It’s no secret that the Harley-Davidson Factory Flat Track Team has had a rough start to the 2017 American Flat Track season. But no one over there is throwing in the towel just yet, including Brandon Robinson. The youngest member of the three-rider squad has been through the process before and has confidence in the new team behind him. We had a chance to sit down with Robinson before tomorrow’s Harley-Davidson Charlotte-Half Mile to talk about those growing pains and his outlook for the future.
What’s your mindset going into Charlotte?
I’m excited and looking to improve. That’s been the biggest thing. Charlotte’s been a good track for me the last couple of years. I think I got fourth on a Triumph there, which for me I thought was awesome, and a close second last year. So I’ve had some good results. This is probably my favorite track on the schedule, so I’m excited for that reason most of all.
There’s been some growing pains developing the XG750R with three races in a row, but it’s not your first time going through that process of developing a bike….
It’s not unfamiliar territory for me. I know the struggles that go into it. I know the hard work and dedication it takes to get something to work that hasn’t been proven yet. Obviously, our results haven’t been there – yet – and that’s the key word, yet. There’s entirely too many good people on this team for it not to be successful. It’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when it will come around.
What are your expectations for that turn around?
Hopefully, sooner rather than later. Our guys are working hard. It’s hard to make a big jump from Woodstock to here, because we’ve only had a week. Time is our biggest enemy right now. This five-week break coming up is going to be really good for us, to get some more things dialed in, and take care of some things we know we’re struggling with. Our team did as much as they could to get us better for this weekend, and I think we’ll be a little bit better, for sure. We’ll find out how much tomorrow. In the long run, I think we’ll have this figure out for sure. But like I said, it takes time.
There’s been criticism from fans about the factory squad running the XG instead of the much older, but proven XR750. Do you think it’s worth going through the growing pains now for future gains?
No doubt, the long-term future is with the XG. The parts and resources and the amount of money it takes to run the XR is pretty hard, not just for a factory team, but for a privateer team. The cost of maintaining them is insane. Definitely the future is with the XG, whether we have growing pains or not. And unfortunately, we do. We have to deal with that as a team, and we’re going to get better. We’re struggling right now, but the only way to go is up, and that’s the bright side. We have only positive things to look forward to.