OFF-ROADER QUINN CODY
was just overload. You have to
have a GPS code that you enter
into the GPS and so it was a huge
learning process that first week.
So going back I will already kind
of have a system down in my
head. The navigation… there are
a bunch of little numbers and
stuff – little notations that mean
things. But if you have to translate
them in your head while you’re
riding, it takes a long time. By
the end of the rally, I could just
glance at a little notation and I
knew what it meant. It wasn’t like
I had to slow down, look and go,
‘Now what does that mean?’ It’s
stuff like that… experience.”
And the experienced were
more than willing to help pass
some of their knowledge to Cody
– even though he was an Ameri-
“Most of the guys were helpful. I’ve raced with those guys –
Cyril [Despres] was my teammate
when we did the KTM project.
I’ve gone to Spain and raced with
[Marc] Coma and those guys.
They helped me out a lot. Jonah
[Street, the other American in the
top 20] was pretty helpful. He
was there if I had any questions.
The BMW guys were really cool.
Frans Verhoeven was super help-
ful. He dialed me in on the GPS
and stuff, which was cool. The
first three days I was basically… I
didn’t even know what was going
on with that thing.”
Okay, so you get some expe-
rience, you figure out how this
thing works… so what are the
chances that a 34-year-old Amer-
ican desert racer could go over
there and win the damn thing?
“If you had that level of support,
there’s still the experience factor
that you need to get,” Cody said.
“Cyril [Despres] has done like
11 Dakars and [Marc] Coma has
done 7 or 8. Plus that’s what they
do year round - they do rallies.
As it stands right now, there’s no
other team that even compares
to KTM. So you would have to
build the team, build the experi-
ence, and within three or four
years it would be possible to win.
But it’s going to take a big invest-
ment and a lot of time.”
And there’s always the chance
that you get the big call – the call
from one of the big teams to go
race for them.
“I talked to some of those guys
and they were pretty impressed
with how I did my first time,”
Cody said. “They see the oppor-
tunity… especially KTM because
they sell so many bikes in the
U.S. They like the idea of having
Americans in the race because
it draws more interest for them.
The same with the ASO [the pro-
moters of the race]. The ASO is
helpful in getting Americans over
there because there were basi-
cally only three of us over there.
They want more entries. The
teams are looking for something
a little bit new, so it’s not totally
out of the question.”
But for now, Cody remains fo-
cused on delivering to his JCR
Honda team what he was signed
to deliver: Victories in Baja.
“Our main focus is Baja. I’m
with JCR [Johnny Campbell Rac-
ing] for 2011 so that’s the main
focus. I’m going to do some hare
and hounds, but I’m going to help
Kendell [Norman] out with him
trying to win a championship and
being there for him at most of the
races. I will do some District stuff
to stay tuned up, but for the most
part Baja is number one.”
So bring on Dakar number
two. In fact, mark it down on the
calendar – January 1, 2012. You
can bet it’s on Cody’s. CN