One Fine Season
By Dylan Wright
Photos by James Lissimore
Where do I start? What a year 2020 has been for me and my team. Coming into the season, we didn’t know if we were going to be racing or not. Regardless, everybody on the team did their part throughout the shutdown and when it was time to drop the gate, I think it showed. Overall, 2020 was a dream season for me. Being at the top of the 450 Class is something you dream about as a kid, and I am finally there. I was able to have a dominating season outdoors, bringing home the 450 MX championship and performed well at the supercross races. Unfortunately, an injury cut that effort short with one round to go. But it was a successful year, as I managed to win the Triple Crown Series title as well. Now I’m just rehabbing my knee and hoping to get back on the bike as soon as possible so that I can get back to doing what I love to do.
Starting with the outdoor season, apart from two motos I would like to have back, it was an awesome season for me. I was able to win 11 of 14 motos and my worst finish was second overall at one round. I was happy and thrilled to have done so well this season, but at the same time, I surprised myself a little bit by how well I performed. I knew that I had put in a LOT of work this offseason, but you just never know where stack up against other competitors until the gate drops at the first round.
I had worked on my riding a lot heading into this year, but I also worked on my mindset as well. I knew if I rode the bike the way I had been during testing that I would do fine, but if I over-rode the bike that the 450 would bite me in the butt. So, I just worked on hitting my marks no matter where I was on the track and no matter the situation. It’s nice to have that as a plan, but to actually execute it felt great. I also had Colton and Justin in my corner this year which was a huge help for me. It is proven that those two know how to win and having their feedback during the week and weekend goes a long way. I am super happy with my results, but now I must work even harder to defend the title next year!
After the outdoors had finished up, it was time for supercross. We did not have a lot of time to get ready for this series as it was only two weeks after the end of the outdoor series. I did, however, take a few days off to let my body recover after the MX series. But once we got back to work, the team and I put in some good, long and hard days on the supercross setup. We made a lot of changes heading into round 1 compared to what I was working with previously. I was happy with the process and am looking forward to putting in the work to make my setup better in the future. Winning one of the supercross rounds was a step in the right direction. I have been working hard to get better at indoor racing and I will continue to do so. It’s something that’s a little newer to me so I’m still learning. I am also having fun with it, which is always a plus.
Unfortunately, at the second to last round of supercross in the second moto, my back tire slid out just before the finish line and clipped a tough block. The contact pitched me in a weird way right at the bottom of the finish line jump. I planted my foot awkwardly and immediately knew something in my knee was not okay as I felt it buckle. I still was able to limp to a fifth-place finish and clinch the Triple Crown series championship. I have to admit that an extra $20,000 is good for the bank account!
Now as I sit at home in Drummondville with my lovely fiancé, rehabbing my knee so I can get back on the bike as quickly as possible. Luckily for me, I did not need surgery as it was a minor tear to my MCL, and LCL and sometimes surgery can make it worse. Also, rehab time without surgery is a lot shorter. My doctor in Ottawa reviewed everything and I am working closely with him and my trainer to get everything back to 100 percent as quickly as possible. With this downtime, I have a lot of time to think about my winter plan and what lies ahead. I am also looking to purchase my first house, and any of you who have been through that knows it’s not always easy. Thankfully, I am lucky to have Kaven Benoit helping me out, so it has been nice to catch up with him and support him in his new adventure into real estate.
Until next time, I hope everyone stays safe from COVID-19 and can enjoy the amazing fall weather riding dirt bikes as much as possible!