Q and A with Destry Abbott, Adelanto GP Winner
Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Destry Abbott is no stranger to winning at the famous Adelanto GP and he returned to the winner’s circle this weekend as he took top honors not once but twice, in the overall pro race and in the 30 plus class. He sat down after the race to talk about what makes the Adelanto GP so special and why this style racing fits him so well.
Q: So tell us what makes the Adelanto GP so special?
Destry Abbott: Adelanto GP has been one of those races that has been going on for a long time now, I’m not even sure how many years. Something I remember as a kid was Larry Roeseler being the “King of Adelanto.” It’s one of those races that I’ve always tried to attend. It was actually my first big race win when I came to Kawasaki in 1998. From then on, it’s been a cool race to be a part of.
Q: Since you’ve obviously been successful at the race before, how many times have you raced it and what have your previous results been like?
Abbott: I have probably done it five or six times. It was always a big race for Kawasaki and back then there were over 3,000 entries. Then it was similar to a WORCS format with the long races. I was able to race about five classes and I would win at least three or four races. It was one of those carnival type events that was huge. The race would typically get at least 20,000 spectators back in the day.
Q: What brought you back this year after taking a few years hiatus?
Abbott: A $15,000 pro purse definitely helps. It was one of those weekends where the opportunity presented itself and I realized I kind of missed the event. For me, it’s like a love-hate race. It’s one of those fun races because it’s so big, but while you are doing it, you just want it to get over with. It’s a really rough course and it does take a toll on your body. But having $5,000 for first place is a big incentive to go back.
Q: You mentioned it was hard on your body. What is the most challenging part of the race that you encounter?
Abbott: It’s kind of like racing in Mexico. There are so many spectators around the course and a lot of them don’t realize when it’s a good time to cross the track. That in turn makes it harder to manage the course since most of it is really high speed. You don’t want to hit someone going 95 mph so that is the scariest part about the race.
Q: How does this years’ race as a whole differ from those in the past?
Abbott: Even though I heard attendance was down, this year was probably just as big. They had a lot of great pros turn out for the event. The course was different than it has been in the past. It was about half the distance as normal. I think they are worried that the people would get a little too wild, I’m not really sure. But with the shorter course it does get a little rougher throughout the weekend. It’s a cool race because of the spectators. Pretty much where ever you are on the course, there are people cheering you on. It really is a unique event.
Q: Talk about what makes your race style fit the Adelanto GP?
Abbott: This kind of racing is right up my alley because it’s more on the faster side. It’s more like a Hare and Hound where it’s really fast and choppy through the desert brush. It’s a lot about finding good lines that will get you through safely. There are some motocross sections, but it’s definitely up my alley of smart racing: knowing when to push or when to back down. I feel that’s my kind of style, being smart and picking good lines.
Q: Any last thoughts or anyone to thank for your big win?
Abbott: Yeah definitely. The guys at Monster Energy Kawasaki gave me the okay to do this special race, even though it was the same weekend as a WORCS race. I had to miss pro practice, but the team was really supportive. It was nice to have them behind me. The spectators were great as usual. It was really cool to pull off the win. Thank you!