yes I am, still a little bit problems from my injury, but I felt good in training and the races I have been in, also in the pre-season, so I hope to do a better result than in Bulgaria, but I don’t think that is going to be too difficult.
MXlarge: There is going to be a lot of racing in Valkenswaard this weekend, what with the veterans and also the EMX2, plus MX1 and MX2, so it’s going to get really rough, but you like that or not?
De Dycker: Yes, it’s going to get rough, but those other classes they make different holes than the MX1 class do, the brake earlier and it’s going to be different to what we are used to in Valkenswaard, but the track was the same last weekend in Belgium, we had a lot of other class riders making different bumps and stuff. There were bumps from the start of the straight to the end of the straight.
MXlarge: What about Desalle, he was really good in Bulgaria and he seems fitter and more motivated this year. What is your opinion?
De Dycker: For sure he will be good, last weekend in Bulgaria he was good and also in Belgium last weekend. He is a rider who really wants something and will fight for it, and that is the best thing he has. You know with him that he can push you until the final minutes of the moto, that he can get you.
MXlarge: Will he be the biggest challenger, who do you think will be tough in Valkenswaard?
De Dycker: It’s not going to be a typical Valkenswaard track; it won’t be like a sandy track. I think the same guys who are quick on the hard tracks will also be good in Valkenswaard.
MXlarge: What has your preparation been for Valkenswaard?
De Dycker: I haven’t done much, a bit of cycling, running and this morning a few laps trying different shocks. For the rest of the week keep it easy and hopefully be as ready as possible for the weekend.