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Monster Energy Yamaha Official Rally Team Rider Andrew Short

Monster Energy Yamaha Official Rally Team rider Andrew Short discusses his experience at the Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge, and his plans for Dakar in 2022. He also tells us why he made the move to Rally after 17 years as a factory pro Motocross and Supercross rider, his passion behind it, and what travelling is like racing in Rally vs other disciplines.

Follow Andrew on Instagram and Twitter!



Pit Pass Moto is a production of Evergreen Podcasts. A special thank you to Tommy Boy Halverson, Chris Bishop, Producer Leah Longbrake and Audio Engineer Eric Koltnow.

This transcript is AI generated, and may contain misspellings.

[00:00:15.290] - Dave Sulecki

Welcome to Pit Pass Moto, the show that keeps you up to speed on the latest in motorcycling and brings the biggest names in motorcycle racing right to you.

[00:00:22.760] - Dale Spangler

I'm Dave Sulecki and I'm Dale Spangler. This week we have Andrew Short of the Monster Energy official rally team. This week's weekend watch is the World Superbike Round Pirelli Indonesian WSBK final round held at the picturesque Pertamina Mandalika International Street circuit on the island of Lombard, which is actually literally right next door to the island of Bali. What an amazing, picturesque setting for the final round of the World Superbike Series. Unbelievable racing. Another series coming down to the final round.

[00:00:57.640] - Dave Sulecki

Yes.

[00:00:57.970] - Dave Sulecki

How about that? And I think the big story of the week had to be the biggest name in motorcycle racing. Toe Prak Razgatlioglu and winning the Championship watching that racing in the rain, which kind of looks like slow motion. You know, these guys are going at it hard Saturday.

[00:01:13.560] - Dale Spangler

They had a little bit of an extreme weather. Anthony had some monsoon rains roll in which resulted in the race one being pushed to Sunday. So they ended up having two legs on Sunday. And Roscottley of Blue came in with a 30 point lead over Jonathan Ray, six time champion. Definitely a showdown down to the wire. But Raza Got Liglou was able to take it home in the first race with a second place finish, which gave him enough points to wrap up the Championship after race one.

[00:01:46.310] - Dave Sulecki

And how about Jonathan Ray with that series? Since he went to Kawasaki in 2015, winning six in a row. And this year he was no chump. I mean, eight out of 13 super polls always battling and sweeps the weekend. So really, Jonathan Ray flocked to the end, but it was interesting in the pits afterwards. Nobody was happier for TOPREC than Jonathan was because he went over and hugged him and high fived him so great sportsmanship on his part. Some of the other big news from the weekend are American racers in World Super Bike.

[00:02:19.020] - Dave Sulecki

Gerloff finishing 7th on the year. He is a Moto America former racer, and it's great to see his success. Also Jason Uravi, who raced several rounds in World Superbikes. So it's great to see the US represented at that platform and level, and we look for bigger things from these guys as the years go on.

[00:02:39.360] - Dale Spangler

Yeah. It's great to see Gerlof put it up there. I think he finished fourth in the second leg on Sunday in the rain soaked second race that was shortened to twelve laps. He ended up as a result, ended up taking the top independent title. What a season for Yamaha, as we've spoke about before, with Rod Scott Le Glue taking the World Superbike. And then we've got Carterra, who's taking the Moto GP title and so really absolutely fantastic season for the Yamaha squad. And for Ross Gottlieblue, he gives a country of Turkey its first World Superbike Championship and Yamaha's first title since 2009 with Ben Spies Craziness.

[00:03:21.580] - Dave Sulecki

Yeah. No doubt Yamaha has been on a tear this year. Absolutely winning the World Super Bike winning Moto GP. I counted seven major Championships for them. If you include MXGP MX, two class with Renault, Aft Singles with Dallas Daniels, Supercross East and west with Cooper and Nichols, and then the AMA 450 outdoors with Verandas. They've really just had a run this year. They've been the brand to watch, and I don't see that ending anytime soon with the domination that they pulled off.

[00:03:50.700] - Dale Spangler

Definitely not. And I think if this is any indication, like we've seen with MXGP World Super Bike is going to be another fantastic season in 2022. Rosguyloglu is now the third youngest champion of all time behind James Toslin and Troy Corser. And I just have a feeling this is probably only going to fuel the fire for Jonathan Ray in 2022 and probably come back and try and grab a 7th World Super Bike title.

[00:04:28.210] - Dave Sulecki

This week's. Industry Spotlight We'd like to talk about women in motorcycle racing. We've got big news out of American flat track racing. Shaneyu Texture Bowman has officially joined the Indian Motorcycle 2022 Aft Super Twins factory race team. I know that's a mouthful, but Congratulations to her. She's going to join her husband, Briar Bowman and also Jared niece this year's champion in the class on that Indian wrecking crew. And we couldn't be happier for her and racing in general. It's this and all the great activity and results from the Royal Enfield Bill Train race program led by Melissa Paris.

[00:05:06.350] - Dave Sulecki

They pushed the ladies to the forefront of racing, and it's wonderful to see also with GNCC action, we've got Becca Sheets with another Championship, really, given that series just well deserved attention, the commitment of the female athletes that they provided to racing along with the action on the race track is growing the sport of motorcycle racing, and we couldn't be more excited for the future.

[00:05:47.450] - Dale Spangler

Andrew Short, welcome to Pit Pass Moto. What are you up to today?

[00:05:51.560] - Andrew Short

I'm stoked beyond. Thanks for having me and getting ready for DACA. It's our big race. It's the beginning of January, and it's a little bit funny because with the timing and with registration with the AMA and the FIM, they don't quite have all their forms ready. So it's a little bit of a madness every year trying to get everything done. So it's a little bit interesting, but that's just part of this race and how it works and getting excited.

[00:06:16.670] - Dale Spangler

Yeah, I can only imagine the logistics that go into that one single race. And so speaking of races, rally racing, you recently completed the Abu Dhabi rally, where you finished 13th and probably would have been even higher if you didn't have an issue on stage four that took you out of that stage, but you're able to return the next day on stage five and grab fourth in the final stage, and I think you ended up 13th overall for the whole race. But more importantly, you got 9th overall in the whole Rally GP series.

[00:06:47.840] - Andrew Short

Yes, it wasn't the best race for me, but it's really good practice for Dakar. It was in Abu Dhabi and in the UAE, and this desert is the same desert as Saudi. Obviously, they border each other. So from the rider perspective, it's nice to be on similar terrain and just having this race so close to Dakar is Catch 22. It's nice to be in similar terrain, but it's really dangerous also, and you don't want to get hurt before the big race. And I was a little bit gun shy and a little too conservative.

[00:07:17.760] - Andrew Short

And I knew that going into the race and my mind and where I'm looking towards that card probably wasn't the best way to approach a race, but I did my best and we had a big issue on day four. That's kind of racing and how it goes. But I lost my motor at the beginning of the stage and I was happy to have that at the beginning and not 300 km deep into it. So I was able to get out of the desert halfway early and easily.

[00:07:42.780] - Andrew Short

So that was nice. And so we'll see how it goes. But it was nice to have a race this close, which is unusual because of COVID to have a race this time of year. Typically, this race is held in March and getting hurt is in the back of your mind when you have plenty of time before Dakar, but this year was completely different. So it was interesting.

[00:08:02.840] - Dave Sulecki

Andrew, I'm curious for you. I mean, you've been at this for quite some time, obviously racing in general, but the off-road and Dakar type off road racing, but I'm curious just for myself and for our listeners. What was the transition like for you from Moto, which we obviously had a successful career and very good at it. That transition from Moto to off-road and the duration of these types of events. What was that like for you?

[00:08:32.390] - Andrew Short

It's different because off road is my passion. And obviously Motocross and Supercross was my dream as a kid. This is all I wanted to do and to have a dream come true, like it did for me to be able to race motorcross and Supercross for so long was amazing. And eventually, after 17 years, I don't want to say it got stale, but it was like a business and it was something I was good at and I really enjoyed it. But there was all these other places and types of racing I wanted to go do for fun.

[00:09:04.760] - Andrew Short

I wanted to go to Baja and ride with buddies and take adventure bikes and not be so worried about just going fast the whole time and to go camp. And also, I love to ride dirt bikes and go trail ride in the mountains in Colorado or Idaho or wherever, Wyoming. And then I got hooked on rally, and this seemed like the ultimate Motocross vacation. You get to explore and go on a big adventure and you're around like minded people that just love to be on two wheels.

[00:09:31.390] - Andrew Short

And there was some racing involved, but it wasn't just about going fast. You had to be really smart and be strong day after day. It was more of a passion. It wasn't like, hey, I need to do this for business or for money, and that so it's a lot different for me in the mindset of transitioning to off-road where some of the off-road guys, I think it's truly they feel like they have to win, and that's how they make money. And then other people are just doing it because they love to compete, and they love being in the desert or in the mountains or back east in the trees.

[00:10:02.720] - Andrew Short

So for me, it's a little bit of a combination of both, but I love it. And I feel really fortunate to be able to have this chapter in my racing career, and it's completely different than Motocross and super cross, what I started with, and it's cool to be able to kind of be in this stage.

[00:10:19.280] - Dave Sulecki

It also got to be a lot different from you pack your gear bag and you're gone for a day or two, and then you're back home again, training and practicing so that alters the landscape quite a bit. It's a full commitment to go to these types of races just financially and just your time and your family's time.

[00:10:37.480] - Andrew Short

Yeah, this part is different even from Motocross and Supercross. It's like I used to travel on a Friday race on Saturday to be home on Sunday, and it was week after week, and it turned into a gun kind of in a sense. But I loved it. And now sometimes by the time I could just go to a motor cross Supercross race, that's how long it takes me just to travel to one of these countries. I'm going to race, going to Russia, it takes two or three days.

[00:11:02.250] - Andrew Short

Sometimes you lose a day. It's like you don't even know what day it is. And by the time you get to the little airport of where you're going in Siberia or somewhere crazy like this, where they're holding the race, it takes a long time, and it's a big commitment. And the logistics are mind blowing. And I'm talking from the rider perspective. So from the team perspective, the logistics of managing a crew and bikes and coordinating all the customs and all this stuff. It's a big effort.

[00:11:26.960] - Andrew Short

But in saying this, you get to experience and race in places that most people never get to see. And we ride long distances. And it's not like we're just going to the touristy places. We ride through the towns and then ride through the desert and see landscapes that most people never, ever get to see. So we get a real feel for the country and the culture, and it's really cool. And typically, most of these rallies, the country is sponsoring the race, so they want to show off what their country has in terms of these things, to appeal to other people.

[00:12:00.270] - Andrew Short

So they come visit these countries and kind of show off what they have. So it's really cool what we get to see and what we get to do. And also, this type of racing is at a really high level, which is cool, really well organized, professional. And it's not like you're like a local race, and typically they have cars as well. And this brings it up a whole nother level in terms of professional amenities and stuff like that. So it's unique.

[00:12:29.210] - Dale Spangler

It definitely seems like you have to have an appreciation for different cultures, different foods, different ways of doing things. And speaking of that, I've always noticed it seems like you're very much a student of Moto history, Andrew. And I saw where this past summer you had the chance to experience an MXGP at the rough and rugged Lamble circuit in Belgium. What was that like for you to be able to witness MXGP in such a famous circuit as the Lamol racetrack?

[00:12:59.420] - Andrew Short

Yeah, it was cool. We were in France doing some Durability testing at another track called Loonplash. We had a lot of sand. It was good for our bike and moving forward that way, and we were fortunate that it was close in location to Loma and to go see a Jeep. I've done a lot of motor cross races throughout my years, but to see this one in real life, it gives a new appreciation for how gnarly this track is, and just to see how the Euros approach racing.

[00:13:27.320] - Andrew Short

It's one thing when you watch Motor cross the nation, but when you just see a regular MXGP, it's cool to walk through the pattern, to see the young kids and the talent that they have in these conditions. It's a lot different than the US. Where our series. I think the kids, they focus so much on the sprint, speed and Supercross and the technical side where these younger kids, they have to have a lot of endurance, and the technique is so much different in terms of they don't have to be so precise, but they have to carry more momentum and really focus on line choice.

[00:13:57.810] - Andrew Short

And as the track gets rougher, how to adapt. So it was different styles. And to watch this, it was really cool, and it's definitely a lot different than the racing here in the US.

[00:14:08.620] - Dale Spangler

I can imagine, like seeing it firsthand, too. Probably really was kind of an eye opener because I feel like television probably doesn't even do it justice just how rough that track was and just how fast they're going on that rough track.

[00:14:22.690] - Andrew Short

Yeah, but this is racing at any high level. It's super cross same way, right? You see it on TV doesn't look too gnarly, but then you get down there on the floor and it's gnarly. It's crazy. And how much the track gets chewed up. And I think you have appreciation for that also. And I think the Euros have definitely appreciation for the American riders with Supercross and vice versa. I think a majority of the American riders have massive respect for the guys in Europe, and especially because we're seeing Fernandes and people like Muskin and Kenny and these people that came from Europe, we know that they can ride, but it's cool to see that their series is kind of pushing different limits.

[00:15:03.780] - Andrew Short

And obviously the riders are really fast when they're focused on motor cross 24/7 compared to the riders here in the US.

[00:15:10.390] - Dave Sulecki

Yeah, nobody can doubt the success of MXGP for those very reasons. Andrew, now I'm curious. You're walking around the pits, you're seeing the action and you probably got to talk to people, you know, but I really want to ask the question, has anybody in MXGP adopted the Shorty third gear start? That's the question I want to ask.

[00:15:32.550] - Andrew Short

Nowadays. With the greats behind the start, I never had this. So who knows what they're doing? But everywhere you go, there's a little bit different technique and there for a while I think it was 2015 when I was doing this. I had it unlocked. But for Supercross, it's a little different with the gearing, and the conditions are so hard packed where these guys are coming off the gate and typically it's groomed or dissed up. I don't think anybody does this, and it wouldn't work so good in today's condition like it did back in 2015.

[00:16:02.590] - Dale Spangler

I imagine your immediate focus is obviously the car 2022. I would assume you're probably looking for some redemption from last year's race get taken out, I think was it the second stage with some bad gas? And so I imagine you're looking for some redemption. But beyond that, what do you have going forward into 2022?

[00:16:24.420] - Andrew Short

That's it. Honestly, I'm kind of at a crossroads in my life, and I'm focused on getting to DACA, which is a big effort. After that, I don't know what will happen and what doors will open and what doors will close. But right now, that's what I'm focused on. And last year was a shame with what happened with the fuel. There was so much I got a bunch of water in my fuel. I was the first one to the pump, and I had, I think, over eight liters of water in my bike, which holds 30 liters.

[00:16:53.330] - Andrew Short

And so I couldn't even dump that amount out. But I was confused on why it happened, the way the organization handled it in terms from the promoter standpoint, they did everything they could to keep me in the race. But the FIM didn't see through with this. And with the COVID situation, it was a bit strange, but this year I feel like we're a lot more prepared if something like this happens, even from the team standpoint on how to handle situations like this, whether it's from a legal standpoint or whatever, just to keep you in the race.

[00:17:23.110] - Andrew Short

But it's a wild race, man. You never know what's going to happen. And this will be my fifth year, I guess, doing this race and every year, there's always a different story and it's crazy and you never know it's around the corner. And it's a long race. And I feel like every time you do it, it changes you as a person. And you can take these experiences and they'll be with you for the rest of your life. So I have no idea what lies ahead, but I can't wait to see what's in store.

[00:17:52.370] - Dale Spangler

Yeah. So speaking of that, so is your deal up with Yamaha, then after the car, then and then that's when things kind of fall into place for the remainder of 2022.

[00:18:01.700] - Andrew Short

Yeah. Exactly. So I've been on a two year deal, and typically, after that, you do the World Championship. It's kind of interesting because Jaco and Aso, who also promotes the Tour de France, but they bought the world Championship. So I think they came to agreement with the other races. I don't know if it's been officially announced, but I think this is the way it's going. And so Dakar will be the first round of the World Championship in the future. But typically you stay with the team until decor.

[00:18:32.690] - Andrew Short

And then after this, you kind of get sorted. It's like Motocross Supercross. This typically happens after outdoors and everyone switches teams during the off season. And then you start again. And so Dakar is kind of like the last one on that's the one that matters. So after this, everything kind of gets sorted. So we'll see what happens.

[00:18:49.970] - Dave Sulecki

So, Andrew, thinking about the future. I know you've got racing in the family, as I like to say, obviously, with your career, which was a long, successful career for Motorworld Suzuki all the way through Team Honda and then KTM, your wife, Jackie, was also a racer in the WMX series. She grabbed some podiums back in the day. I know. And I've seen her race. And are there any plans to bring the kids along? I know. I've seen pictures of your boy riding. Is there any opportunity there?

[00:19:18.410] - Dave Sulecki

Are you steering them away from the sport or how does that look for you?

[00:19:22.750] - Andrew Short

Yeah. It's funny because as you said, my wife used to race and now my son, he loves to ride and he loves to race, but he doesn't quite understand because Jackie my wife, she doesn't ride so much anymore, and she'll be giving them some pointers. And he just acts like she doesn't know what she's talking about. So me and her always kind of laugh. And every once in a while, she'll go ride with them. But, yeah, I don't know what will happen. We just try to have fun and make the most of it.

[00:19:49.700] - Andrew Short

And it's been cool because before COVID, my son never really liked to ride, and now he's all into it so we can go into a local offroad race, or even my wife and him and myself can go ride with some friends. And we have a great time and that's kind of what it's all about and trying to enjoy that. And it's definitely different when your kids can ride, and it's not all about you and you can share your passion with them and have these good times together.

[00:20:16.380] - Dale Spangler

So, Andrew, what about any other type of brand ambassador type roles? I know you've done that for some of the brands you've worked with for a long time, like Fly Racing and some of the other brands. And I think if any brand will be lucky to have you as an ambassador. So I assume there might be some plans like that for you in the future as well.

[00:20:35.590] - Andrew Short

Well, thanks for the kind words, but no, honestly, yeah, I don't know what's going to happen after Dakar. Like I said, I'm at a crossroads in my life, and kids are getting older, and I've been traveling so much. And if there's an opportunity to race like there has been, then that would be amazing if there's not. I wouldn't mind trying to navigate in a car or doing something in the industry. And I love to ride, and I would love to be able to give back. And I don't know what that is.

[00:21:02.370] - Andrew Short

And I have a lot of friends in this industry, and I would like to do something, but I don't want to force something. And if that opportunity comes about, I'd love to be with like minded people that love their bikes, love two wheels and that adventure style passion. The racing side of it is great, but there's so much more to dirt bikes than just racing. But we'll see what happens. There's still some things I would love to go do and places I want to go ride.

[00:21:26.970] - Andrew Short

And sometimes with racing, you don't have time to do this. But there's definitely a bucket list of places I want to go on my dirt bike as well here in the near future and see how that goes.

[00:21:38.830] - Dale Spangler

Well, when you do make it to retirement, those will be plenty of opportunities for all those fun adventures you're just talking about. But, Andrew, I really appreciate you coming on today. I appreciate your time. And is there anything else you'd like to give a shout out to before we close this episode out?

[00:21:56.020] - Andrew Short

No, I appreciate you guys having me on, and it's great to talk to you guys, and it's cool you guys do this for me? No, I'm just looking forward to Dakota. Like he said, with our team with Master Energy and Yamaha, we had a rough one last year. So we're looking to rebound. And with this race, you never know what can happen. But also, I've been a part of the fly racing family forever, and I've had the opportunity to work with you. Obviously, Dale there and they're great people, and they've been a big part of my career and my success.

[00:22:25.400] - Andrew Short

And I have a lot. A lot of it comes from them. And I have a lot to think to those guys because they've definitely helped me live this dream and very appreciative of that. So between those people, they've allowed me to go race, and I'm thankful for that. Thanks again.

[00:22:41.260] - Dale Spangler

Andrew. I appreciate you coming on today.

[00:22:43.470] - Andrew Short

Thanks, guys.

[00:22:58.910] - Dale Spangler

Thank you again to our guests for being with us today. And thank you for tuning in. If you enjoyed this episode, make sure to follow us on your favorite podcast listening app. So you never miss an episode. If you have a moment, please rate and review our show. We'd really appreciate it. Make sure you're also following us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and visit pitpassmoto. Com where you can check out our latest blog.

[00:23:23.460] - Dave Sulecki

This has been a production of Evergreen Podcasts. A special thank you to Tommy Boy Halverson, Chris Bishop, producer Leah Longbrake and audio engineer Eric Koltnow.

[00:23:34.050] - Dale Spangler

I'm Dave Sulecki, and I'm Dale Spangler. See you next week.

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The Team

Dave Sulecki

Dave Sulecki is a 37 year industry veteran, and a lifetime motorcycle rider, racer, builder, restorer, and enthusiast.

P.J. Doran

Originally from the Midwest, but has lived and worked everywhere in the U.S., PJ grew up on the back of his dad's BMW motorcycles and in his sidecars in the 70s.

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