CATCHING UP WITH RYAN VILLOPOTO
By Donn Maeda
Team Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto will return to action at tonight’s Seattle Supercross after sitting out several weeks with a viral infection. For RV2, the event – like the Washougal MX National – is like a homecoming, as he grew up not far from Qwest Field in Poulsbo, Washington. That said, Ryan hopes to have a great showing in front of his home-state family, friends and fans. We chatted with Villopoto for a few minutes as he headed out for the afternoon track walk.
Welcome back to the races.
Yeah, it’s going to be good. I’m just finishing out the last three rounds and then getting ready for outdoors.
What exactly was the virus you had and what were the symptoms?
One doctor said that it was Mono and one doctor said that it wasn’t and that it was just an intestinal virus—I don’t know.
How did it make you feel?
I was tired and tried racing through a couple of the races being sick and everything, but I just couldn’t do it. I took some time off, so I guess now I have the upper hand on everyone else heading into outdoors.
When you say time off, what did you do?
I didn’t do anything. It was the same thing as Mono. You just can’t exert yourself or it won’t go away.
How long have you been riding then?
I rode Thursday before Jacksonville and that’s about it.
Have you been doing any outdoor testing yet?
No I haven’t started on that yet. Just been trying to recover from the virus. I’m going to start outdoor testing next week.
What are your expectations for tonight?
I just want to try for the podium. But I need to get a good start and just finish the last three rounds healthy.
So, what’s the story behind the purple gear for this weekend?
What do you mean? It’s sick! You don’t like it? (Laughs)
No, it’s good! Why is it called Frankenstein?
I didn’t name it. James [Stewart] has worn pink, so what’s wrong with purple? (Laughs)
Was it hard watching the three races that you sat out, or did you even watch them on TV?
Yeah, I watched them. But like I said, it was kind of a nice little break.
What did you do during that break?
I hung out. I was basically retired for a couple weeks, so it was pretty nice. Like I said, though, I’m just ready now to put in some solid rides at the final three races of the season.