Dropping In On: Red Bull KTM Factory Racing Jeffrey Herlings

With two MX2 World Championships under his belt and a commanding lead in this year’s series, the young Red Bull KTM Factory Racing rider Jeffrey Herlings from Holland chats with us briefly about Villopoto’s appearance on the MXGP scene and his own plans for the future.

What, in your opinion, are some misconceptions about you by the American racing fans?

American fans, apparently, think that I’m arrogant or cocky. Obviously I’m not, but that is easy to say from my side and it’s hard to prove. Yeah, that’s the main thing. I always get, on my social media, told I’m arrogant and cocky and kind of a ussy not to go up to the MX1 but we all got our reasons for that. And I just want to say that I’m not arrogant at all.

What do you want Americans to know about MXGP?

I think a lot of American fans and riders underestimate the competition we got here in Europe. Obviously they send the best America at the moment, which is Ryan Villopoto and he is also struggling here. I mean he is the best of the best of the best you could possibly have and he won a lot of American outdoor titles as well as supercross titles and he is having a tough time. Of course it’s a different thing here. We’ve got different tracks, different lifestyles, different languages everywhere, so for sure it’s tough but racing is racing and he is also struggling. I think they (Americans) really underestimate our series over here and they obviously think we are really slow, but we’ve proven now again that we’ve got some great rider here in Europe. I’m not saying Villopoto is bad, he is still one of the fastest guys out here as well but it’s not as easy as everyone thinks it is.

Where do you see yourself in the next five years?

Obviously just winning as much as possible, that is main goal, and hopefully collecting as much championships as possible.

Any possibility of moving to the US?

I mean, I’m pretty late with moving to the US. Kenny Roczen he moved when he was 16 or 17, which maybe I should have done as well but at that time I decided to stay over here and now I’m 20 and turning 21 in September so I’m getting pretty old already to still go over there and learn Supercross. I mean, Supercross is the big thing in America and we really don’t have that in Europe so I think I’m too late for that. But I think our series is growing, and getting bigger and bigger with more coverage on the media side as well as the TV side so I think our series is getting really good.

Who was your favorite rider growing up?

That’s a tough question, but I actually got three. So it’s Villopoto, James Stewart, and Cairoli. Those three are my heroes. I just really love Villopoto’s riding style and I’m a big fan. His style is just something special.