The start of the season didn’t get off to an ideal start for Tim Gajser as he picked up two fractures in his jaw bone competing in the International Italian Championship at Mantova. It meant the two time World Champion didn’t make the first round of the MXGP World Championship.

Gajser made a return at round two and has been improving as he gets more and more races under his belt. The Slovenian got back on the box in Águeda earlier in the season and at Matterley Basin was close to another podium.

The HRC Honda rider was tied on points with Febvre and Desalle but as he didn’t have the best of second moto’s it meant he ended up fifth overall.

We caught up with Gajser to discuss Matterley Basin.

Gatedrop: Tim, not such a bad weekend for you as you ended up tied for the podium, you must be disappointed to miss the podium but the speed wasn’t so bad?

Tim Gajser:  Sure, I’m definitely disappointed because I know that I have the speed. Just in the second moto I couldn’t pass Romain (Febvre), he was blocking all the inside lines so I had to work really hard. I pushed a little bit too hard and lost all the energy. In the last three laps I just rode around and didn’t push anymore.

I’m really disappointed but anyway we are going to go home, work hard and come back in France.

Gatedrop: I mean in the first moto for the first 15-20 minutes you were right there with Herlings so you must be pleased with that?

Tim Gajser:  Sure, you know the first race was good. I took a good start and I was out front with them, I could see their lines and you try to follow their rhythm and everything.  I was feeling good on the bike and everything in the first one. In the second one as well, the start was okay, but I made a big mistake around the first corner. I almost crashed out so I was quite far down the pack so I had to come through the pack and make some passes. I got stuck behind Romain (Febvre) and then Desalle passed me as well but yeah, that was the end.

Gatedrop:  Obviously getting a good start will help but what do you think you need to do to be right there with Tony and Jeffrey?

Tim Gajser: The start is really important. I think the start is getting more important every race because all of us are really riding the same speed. I think this year with the tracks, they don’t rip them so deep so you don’t have a lot of line selection like in previous years. The start is the key and to try find some good lines and everything. I think that will help for sure.

Pic: Nigel McKinstry

Gatedrop: You’ve been on the HRC Honda for a few years now. What’s the bike like for getting out of the gate, is it okay or is that maybe an area for improvement?

Tim Gajser:  We are working all the time. We are testing a lot, we try to improve everywhere. But I think we have a good bike with Honda and I’m happy with it. I think it’s all on me so I have to figure out how I can come back. For sure the beginning was not easy for us but now it’s already half way so I’ve had a couple of races under my belt. I will try to be better and better each weekend.

Gatedrop:  We head to France next weekend, that’s a track that should suit you so you could push for the podium!

Tim Gajser: Sure, it’s always the goal to be on the podium. I will definitely give my best to be there.

Gatedrop: There’s sand coming up in the calendar with the likes of Ottobiano, Assen and Lommel. Have you done much sand riding to prepare for those races?

Tim Gajser:  Yeah, we have been testing a lot in the sand as well as hard pack, we practice a lot everywhere. I try to be ready for every track.

Gatedrop: They seem to be flatting the tracks a lot more this year compared to previous years, have you noticed that and what’s your thoughts on it?

Tim Gajser: Yeah, they are flatting the tracks a lot this year. I think it makes us all run the same pace but we have to ride what we get so for everyone is the same. There’s no excuses from me.

Gatedrop: Just on your future, you’ve done a few races in America in the past and you’ve said in the past you want to go there. Is that still the case or do you see yourself in this paddock now?

Tim Gajser: Sure, one day I want to be there (in America).

Gatedrop: But for next year, MXGP?

Tim Gajser: Yeah!

Interview: Andy McKinstry

Pics: Nigel McKinstry

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