Los Angeles, California
July 1, 2012
This was my second X Games and last year’s atmosphere was awesome and I was definitely excited about this year! During the day we had our normal two 5-minute practice sessions and then our hot lap. I posted the 7th fastest time and was pretty happy with that!
I honestly couldn’t believe how stacked our heat was! They only took two to the main and we had Brown, Bluzusiak, Jarvis, Graffunder, Sutherlin, Garrison, Roper, Sweeten, Crosset, and myself! It seemed like more of a main event then a qualifier. I got a great jump out of the gate, but was pushed out in the first corner. I got stuck behind a couple guys and made some mistakes and ended up missing the main event by a couple spots.
One thing about X Games is all the guys racing it are great riders and you need to make sure you put yourself in the right place and a good start was big! I had another great jump and this time I was leading after the second corner, but messed up in the chopped wood and went back to second. Then two laps later I was leading again! However once again I messed up in the chop wood, which was really hard, and the toughest section for me! I ended up going back to fifth and now it was time to start taking chances to see if I could make it back to the top 2 spots (that’s who went to the main). Haaker went down and I saw I was closing in on the guys in front of me. On the last lap I passed a few guys, but wasn’t sure if they were lappers or guys in front of me! When I got the checkered flag I didn’t have a clue what place I’d finished! I looked up at the big screen and saw my name in second and before I started to celebrate I had to look back at the Kawi boys. When I saw their hands raised I realized I was in and was so pumped to make the main again!
I didn’t have the greatest gate pick, but I knew I was getting a great jump off the gate and was going to give it my best try! As we were sitting there for a commercial brake (weird saying that) I really took in the whole atmosphere and how cool it was being in this position. It was a surreal feeling seeing a packed stadium, and then knowing we’re being watched my millions is truly an awesome feeling. It’s definitely something you don’t get much experience with being an off-road racer! Now it was time to start the bike up and put a 100% focus into the race! I had another great jump and somehow came out in second after the first corner. Brown was leading and I had Graffunder and Webb behind me. I messed up in the uphill rock section, but on the second lap went through the chop wood pretty well and was close to Brownie again. Then going back up the hill I didn’t want to follow Brown and decided to take a different line, which backfired on me, and I got stuck. I didn’t panic and when I got going again I was back in 5th. I actually felt great! My speed was good and I felt I would have enough left to sprint towards the end. Taylor put a good pass on me, and then the next lap he went down hard over a log jump. On that same lap I lost my front end out of the tire section and went down. I had Taddy on me and since I was lying down on the other side I knew he wouldn’t see me. I was trying to get up as fast as possible and as soon as I did I saw that he was in mid air! I jumped out of the way, but he landed on my bike and bent it up pretty good. I was able to get going again, but could definitely feel the bike wasn’t what it was earlier. On the last lap I had Taylor and Jarvis right in front of me. Taylor ended up getting around Jarvis, but I wasn’t able to and finished 7th.
There’s definitely a lot of pressure coming into a race like this, but I really felt like it didn’t bother me and I was in a good place. I really have been feeling good on the bike and of course I wish I didn’t make a couple mistakes and felt I had a great chance at a medal! I know a lot of other guys in the main would say the same thing, and as a racer you have to think that way! It was another great experience and I know the family and I had a blast and look forward to next year. Since I made the main I’m already seeded into next year, which is pretty awesome!
Main Event Results:
1st Mike Brown (Gold)
2nd Cody Webb (Silver)
3rd Cory Graffunder (Bronze)
4th Taddy Blazusiak
5th Taylor Robert
6th Graham Jarvis
7th Destry Abbott
8th Geoff Aaron
9th Kyle Redmond
10th Kevin Rookstool
Big thanks to Monster Energy and Kawasaki! Two great companies to be with and they definitely took care of us this weekend!
Last year’s Bronze Medal rider and teammate Justin Soule wasn’t able to race since he’s still recovering from his crash at round 2. He did some live announcing for X Games and did an awesome job. His mechanic Jeff Decker came over to the dark side and was my mechanic for the weekend J Jeff did an awesome job and was a huge help!
Here’s a really cool thing ESPN did with all four of us Monster Energy Kawasaki riders at round 2. This is worth watching! http://espn.go.com/video/clip?id=espn%3A8099586
Monster Energy is putting together a video with us preparing for X Games and what we do to prepare and behind the scenes. Here’s a small clip right now and the full version should be here soon! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oibg9tcQ3Fw&feature=youtu.be
I was wearing a GoPro this weekend and I can’t wait to see some of the footage that GoPro will be posting. I know both Taddy and I were both wearing one when he just about killed me ;)
Here are a couple video highlights from the main event! http://www.endurocross.com/videos/x-games-los-angeles-2012-enduro-x-final-highlights/
James Z showed up with some of the 2013 Thor gear for the race, which was way cool!
I attached some photos from Kelsey Abbott, Garth Milan, Megan Blackburn, and Drew Ruiz.
My next race isn’t until the end of the month at Loretta Lynn’s MX National. I’m turning 40 this month and will be racing the 35+ and 40+. I’m really looking forward to this!
Facebook Fan Page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Destry-Abbott/114746998547830?ref=ts
2012 Sponsors: Monster Energy Kawasaki, Thor, GPR, SIDI, Dunlop, Shoei, Fox Racing Shox, Akrapovic Exhaust, Stephen Gall Training, IMS, Zip-TY, Motion Pro, Hoy Fox Toyota, Works Connection, BRP, Crank Works, Renthal, Hinson, Braking, Kicker, Asterisk, Maxima, Traxxas, Scott, N-Style, UNI, Jonre Mutimedia, ParkwaysChiropractic, and ZLT.