Chad Reed came into Anaheim 1 with a lot of question marks and a lot to prove. It’s been a long time since the two-time Supercross champ raced the series, having suffered an injury almost a year ago at last year’s Phoenix round. Reed also came into the race on a new bike and with a new team, one he is fronting himself: TwoTwo Racing. And after finishing a solid fifth at the A1 opener, Reedy spoke candidly with Dirt Rider about his thoughts on the race and his new bike.
What are your thoughts on your race?
I’m just happy to get it out of the way. It’s been a long time coming. My heat race start was solid and I just tried to replicate that in the main but I think I was snoozing on the gate. I just tried to be patient, but it was playing in the back of my mind once I got that bad start, and at one point James [Stewart] and I were right next to each other and I thought, “Ah, Phoenix all over again.” I was just careful and let the race come to me, but I wasn’t forceful. My pace was off a little in the beginning and about lap 12 I started flowing a little more and pushing to the front.
Are you satisfied with how things went?
It was not a stellar race and nothing to write home about but I’m happy. It was lot of different emotions going on and I think it’s good to get that first one out of the way. I said early I felt like I needed to go racing and I think I learned a lot of things I need to work on here and there. But overall I’m honestly happy. Top five overall, for as stacked as the class is and as spread out as we all were, it was good. It was an interesting race, I have to say; it didn’t feel like a normal Anaheim 1 atmosphere, but being in the back will do that too.
What are your thoughts going forward?
It’s going to be about the starts. All year it’s going to be about the starts and trying to lay those laps down early. You know, we didn’t even get a sniff of the two Ryan’s, we were in the back, but it will come.
Now that you have a race under your belt, what are your thoughts on the Honda and were you are at on your race set-up?
The bike is great and I think it has a lot of potential. I think for the first race I think that we were close. No major changes are needed; just a few tweaks here and there. And I guarantee you – even the winners – everyone will go away from here and try and work on what they learned for this weekend. The racing just presents things we don’t get at the practice track. So this is a good position we are in and I’m excited for this next weekend, going into Phoenix. I think we have some momentum, although it sounds weird to say we have momentum after finishing fifth. But I think fifth was a good finish considering where I came from and how I rode at the beginning.
Do you feel you’re in the hunt?
Oh, absolutely. It was all positives this weekend. Even the bad start, it’s just all the little things you learn. This is the first race I’ve done on this Honda in this configuration and there are things we learned. I’m inconsistent on things, and you need to learn what those things are. Good start in the heat; bad start in the main. It’s kind of normal with a new bike and new styles. It’s good to put 20 laps on the bike, a full heat cycle, and find out what the bike’s gonna do and what the clutch is gonna do. Just small things like that. Overall, I think we’ve got a very good package and it as a positive weekend.