Stoppin In: Kurt Caselli
A motocross first-timer
Stoppin In: Kurt Caselli
Story and photos by Shan Moore
Kurt Caselli has long been a force on the American off-road scene, with multiple titles in various series such as WORCS, Hare and Hound, in addition to a long line of accomplishments in International Six Days Enduro competition.
This past weekend at Southwick, however, the FMF/KTM rider tried his hand at national motocross for the first time ever, coming away with a respectable 28th place finish.
Motocross.com spoke with Caselli at Southwick about motocross, and the upcoming Six Days competition in Germany.
What made you decide to race here at Southwick?
I’ve been wanting to do an outdoor national for a couple of years now and it just worked out that this year, with the backing that KTM has with DeCoster, it’s a lot easier for us off-road guys to get on a moto bike and try some different stuff.
Obviously, the new bike is good, and I was able to get on one and come back here and race my first national. It was fun just being here, I haven’t raced in three months, I got injured doing a Hare and Hound and I’m just coming back from that. I’m still working at getting back in shape. But it was kind of cool being out there.
How is your injury is doing.
I went down in the fifth round of the H&H series and broke my scapula and separated my shoulder. So I was out for six weeks because of the broken bone and in the meantime I decided to have my knee cleaned out just because it had been bugging me. That took another three weeks, which put us out of two months of riding. Injuries are part of the deal and everyone goes through them, so it’s not a big deal.
Talk about your decision not to ride WORCS this year.
It just didn’t work out this year, we had a huge backing from KTM for Baja and they are putting in a big worldwide effort from the factory for that race. I really wanted to do well, and the first race went well, we won the San Filipe 250. I wasn’t able to race the 500, but we got third there. The team did awesome, we have Marc Coma step in for me and we’re still leading the points. Goal number one for me this year was Baja, and with that I had a decision I had to make on my own whether I was going to do Hare and Hound or WORCS and there were seven races that conflicted and I didn’t want to be jumping back and forth between different model bikes; I wanted to race the same bike we were running at Baja and that ended up being the same as a Hare and Hound bike. That was the whole decision; it was nothing against WORCS or anything like that. It just happened that I had to pick one or the other and I definitely wanted to be prepared for Baja.
Tell us about Baja. Was that something that took some adjustment for you?
Baja is it’s own deal; it’s unique and it’s dangerous, of course. There are a lot of different elements you have to think about. I just think the mindset is the biggest thing. You have to go down there a lot more aware of what’s going on and a lot more prepared. Physically, it’s no different that a regular Hare and Hound or desert race. As far as the riding goes, you ride with your head.
Six Days is coming up and you had a stellar ride last year. Are you going to be 100% for Germany this year?
Yeah, injuries never happen at a good time, but the good thing is I’ll be 100% for Six Days this year.
Talk about this year’s effort.
This year we have an amazing team, it’s definitely going to be one to remember. I think we have a good chance not only of doing good overall, but during the day the test times are important and people are watching those and to be able to have five or six solid guys who are capable of winning tests, that’s huge. So I’m excited to be a part of it.
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