To get a couple different perspectives on the Dirt contest, James asked one rider who made the finals and one rider who didn’t what they thought about the comp.

Mike Parenti (in the Dirt finals)

You qualified yesterday at one of the biggest contests of the year; tell me about some of your runs.

I’m just trying to do some of the transfer stuff; I don’t really see too many people doing it. Maybe throw in a few tricks like no-footed cans or superman-seatgrabs; just something to stand out. I know the judges like the transfer stuff a lot, so I’ll go out and three it or something and if that happens, I’ll be stoked.

What do you think of the course?

I’m always up for new ideas, but as far as it being a dirt jumping course; nobody has a re-start thing at their trails. It’s all right, but there’s not a lot to it. If you look at it they could have put more effort into it, but it’s fun; it’s something to goof around on.

How’s the knee?

It’s all right; I can’t be saying it’s great, but after this contest I’m getting surgery and I’m going to let it heal right this time and be back for next year.

What do you have planned for the finals?

Basically some double-truckdrivers; I haven’t done too many of them yet, and definitely some big transfers. It’s hard because I’ve been in a lot of pain lately; I just want to keep it conservative and play it safe.

Jerry Bagley (didn’t make the Dirt finals)

What was up with some of your runs yesterday?

I was feeling pretty good early on in the day, feeling pretty happy. I thought I had planned a couple of good runs; my first one I 360’d the first set, over-rotated, my foot blew off, and I landed sideways. My second run was good, but I blew up on my third and fourth run…it’s been a bad weekend and a bad year overall I guess; this whole year’s been total crap for me. I’m just writing this one off and starting over again.

Any predictions for the finals?

T.J. and Biz pretty much; Biz is going to kill it. He’s just really original. He’s going to pull all this crazy stuff. And Aitken and Doyle too; this whole final is pretty much everyone who I expected to be in it, except myself (laughter). It’s going to be a really good final.