come along for the ride
This post is about my friend Eric Kondo, aka Kazman, who I felt that I needed to thank for all that he has done to help me become a better rider and racer. I met Eric at the first Feel Like a Pro meeting, but didn’t have a chance to start to get to know him until our first track day together. We both took our New Racer School together at Thunderhill raceway back in early March. I was definitely a little intimidated to ride around the track with him since I knew that he had been a professional AMA previously. I mean I had only been on the track at Thunderhill twice previously and maybe a handful of times around Infineon. The day went well and we both received our licenses. It was the start to what I hope will be a very long friendship.
During the first race with Eric he acted much like my very own track coach and showed me what an amazing learning tool GoPro cameras can be. He followed me around the track and showed me footage of my riding. He explained to me what I was doing wrong and how it could be improved. He showed me how to listen to difference in engine noise between my riding and his. I learned to focus on the basics of my riding in order for me to gain the confidence to go faster on the track.
Not only has Eric taught me technique, but also given me encouragement and been there to support when I felt frustrated. He hasn’t focused on how I finished in a race, but the mind set that I had during the race. “Want it” is best phrase that I can use to describe what Eric has taught. You have to have the desire to push through and dig deep within yourself to push through even when you feel the race hasn’t gone the way you planned. I definitely haven’t fully mastered this, but when I put this mindset into play I feel the difference. When you want it racing becomes an amazing experience and no matter where you finish you feel as if you accomplished something.
Thank you Eric for you mentorship and friendship.
Champions are made from something they have deep inside them — a desire, a dream, a vision.
Leaders aren’t born, they are made. And they are made just like anything else, through hard work. And that’s the price we’ll have to pay to achieve that goal, or any goal.