The 17-year-old on managing risks and learning in the first week.
Red Bull KTM’s rookie Maximus Vohland is getting up to speed quickly in the 250SX East class.
Getting thrown into the fire is an understatement when it comes to the first week of Vohland’s professional career.
For most young racers, they get a week between races to go back to the drawing board, test the bike, work with the team and gain confidence going into the next round. For 17-year-old Vohland, the first week of his career includes three Supercross races with little to no riding in between them.
While he’s conscious of the potential con’s of the unique scenario, he’s remaining calm and confident knowing that this is a learning year for him.
“Well yeah the way the schedule is for me at least, it’s a learning year and I’m learning a lot,” he said. “But it does suffer a little bit where you can’t go back to the test track and work on the bike or maybe even work on yourself for conditioning. So that’s a little bit unfortunate.
“But it’s also great to be racing so constantly and learning so much. The main thing is learning these guys speed, this is pretty much my first two pro races, so I’m just really learning what these guys are doing and trying to suck into their speed and do what they do.”
Despite the steep learning curve, he’s come out swinging in the first two, notching top 10 finishes in both: “Well a great positive thing I’ve got behind me is my dad [Tallon Vohland], who raced for many years. He’s got a lot of experience and he’s prepped and groomed me to be a smart racer and rider and not to take too much risk.
“Especially at the age I’m at now, being young and being out here with these big guys, it’s super easy to get over your head and make a mistake and go down and you’re out. That’s something we’ve always focused on is risk management and so far it’s got me to where I’m at now and I’m grateful for it. Now I’m just going to try and stay healthy and race with these guys.”
With that, he’s also got the added bonus of the team behind him not putting any pressure on results in the first year of his three year deal with Red Bull KTM.
“Right now when I go out to the line, I don’t feel any pressure. I just feel like ‘okay let’s just go racing – let’s have fun, but let’s also do good.’ So I’m still serious about it and still focused wanting to go out and do good but the pressures off and it makes it so much easier to stay calm and stay cool, to not go over my head and make a mistake.”