CATCHING UP WITH JOSH GRANT
By Donn Maeda
JGR Racing’s Josh Grant has had a few bumps and bruises since winning the season opener at Anaheim I, but in the home stretch of the championship JG33 still sits a solid fourth and is more than pleased with his performances. We caught up with the California native to see what his thoughts were about his Supercross season, the Nationals, and his new temporary teammate.
After the high of winning Anaheim I, you've had your share of bumps and bruises along the way, but are you happy with the way the season has unfolded?
Yeah, it's been really good for Joe Gibb's Racing and me. To have the first win was real exciting, but yeah I’ve had a few ups and downs, but we've been consistent with some top fives and that's what the goal was. Since we got that first win, we didn't have to change our goals or plans for the rest of the year. My goals are still to finish inside the top five and stay healthy and carry that over to the outdoors.
Have you changed a lot in your bike setup from the first night like many teams have, or are you still pretty close to your original settings?
We did make a few changes over the past few weeks, but that's just to get things set up for the tracks we are racing. But for the most part, it's still the same as what I started with.
Your teammate Cody Cooper got injured early on and the team pulled Nathan Ramsey out of retirement to fill his spot. Has Nate Dawg been fun to team up with?
Nate's for sure a cool guy and it's great to have him as a positive influence on us. He gets a fire under the team and has a good, positive role model to the team, and even Coop's (Cody Cooper) glad he's here.
So a lot of people have talked about you winning your first supercross race in just two attempts. Is that some kind of record?
Winning in what was only your second-ever 450 Supercross.
Yeah, but I've only won one….
Right, but that was only in your second start. I don’t believe anyone else has ever won that quickly…
I don't know; I don't really think anyone else has, but it'd be cool if I have some record. Anaheim was a good night and everything fell into place.
Are you happy with where you are in the point standings in your rookie year?
Oh yeah for sure. I had a few DNFs and some other issues, but I'm only 25 points off Andrew Short and he’s been in the class for a few years. So I'm pumped, and I just want to go out and finish these last few strong and grab third overall.
The Motocross Nationals are coming up, and this will be your first year on the big bike. Do you have the same goals for the outdoors?
They are the same, and they'll be a few guys out of it like James (Stewart) and Kevin (Windham), so I don't have big expectations set up just yet. I need to get the testing done first, and once we have that down I'll know where I stand. I like the 450 and being able to run it faster and jump it a bit bigger.
Your fellow 450-class rookie Ryan Villopoto wrote in one of his columns that the jump the big bike was harder than he expected. Do you feel the same, or has it been a smoother transition for you?
It's been easy for me. I've wanted to be on this bike from the beginning, it suits my style, and I knew I'd get out there and get good results right off the bat.
How has your fan following been since your season started? Did Anaheim I earn you a ton of new fans?
It's been fun, and I like doing opening ceremonies. Everyone comes by and asks how things are and say the bikes look good, and I agree with them. Alex (Ewing) makes it the best looking bike out there.