Hey Charlie, overall how was your trip to Croatia?
My trip was awesome. I was super excited to get the first World Cup underway and was generally pretty happy with how I felt for the start of the season. I had a really great time with my team all week and shared lots of laughs, so I was pretty hyped on the whole situation for the duration of the trip.
What did you think of the country?
Croatia was pretty amazing, it was definitely the most coastal place I've been able to visit while in Europe. The landscape was beautiful and the ocean was some of the clearest water I've ever seen. Since I love surfing so much, I am always stoked when there is an ocean to swim in while at a race, even if there's no waves. We rented scooters one day and ripped around to the other side of the island, that was so much fun and we had some sketchy moments that were pretty hilarious.
How did you feel about the course?
I liked the course for the most part, it was pretty easy to get used to, as it was loose, rocky, and dry, kind of like the tracks I ride at home. There were a few awkward sections, but overall, I think it was a pretty well put together race course. The track was challenging to consistently hit lines perfect, which made bike set up and knowledge of the track very important. It's hard to race such a short track because the smallest amount of time can mean five to ten spots in results, so racing a quick track like that means that you have to be 100% out of the gate to the bottom, no settling in. I think the layout and set up of the track combined with the finish in downtown Losinj made for real exciting racing.
Run into anything interesting or different there?
The whole country of Croatia was interesting to me, as it was completely new.
You finished 14th overall, which so far is your highest World Cup result (and is awesome!), but you’ve had a few 14th finishes correct? What do you think will be the key to breaking through that spot and working your way up?
I wish I knew what the key was to breaking out! Hahah. This is my fourth 14th place finish, and the third time I have qualified 11th and finished 14th, crazy. My ultimate goal as of now is to be getting top 10's, which I feel now is very much in grasp, so I just need to stick with what I've been doing, and it will come. I think once I can qualify 10th and not 11th for once, I'll break the curse and be good to go for a top 10 in finals hahah.
You were one of the youngest riders to finish so high in the list, do you think that gives you an edge or more to overcome?
I think that being younger you have more motivation to get good results and to prove yourself, but at the same time, I don't have as much race experience as the older guys, so dealing with certain situations could be harder due to the lack of knowledge.
What’s up next after Croatia?
Pretty much all I have planned between now and Fort William is to enjoy some time at home and continue with the daily routine of training and riding. I'll be working on bike set up a bit before heading to Fort William. The team learned quite a lot in regards to some things we should maybe try for set up on our bikes after Croatia, so it will be exciting to work on that.