"I Didn't Watch or Listen to Any Races" | Dylan Ferrandis on Not Racing Nationals

Dylan Ferrandis talks about the '23 Yamaha 450, last year's season, Justin Barcia, David Vuillemin, and more.

Since making the permanent move to the United States in 2017, Dylan Ferrandis has put all he has into his racing career. Winning four titles in the last four years and proving he is one of the elite riders in the world might be enough for most. But Dylan still has the dream of a 450 Supercross title and he is determined to prove to himself he can accomplish it. We called him up to talk about the 2022 season, MXoN, and what’s ahead in 2023.

       For the full interview, check out the YouTube video right here. If you're interested in the condensed written version, scroll down just a bit further.

  Jamie Guida

Jamie Guida – Vital MX: How are you doing, man?

Dylan Ferrandis: I'm very good. Thank you very much. I’m just back to the grind. Every October we get back to supercross and I’m happy with the way it’s going. We got the new 2023 Yamaha and after MXoN we had one week off and then we started to ride supercross and test with the new bike. It's been going very well. The bike feels better than last year in supercross and is fit more for my riding style. I feel much better on it compared to last year. So, it's a big step in the right direction for me.

Vital MX: What specifically feels better about it?

Dylan:  I cannot really tell everything. But I would say that with these bikes I can go back to a more neutral setup like before. I always had the same problem on the bikes in supercross, and so I had to set up my bike to try to manage this problem. And now we don't have it anymore. I can set-up the bike more neutral and don't have to go in any crazy direction. I don't know if it makes sense, but the bike is just simpler to ride and with a more simple setup, you can feel good in supercross.

Vital MX: You come off the Pro Motocross Championship in ‘21 feeling great and the ‘22 supercross and motocross season just does not go how you expected at all. Was it difficult to transition into supercross on the 450 or was it the bike stuff you just talked about that kind of held you back?

Dylan: Honestly with the way I’m riding now in supercross with the new bike, I feel like my problem was I didn’t feel good on the bike. I was trying the best I could. I was trying to ride better. I was doing a lot of testing. And I feel like myself and the team, we never found the right setup on the old Yamaha bike in supercross. The last two seasons I've been struggling with that. I never really felt great on it. It's not like I’d show up to the practice track and say, “Oh, the bike is awesome, and we don't need to change anything”. Every day was like, “we can be better here or I'm not good here”, you know? I feel it was more bike setup problems for me in supercross and that's why I didn't deliver the result I was hoping for.

Vital MX: Going into outdoors with plans to defend your title, you had a thumb injury. Did you ever feel like, “Why me? Why is this happening?”.

Dylan: No, I worked really hard to come back after supercross and be ready for the nationals. And I was very ready. I was fit. I was fast. And yeah, on press day I crashed, and I broke and dislocated my thumb, and I needed surgery.  I was like, ‘okay, it's a dangerous sport’. We all have injuries. I was like, ‘Hey, it's my turn’. I won at least one title every year four years in a row. That was very good. Last year was just a bad year with injury. We all know it can happen in a career. I was okay with it. I made a mistake and it's my fault and nobody is to blame. Just move on.

Vital MX: I would assume sitting at home, not getting to run the number one plate, seeing your teammate Eli Tomac doing so well, you had to feel like that could be me. Or should be me.

Dylan:  For sure it was tough. I think you texted me this summer to ask what I thought about something. And I said to you that I didn't watch any races because I was kind of sick of it, you know, not being able to defend this title. And I couldn't watch. I couldn't just hear or listen or see any pictures of motocross. It would get me very mad. So, I just did my summer in Florida with my wife. We kind of relaxed a little bit. At the same time, I worked really hard on everything I could work on. I had just a thumb injury, so I was able to run, even cycling to work out. So yeah, I spent my summer busting my ass to come back. 

Vital MX: You came back for a couple of rounds to get some time on the bike and get prepared for Motocross of Nations. At Budds Creek you had the incident with Justin Barcia. Do you want to give your side on that? Do you have anything to say about that incident?

Dylan: I think I said everything on my Instagram post when it happened, you know? Barcia is Barcia. We're not going to change it. I don’t think he’s a very respectful rider on the track, but we all know that. I never expected him to do a dirty move by going off the track, you know? We know on the track he's going to do a dirty move. And we all are okay with that. But what really got me mad in this situation is he went off track and still made a dirty move. So yeah, I was pretty pissed about that. And yeah, he says it’s my fault and I say it's his fault. There’s not much we can say, it’s just sad for the sport at the end. It doesn't show the good side of a sport. And even for him, he doesn't have any titles in the 450 class. So that shows that this technique doesn't work.

Vital MX: When you hurt your back at Budds Creek, was MXoN on your mind?

Dylan: Yeah, for sure, because I didn't really race this season. It's a tough race because your season is finished. It's been a long season and you're tired. You want to rest and get ready for supercross. So, most of the riders, they don't really want to ride because of that and this season for me, I didn't really race much. I was just happy to have a chance to do another race. For sure I was very interested, especially in the U.S. so you don't have to travel back to Europe or anywhere in the world. And as soon as I knew I would be able to ride at my full potential I said yes to the team.

Vital MX: How hard was it physically and mentally to get over the back injury? 

Dylan: It was really weird. It wasn't crazy. It wasn't that bad. Every time I tried to ride; I had more pain lap after lap until I couldn't really ride anymore. The problem was more that I couldn't ride. Off the bike was not so bad. I didn't hurt anything. It was just a bruise. At some point we had the deadline. If at this point, I couldn’t ride then we're not going to do MXoN because I don't want to race at 70% or 80% of what I can do. There's no point riding like that. I just rested and when I felt rested enough, I went back to the training and my back was fine and we said, “Yes, let's go”.

Vital MX: Sticking with Motocross of Nations, as a country, you guys finished second, you won your qualifying race, and you put everything you had into that ride. How do you feel about your performance? 

Dylan: I think it was good. It was a good weekend for sure. Too many mistakes for me. But it was a Motocross of Nations. It is a big event. There’s a lot of pressure. And for me, coming back from an injury after a bad year, I wanted to show that I'm still good. And maybe I wanted it a little too much and that's why I crashed. I showed good speed, good starts, and good physical strength in the end of the moto. I showed that I had everything to be back to what I was last year in motocross. A little bit disappointed that we couldn't really fight for the win with the USA. The home field advantage was big and also, I think when you don't have the Star Racing 250 it's hard to fight for wins. I think that was the biggest disadvantage we had.

Vital MX: You told me that weekend about how hard you can be on yourself even when you finish second. You said it’s something you need to work on. Do you feel sometimes that can hurt you to not see the positives in what you do?

Dylan: Oh, yeah, for sure. When I get home after the race that I didn't win, I'm not really a nice person. I'm very mad, very angry. It's not easy for the people around me every day because of that. So, yeah, that's for sure something I need to work on. I'm getting better. When I train and work to win, and you don't win it's just difficult for me to accept it.

Vital MX: You talked about the home field advantage at Motocross of Nations. Next year it’s in Ernee, France. How excited are you? It's got to be at the top of your mind.

Dylan: No, not really. Top of my mind is to win the supercross championship. That's my only dream. For sure, it could be interesting, especially for me. I never raced MXoN in France. I've been there as a fan. I know how big it is. It would be something great to do in my career. But like I said before, after a very long season here in the US, it's very difficult to still add one more race on your calendar and show up ready at 100%. So, we will see later next year. But, for sure I would like to do it. 

Vital MX: Can we talk about your coach David Vuillemin and your parting ways? How did that come about?

Dylan: I mean, I think it’s crazy. I was out with injury this summer. I was kind of just by myself with my wife in Florida doing my thing. And, yeah, I first heard it, I don't remember which media, he said that we weren’t working together or something. I don’t remember exactly what he said. But something happened this summer and I just didn't know about it. One day I showed up to the track and my team told me and I was very surprised. I think that was just the beginning of the end of the relationship. I didn't find that he helped me to get where I want to be in supercross. It was time for me to change and to find something different because it didn't work the last two years. I don't want to keep going on something that doesn't work.

Vital MX: In the last couple of years, you’ve become very good friends with Christian Craig. He obviously just switched teams. Is that a little bit of a disappointment to not have somebody that you're so close to under the tent?

Dylan: I can't say it's a disappointment because I'm very happy for him. He earned his 450 ride, and he deserves it. I'm very happy for him for sure. He is a good friend, and we were in the same city here in Florida. Now he's not here anymore and we cannot really spend our time together when we have free time. So, for sure it's a little sad, but I mean, it's part of the life, you know, and I'm just happy that he got his ride and he's going to be good on the Husky 450. I'm just happy about that.


The Latest