The Mentality

A guy hit us up on Twitter and we decided to give it a go for you moto die-hards.

By: Taylor D
Lead Photo: James Lissimore

It’s bizarre, the thought of wearing your favorite pair of Ethika underwear inside out? Superstition...Or a sub-conscious “grasping of straws”, looking for any edge humanly possible. Give me something, anything, to make me feel as though I have an edge in tackling the arduous sport we call MOTOCROSS!!

Whether you’re a local “B” class rider or Eli Tomac, the mental aspect of “creating the winning edge” is undeniably incredible. To be in a place where complete “comfort” can be achieved is a long process that requires so many things to align, for all to be right in your world. You hear industry people such as Steve Matthes himself refer to them as mental “nutjobs”. He is absolutely correct in his description of these riders. The things they go through to achieve comfort while riding at an incredible pace in front of tens of thousands of fans screaming their brains out, would seem absolutely insane to us normal beings.

As previously stated, some will go as far as wearing underwear inside out because that’s “what they do”. Some prefer a certain type of sock, or knee brace sleeve. This trend continues through the boots and how broke in they are, to the helmet and goggles and what type of foam is around the frame of the goggle. On to the gloves, and some won’t wear the ones with Velcro straps. The list goes on and on and the number of things to keep straight for all of the team members is huge! They are like a beautifully orchestrated symphony and not too many fully understand what it takes for a Tomac to be in the proper mental state to go out and perform on Saturday night!

To watch it all come together like it did for Eli in SLC, is an incredible thing to watch. We are all singing his praises, what an incredible ride, how can anyone beat him? Seven short days later, we see it all crumble beneath those freshly mounted Dunlop tires. What happened? Is it that flashy red background behind the big number 3 like RC says? Was his bike twisted up from washing the front wheel shortly after getting into the #1 spot. We will probably never know exactly what happened! A champion will come back from this, he will right the wrongs of East Rutherford and learn from whatever ailed him!

These mental nuances are what makes Ryan Dungey incredible. Week in and week out he is there, and this mental fortitude is what creates a champion, year in and year out!