By Michael Antonovich
After a stellar 2009 race season, Chad Reed found himself in the same position he was in days after the 2008 Supercross series; a newly crowned champion with no job for next year. After serious contract negotiating (and some major energy drink money), the likable Aussie found himself under the Rockstar/Makita Suzuki tent for 2009, whose help brought home his National title. With an economic downturn, the option of Suzuki resigning "Two-Two" was looking bleaker by the day. But once again, a factory came calling with an open spot on the team (and energy drink money to sweeten the deal), and Chad Reed found himself a reason to be on the starting line for 2010. We caught up with Reed to discuss his new deal, the Motocross of Nations, and his "five year career plan.”
So Chad, how do you feel about last weekend’s performance in Italy for the Motocross of Nations? You guys had some tough luck that took you out of the running for the Chamberlain trophy.
I'm bummed about it actually. It's always fun to go represent your country, but I'm just disappointed we couldn't pull it off. Byrner landed on a guy that crossed over on him, so we just got dealt some bad luck.
At our awards show on Thursday you won the Reader's Choice Award, and you and your table seemed pretty happy about it and celebrated all night. You're a fan favorite, you cleaned house on votes compared to everyone else.
Yeah, for sure (laughs). To me it's the most important award out there, because the fans voted for it and it shows we've come a long way with the fans. I'm so proud to have gotten it this year.
You're about to fly home to Australia for the Supercross series you helped set up down there. Are you excited to get down there and ride in front of your home crowd?
Yeah, it's going to be fun. It's going into the second year, and it's a lot of hard work but when I get down there it's all worth it. It's going to be fun to see my family for awhile and I'm stoked to get down there and be home. I'm really going to enjoy all my time down there.
You've been running around the past two days with a Monster Energy hat on, and some shots of you on something other than a Suzuki hit the Internet the other day. Can you talk about your new deal for next year?
Yeah, it's coming around pretty good. I've been doing a little testing on the Kawasaki and it feels pretty good, so we should be in good shape come January.
You dropped a hint last night in your acceptance speech that you've been alluding to for awhile. Two more years and you're leaving the sport?
Yeah, I think so. I want to give it all I've got the next two years and maybe transition on to something else. I have a huge desire to move on into car racing, and I have some great opportunities to start with so it looks like I have a shot.
You want to do rally or on road?
I love rally, but I have more available places in road racing, and it seems like I could have more career longevity there, so that's where I am leaning towards.
That’s great, Chad. Well, good luck down in Oz, and we’ll see you in January!
Thanks, guys! And thanks for the award!