By Jay Newman
Every now and then as I admire the pro riders in competition, I am delighted to see one of the ladies holding their own in the men’s class. Such was the case this past weekend at the Monster Energy Supercross in Toronto.
As the bikes cleared the dirt for the air one after the other, there she was Vicki Golden, iding high on a Suzuki RM-Z250.
Vicki is a professional 250 supercross rider in the 250 East Series. With a 17 year track record of riding and racing, Vicki turned to pro supercross 2 years ago.
I watched intently as she cleared big triple jumps with great confidence. She rides like a pro, no question about it. She handles the rhythm sections well and even the whoops. To put it in perspective, in the timed qualifying, the whoops were massive. Tall and rounded on top and then down into a steep, sharp “V”.
There were many riders slowing down to figure out how to get thru the section. Those that didn’t slow down and tried to gas it thru, found themselves getting pitched from the bike like it was the first bull ride in a rodeo.
In the semis, the whoops were pounded down quite a lot. Even Chad Reed commented that they were way easier than in qualifying.
I caught up to Vicki in the pitts for a few questions:
What would you say to another young female rider/racer?
Her biggest point was to emphasize “having fun”, to “keep it fun”. Vicki says there are times when it is tough even for her to keep it fun. Getting caught up in everything can be a bit distracting from that goal. Getting burnt out quickly is a real possibility, but keeping a fun attitude helps you enjoy race days more.
What is your training routine?
“We do a lot of (on the bike work), obviously. In the past we did a lot of gym work as well, but this year we had to taper down a bit because we realized I couldn’t push to hard, physically, to get the highest amount of fitness. We learned that less is more, and we utilize our time on the track and in the gym more efficiently”. She said her training is light compared to the top riders in her class.
What are you aiming for tonight?
She said her goal is to ride to her full potential and ultimately make the night show.
The first couple of practices, she said she was conserving energy. Through the first two timed qualifying sessions, it’s all about getting the jumps and the lines dialed in, then on the third time out, she’ll put down a couple fast laps to (hopefully) qualify to the night show. Vicki said she was currently battling a couple small health issues, and as it would turn out… She made the night show.
Way to go Vicki!
It takes a team and hard work to make this stuff happen. Congrats to you and your team Vicki.