Catching Up With Jessica Patterson
After competing with Ashley Fiolek in a tooth and nail battle that continued until the final round, Jessica Patterson is on hiatus. While racing is a year round job, the women’s tour has an extended break while the Supercross season travels the country, leaving lots of free time for rest and preparation for the next championship. While some partake in the European Supercross races, Patterson has stayed low key and avoided the spotlight. While at the DC Shoes Ride Day, we caught up with the multi-time champion to see what the new year has in store.
It’s been roughly three months since the Pala national. What have you done with all your down time?
I really haven’t done too much. I maybe ride once a week and hang out. We got to go on a cruise and I have hung out with my parents, just taking it easy and enjoying the time off with the family.
This year the women’s tour had the chance to go to a lot of tracks that you hadn’t gone to in the past. What do you think of the additions and the tour itself? Is it the right amount of dates or would you like more?
This year they are going to change things up. It is not confirmed yet, but it will probably be one moto with a longer length and TV coverage. Of course I would like to have a longer series, but this year worked out great. We had eight races, but it is kind of hard with the girls racing because I don’t think that everyone can afford to go to all twelve rounds, which I am sure we would all like but the budgeting has to be there. We will try this year with the one motos, and maybe the next year we will get more races in there.
Do you like the time slot that you run during the day? Running after both classes, sometimes the track was just brutal.
Yeah, they were tough and nasty, for sure. The last moto sucks. It is not so much that the track is rough and gnarly, because that is just racing, but the sun gets you and it is hard to really see. I like those rough conditions, but I could do without the sun.
With the one moto format, though it sounds like an experimental thing, it seems like it could wreck havoc on a points chase. If you have one bad moto, it is not like you’ll get the chance to make up for it later. Other than the longer time, what do you think about it?
The longer time is going to be key, because like you said, you have one mistake and your whole day is ruined because you won’t have the chance to come back and redeem yourself. It will be tough and I am on the fence about it, but if we have the longer motos I think that it will work out okay. It is something that we are working on now, to get the media and exposure that we need. I think that eventually it will work out in it’s favor, but it will take a little bit and having those perfect races.
Looking back on this year, are there many things you wish you could have changed?
There are things that I wish I could change, but honestly I had a great year. I won twelve out of sixteen races and I had two really bad races out of the whole year, which isn’t really too bad. I mean, of course I wish I could go back and change those times and do things a little different, because you think of so many different things. But for the most part, the team and myself, my boyfriend, my trainer, everyone has just been great and helped me. We did everything thing we could have done and what happened happened.
To see the sport where it is, racing eight rounds in 2011 and the X Games Supercross all to yourselves, it seems like women’s motocross is only on it’s way up. What do you, though it is still in its developmental stages, think of the way it looks?
I think it is getting better. At one point it came up and was on the climb, but this whole economy thing tore it down. There was a time that we had both motos on Versus and everything was going good, but we had the economy fall out. But now it is starting to climb back and I think that people are starting to realize it more. With the exposure that we are starting to get, the better it will be. The Coombs’ family has helped us out a lot and they are behind it, so there is a future in it.