Jimmy Jarrett has officially decided what’s next in his already storied career. Whether it’s on the starting line or managing a team, (or both) Jarrett’s plans are the topic of this week’s Wrench, as he tells us just what he has in mind for 2013.
So you just got back from Boise EX last night. How was it?
It was awesome! My girlfriend is from Boise so I got to hang out with her family and go to the EnduroCross. It was actually on my birthday so we had a huge party afterwards. It was actually pretty fun.
It sounds like it. Happy Birthday! What number are we to now?
So what’s in store for your 36th year?
Well, I know what I want to do and I have some things in the works, but as for a detailed a description, I’m not sure. I definitely want to be in a managing position with a team. I’ve been doing it for so long I know what needs to be done and what doesn’t need to be done so I think I’d be pretty good at it. I think helping riders come up and help win a couple championships would be cool.
So you’ve officially decide to announce your retirement?
I have. I just wasn’t having as much fun as I was in the past. That competitive edge wasn’t there anymore. It was pretty tough to go to the GNCCs and ride around in 10th place not having fun. I just was not enjoying myself anymore. This last weekend I had more fun going early, setting up and talking to everyone. I just knew it was time. Lots of people struggle with stopping racing and I haven’t really had that. I’ve been there, done that, and don’t really regret what I’ve done. There were no hard feelings or regrets that I was going to miss it. It was just time to make that decision. When you know it’s time to move on, it’s time to move on.
What do you think your ideal set up for next year would be?
I definitely want to manage an off road team. My goal would be to kind of do what JT is doing and carry on with some factory support and get some good riders. As far as where I’m going or what I’m doing, that’s what I’m trying to figure out right now.
What do you think you’re going to miss most about XC1 Racing?
I think I’ll miss just hanging out with people and seeing them on the weekend. It’s kind of why I want to stay in the industry and go to the races still and see everyone. I started riding and racing because I loved it. I’ll still be doing races all next year and probably the rest of my life, just not on the XC1 row. I’ll still be doing morning races in the Sportsman A class.
You’ll be racing against JT Bennett!
Yeah I will!
What do you think you’re most proud of in terms of racing accomplishments?
Definitely the OMA championships. They’re very special and something I’ll never forget and also the ISDE. I’m thankful for all the different places I’ve traveled, and the people I met along the way. That’s what I’ll remember the most for sure.
After all the races and wins you’ve had, do you think you could think of your favorite race of all time?
Oh man, that’s hard to answer. I’ll have to think about that for a minute. I can’t think of just one but if I had to it would be a toss up between my win at Unadilla after being hurt all year and getting run over while cycling and the times we podiumed at the ISDE. That was something I’ll never forget!
The GNCC season is over this weekend. Looking back, what would you say about how your season has gone?
I guess looking back at the end of last year I kind of had the feeling that I would be done but it was just the way things worked out that it was better for me to ride one more year. 2011 wasn’t that great and I thought I can do better than that. I was convinced that I had one more year in me to be competitive. I trained like I did before and prepared for the season. But it wasn’t long in the season, when I realized I didn’t have one more year in my heart and body. It sucked at the beginning of the year. I put so much time and effort in it and so did JT. I was there to produce results and it wasn’t happening. JT knew where I was coming from, though, and it was just one of those things I had to accept, and then the season was a lot easier. Results wise it wasn’t a good year at all, but learning what I did through the year, I thought it was a pretty good year as far as that aspect. I’m more looking to the future than I was about results. It was kind of tough to look back and say it was a good year when you see the results- but looking back through my eyes it was a good year.
So you’re working on next year, but you have to have some fun plans after Loretta’s this weekend. What are you going to do with your time off?
I’m going to do a lot of hunting! (laughs) I haven’t been able to get out yet! That’s my first priority when it’s done. I’ve also been invited to a race in South America, the Desafio Pucon, right before Thanksgiving. It’s like a two day enduro. My girlfriend’s dad and I are going down for 10 days and do that race and see what that’s all about and I’m going to write a couple articles in Dirt Bike magazine.
Oh nice! Have you written things before for DirtBike?
They’ve done motorcycle tests and interviews- but as far as my writing-no. It’s going to be a new challenge for me! It’s a new event that the guys are starting down there and I want to get the word out for them.
Well best of luck with that. It sounds like after a good rest you’ll be ready to go for next year. Before we end is there anyone you’d like to thank?
First I would like to thank my parents and my family. They have been behind me since I started riding at the age of 5 and have been to almost all of my races my entire career. I would like to thank everyone who has supported me along the way. There are so many to list but a few that stand out are Phil and Nancy Andrews, Rodney and Lori Smith, JT and Gretchen Bennett, Harry and Joanne Reed, My OMA family, the Spangler family, everyone at Western Reserve Motorcycle Club, Mike Webb, Randy Hawkins, Fred Andrews, Kurt Caselli, my girlfriend Shayla and her family, and my amazing sponsors that have been with me forever, Honda, Kenda, Silkolene, DP Brakes, AXP Racing, Moose, Super Sprox, PG Graphics, Cycra, Tsubaki, Factory Connection, FMF, Works Connection, CV4, BRP, No Toil, Rekluse, IMS, Moto Tassinari, Outerwears, Renthal, G2 Ergonomics and Zip Ty. Thanks to everyone that in one way or another has helped me along the way. You guys are the ones that made it happen. Thank you!