We sit down with Dylan Merriam and discuss 2017, what he’s been doing during the off season, and what he’s got in store for 2018.
Dylan, could you please give us a run down of your 2017 season?
My 2017 season was very up and down. I was able to accomplish some life-long goals but also dealt with injuries and bike problems throughout the season. My first 3 rounds of Monster Energy Supercross I was very uncomfortable with the bike. We made a big change before round four in Daytona and I made my first main event. After that, the ball was rolling and the progression was good. I won the LCQ in Indy, finished 15th in that main event and transferred straight to the main from the heat race in St. Louis the next weekend. Unfortunately, before the final two rounds, I tore four ligaments in my ankle and was unable to perform to expectation. As Supercross came to an end, we shifted over to Lucas Oil Pro Motocross with my first round being the Glen Helen National. In the first moto, I lost the front end and ended up breaking three bones in my foot. I came back to the Spring Creek National seven weeks later and went DNF-20 due to bike issues. Fortunately, I rebounded at the next round in Washougal Washington going 14-16 on the day for 16th overall. 2 weeks later while preparing for Unadilla, I landed on a down riders bike at the practice track resulting in a fracture on my T-6 vertebrae. That was the end of the 2017 season for me.
What have you been doing during the off season?
During the off-season, I’ve used the time to let my body heal up and rest. I still continued to ride and workout, but made more time to relax and recover.
How have you been preparing for 2018?
To prepare for the 2018 season, I have applied more structure and consistency in my program. I’ve been burning a lot of laps on the bike as well as doing a lot of CrossFit, mountain biking, road biking and swimming to improve my strength and stamina.
What are some things you have been improving on for 2018?
I would say the biggest thing I’ve improved on this year is getting my confidence back. Last year I had a lot of injuries both big and small, preventing me from having a full off-season training camp. I always felt like I was behind the 8 ball and playing catch up. I have had a quality five weeks of training and still have four more ’till the gate drop.
What are you looking forward to most in 2018?
What I’m looking forward to most in 2018 is getting to race every weekend and show what I can do. The main goal is to complete the entire season injury free. I have expectations and know where I want to be but completing an entire season is my main goal. If I’m behind the gate every weekend for seventeen rounds, great finishes will come.
What round of SX are you looking forward to most in 2018?
Last year I only raced the east coast rounds so I’d have to say I look forward to Indianapolis the most.
How do you feel about rejoining the TPJ Racing team for 2018?
I’m excited to be back with the TPJ Racing team for 2018. Everyone there is awesome and it’s familiar to me. The goal is to get picked up by a factory team and their program is what will help me get there.
Is there anyone you would like to thank?
I’d like to thank TPJ Racing, Fly Racing, Braap Shop Yamaha, Alpinestar, Von Zipper, DSC Construction, Dedicated Ride Co., CrossFit by Overload, FitAid, ODI, and AC Systems.
Interview: Anna Glennon
Photos: Anna Glennon