Monster Energy Interview: Loretta’s MX ripper Vincent Wey and his dad, Nick
August 30, 2022 (Corona, Calif.) – It’s so cool to see past pro motocrossers at the races with their sons (and daughters). The phrase ‘A chip off the old block’ certainly applies as many of these kids, including Monster Energy’s Vincent Wey, can flat out rip on a dirt bike. Vincent’s a past Loretta’s 65cc champion and moved up to the 85 classes this year, did real well at Loretta’s earlier this month, winning two 85 class motos during the week.
It’s not a given that a pro MXer’s kid will catch on to the sport and take it all the way to where they make a living with it. Motocross is a very tough and unforgiving sport for sure. Besides the fast DNA passed along from their dads that’s no doubt a benefit, the kids who’s dads raced – since they themselves were kids – have a decided advantage in that their fathers understand the playbook for the road to success better than most. From technique to gain speed to jump setup and cornering skills, pro dads are a live-in coach. And in Nick Wey’s case, a top shelf live-in trainer as well.
Monster Energy thought it’s be cool to take an inside look at the pro dad/racer son dynamic. And the Weys are a perfect example of just how well this team can work. We’ll start off with Vincent, get his take, and then follow up with Nick. Check it out…
ME.com: Vincent! You returned to Loretta’s this summer as a champion, having won the 65cc (10-11) class last summer. Talk a bit about Loretta’s. It’s such a big event in your family history as your dad is one of the all-time winners at the Ranch. Tell us about your road to qualifying for Loretta’s over the years, the times you’ve raced there in your young career, some of your best memories and, overall, what the event means to you.
Vincent Wey: My family does have a lot of history at Loretta Lynn’s Dude Ranch. My dad raced there from the 50 class to the Pro Sport classes, and my grandpa even raced 30+ one year. The first year I raced there was on a 50. I was pretty new to racing myself. The whole event was so much fun! I almost won my first ever moto, but I got third in that moto after a couple of tip overs. It is super tough to win at Loretta Lynn’s. I am proud to have won the overall last year and one a couple motos this year.
Let’s take a step back just a bit. What grade are you going into in school? What’s your favorite subjects? We’re betting that your parents stress getting it done in the classroom well before the Bell helmet gets strapped on and the Husky 85 tank’s filled with Klotz.
I am going into eighth grade this year. Just like most kids it’s hard to sit still, but I do really enjoy math. And yes, my parents are very strict about doing well in school.
Getting ready for Loretta’s requires a ton of work, much of which is handled at your local track. Where do you normally ride and what does your usual practice schedule look like? And do focus on fitness between motos, or do you just hop up off the couch and bust out fast laps?
Are usually ride at Fox Raceway, Perris Raceway and sometimes Glen Helen. I usually go riding two to three times a week when my dad can take me. About a month before Loretta’s we go to Michigan and I train really hard at our farm. We have about 80 acres and we have a blast. I love to shred the Michigan loam.
Michigan loam… that’s what your grandpa (T-Wey) taught your dad on! Big move up to the 85cc class at Loretta’s this year. Lots of fast kids. So that opening 85 (10-12) moto on Tuesday is probably one you’d like to have back. You were poised for, at least, a top five finish – before dropping down to 9th place late in the moto. What happened with that?
Well, I pulled chip (#) 29 and got the very inside gate I got a good jump but got pinched. I think I was around 15th and then moved up to fourth. I got up and charged through the pack again and fell while trying to pass for fourth on the last lap. I was frustrated with my 9th place finish but I gave it my all.
Hey, that’s all you can do – is try your best. Wednesday at Loretta’s you rallied back in the 85 (10-12) Limited class, racing from a 5th place start to a podium 3rd place opening moto finish – holding off a late charge from Cole Blecha (KTM). Discuss how you were able to turn things around in the 85 Limited class.
On my second first moto I pulled chip 27! Cool number (dad Nick’s longtime pro number was 27), but not a great pick at the gate. I got another mid-pack start, and I made some quick moves to get up to around 5th pretty quickly. I battled with Cole for a few laps and once I got around him the best I could do with the laps that were left was 3rd. I also had another moto the same day. I was in a good battle with the lead group and I had a wash out crash on the take-off of a jump. That was my biggest crash of the week by far! Probably was my fault, but I also ended up having a flat front tire. I struggled to finish smoothly and ended up 7th in that moto.
All kinds of stuff going on! On Thursday you had a bit of a break with just one moto. We’re guessing your dad had you down on the fence line watching some motos. Or were you in the creek? (Hahaha) Who are some of the other up and coming riders you like to watch race?
On Thursday I had a Moto later in the afternoon. I had a great start but came together with another rider on the first lap and crashed. I had an epic battle with a big group of riders and ended up fourth. And yeah, I do end up watching a lot of motos when I’m not racing. I like watching Ryder D (Monster Energy’s Ryder DiFrancesco with Pro Circuit/Kawasaki) because he has some very creative lines.
Back to business on Friday. You came roaring back in a big way in the 85 (10-12) class, winning the final moto after going 9th/7th. The win put you in the top five (4th) overall. Talk about what came together for you in that third moto that allowed you to win. And also, how can you use the momentum of that win to your advantage moving forward the rest of the competition year?
On Friday I was fired up! I got an 8th place start and made some quick moves. I got into first place on lap one and had a comfortable gap for the most part. I got into some traffic the last couple laps and the race became pretty close. I ended that race with the moto win! I was pumped because the rest of the week hadn’t been going so smooth and I had a lot of friends and my family encouraging me. I knew I could do it. I just needed to focus.
That’s awesome. On Saturday, the last day of racing at Loretta’s you backed up Friday’s win with another third moto victory, this one earning you an overall 2nd place podium finish – in your first year at Loretta’s on the 85s. You’ve got to be pumped with that.
The win on Saturday felt great! It was an awesome week of learning. I had a blast! I wish it would’ve worked out to win an overall, but I made too many mistakes early in the week.
Well thanks for allowing Monster Energy to revisit Loretta’s with you. Cool to hear your perspective on this Big Time event. How’s the rest of your summer looking? Still got some more races going? You coming back to Michigan for the Motocross Des Nations at RedBud?
I have been having a blast with my friends. We have been doing a lot of swimming. I even learn how to do a gainer! It scares me which is sick! I will be racing Fox Raceway Amateur Day and hopefully Mini Os later this fall. I have been asking my dad about going to MXON at Red Bud! Hopefully we can make that work. I would love to watch team USA, and France - Gajser, Prado and Vialle - and just see how many people show up!
We can’t begin to believe how awesome it is to see your son following in your footsteps winning races and championships at Loretta’s – a place where you certainly met with a great deal of success in your young motocross career.
It has been fun to bring my family to Loretta’s ranch. All of my kids really look forward to going each year. They have a great group of friends that they are excited to hang out with. Both of my kids’ grandparents even make the trip from Michigan. The last couple of years the country concert has added another exciting aspect to our trip as well. As always the racing is at a very high level, but we try to enjoy our time when it's not race time.
There’s a fine line between being too hard on a kid and, well, him (or her) not qualifying for Loretta’s. Talk about how you’ve approached that line and what you’ve done not to cross over it, while at the same time coaching and training a boy who’s become a national motocross champion.
The first year Vincent raced was 2018. He did not have a lot of race experience, but I was going to the event to work with Answer Racing. Vincent qualified and from the regional until the event we worked really hard on his riding. He surprised himself with his accomplishments at the event by really digging in and working hard. He has been very motivated to win races since those early days on a 50. If anything I push all of my kids to try other sports and experience being a kid. When it's time to prepare for Loretta’s we take the prep very serious, but we are honesty pretty recreational racers for the most part.
Interesting. … There’s so much to being a moto dad. From coach and trainer to mechanic, driver, track builder, nutritionist, counselor, business manager and medical technician… when you’re wearing all these hats to you think back sometimes and appreciate what your dad, Terry, did for your MX career?
I am very close with my parents and have always been very appreciative of their support. I did not truly understand the level of sacrifice though. My entire family traveled around the world to support me over the years. Keeping up with bike maintenance, and keeping the tires aired up in the motorhome has been tough. I'm pretty sure it will not get any easier either.
You’ve been quoted as saying that your plan is not for this, motocross, to be Vincent’s full time job as an adult. Discuss that with MonsterEnergy.com readers, many of whom have high aspirations for their kids in some area of the action sports/motorsports spectrum.
Vincent has always been very competitive. With my racing experience this sport is what I know best. The last thing Iwant to do is push my kids into doing anything they don't have a passion for. Vincent’s motivation to practice and race to win has really motivated me to support him in any way that I can. If he continues to have the same motivation to improve and compete he will have a bright future in the sport. As a parent, I want to fully support each of my kids in whatever they truly enjoy.
Sage advice. … So congrats from everyone at Monster Energy on a strong showing at Loretta’s this past week for Vincent. And good luck with whatever you guys are racing the rest of the competition season.
Thank you! We appreciate Monster Energy’s commitment to the motocross community and supporting our family.
About Monster Energy
Based in Corona, California, Monster Energy is the leading marketer of energy drinks and alternative beverages. Refusing to acknowledge the traditional, Monster Energy supports the scene and sport. Whether motocross, off-road, NASCAR, MMA, BMX, surf, snowboard, ski, skateboard, or the rock and roll lifestyle, Monster Energy is a brand that believes in authenticity and the core of what its sports, athletes and musicians represent. More than a drink, it's the way of life lived by athletes, sports, bands, believers and fans. See more about Monster Energy including all of its drinks at www.monsterenergy.com
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