Tim Gajser interview - Home Boy
Posted on June 23, 2020
HRC rider Tim Gajser returned to racing last week with a 1-DNF performance and continue to enjoy racing in front of his beloved Slovenian fans.
We actually asked Tim to do the interview last week and he forgot us, but like the good guy he is, he gave us a call this morning and we talked about his comeback to racing after lockdown and many other things.
MXlarge: First, I want to ask, racing again, how good did that feel?
Gajser: It was great. To be on the gate again after a couple of months, it was just the Slovenian championship, but the feeling was the same and we raced. I had a decent day, won the first race and then had problems with the bike in the second moto. I had a DNF, but it was great to get on a race and get that feeling back, I enjoyed it a lot.
MXlarge: Isn’t it a race you normally do anyway?
Gajser: Since last year I try and do a couple of those Slovenian championship races. Before I would do all of them, and we have seven or eight rounds and last year I decided to do just two, which are both close to my house. I wanted to do just two so I can have some weekends off from the racing and recharge the batteries and rest a little bit, because I was racing every weekend, and even this year before this lockdown period, I decided to do just two races. Now, because we don’t have GP’s I decided to do more of them.
MXlarge: What do you have coming up?
Gajser: This weekend we have another Slovenian championship race. It will be held at an old Grand Prix track. I am really looking forward to it and it is like 6 kilometres from my house, so very easy for me.
MXlarge: When you do these smaller races, against the opposition you race, do you still get nervous?
Gajser: I think it is, well, every rider gets a little nervous, doesn’t matter if it is World championship or a national race. We still have that feeling, the adrenaline, and you start to breath a little faster, but for sure it is a bit different from the World championship. On the end, we are racers and we have competition in both championships.
MXlarge: Its funny, I was staying in Amsterdam a week ago, and the lady at reception was from Slovenian and I asked her did she know Tim Gajser, and she said “of course I know Tim Gajser, everyone in our country knows him. I saw the videos you put up on your social media and there was a nice crowd there. I was surprised how big it was, how was that for you?
Gajser: It was amazing, and actually I didn’t know so many people would come. They said they didn’t want too many people, they wanted maybe 200 people, but they didn’t tell anyone, and the people just came. The circuit was full, and I was thinking of going and just having a race and no crowd, but in the end, I did a signing session and it was really good.
MXlarge: I guess your country hasn’t suffered too much from cases and deaths, so it is pretty safe anyway.
Gajser: Yes, but it has been tough. We were one of the first countries that stopped lockdown and we opened up a lot of things. Even in quarantine it wasn’t that strict, not like in Italy or Spain or where they had a lot of problems and people getting the virus.
MXLarge: I have spoken to a lot of riders and teams about these Czech championship races that start this coming weekend. Did you think at all about doing some of those races against the other GP riders?
Gajser: I just read about it on MXlarge, and I even talked with the team about it doing some Italian championship races, they asked if I wanted to do these races. I saw the Husqvarna guys are going and some others, but we will see. We still don’t know when we will race MXGP again, and they say in Latvia, because the Russian round is delayed and somewhere in August. So basically, we don’t know when we race again and for the moment I focus on my training. I haven’t changed a lot and until now I was just training hard and be ready whenever we go racing again. I will just do these Slovenian races and then a month before we know about the MXGP starting, I will focus some more. I am riding twice a week and I don’t want to over train yourself. When we will come back, we all know that we will race many weekends in a row, and I want my body to be healthy.
MXLarge: Last question, I went to Arnhem yesterday, to that new facility. They are thinking of having a Grand Prix there, maybe next year. Have you ridden there before and if you did, what did you think, it the sand similar to Valkenswaard?
Gajser: It is a nice track. I wouldn’t say the same as Valkenswaard, it is a little sandier, because my feeling is Valkenswaard gets harder and harder and maybe because we have the race early in the season, still in winter, so the ground is sometimes frozen. It is difficult to judge. I think with some work it is a good track for a Grand Prix. It is a bit short, but they will change for sure for a Grand Prix, but it is a nice track and it is always nice to get some new tracks in the GP calendar. We have almost ever year the same tracks, so always nice to get new tracks.
MXlarge: Sorry, I do have another question. Did you watch the supercross and if you did, did you enjoy it?
Gajser: Yes, I watched the replays today. It was nice racing, for sure in the 250 class, they were battling all the time and it was good racing. I enjoyed it.
Photos Goran Kroselj