Pastrana offers Roczen encouragement

After a few weeks of wondering what has been going on with Ken Roczen, we finally have some answers and Ken, probably wisely, has stepped away from supercross in a bid to fix yet more health issues.

Illness in December still led to a surprise win at A1 but that maybe covered the cracks and lifted expectations too high. Roczen, as the season has went on, has seen results fade and mistakes increase. And, even recently when he has had the pace again in qualifying the longevity of his race pace hasn’t been there. Now in a Honda statement it was revealed that as well as his original sickness in December, Roczen has also had Covid after the San Diego supercross and it all explains just why his performances have not been up to the standard of his talent.

Roczen said on Instagram: “As many of you have already read, my Team @honda_racing_us and I have decided to take a break from Supercross 2022. My Sponsors, Family, Friends, Fans… I love you guys so much. You are always true and you always support me. This year has been super tough on me in a lot of different ways and I need some time to fix it.”

It should not be underestimated how far Roczen has come from that crash in 2017 but sadly, it looks like he may never quite be the same as he was before with lingering health issues generally thwarting his title attempts every year even when he looks in position to deliver.

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And Travis Pastrana as well as the likes of Ricky Carmichael and Jill Cairoli have offered messages of support to the globally popular German. An empathetic Pastrana wrote: “Always fun watching you. Always amazed you have battled through so much and continue to get back to the top. No one knows what you are going through but you… and we don’t need to.. but all of us who have ever tried to be a champion in this sport understand how tough it is. I Have nothing but respect for all that you have done and continue to look forward to all you will do in the future.. on and off the bike. Much love bud.”

Ken’s Honda contract is up at the end of the year and it remains to be seen where he goes next. Does he stay in the USA, go back to KTM, what about Triumph? Light rumours have indicated he may even want to race MXGP again before he retires and go back to his roots.

First of all though, let’s hope he can get his health sorted and get back to the sharp end of whatever series he races, because watching one of the most naturally talented and smooth riders ever to ride a bike struggle isn’t nice. Ken doesn’t deserve to go out like this, he’s too good.

Article: Jonathan McCready

Images: Honda

Podcast! Jonathan McCready and Andy McKinstry talk about the MXGP at Mantova, some amazing MX2 performances plus should Herlings race the US nationals? We also talk about Ken Roczen’s future and that Stewart/ Anderson clash (at 1 hour 5 minutes 20 seconds in). Available on all major podcast platforms, get it on iTunes here or Spotify and You Tube below: