Despite long breaks between EnduroCross events, JG Off Road’s Geoff Aaron is keeping busy. The champion rider is on the road about 40 weeks a year, and this summer, added on stunt shows at six of the Outdoor Nationals. Aaron has taken the weeks between events to recoup from a preseason injury and shares how he’s doing in this week’s Wednesday Wrench.
Hey Geoff- What are you up to today?
I just prepped a new Gas Gas trials bike and am planning to take a ride this afternoon up here in Vancouver, BC.
This year you committed to doing stunt shows at the Outdoor Nationals, with the last one last weekend at Unadilla, how did that arrangement come about?
This year we were actually contracted to do performances at six rounds of the outdoor MX Nationals (CO, MD, MI, NY, PA & CA). For 2012 RedBull is a series sponsor and longtime supporter of my program. They asked us in February if we’d like to help them bring more entertainment to the races and of course we jumped at the opportunity.
When did you start performing at the Outdoor Nationals?
The first time I ever did an ERE demo at an outdoor National was Hangtown in 2000!
What do you like about going to those events to do the stunt shows?
Performing at these events are great way promote your name and have fun at the same time. Sometimes the traveling gets tough but it’s all worth it to see the people enjoying themselves. It’s cool to also see how many enthusiasts are also following our racing program. Lots of people ask about Endurocross, X-Games and AWD GEICO Hondas.
For your interview at Allisports, you said you’re a regular at open motocross practice but haven’t raced since college—why did you decide to focus on other racing disciplines?
I’ve always focused primarily on Mototrials. Once Extreme Enduro and Endurocross popped up on the radar it grabbed my attention because I prefer the technical competitions. I’ve always cross-trained and ridden a little motocross but I definitely don’t consider myself a motocrosser
You’ve been able to race two of the first three rounds of the Endurocross season, with the X-Games being the last event. Do you mind taking us through your race at the X-Games?
X-Games was another great race. My primary goal was to make the main event. Since my injuries were still not 100% I was realistic about my finish. I had a solid ride in my heat race to make the main but then got a terrible start and only moved forward a few positions for 8th place in the final. Not where I ultimately want to be but given the circumstances I was happy. There were a lot of amazing riders that didn’t make the cut.
How did you feel about the track/and how EnduroCross was portrayed for its second run at the X-Games?
The X-Games track was cool and there was a great turnout for the races. More effort was put into the layout and it was noticeable. The tracks seem to be trending towards faster and less technical but it was fun to ride nonetheless. Obviously the TV exposure is huge and hopefully it’ll continue to grow worldwide.
In terms of points, you are just right outside of the top 10. You’re a handful of points away from breaking up the four way tie in front of you. Are you paying attention to the points race right now, or is it still too early?
Yes, missing round 1 was not ideal. I’ve got a lot of work to do in order to claw my way back into the points. I will be trying hard in the second half of the season to finish up strong. It’s a shame because prior to the start of the season I felt stronger and faster than ever before.
The season is so spread out this year in my opinion, but it kind of helped to give you some extra healing time, but how do you feel about waiting until September 15th for the next round?
The longer the better in between rounds.
What have you been able to do in terms of testing and training during these long stretches? Have you been able to mix things up and try new things to help you on the race track?
I’ve been busy performing on the Trials bike as you already know and mixing Motocross, Endurocross and Bicycle into the day to day training. It’s been tough this year because the more I ride the more it aggravates my banged up shoulder. I’m doing the best I can right now. One thing I’ve been improving is my Honda. New ignition settings and special fuel have improved some of the stalling problems I’ve been having.
Do these breaks between races help give you time for ERE?
There are really no breaks for me during the season. I’m always riding, racing or performing. We are obligated approximately 40 weeks a year!
October is pretty intense for the EnduroCross season- what do you think will be the key to making it through those three rounds in good shape?
I’m looking forward to the October races. I’ve had great finishes at each of those rounds before. The key for me is to continue working hard and riding smart. Hopefully my luck will turn around and the results will come.
Besides celebrating your birthday last week-what else is new with you?
Yes, it’s true… Mike Brown, Destry Abbott and I are all now eligible for the old guy class (laughs). The biggest news however is that my family and I are moving to Temecula, CA in a few weeks. Being closer to the motorcycle industry is important for my business and we are looking forward to a new change.
Last but not least- is there anyone you’d like to thank?