Dean Wilson Returns To Pro Circuit
Dean Wilson just phoned to share the news that it was official: he will return to the Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki race team after a few weeks of testing with the now-defunct Jeff Ward Racing team.
Congrats on getting a deal for 2013 put together in short order. Why don't you give us the scoop on what you will be doing, exactly...
Well, I am stoked to finally have my deal done. I will be returning to Mitch Payton's race team, where I will be racing East Coast SX Lites, and then switching to the 450 for the Nationals. I'm really excited to be a part of the team again. The whole time I was off with injuries, it really motivated me to come back stronger than ever. I am doing East so that it will give me some extra time to really get ready and be in the best shape possible.
You were on the Jeff Ward Racing Team for only a few weeks, and only had a few days of testing under your belt. Did you ever have a feeling that the team was not so solid?
When I signed with the team, I was fully committed to it. I felt a great connection to everyone on the team. I heard all of the rumors from the start, but I just ignored them and focused on training and doing my job. Everything seemed good and we made good progress in the few times we tested together. When I got the call and was told that they couldn't fund the team anymore, I couldn't believe it. I had an out, and I took it, and I found myself looking for a job. I was very lucky to find a spot with Mitch and Pro Circuit Kawasaki, so I didn't have to jump in with an unfamiliar team this late in the game.
Will you be reunited with Paul Perbijnos again?
I don't know. That is a very good question.
What went through your mind when you got word that Mike Kranyak was pulling the plug on the race team?
I couldn't believe it. I was in shock. It was crazy, you know? I was totally committed and I was all psyched up to make the switch to the 450. I had been training and riding on one, and I was hoping for a great debut season. After it all happened, I sat back and thought about it and put my career into perspective. A Lites Supercross championship is something that I have always wanted, and this is my last chance to go and get one. I am only 20 years old, and I have only been riding Supercross for three years, so I figure that it's now or never. I am going to work my hardest for it, and I'd say that if I don't get it, I will be very disappointed.
You have to be excited about still being able to race a 450 outdoors...
Yes, very much. I am excited to be able to make my 450 debut with Mitch and the team. Bones knows exactly what I want out of my suspension, so I know that it will be an easy transition for me. Plus, they have a whole year of testing and setup experience from Tickle this year. I can't wait for the outdoors to start. I am very happy, most of all, to still be on a Kawasaki.
It must feel like coming home after running away for a while.
[Laughs] Yeah! It's going to be good and I am really excited to be back on the team!
You have to be considered a favorite for the East Coast Lites SX title... Is it hard to get back into the Lites frame of mind?
A little it, but I am going to work very hard to make the best out of this situation. I am going to work so hard to be in the best shape of my career. I am going to give this opportunity 100% effort!