Stopping In With Jessy Nelson
Story and photos by Shan Moore
Jessy Nelson turned a few heads at the Texas round of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championships, when the series rookie turned a 7-9 performance into seventh overall finish in the 250 class. The Troy Lee Designs-backed Honda rider got great starts all day and even led a lap of the opening moto.
Motocross.com sat down with Jessy at the Lakewood round this past weekend to see how the California is adapting to life in the Pros.
You seem to be adjusting to the Pro class just fine.
Yeah, I’m enjoying it. It’s a whole new ball game, just getting used to how much different it is from the Amateurs. The competition is just so much gnarlier and the pace is so much faster. There’s a lot of stuff to get used to and I’m just trying to prepare myself for years to come.
You had a really good race in Texas, you got good starts and you ran out front for a while.
Yeah, I did get good starts, I was happy with that. That helped me get a top-10, which I was happy with.
What’s the biggest difference for you between the Amateurs and the Pros?
I would say the caliber of riders and how many really good ones there are. In Amateurs, there are only a few really fast guys, but out here there a lot of fast guys. Plus the longer motos are a big difference and the starts are key, just because you’re not going against just a couple of good starters, you’re going against 40 really good starters. It’s just a lot different.
What do you like most about being a Pro?
I think the coolest thing is flying to the races and then getting out of there as early as possible and being home on Sunday. At an Amateur race, you’re there for a week and a half or so. I like the fans, too. They come by and tell you they like watching you ride and all that.
Coming into the season, where did you expect to finish?
I just had a goal of top-10, and maybe top-15 every week. I didn’t know what to expect and I didn’t know what my speed would be coming in. It’s just a whole new thing.
Are you fitting in with the Troy Lee guys okay?
Yeah, I feel like I fit in with the team pretty good, and I can’t thank them enough, these guys are awesome. They help me out so much, and they’re great.
Where do you live at now?
I live down by the team in Corona right now, but I’m from around the San Luis Obispo area, which is a cool place, I love it out there.
Are you looking forward to Supercross and is that something you enjoy riding?
Yeah, I’m looking forward to Supercross, for sure. That’s more my style than motocross. I’ll start riding Supercross soon to get ready for the new year.
How would you describe your style?
I try to be as smooth as I can, but I can be aggressive when I need to . I guess I just do my best under any conditions.
What kind of tracks do you like best?
I do the best on the rougher tracks, but it just depends on how I’m feeling at the time. This Lakewood track, I’m struggling with it. I’ve never been to this track before and it’s kind of balling me up trying to figure it out, there are so many lines and it’s so rutted. I just can’t put together a good lap.
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