I’m used to seeing you go through sections at trails effortlessly all the time, every time whenever and never pull off. Recently it’s like, “Wow, you actually are human.”
My first session in a while was at Posh. You have to roll in being like, “I’m going to hit that set and pull back.” It took me twelve tries to get through Chillers. I bet I didn’t pull out of Chillers twice all of last year. Some people showed up later and got to witness the battle I was having. J-Bone was like, “I never seen that before.” I can’t ever remember riding that poorly… you’re just riding the wrong way. I think when the trails are of that caliber, there is one way to ride it. The only way to ride it is fully relaxed, going as high as you can. The funniest part of the day was about two hours in it felt like the lips were really buck-y this year. Once I got comfortable, the bucks went away. I was riding the jumps in a way they didn’t want to be ridden. (Laughter) Everyone has that session the first day of spring where you’re just kind of sketchy. I think what happens, as you get older, you have one of those sessions and you just call it. It’s like, “Alright, I’m not very good anymore.” If I didn’t make it through those first two hours, it was kind of like, party’s over. (Laughter) I don’t want to ride bikes if this is what it’s going to feel like. But two hours in you’re feeling more comfortable; you’re not sketchy anymore. My first session at Catty this year I hit Roller Run; I never hit Roller Run in my life. (Laughs)
I remember it was about seven years ago, you going to Catty Woods for the first time ever, and you went through every section first try.
When I think about that, it doesn’t make any sense to me. It was later in the day. I remember that day; I followed Dave King. Dave had squeaky brakes, so I would just follow him and I had no idea what was coming, but if I heard his brakes, I would grab brakes. He was in front of me so I could see if he pulled back hard; in an effort not to run into him I have to pull back hard too. I remember making it through all the lines, then for the next hour I tried to do the lines myself, and I had no idea where to go. (Laughs) I want to get comfortable again.
If you were at that level before, you can get back up to it.
I’ve been comfortable on my bike… I haven’t had an injury streak like the one I just went through since I was twenty-nine.
In an interview from 2007 you said if you had a good injury like blowing out a knee it would be bad. What do you have to say about it today, now that it actually happened?
It could have been worse, but it definitely freaks you out a little bit. It was bad. (Laughs) With loss of confidence you start questioning, “Should I be doing this?” The other day I went to pull out on a big set and my brake cable broke. I kind of splattered into the landing and had a sore back. My wife was like, “So how high were you when you jumped off?” I looked at the roof, and I thought, “I pretty much just ran off the roof.” And because I didn’t want to land on my knees, I landed on my ass. On the drive home, my back’s hurting, and I’m thinking, “A forty-year-old dude does not need to be flying fifteen feet through the air.”