ROGER DECOSTER’S 10 GOLDEN RULES OF MX

Roger DeCoster has mentored more motocross champions than any man in history. His own racing record is incredible. Beyond his five  500cc World Motocross Championships, he was a member of more winning Motocross des Nations teams than any rider, of any country. Then he led the U.S. team to a record string of des Nations victories as manager. He was an architect of the Team Honda domination in the ’80s, then managed U.S. Suzuki’s most successful years in racing. Now he oversees both team Redbull KTM and Rockstar Husqvarna, laying the framework for their current success. No other single man has done so much to shape the history of motocross in the world. In the June, 1996 issue of Dirt Bike, he wrote down the 10 golden rules  for success in motocross that he tried to instill in every rider under his guidance. Here they are:

1. KNOW WHAT YOU WANT

No one ever became a motocross champion by accident. In fact, no one ever won a race by accident. It takes planning, strategy and goals to get there. The emphasis is on goals. 

“That’s easy,” someone is thinking right now. “My goal is to be the best motocrosser in the world.” That’s a big first step. You might want to break that down a little. … read more

2. WATCH AND LEARN

If you want to win, act like a winner. It sounds obvious, but even riders at the top levels can improve their technique by watching other riders and imitating certain aspects of their riding style. What do you think the 125 riders are doing when the 250 riders are on the track at a supercross? Watching. If you are taking a rest break after practice, you can just as easily watch the track, especially in areas you are having difficulty. Here are some things to watch: … read more

3. MAKE IT FUN

There are a zillion different ways to train. There’s running, bicycling, weight training, racquetball, basketball and a whole wealth of other balls. All of that is fine, but never forget that the best training for motocross is motocross. The problem is that you need to ride more frequently than you race. … read more

4. TRAIN SMART

Jeff Stanton, Jeff Ward, John DeSoto, Mark Barnett, Johnny O’Mara. Sure, they all were fast, but they also were riders who knew the value of training. Basically that’s true of almost any rider who made an impact on the sport. On the other hand, the history of motocross is full of riders who had the speed and the skill, but didn’t have the endurance. ... read more

5. KNOW YOURSELF

You are generally the last person to know something about yourself. Riders can let the most obvious things go by unnoticed–sometimes it’s because of ego, sometimes it’s because they just aren’t paying attention. … read more

6. EAT, DRINK AND BE READY

Computer guys have a saying: GIGO. It stands for garbage in, garbage out. Human beings aren’t that different from machines. They need fuel. If you give them poor fuel, they run poorly. The biggest difference is that a computer will start producing quality output from the first moment it gets good input. Humans are much more fickle. … read more

7. PREPARE YOUR BIKE

I will be the first to admit it. It’s good to be a factory rider. When you don’t have to worry about the bike being ready, you automatically have a big advantage.  … read more

8. DIAL IT IN

Today’s motorcycles are good. They have come a long way from the days when the buyer had to finish manufacturing them. Even so, the bike you buy isn’t perfect. It can’t be, because the people who made it don’t know you. … read more

9. RACE WITH YOUR HEAD

Of all types of racing, motocross is fairly pure. The gate drops, and the guy who goes the fastest wins. Other forms of racing, like enduro timekeeping, are more strategy than speed. Some types of bicycle racing are a virtual chess match, and NASCAR is a war won with smart pit stops and tire selection. Even in motocross, though, you can’t just twist the throttle and hope for the best. Here are some tips for a smart race.  ... read more

10. BE A GOOD INVESTMENT

Every kid in the world wants to know how to land that big sponsorship. They spend a lot of time thinking about what a sponsor can do for them. It helps if you turn it around. Think about what you can do for a sponsor.  … read more

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