Appearing just on the outside of the spotlight, Taten Gilman is anxiously awaiting his moment to step out of the shadow’s and prove is true worth on the national circuit. With his name beginning to echo across P.A. systems across the country weekend after weekend, both fans and industry insiders are realizing the true potential of the Holland, Michigan native. It’s come at the expense of true hard work, and dedication, both on and off the motorcycle. Not only an accomplished racer, but a tedious student as well, anything he chooses to embark on, he places full effort into, seeking the absolute best out of himself. We caught wave of his accomplishments and were eager to take a few minutes to sit down, listening to what he had to say with a high-degree of interest. We thought you’d like to hear his story; without further ado, Taten Gilman.
How did you get involved in motocross of all things?
My dad had actually ridden while growing up, and had gotten me a quad when I was 2 years old. By the time I turned 5, I had gotten my first dirtbike. I competed in my first race when I was 7 years old at the local fair race, and the rest was history.
If you can choose one significant memory from your early years of racing and riding, what would it be?
One of my earliest motocross memories would be when I was on 65's and had won my first state championship. It wasn't the actual championship that meant the most to me though, It was the span of that entire year that was significant. Throughout that year, I really learned what the moto-family was. I met a lot of nice people and spend some good time with my family. That year was what got me hooked with the sport.
Earlier this year you went to the Spring Classic at Mill Creek, putting in some very respectable rides; how did you feel after the event?
I was actually pretty disappointed with myself. I knew that I had put the work in, and that I should've finished better then I did. But I used that race as a learning experience and it gave me more reason to train harder.
After you had completed your area qualifiers, were you confident that you could qualify through the regional process?
After getting some top five’s at my area qualifiers and running with some of the top B class guys, I was pretty confident that I'd be able to punch my tickets. I knew it wouldn't be very easy, but I carried my momentum and was able to get the job done.
Hopping back and forth between the 250 and 450, which do you prefer?
I actually just ride the 250 in both classes. It seems to actually be an advantage over the 450, because by the end of the moto the guys on the 450s are dropping way off the pace, while I can keep pushing until the checkers.
Everyone knows the B classes are always competitive, were you stoked with your performance at Spring Creek for the amateur regional?
I was super happy with my performance at the SCRC, finishing 4th overall. I was pretty happy with my overall finish, but wasn't too happy with my riding. I was just coming off of a pretty bad ear infection, so my balance was still a little off and I didn't feel like I was riding to my full potential. Luckily, I got the job done and solidified myself a spot in 250b Limited.
Schoolboy can be such a tough division; how did the MC Motopark regional go for you?
The MC Motopark regional actually went pretty well for me, finishing 5th overall with 3-10-2 moto scores. The 10th place finish kind of lowered my confidence, but coming into the final moto I knew what I had to do and fortunately got it done. I was happy with how I rode.
What’s the plan, training wise, for the next few weeks or so?
Throughout the next few weeks, I will of course be riding whenever I get the chance too. I will also be spending some time down at Georgia Practice Facility, and will be doing a lot of gym work and putting some miles in on the cycling side of things.
What type of off the bike training will you being doing to get prepared for the ranch?
Fitness wise I will be doing a lot of cycling, including both mountain biking and road riding. This year, I have been focusing on the nutrition side of things a lot more then I ever have and it seems to be working. I feel a lot better and can ride a lot harder for longer.
Do we have any specific goals in mind for the ranch, results or performance wise?
Coming into the Ranch, my main goal is just to give it my all and do the best I can. I know what I am capable of, and I know I can do a whole lot better then I have in past years.
Is it A class after Loretta’s?
At this point, we are not sure. It honestly all depends on how Loretta's goes this year. The last two years have been learning years, so coming into the big show I know what I have to do. If my expectations are met and I feel that I am ready, I will move up after Loretta's and start working towards getting my pro card.
Off the motorcycle, what do you like to do for fun? You also graduated a year early from school, tell us about that as well, as that’s a very impressive accomplishment.
When I'm not riding, some of my favorite things to do are ripping up the mountain bike trails, shredding pitbikes with my friends, going to the gym and lifting, and recently I have been getting into some car audio stuff. I actually had started my highschool classes when I was in middle school, meaning I had accomplished my senior requirements a year early. I decided to graduate a year early mainly so I would be able to focus on riding more.
Any sponsor’s you’d like to thank?
First off I'd like to thank my Mom & Dad. Without them, I wouldn't be anywhere near where I am now. I would also like to thank Lake Cycle Ktm, PerfMoto.com, Performance Motorsports, WPS, GPF and Forty Five Designs.
DAILY BREAD BY / LOGAN MATTINGLY
IMAGES BY / JESS TEN HAGEN
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