Genette Våge; A rookie on the rise
By Nikki Scott | 10 Feb 2014
Young and determined are two words to describe one of Norway’s hottest WMX riders, Genette Våge. Last year, the then fifteen-year-old Våge put her name on the map when she rode her KTM 125cc to a remarkable sixth place finish at the final round of the FIM Women’s Motocross World Championship. This year the youngster will enter the entire WMX World Championship and has just been granted support from one of the biggest clothing company’s in motocross FOX Head via the guys at FOX Nordic. We decided to catch up with the young Norwegian talent to get to know the name Genette Våge a little better.
How did your season go last year?
“I had my first WMX World Championship race in Valkenswaard last year, I was just fifteen-years-old. I found it quite tough, I qualified seventh in the qualifying race but then in the first race I crashed so hard and got injured. That sidelined me for most of the season. After getting medical clearance, I raced the last three rounds of the WMX World Championship where I got better each time finishing seventh and then sixth at the last two rounds"
I see you ride a 125 two-stroke where as most riders today opt for the 250F four-strokes. Why 125cc?
"I consider myself still in the learning phase, and I have a long way to go before my skills are fully developed on the technical side. Our strategy is long-term, I still have a couple of years to go before I am supposed to ride really fast, so during this period we chose the 125cc just because I think you get punished much harder for making mistakes on a two-stroke compared to a four-stroke. It is also easier to handle when it comes to developing technical skills, which is important considering my age and height. It is possible to gain 2-3 seconds per lap "for free" when we eventually switch to four-strokes.
You did the last three rounds of the FIM Women’s Motocross World Championships. Did you feel nervous?
Yes, most definitely!
I have tried to prepare myself as much as I possibly can during the previous years, by mainly competing against boys in larger races like the European Championships. It was a dream from the start to achieve a level that allowed me to race in the WMX World Championship".
What did you learn from that experience?
"I didn’t know how fast the others where, so I raced without a benchmark. I knew most of them had tons of experience, but apart from that, most of them were unfamiliar to me. I think I put myself on the map, and I know I have to work hard if I am to improve my results".
This year the WMX is running alongside the big boys in MXGP, which will be a whole new experience for you. Do you know what to expect? Are you excited?
“This is a major advantage for the whole of WMX, and it increases the status enormously. It has definitely led to more of the fastest riders returning to their professional careers. This has increased the level for the 2014 season, and as for the big boys? We can handle them!"
In Qatar you will be racing in the evening under floodlights. Is that something you have done before?
During December 2013, I spent 3 weeks in USA where I trained under floodlights during the evenings. Winter training at home in Norway is also done under floodlights, so I hope it will not present me with too much of a problem, but you never know. I have great respect for the whole World Championship setup, so I prepare as well as I can".
What are your goals and expectations for this season?
"Like I mentioned, new and fast riders are entering the WMX this year, so the bar has definitely been raised. I still feel that I have developed in the right direction, and I hope to be able to start off somewhere near where I ended last season (6th)".
What are you doing to train and prepare?
"I know the winter is very important for training. Together with my personal trainer and National Team coach Kenneth Gundersen, we ride all winter in the snow, through mud, deep rutted trails and in generally rough conditions. This is mixed with speed training, usually in foreign countries. We also play around on other bikes like trials, BMX and Downhill for some extra skills.”
I saw on your website, you just signed a deal with FOX Nordic. Fox is a pretty awesome brand to have on your side. You must be happy with this deal?
"I am so happy FOX Nordic contacted me. This is huge for me. I am very thankful that Fox Nordic sees potential in me and are willing to join me on my road forward. I will do my utmost to make this a positive experience for both of us".
So it will be your first full season in the FIM Women’s Motocross Championship. Are you doing any other championships?
"Yes, I didn’t really have much racing experience last season so Qatar is the first real test this year. Other than the Women’s World Championship I will race the Norwegian National Championship, which is 3 rounds and the Swedish National Championships, too. The Swedish races are on a very high level, and run over 6 rounds. I am also planning to race in a BSMA Women’s Motocross National´s in the UK".
Who else would you like to thank for supporting you this year?
"First of all my coach Kenneth Gundersen, Fox Nordic, and Johan Boonen from DT1 filters along with all of my other sponsors presented on my website www.genette.no. Since I’m still at school I want to extend my thanks to my school for helping to make this all possible. And of course my Mom and Dad, without them I wouldn’t be where I am.
And one more for your fans, what are your social media and website platforms?
“I want to thank all my fans and supporters - every single one of you mean a lot to me! Without you this wouldn't be impossible. See you all on the track soon".
Instagram & Twitter: genettevaage
Thanks Genette and good luck this season!
Copyright: Photos: Genette Våge
Read the next news: The fifth issue of the MXGP Mag is Online (04 Feb 2014)
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