It’s in the mid-30s Down Under where Billy’s sweating out the laps so he can come out fighting for the nationals…
February has been wide open and blisteringly hot! Riding has been tough in the heat but when you see the improvements each day it makes you keep working – it’s tough though, sometimes the heat gets up to the mid 30s out in the desert. Regular trips to the chemist for glucose and electrolyte powders are a must, otherwise you can lose three or four kilos in weight just from sweating.
Today I woke up after a gruelling day’s riding and was 79kg, the lowest I’ve ever been! I didn’t know how to take it at first – normally I’m up around 84kg which is like my ‘safe’ weight. I never really go over or below that weight, it’s always around the same, so when I saw 79kg on the scales I had to ask myself a few questions. ‘Do I feel good?’ Yes! ‘Is training okay?’ Yes! ‘Can I complete the motos without feeling too tired?’ Yes! That’s all I really care about at the moment and if those things still continue to go well then there’s no reason to question anything – just crack on and keep doing what I’m doing. I feel lighter and stronger than I did last year and on the bike I can feel within me that I can push harder for longer.
Riding has been going really good this month and I’ve been building my minutes up each day and practising the sprint formats for the first round. The sprint formats are pretty hard in the heat – it’s horrible sitting there in your sweaty gear waiting for the five minutes to be up. I’ve also been doing 35-minute motos so when I do the sprints when I hit the 15-minute mark it feels like I’m just getting into it and working the track out only to be stopped mid-session!
Keith has hit terra firma back in the UK now after doing a week’s stint with Johnny Rae down in Philip Island doing his manfriend thang – although he’s not really a manfriend, more a manforce! He just carries the force with him all the time. I also got to catch up with my old training buddy Leon Haslam and Kirk while they were over here the weeks leading up to the race. It was great to see everyone as I was starting to miss home a little. So I’ve had quite a lot of company the past couple months and it’s now back to H and me in our cosy little love shack which is pretty nice and relaxing!
I got whisked off on a little Valentine weekend away too which is always a welcome break. Australia is so easy for holidays – nice weather, nice beaches, you can literally have a holiday any weekend within a two-hour drive. So we hit the beach and had a little holiday home right near the water, enjoyed some red wine and good food with gorgeous sunshine and clear blue seas!
We recently had the launch of the 2011 MX nationals down in Sydney. It’s a pretty cool thing to do for the series – all the teams rock up and have a test on one of the national tracks. We all do our thing to promote the series and get to test our bikes, catch up with everyone and have a good time. There was a BBQ, a freshly watered track, all the TV and press guys were there so we did some fun interviews and checked out all the new rigs and bikes. It was a good thing to be part of. You can check out the videos on YouTube if you search out the links.
We have a brand new set-up for this year as I may have mentioned before. We’re the full Monster Energy Kawasaki team here in Oz and our graphics and posters etc are so much cooler than last year’s. We’re using the same design as the factory Kawasaki bike in the States and the new semi truck is fully wrapped in the Monster Kawasaki colours and looks so cool! It makes me excited to be a part of everything and I can see the team growing each week with the work Troy and the mechanics are doing.
We have loads of great sponsors coming on and I get on real well with my new team-mates. We have a new MX2 guy called Phil Nicoletti who is cool. He’s been in the States riding with Zach and Jas before he come over so it was fun to swap stories with him and find out how Jas has been getting on. Dean I already know from last year and he’s a cool guy and a hard worker – I’m sure he’s gonna be fast this year.
Guys, I’m really sorry there’s not a lot to talk about. I haven’t really had anything funny or weird happen to me this month – it’s been all work and no play! The only things that come to mind are the things I’ve been doing round the house! While Harriet is at work and I’m left at home I find myself feeling a bit house proud and being a proper little house husband. I always have the Hoover out and always do the washing!
Hope you are all good back home, I’m really looking forward to racing the British GP in August! I need to try and contain the excitement – there’s nothing like riding a British GP!