Mel Pocock had an unbelievable week, with penalties and injuries being chucked his way. Through all of that, however, he persevered and kept his title hopes alive in Europe and Britain. With an action-packed seven days in the rear-view mirror, Pocock opened up about everything that happened in this MX Vice interview.
MX Vice: First off, Russia. I guess we will start with Saturday. You got disqualified and I guess you could see both sides. It kind of was not your fault, because you got punted down a hill and it could have been really bad, but talk us through what happened there, the process, what happened afterwards and all of that.
Mel Pocock: I literally cannot see both sides of the story. It was an absolute joke what happened. He [Pierre Goupillon] hit me, only I think that he could not have hit me that hard, he must have been out of control. There was no intention of turning or even making the obstacle that was in front of both of us. I pretty much flipped over a hay bale. I clipped the freaking camera stand and over a double span of a container. Lucky to even get up. I saw red. I was fuming. Probably should have used my experience and not done what I did. But, hey, if it was all on camera, then there would have been a different outcome of the story, because it was just a joke.
You did not really do that much though. If you had laid a hand on him, I’d get it. Obviously that is overstepping the line. Really you did not do that much other than help him get his bike up and then drop it. Did you get a chance to protest it? Did you ever get to say your side?
Yeah, I cannot believe it. He dropped the bike that I picked up for him and it went right back down that bank! Such a shame. We had a jury meeting. It was obviously going to be a process against that from Kawasaki. Me and Mark Yates fought our corner but, unfortunately, because it was only my doings that were on footage, it went against me. Lost the fight.
Obviously, you only lost two points. I guess that is not that big a deal, but is it more a case of principles? You were the one who got disqualified, but you were the one who got punted down a hill.
More of a fact from that whole scenario, I was glad that I actually got up from it. I had my left hand x-rayed, which we thought was broke, but it was not. Just badly bruised, so that was lucky. Lost the two points, but more to the outcome of that I actually got up and was okay from that. That was the grateful thing from that whole situation. Moving on, I hope I do not have to deal with something like that again.
Then obviously the next day you popped your knee out, which just confuses me. That seems like quite a serious thing! I do not really understand how you finished the race or even raced this weekend.
I kept that a little bit quiet. Obviously it is not really so quiet. I had a clash with Dylan Walsh. Not really anyone’s fault, just a racing clash. It properly popped my knee out and brought tears to my eyes. Pretty much if pit lane was at the end of the straight it happened on, I would have been pulling in. I cannot thank my massage and physio guy, Julian, enough. He has worked on me every single day. I brought him here today. It is sore. It’s not ideal, but it is the knee where I am missing the ACL from a previous injury. Had it been my good knee, my right knee, I think I would have been faced with some injuries. I cannot actually believe how I got away of it and managed to race four days later.
Obviously, it is sore today, but I guess that will get better? This is not going to be a thing that nags at you the whole season? Just give it a week or two and it should be fine?
Yeah, exactly that. I have given it a yank about. I do not really want to do it again. It was not pleasant. It will get better. It is just one of them things; I can put it in my knee brace and crack on with it.
Then onto today and another penalty, but not a disqualification this time. You jumped on waved yellows, I guess, and got docked five positions. Just talk us through what happened there.
Another ‘mare. You could not even write a story on this. There was no incident where the yellow flags… The incident had cleared up, because it was coming downhill and we could see that there was no incident, but the flags were still out. I did slow up. I did case the jump that it was on. I just had some protests against me, again, which made me lose five positions, which I did not really need at all. Trying to keep the championship alive and stuff like that does not help.
What was the process of being told that here? I guess it is a lot less professional than at a GP.
Yes, because they do not have immediate replay on the footage from the TVs. When there are about three or four words against mine from three different complainers, then I’m going to get pipped, aren't I?
Obviously I have got to ask you about today, but I guess you are not really happy. All in all, knee and everything that happened last week, you did salvage good points. I guess that is okay?
In moto two I had a bit of a mechanical issue. I had no front brake the whole race. I was just literally sat nice in second and third, then just overshot a corner and no way but to sort of lay it down. It was difficult racing out there in moto two without a brake. I could just only salvage a seventh, really. This is not really a great day for me. I am looking forward to Latvia really. I need to get my racing straightened out and get back on the podium, really. I have got the speed. I have got the fitness. It just all needs to fall into place, but we will get there.
Finally, after all of this, if there is one good thing to come from it then it is that in Latvia you are going to be close to one hundred percent and you are going to be able to keep on. With everything that has happened, it could have turned out very differently.
Moving away from Blaxhall, yeah, I am glad that I managed to do this race. I was in agony walking through the airport Wednesday. Hardly any movement in my knee. We worked hard on that. Coming into Latvia I just need two good starts to get my head down, then try and see them steps on that podium again.
Interview: Lewis Phillips | Lead Image: MPS Images