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Longname – What were you up to on the off weeks you had with your shoulder?
Pettis – So for the first week and a half or so I was still pretty sore and I was just sitting around recovering, I couldn’t do a whole lot. Then the next week I kind of slowly starting getting back into my normal routine, just hitting the gym doing lower body stuff and road biking. Just doing the most I could do so that I keep in the shape and not go backward. I did get some acupuncture and went to the chiropractor a few times just because my whole body was sore also.
Longname – Are you happy with how your overall season has been going? Minus the shoulder injury…
Pettis – Yeah I’m really happy; it’s been a good year so far despite the injury, but we’re just putting that behind us. But I feel like my riding, fitness and everyone on the team has been working super good together. Everything has just been clicking. I feel like I have been riding really well every weekend that I’ve been able to finish. Every weekend I’ve finished I’ve been pretty much on the podium. So it’s where I want to be for sure.
Longname -It seems like a lot of the races you and your teammate Shawn Maffenbeier have found each other on the track. What’s it like battling with your teammate?
Pettis – It’s good racing with Shawn, you know he’s a good racer and he’s definitely riding well this year. I respect him and he respects me and we can trust each other, but I mean at the end of the day we are racing dirt bikes. We both want each other to do good, whether he goes 1-2 or I go 1-2, that’s kind of our goal. It’s kind of a nice feeling when I see him behind me because I know I don’t have to worry so much, where some of the other riders we kind of have to watch out for them.
Longname – Yeah that’s kind of nice when you don’t have to worry about your teammate taking you out. Or hopefully, he doesn’t take you out. Lol
Pettis – No we’re good with each other. He has stayed at my house for a week and I stayed at his house for a week. So yeah we kind of work together. You know, make sure we both try and do good.
Longname – So you guys are pretty good buddies then eh? Because it doesn’t always work out that way with teammates
Pettis – Yeah like before he signed, I always got along with Shawn, but I never really talked to him much. I would just kind of wave at him. We weren’t enemies but we weren’t best friends. But we really got to know each other this year. He helped me out with some stuff and yeah we get along really good. I think it’s good to have someone like Shawn on the team. You know having everybody getting along is definitely a better atmosphere then compared to if some people didn’t really get along
Longname – So I’ve been hearing a lot of negativity about the track this weekend, the riders weren’t really a big fan of it. What were your thoughts on it?
Pettis – It’s just a different track from everything else we’re used to I guess. It’s not quite as wide as some of the other tracks. The biggest thing is just the dirt. You know they just dealt with it and that’s what we have to deal with. It was just super slippery and it keeps you on your toes for sure because you can slip up or have a crash pretty easy. You definitely have to be really smart and I think that kind of showed on Sunday, a lot of riders we’re going down or making a lot of mistakes, so the smoothest guy is the guy that was going to be the at the front.
Longname – What were your expectations coming into this race after having a few weeks off with an injury?
Pettis – I honestly didn’t have any expectations. I just really wanted to get through the weekend like see how my collarbone was. I just wanted slowly keep getting better each weekend, keep finishing at this point and hopefully make some money. Whether I was going to be in the top 10 or whatever it was I just wanted to finish, to be honest. Just to be back at the track racing and not be at home watching it because it was killing me. So after qualifying, it was feeling good and I put down a good lap and qualified 2nd. I put it to the test and it feels good. It felt good all day I definitely put my head down and gave it my all. It’s definitely hard coming off sitting on the couch for 3 weeks and going straight to the race track pretty much. Trying to get back at race intensity, the body is sore and the hands, your just not use to it. It’s pretty crazy but I’m happy to be back and my first round back to go like that and do as good as I did, it’s pretty crazy. I wasn’t really expecting it and I didn’t have any expectations or pressure and it just kind of came to me.
Longname – So obviously the shoulder was feeling good coming into the race how does it feel leaving the race? Sore at all?
Pettis – No it’s actually not, (laughs) my whole body was pretty sore on Monday, other than my shoulder, it actually felt really good. I’m happy with that and my doctor. I wouldn’t have even been racing if it wasn’t for my doctor even considering doing surgery. I so could have been laid up on the couch with it in a sling right now. I’m pretty pumped that we made that decision just to get it done and come back.
Longname – So overall thoughts on the day? Any changes needed for next weekend?
Pettis – No, the tracks are fairly similar. We’re just going to hopefully take what we did last weekend and carrying into this weekend. Try to get some more good starts and ride like me. Again this weekend I’m not going to put a lot of pressure on myself. I’ll show up and race. Hopefully, we can be back up there; I got a good group behind me so I’m looking forward to finishing off the year strong.
Longname – Take me through Moto 2. It was pretty eventful.
Pettis – Yeah I mean there is definitely a lot of passing and people making a lot of mistakes. I was just telling myself you know this is just my first race back. Whether I get 4th, 1st or 10th whatever I get I’m just going to ride in my comfort zone and not get too carried away, I can’t be crashing at this point on, I can’t really afford it. I just kind of rode in my comfort zone and I was right there kind of behind the guys letting them all make mistakes. I mean Osby and Dylan Wright got together pretty hard and Osby got hurt.
Longname – Did you see the crash?
Pettis – I did see it yeah. It was pretty crazy I don’t know how Dylan was able to actually ride away from that. It was sketchy for sure. I’m just glad I wasn’t in that position and was able to keep smooth and make no mistakes really and take the win. I was super pumped.
Longname – So what’s the feeling like getting your first Moto win and first overall on the day and career? Especially your first race back from an injury.
Pettis – Everyone was kind of questioning me being back. Really I was the only one that knew that I felt good. People were questioning it all day but I knew how I felt and I was ready to do battle. I was pumped to come back and leave with that. It couldn’t have been any better really.
Longname – Was there any controversy with when you guys got the checkered flag with getting the Red Cross too? Because I didn’t see it as he was showing the checkered flag to you but I did see both flags flying after.
Pettis – I honestly had no clue. Somebody did ask about it but I had no clue what they were talking about. I was just racing Jacob to the finish line pretty much as hard as we could. I don’t think the Red Cross flag was even out and there’s no issue.