Broc Tickle captured his first 450 podium of his career this past Saturday in Toronto! Tickle has been steadily improving throughout the year, and rode very well in Toronto after getting a good start. It wasn’t all highs though, as some drama between him and Barcia in their heat race resulted in some off-track aggression and AMA involvement.
We had the chance to speak with Tickle one-on-one after the race to get his feedback on both the Barcia incident and his first podium. Here is what he had to say:
Moto Now: Firstly, it wasn’t addressed in the press conference, so I have to know… what happened between you and Barcia?
Broc Tickle: Well, you can ask anybody out here, the guy races like he’s going to kill you, you’re expecting it. In the heat race, I passed him, and I was expecting it in the next corner, so I moved over and let him dive bomb me; if I wouldn’t have done that he would have just cleaned both of us out probably. So I just moved out of his way, cut down, passed him back, and went on with my day. When I came off the track, he cuts me off flying past me, and I honestly got heated… you know, things happened, there’s not much to say about it. The guy has done it many time – he did it to Baggett right in front of me, so it’s just tough, but moving on forward, I’m stoked for the night.
Did the AMA talk to you afterwards?
Yep. They penalized me with last gate pick for the semi, and that’s what happened.
And then you almost pull a hole shot in the semi!
(Laughter) Yeah, so I was fired up! It started my night out in the right direction; I got fired up and felt good the rest of the night.
Okay, so in the main, laps are dwindling down, Reed is catching you, you must have been getting tense! How were you feeling?
No, I felt like before Dungey passed me I was definitely tightening up a little bit. I was kinda struggling there in that rhythm lane, and that corner over there after the first set of whoops where you went single-over-table then three; it was really rutted and tough to hit. I was panicking a little bit, but once Dungey passed me, I followed him and he had a really good line there. After that, I picked up on a couple of other little areas that he had as well, and it kinda opened up my corners so that way I could relax and breath. But I knew I had it there at the end. I didn’t even know how many laps were left to be honest with you until I saw the white flag. Once I saw the white flag, I knew it was time to at least finish the lap strong, because I knew Reed would be putting in a strong lap to try and pass me. So yeah it was good. I would say the main thing that I learned obviously is keeping it going at the beginning a little more. I feel like I kinda settled in a little bit too much from lap 3 to 8. I felt like if I were to have been a little better there, it would have been a little bit easier for me at the end.
I feel like this year has been consistently better than years past for you. Did you feel that entering the season? Could you tell beforehand that 2017 was going to be good or better than years past? How tough is it to judge without knowing your competition?
Yeah, for sure. But dude, the class is so tough right now. Everybody works hard, everybody is on good equipment. You just need to get a good start, race your own race, and do your own thing basically; it’s so hard to get caught up in it! Obviously we all work hard, but you have to find out what works for you, on and off the bike, trust it, believe it, and trust your team when it comes to making changes. You have to believe in your whole program to be able to do this, and to do it well. Last week for instance, I got 14th, and I honestly tried! It was a bad start, which caused me to ride bad, and I couldn’t ride to my potential. It put me in a bad place, so you just gotta get some starts. Each and every weekend, it’s going to suit certain riders better; some guys are going to shine, and some guys are not. So you have to take advantage of the nights that you know you can put yourself in a good position to ride well.
It seems like there’s a large group of riders who, given a bad start might end up 14th, but given a good start might end up around 3rd. Today you were the one who had a good start, but how do you end up at the next level like Dungey or Tomac where you’re consistently up there?
I feel like honestly all it’s going to take is a little bit of confidence. [Being up there] multiple times in order to keep doing it. I feel like if you can consistently be on the podium, you’re going to eventually get a hole shot, stuffs going to happened behind you, and you’re just going to be at the right place at the right time to get a win. Obviously tonight was awesome. I got my first podium here in the 250 class, broke my back here in 2014 which caused me to be out for 7 months, and now back here again, first 450 podium. So for me, looking forward to next weekend. I’m pretty happy with where I am right now. I’ve been really good about my program back home, as well as with riding and being around the team. I feel like it’s a good atmosphere right now.
Cover photo from Racer X Online by Jeff Kardas