Interview: Arminas Jasikonis on becoming Dutch Champ and Ice One Husqvarna
Arminas Jasikonis is rider with so much potential. It’s easy to forget but he’s still only 21 years old which makes him the youngest rider in the MXGP World Championship.
The Lithuanian clinched the Dutch Masters title at the weekend against some heavy hitters like Glenn Coldenhoff and Pauls Jonass to name a few.
Jasikonis only signed a one year deal with the Ice One Husqvarna team so will be hoping he’s done enough to earn another contract with the team. He currently sits sixth in the MXGP World Championship standings – not bad for a 21 year old!
We caught up with Jasikonis after he won the Dutch title at the Zwartecross festival.
Gatedrop: AJ, overall it was a good day for you clinching the Dutch Masters title. Just how does it feel to win this National title?
Arminas Jasikonis: It’s fine. It’s just the Dutch you know but still it’s something special for me. It’s good, it wasn’t the best day but it was okay. My riding can improve and still we are missing something. Let’s see how it goes this weekend, step by step.
Gatedrop: Have you won National titles before, I guess you have in Lithuania? But this is the biggest title you’ve won I guess.
Arminas Jasikonis: Yeah, let’s say this title is one of the biggest for me. Of course many times I am Lithuanian champion but that doesn’t rank up as high as the Dutch Masters championship.
Gatedrop: What’s your thoughts on the Zwartecross event running a Motocross race with a festival? I think it’s really good for the sport but on the other hand the track isn’t the best..
Arminas Jasikonis: Yeah, I mean the track is quite special (unique). I mean it’s nice when you ride it on your own like in qualifying but once the lapping started in the race, to be honest they weren’t paying attention, you know? They just didn’t care, it wasn’t dangerous but a little disappointing that they don’t move out of the way. They got showed blue flags but still they kind of ignored them. It’s fine, we had a good race and this was fun. With the Zwartecross, it’s nice, it’s my first time here and I’m surprised with how big it is.
Gatedrop: Just on MXGP, you started incredibly well and were fourth after three or four rounds but since then the form has dipped a little but are you happy with how it’s going?
Arminas Jasikonis: The last races haven’t been like I wanted. I’ve dropped a little bit but I’m still young with a lot to learn. This year already we’ve made a big step with everything. It’s good, I am struggling a little bit now, I’ve been preparing the season for quite a while now, I have to find a second breath and go again now for the rest of the season.
Gatedrop: Last year you were with the Assomotor Honda team and this year you’re with Factory Ice One Husqvarna, just how do they both compare?
Arminas Jasikonis: Ice One is one of the highest quality teams in the paddock, for sure. The way they work is really professional and everything. We can’t compare Assomotor and Ice One because Ice One is a factory team and that already says everything. We can’t compare but I can’t say anything bad about Assomotor, it was a great year with them for me. Now with Ice One I am happy with where I am with this team, everything feels fine.
Gatedrop: It’s coming up to contract time, I know you only signed a one year deal, has there been any talks about next year yet? I guess you want to stay with the same setup!
Arminas Jasikonis: Right now, let’s say I have nothing. I am just waiting. Let’s see what it brings, we have to get some better results at the end to get something. Let’s see how it goes.
Gatedrop: Lithuania obviously didn’t send an MXoN team to RedBud but do you know if they’ll send a team to Assen? I guess you’d love to be part of that.
Arminas Jasikonis: Yeah, I had already a talk a couple of times and they’re planning on making a team this year for sure. Let’s see if I will be healthy and everything, I’d like to go and race there.
Interview: Andy McKinstry
Pic: Niek Kamper