Carter Malcolm wasn’t sure exactly how things would go at the Baja Acres Mid-East Youth Regional a couple of weeks ago as the young racer out of Colorado hadn’t lined up on the gate all year long. The last high-profile race that he contended was Mini Os at the end of 2019 and things didn’t pan out exactly how he wanted at Gatorback. He knocked on the door of the top ten with a couple of solid finishes in supercross but his motocross campaign was cut short as he went over the bars and broke his collarbone. Nonetheless, Malcolm was able to put all of that plus the long hiatus from racing behind him when the gate dropped at Baja as he forcefully claimed two tickets to the Loretta Lynn Amateur Motocross Championship. The KTM rider showed his speed by finishing in 1st place overall in the Mini Sr 2 class as a result of three intense motos, proving his comfort on the new bike after making a switch in manufacturers at the beginning of the season. Malcolm is aiming to carry the momentum he picked up at Regionals and take it into Loretta’s as he contests his last season in the Mini Sr divisions before moving up to the Supermini classes in 2021. We checked in with Carter to see how he spent his downtime throughout the lockdown, how it felt to be back at the races, and what went down at Baja.
What did you do during the few months that there was no racing happening with the coronavirus lockdown in effect?
Well, we live on forty acres so we were able to ride every now and then at our corner track at our house. Most of the tracks in Colorado were shut down, so we didn’t really have an option to ride on a real track. I did a lot of school during the lockdown too.
Did you take some time off of riding when racing was initially canceled and postponed back in March?
During the lockdown, I definitely rode less. I was probably riding twice a week at my corner track at my house. We got a SX track built at the beginning of May so once that got built I started riding it quite a bit. Colorado has been pretty strict with the lockdown up until recently, so none of the public tracks were open until the end of May.
What was your riding situation like the last couple of months during the quarantine?
My riding situation has been okay, but not great. Like I said earlier, we have a corner track at our house that we would ride every now and then. Before we got the SX track built, we were probably riding twice a week, which I’ll take because some people didn’t have the opportunity to ride at all during the lockdown.
What do you like to do for fun in your free time outside of motocross?
In my free time, I like to jump on my tramp and learn new flips. I also like to play MX Simulator every now and then, and hang out with my friends.
How did your weekend of racing go last year at The Motoplayground Race at Ponca City?
My weekend at Ponca didn’t go great. I struggled with starts all weekend and wasn’t able to finish where my times were showing. I still had fun there, but I wasn’t very satisfied with where I finished. I ended up 10th overall in both of my classes.
What do you think about the track layout at Ponca?
I really like the track layout at Ponca. The track has a lot of flow, it’s technical, and has some fun jumps. The dirt there is great, too!
Talk about the injury you had last year at Mini Os and your recovery process.
I ended up breaking my collarbone at Mini Os in November last year. It wasn’t a super bad break, so I didn’t need surgery on it. I didn’t really have anything special to my recovery, just drank a lot of milk and waited nine weeks to recover.
What prompted the switch to KTM for this season and how has that transition been for you?
I made the switch to KTM because I never really felt happy and comfortable on the previous bike. There were times that I felt really good on the bike, but there were also times where the bike was unpredictable. I wasn’t performing how I knew I could and that was really taking the fun out of racing. Ever since I made the switch, I have been in love with the bike. I feel really comfortable with it and overall just trust the bike more.
What was it like to finally be back at the races at the Baja Mid-East Youth Regional after not being on the gate at all this year?
It was nice to be back at the races. I will say that it was really nerve-racking that my first real race back was going to be a pretty important race. I was definitely pretty nervous coming into Baja, but once the first motos were finished I gained a little bit more confidence.
How were your results at Baja and how did the racing go from your perspective?
I ended up with a 1st overall in Mini Sr 2 and a 5th overall in Mini Sr 1. I would say that the racing went good. I got pretty good starts all weekend and everything ran smoothly.
What’re your thoughts on the Super Regional format this year for Loretta’s?
I think that the Super Regional was pretty cool. It was definitely a lot different. I will say that it was nice to be able to go straight to the Regional without having to travel to three different Area Qualifiers.
Have you given any thought to what classes you’ll be racing after Loretta’s heading into the 2021 season?
For the 2021 season, I’m most likely going to just race Supermini 1 and Supermini 2 for nationals.