Trey Canard came into the pro ranks winning, grabbing the 2008 East Coast Supercross Lites title in his rookie year. Since then championships had eluded him, but 2010 was different. After nabbing five supercross podiums during his guest ride on a factory 450 Honda during his 250F division break, he went into his final 250F outdoor season and came up with the championship after overcoming a huge point deficit, then he participated on the winning Team USA at the Motocross of Nations. But his year really peaked when he got to ride Dirt Rider’s stock 2011 CRF450R test bike! We spoke to Trey the morning of his first ride on the Honda supercross test track as a full-factory rider on Big Red…right after helping us out with this issue’s cover.
Dirt Rider: You had an amazing end to your 250F season. What was different this year than in previous years?
Trey Canard: A little bit of self-confidence or self-belief. I just had a couple good races and then it all came ina from there. With the great 450 rides in supercross, which was a great jump start to the outdoor season, and then with an awesome year for myself. I can’t complain one bit about any bad races or any times that I had, it was good.DR: Did you do anything differently this season? Can you pinpoint it and say, “This sure worked”?
TC: It wasn’t rocket science. I think the main thing was to believe in myself. I’m a racer at the end of the day, so to really put too much thought into why or how, I don’t think it’s too logical. I think I just had some good momentum going and a few changes in the program-a little more fun and a little more riding, I think, was the ticket.DR: You performed when you needed to. Do you consider yourself a racer who performs better under pressure?
TC: Yes and no. I’ve had my times of performing well under pressure, and I’ve had my times of crumbling. I was just happy to get it done when it counted, and I know there will be a lot more positions like that, and I hope I can be known as a rider who performed well under pressure.DR: When you started as a pro in the 250F class you came in like gangbusters and had an amazing start. Is there something you gained with that that you’re going to bring into the move up to the 450 class?
TC: I think the thing with that is I perform well as kind of an underdog. It motivates me to not really have anyone expecting me to do a whole lot, or maybe not that, but people are expecting others to do a lot better, so I think that is good for me and why I did so well in ’08. Hopefully I can bring that same mentality this year and do what I can.DR: Did Ryan Dungey’s rookie 450 success affect how you see the move up and your new competition?
TC: Yeah, it does help me, thinking that as a Lites rider it can be done, to be competitive in the 450 class. He has cleared the way that anyone can do it and it doesn’t matter if you’re a rookie or four years in the class, it can be done.DR: Does your approach change this year going into a full 450 supercross season compared to last year’s 450 rounds?
TC: Not really. I did the full season last year, minus two races, and I got a taste of that and I feel like I have a little bit better of an idea with it. And having Timmy [Ferry, his mentor and trainer] will be a big help for me, having been there and done that several times. I think the approach is just to come in ready and do the best that I can. That’s all I can really 100 percent do, so that’s what I’ll do.DR: Do you change your training focus to race 450s?
TC: Yes and no. It’s really hard to put on real weight. I think I’m a pretty decent size for the 450. Obviously I want to put on a little bit more, but you don’t want to get carried away with it. I think the main thing is just not over complicating it. Just remembering it’s just a dirt bike.DR: How stoked are you to be riding Dirt Rider ‘s bone-stock Honda?
TC: I’m pumped, man! It takes me back to the amateur days, so hopefully I don’t get carried away on the supercross track and end things early!