Considering that his dad’s nickname was “Holeshot,” and that he grew up helping out at the Donnie Hansen Motocross Academy, we figured that Yamaha of Troy’s Josh Hansen might have a starting tip or two to share.
“First off, when it comes to gate selection, I try to find the straightest point to the first corner, but usually from the middle to inside.”
“For cement gates, you always have to get it as clean as you can, and then chirp the back tire to keep it hot and sticky.”
“On dirt, try to find a start without a big rut…something kind of shallow and pretty straight to the first corner.”
“When the card goes sideways, I usually have my clutch out to the point that the bike’s just trying to creep. That way I minimize the reaction time, and I’m able to jump out there real hard as soon as I see the gate move. I’m usually holding steady at about mid-throttle, and I’m usually watching the pin, because that’s the first thing that moves.”
“I keep my weight centered. If I go to lean back too quick, my front end comes up and I start wheelying. So I always keep my weight forward, and my feet in front of the footpegs, and I find it easier to shift with my heel.”
We also noticed that Josh uses his feet to counter-balance, like when the front end came up, and asked him whether about it. “I guess it’s just a subconscious thing, from experience.” But after watching Josh on a Bongo Board (an accessory used by skateboarders to help develop balance) earlier this year, we can tell you that he’s got great balance.
Thanks for the tips, Josh!