Mike Metzger: My thoughts on Laguna Seca Supermoto

We got this note from Mike Metzger after last weekend’s Supermoto event at Laguna Seca.

Well, to say the least, I am not too happy with my performance at the first-ever AMA Red Bull Supermoto event held at beautiful Laguna Seca Raceway in Monterey, CA. I feel I had a lack of testing going into the race due to over-scheduling my freestyle appearances at Disney’s California Adventure.

Freestyling four times a day in 20-minute shows is great practice for the X Games, but not for preparing to win a Supermoto championship. The heat race grid position was determined by luck of the draw number pick from a small bucket, not time practice for proper positioning. I wasn’t so lucky. I picked number 82 and had a terrible grid from row five inside. It was not the way I wanted to start my weekend, coming from behind. I had no choice. I went from 12th on the first lap, to third by the end of the 10-lap heat. Having to pass a grip of guys who mostly made mistakes at every given moment, handing me positions one after another. I was really stoked knowing I didn’t have to race the semi qualifier the following day to get into the 28-rider final.

Ready for the 24-lap main event, I was seated on the inside third tow, having eight riders in front of me going into turn one. I thought I might get lucky and sneak a couple of spots in and out of the first turn, but not that time. I got myself pinched and was running 12th by turn two. All I could think of was Ward, and the front pack yarding on me. Not the situation I wanted to be in. Oh well.

That left me to deal with passing on a track that was near impossible to get by someone without banging the door and almost taking yourself out, which I successfully did twice, taking out Gary Trachey, Joe Kopp and myself in the off-camber dirt right-hander (turn 10). Two laps later I t-boned a lapper in turn two chasing Kopp, falling again and catching up to ninth overall. Feeling impatient because the track was so tight, I made way too many mistakes. I think it would be a lot safer if the AMA decides to use a blue lapper flag, but if the don’t the crowd gets to see some good yellin’ and bangin’. Real head-to-head racing.

If you haven’t seen the best racing on earth, you need to check it out. This weekend 80,000 people got a chance to check it out alongside the World Superbike event. All-in-all, my first tip to Laguna Seca was a great learning experience and I go to spend the weekend racing with my wife and kids. That’s the best for me. Going home safe with the family. See you at round two at South Boston, VA, where I will try my best to flow.

Congratulations to Team Troy Lee Designs—Jeff Ward taking home first with teammate Jeremy McGrath third. Team KTM—Kurt Nicholl, second.

Thanks to all my sponsors for being a part of the Team Metzger, Zoo York, Team ECC, Honda, Red Bull, Oakley, VP Fuels, Michelin, STM Clutches, Marzocchi, Bell Helmets, Alpinestars, Renthal, Race Tech, N-Style, DVS, Braking, Aim Sports, IMS, and Acerbis.