MXLarge

Dan Reardon interview

Former Australian supercross champion, Dan Reardon might not have the same worldwide drawing power of a Chad Reed, or even Hunter Lawrence, but what he does have is a bag full of Australian Supercross Championships and a career full of strong international performances indoors.

The 31-year-old veteran will line up in the new-look 2018 Arenacross World Tour after signing a deal with the i-Fly JK Racing Yamaha and he couldn’t be more excited to go head to head with names like Evgeny Bobryshev, Thomas Ramette, Cedric Soubeyras, Adam Chatfield and many more.

What many might not know about the experienced Aussie is that he led last months Aus-X Open main event for many laps on the Friday night, battling long and hard with Scotland’s Dean Wilson, before the AMA Supercross top ten rider made a pass to take victory. He might be at the back end of his career, but Reardon’s talent for riding indoors remains at the highest level.

Reardon is known worldwide for his supercross skills, and raced in the AMA Supercross series in America in 2017. The former GEICO Honda and MotoConcepts rider signed a deal with Yamalube/Star Racing Yamaha to contest the 2017 250SX West Region in Monster Energy Supercross alongside Dylan Ferrandis. You don’t get picked by Geico, MotoConcepts and Star Racing, as a non-America, unless you have major talent.

The Aussie isn’t new to Arenacross, having won a round of the AMA Arenacross series way back in 2007, when was considered one of the brightest young supercross riders to come out of Australia.

What you can be sure of, when the flag drops for the opening round of the Arenacross series, on January 6 at the Manchester Arena, Reardon will be using all his skills to beat home a bunch of very talented Frenchman, Germans, and British riders.

We were lucky enough to catch up with the current Australian number two supercross rider, and ask him about his exciting plans to race in the biggest two wheeled series in the UK.

MXlarge: Dan, what was the reason to come and race the Arenacross in Europe?

Reardon: Well, it pretty much started last year. I am supercross only, so I have more time, because motocross takes up a lot of the year. It opens up doors to be in other places. Last year we went back and forth, and we were trying to get a deal together, but it was the same time the American deal came together, so I ended up racing over there. We stayed in contact and now it is happening this year.

MXlarge: I was at the Aus-X Open, and you really had good speed there, leading the Friday night main event for some time, and you have often shown good speed. Where would you say you are at the moment in your career?

Reardon: In terms of where I am in my career, I just want to enjoy going racing, and that is what motivates me. I mean obviously I retired, then came back and won a championship in that first year. Last year I tore my ACL, and still finished third, and this year I finished second, and I am still pretty competitive. I am one of the older guys out there, but I really enjoy going racing. Now I am going somewhere I haven’t been much, in England and around Europe, and that makes this very exciting for me. I really can’t wait to be over there.

MXlarge: You will stay in England for the whole series, or fly back to Australia sometimes?

Reardon: I will stay there for the whole time. I don’t really know England that well. I have been there a couple of times and my parents are from England. I understand the weather isn’t great over there, it rains a lot and I am told its snowing now. I am not sure where I will be based, somewhere around England. I will maybe go and do some riding in Germany or France.

MXlarge: Obviously Evgeny Bobryshev the Russian Grand Prix rider has signed up to do the series, and they have many really good French riders and local British riders. What do you expect in results?

Reardon: It is hard to know how I will do. If you ask every single guy racing, they all want to win, that is the same for me. I expect to have a good strong series. I picked up a bike a couple of days ago, and will have it set-up before I get over there. The weather is really good in Australia at the moment, and I will be preparing. I will get my bike over there and bolt on my parts that I take with me. I did a little bit of resource on the series and watched some races from the last couple of years and there will be some strong competition. The track are a little bit more basic to what I am used to, which means the racing becomes closer. It won’t be a problem, good starts and the smaller stadiums. We will cover our bases and be prepared.

MXlarge: Talking about the tracks being a little easier, I guess they do that to make the racing closer. In AMA supercross the track seem lethal, and only the really top guys can handle them. I am guessing with your supercross experience, you would prefer the tracks to be a little more difficult?

Reardon: I think tough tracks are good and I do like a tough track, big whoops and you can hear the mumbles of other riders saying they don’t like them. I love tracks that are tough, and the tracks are more basic, so there are only four areas you can make a difference. The dirt seems good over there, which is not what I am used to, because where I am from the tracks are often hard-pack. It will be nice with the changes in the dirt, makes it more enjoyable to ride dirt like that.

MXlarge: I would imagine you would actually do well on those loamy, soft tracks, because you have a really good technique and it seems guys with good techniques are good on those softer tracks.

Reardon: Funny you say that, because a lot of people say I am good riding on a flat turn, maybe because I did a bit of flat track when I was younger. The loamy stuff isn’t something I am used to, but I have races all around the world and that gives me some experience in different conditions. Its nice to have a chance and ride tracks that are different and its hard to know what I am up for. My bike set-up is usually firm, because we usually have big whoops and big jumps. I have changed my track here in Australian toned it down a little to prepare me for the UK series.

MXlarge: You mentioned you have watched the highlights and one thing you can say about the Arenacross series, its well run, with big crowds and good entertainment for the public. Similar to the Aus-X Open, which is of course your major event of the Aussie season. So it creates a really nice atmosphere. Is that something you are looking forward to?

Reardon: For sure, and as you said, the Aus-X Open is the best event on our calendar, and you can ask anyone that. Being part of an event like that, with so many people and enthusiastic fans, its really nice to race events like that. The show part is also fun, and that is one of the reasons we do it. We are entertainers, and I noticed the Arenacross series has big crowds and it happens every weekend. It doesn’t matter if you are a rider or fan, you want to be part of something like that, and I hope I can bring something to that series. There are not that many Australians racing over there, and I am pretty excited to be part of it.

MXlarge: When do you actually head out to England?

Reardon: We haven’t confirmed, but probably in the middle of December, and we will have a week or two before the first round.

Arenacross puts together an intoxicating mix of world-class indoor motocross racing, high-flying freestyle motocross and a show to rival any music festival with lights, lasers, pyrotechnics and a pumping soundtrack. The three-and-a-half shows are guaranteed to have you on their feet, hollering for more and it’s all indoors, so there’s never an issue with the weather. Also expect new merchandise stalls, plenty of food and drink outlets, meet-and-greet autograph sessions and much more from Arenacross in 2018. 

Tickets are available on: http://www.arenacrossuk.com/buy-tickets/buy-tickets