ROAD TO THE RANCH:
Max Miller debuted at the Loretta Lynn Amateur National Championship way back in 2010, registering at the time in the 51cc (7-8) Stock class. It took the Oregon native three years to break into the top ten at the Ranch, but he finally did so in 2013 as he earned a 10th place overall finish in the 65cc (7-11) class. At that point, Miller’s results in Hurricane Mills started to turn around as he’s finished more than half of his classes inside the top five overall since 2015, mixing in multiple overall podiums and moto wins into the occasion. The KTM rider landed 5th place overall in the Mini Sr. 1 class in 2015 and took it one step further in 2016, achieving 2nd place on the overall podium due to a duo of race victories. Miller has continued in solid form throughout the last couple of years at the Loretta Lynn Amateur National Championship, claiming a top-five overall finish the last two consecutive years. The Orange Brigade rider is planning to take on the Ranch in the A class this season and his results at the Deseret Peak Midwest Amateur Regional proved his podium potential. Miller finished in 2nd place in 250 Pro Sport and 3rd place overall in Open Pro Sport and he’ll be hoping to bring that same speed to Hurricane Mills at the beginning of August.
How’d the Regionals go for you?
Regionals went good! I went up to Utah to race and qualified in 250 A and Open Pro Sport. It was a hectic weekend due to crazy weather. It was hot and windy one day and pouring rain with thunder and lightning the next day. So we had to red flag a few motos and line back up but we got the job done.
What’s a typical day of training been like for you getting ready for Loretta’s?
Getting ready for Loretta Lynn’s, I do a morning warm-up and jump into some long motos. The time of the motos varies depending on how close we are to the race. I did have a handful of thirty-fives in there but most of my motos have been twenty-five to thirty minutes.
Do you have a pre-race routine?
I don’t really have a pre-race routine. I like to stretch and ride my road bike to Loretta’s house and back just to get the blood pumping. When it comes to the gate, I like to keep things fun and joke around a bit.
How do you recover after a twenty-minute moto in the brutal heat and humidity?
After a gnarly moto in the heat, I like to strip all my gear off and lay in the creek for a bit to get my core temperature down, then I’ll get some food and relax. If it was a good moto I might cruise up and get an ice cream cone from Larry the ice cream guy.
Is there one specific year at Loretta’s that has been the most memorable for you?
The year that is the most memorable year for me is 2016. I raced Mini Sr 1 and Supermini 1, started the week off with a couple of crashes and finished 8th in the first moto of Mini Sr. 1. I regrouped and won the next two motos in that class (my first moto wins at LL) and finished 2nd overall. In Supermini 1, I finished 3rd overall.
What do you think is the key to success at the Ranch?
I think the key to success at the Ranch is mental toughness and just believing in your ability.