Justin Bogle | Prepped and Ready
By Casey Davis
We spotted Geico Honda’s Justin Bogle spinning some laps this morning at Milestone MX Ranch and caught up with him just as he finished up his afternoon motos with trainer, Ryan Fedorow. The defending East Coast 250 SX champ had entered the 2015 season with barely any time to prepare, as he went under the knife to repair a shoulder injury from last year during the off-season. However, the Oklahoma native made it happen at the East Coast opener and finished just behind Red Bull/KTM’s Marvin Musquin, putting himself second in points as they head into round two. We spoke with Bogle about his small window of preparation coming into Arlington, the Vegas shootout and how Ryan Fedorow has been the biggest piece to the puzzle.
During the off-season you sustained an injury. For those who don't know, could you explain what it was?
Yeah, during the off-season I had surgery on my shoulder. Basically, I had it repaired from when I initially injured it during last year's outdoor season. Luckily, I had enough time to get back from that before the East Coast rounds. I was able to train a lot more this year than I was allowed last year because it was just my shoulder were as last year it was my back and a few other things, as well. Last year I pretty much had to just lay on the couch. This year, I was able to train with my trainer, Ryan and put in a little more time, so it's all good man and no excuses. I'm on the gate and it should be good!
So the shoulder is 100% now?
Yeah, for sure! It is a little sore here and there, but it is what it is and everyone else has their own issues. Constantly racing and riding you'll always be sore, but that's dirt bikes!
Coming into the 2014 Supercross season, you had very little time to prepare, as you mentioned. Obviously, this year was totally different in that you had a good amount of time to recuperate, so was it, again, another scramble to get ready?
Yeah, I did have more time this year. It was still a bit of a scramble with a few things, but I was still able to test and get my bike set up the way I wanted it. It was completely different than last year were I was only able to ride my bike a handful of times before the opening round. It was still crunch time and I didn't have the entire off-season to ease my way into it, but it's all good. Unfortunately, we have a lot of experience with this situation and my trainer, Ryan knows exactly how to bring someone back, training wise from gnarly injuries since he's having to deal with Will (Hahn) and myself constantly. I’m thankful to have him in my corner and my mechanic, Hutch, who's been putting in long hours now that the season has begun. I got to test a bunch of stuff the other day with the Factory Connection guys and the whole Geico Honda team. This is the best my bike has ever been since I turned pro, so I'm extremely happy with the way everything is working right now.
So you're sitting just behind Marvin Musquin in points after just one round. How are you feeling about that, right now?
Obviously, the goal is to try to get a win no matter what. The number one looks really good on my bike and I'd love to keep that for another year. It's definitely not going to be easy to maintain that, but I've prepared myself knowing that keeping that number is going to be the most difficult thing I've ever had to do. Marvin rode pretty flawless last weekend and I feel like I didn't really make any mistakes either. I was a bit off the pace, but I learned a lot and had the first race jitters since I hadn't been on the gate in a while, but everyone else was in the same boat. I did ride a little tight and there were a few things that I could clearly see that I wasn't doing, but I've been working on those this week. I feel really good about this week and I'm happy with the spot that I'm in right now and this is the best I've ever started a season, so I'm looking forward to the rest of the races. It's a lot longer of a season than people think. Nine races is a lot of racing and anything can happen. I mean last year, I barely made it to the main in Dallas (laughs).
Atlanta is this weekend. Any expectations as far as the outcome for you?
For me, we've just been working a lot on the process that we have. First off, getting in the main with a good spot is important and you can't overlook that. A good start in the heat race with some solid laps and then once the main rolls around it's all about drilling a good start and getting in those solid laps. We've been working on those little things this week that I lacked last weekend. Like I said, I saw the things I needed to improve, so that's the main thing, for now. As long as I dial in my process and nail everything I'll be happy, but obviously I want to win so we'll see what happens.
Lets talk about the West Coast guys. Were you expecting Webb and the rest of the top guys to be up in points like they are now?
Absolutely. I'm pretty good friends with Coop (Cooper Webb) and I've raced a bunch of those guys my whole life. Coop was a few years younger than us, but he was always with our crew of friends and he's always been a fast kid. Guys like Nelson I've had to battle with my entire amateur career, so no doubt those guys are fast, too. We've all been through the professional thing for a while and sometimes it takes a while to figure out this whole Supercross thing. When we all get together in Vegas and outdoors it should be interesting.
Speaking of Vegas, Are you excited yet to see how you'll stack up against those guys?
Yeah, for sure. I don't think anybody would be telling the truth if they said they cared a whole lot about the shootout. Last year, for me, I could have cared less, but that's because I had literally just wrapped up the title, so I was ready to pack it in (laughs). The shootout is what it is and I don't really gauge much off of it and I don't think a whole lot of people do. It is bragging rights and all that, but it only matters for about a week or so until outdoors starts.
You're still working with Ryan Fedorow. How long have you been with him now?
It's been a couple years now. End of 2012 is when I started working with him. I had a really frustrating first year or two and I saw what he was doing with Will (Hahn) and being really close friends with Will, I got to see what he does and I felt he was the best move for me, so I made the jump and it's obviously paid off. It's been a tremendous improvement mentally and physically and I don't think I would have been able to make the come backs happen that I have made without him.
Ryan is big into cycling. How does he incorporate that into your program?
Yeah, he's really big into that stuff and we do a lot of it. Specialized Bikes and Shimano Components keep us dialed in and it's a lot of fun, now. I used to fully hate it, but I enjoy it now. We have awesome bikes, so that makes it fun, but I'd be lying if I said I didn't hate it sometimes. It's pretty tough stuff and he's really gnarly on a bicycle.
Last year you, Wil and Ryan did the occasional mountain bike race. Are you going to do any more this year?
I think once the Over The Hump stuff comes around we'll be doing a few of those, I'm sure. They're a good way to mix up the training program during the week. Last year I wasn't hurt till later in the year, so I got to do a few of those races, but this year has been a little different. It's definitely fun stuff and I really enjoy it, plus it keeps you competitive.