Eighteen AMA national number one plates, seven International Six Day Enduro (ISDE) medals, two OMA championships and even an ISDE World Cup Trophy adorn the walls of Husqvarna’s winningest off-road racer. Who is the celebrated champion behind this impressive resume? None other than Mandi Mastin!
The Hall’s Cycles-backed rider recently wrapped up her 11th (yes, eleventh!) consecutive National Enduro championship aboard her Husqvarna TXC250. Along with seven other AMA number one plates and two OMA championships, Mastin has racked up an unprecedented 20 national titles in her career, making her the most decorated female rider in off-road.
Now at the tail end of her 2011 season, Mastin looks to cap off the GNCC series with a pair of strong finishes at this weekend’s double-header, and will finish off her year with an appearance at the AMA EnduroCross finale in Las Vegas. We caught up with the busy off-road racer this week to hear about her 2011 season, and what’s in store for 2012 (hint: she has no plans to slow down)!
How has your season been?
It’s been kind of up and down. It’s been a bit of a roller coaster. But at the same time I’ve learned a whole lot. I’m on a new bike; my Husky is great. It’s been a lot of learning throughout the whole year, so it’s been up and down, but in the end I’m happy and I ended up winning the National Enduro championship.
And this is your 11th National Enduro title?
Yeah, it is. Eleven in a row! It makes me feel old when I see that! [laughs]
You have a total of 18 national number one plates right now?
Yeah. I have 18 AMA championships and then I have two OMA Women’s championships. So I have 20 national championships.
There’s a picture on your Facebook page of all your number one plates that is very impressive. It really puts it in perspective when you see them all at once.
They were all just sitting stacked up on my shelf and I was like, “They’re just sitting there… I need to get them out.” I’m actually going to put them on the wall in my workout room and I told my boyfriend, Dave, “We gotta make sure there’s room so I can get more.” It’s still a work in progress.
On top of all your racing, do you have a full-time job as well?
Yeah. Our family owns a business and I work Monday through Friday. Then I leave Friday night for the races and come home Monday. It makes it very difficult. Especially in a week like this when I’m prepping the bike to leave on Wednesday. There’s only so many hours in the day, and I’m trying to figure out, “Do I work on the bike tonight, or work out tonight?” It’s all a juggling act. It is really difficult but Dave, my boyfriend and mechanic, he does help out a lot. During the week he does what he can to help out and especially on the week of the races, he helps me with the driving and all that. It’s difficult, but for some reason I keep going back and doing it every year! [laughs]
On top of having a full race schedule with National Enduro and GNCC, you also have the ISDE every year, which is a huge commitment. How have you been able to keep up that pace?
This year has been really difficult. It seems like everything this year was crammed into the summer. From June to August, I was so slammed because not only do I have a full-time job and my racing, but I also have the container for the Six Days. So the big container that gets loaded with all the bikes, inventory, all that. I do all that now. So we have to do that in the spring, get all that coordinated and this year it shipped in June. To be honest, it was really tough.
When we got back from Six Days, I actually didn’t race for about five weeks. I just came home and I was pretty burned out just form everything going on and just took a break.
Keep following Mandi Mastiin in 2012 and see how many more number one championship plates she brings home.
As for 2012, do you already have a program put together?
Yeah, pretty much. I think I’m going to do the same thing. I’ll do the GNCCs and National Enduros. Every year I talk about not doing the National Enduros because they are so spread out and it’s more expensive with all the driving. But then at the same time I look at the 11 championships and I don’t want to just give it up. So I’m pretty sure next year I’ll do the National Enduros, the GNCCs and then I’d like to do more EnduroCross rounds. And once I actually see the schedules, I’ll see if I can get anything else on my plate! [laughs]
You also did a national motocross (WMX) this year. Is that something you’d like to do more of next year?
I would. I would like to do a couple more. It’s just so hard fitting it onto the schedule. RedBud happened to be a free weekend and it’s real close. I would definitely like to do RedBud again. It was a blast and I would definitely like to practice a little bit more. It was more just to have fun and say that I did one. So yeah, I’d like to do it again.
With so much success in the National Enduro series here, have you thought about competing in any World Enduros?
I was trying to do one last year. But it was short notice and I couldn’t get things put together in time. I did talk to people this year in Finland about trying to do a couple of the rounds [in 2012] and I talked to Maria [Forsberg] and she wants to do them, too. The World Enduros are really technical and the courses look really fun. And the girls like Ludevine Puy and the Swedish and the German girls are really good riders. I know Maria would do well at them and I think I’d do good, too. So yes, I would really like to try out some of the world rounds.