One on one with Jo Shimoda, the up and coming star from Japan

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Quiet and unassuming, Jo Shimoda, the first Japanese rider to win an SX race, sat down with NBC Sports to talk about his relationship status, what he would be doing if he wasn’t racing motorcycles, and which rider he admired as a kid.

The answer to that last question may be a little surprising.

How did you  meet your girlfriend?

How did I meet my girlfriend? I actually don’t have a girlfriend. 

What’s your middle name?

My middle name? I actually don’t have a middle name, either.

If you weren’t a motocross racer, what would you be doing?

I would probably do golfing. My grandpa and my dad love golfing and they taught me so many times, so I’d probably do golfing. 

What’s your favorite movie?

I only watch YouTube, so I don’t really watch the movies.

What’s your favorite hobby?

My favorite hobby would be golfing. And I started surfing actually, and it’s pretty fun. 

Other favorite types of racing?

I kind of like F1 right now – just because I bought the simulator the other day and it’s kind of fun.

Growing up, which rider did you want to be like?

Growing up I always wanted to be like Justin Barcia, because my kind of riding and personality is a little bit different from him. I never really do any take-outs or riding super, super aggressive, so I always wanted to be like him.

Shimoda’s less aggressive style is working for him. In addition to winning his first Supercross race in the next-to-last round of the 2021 season at Salt Lake City, Shimoda debuted in the NBC Motocross Power Rankings in fifth.

Shimoda’s ranking was based on his steady progression in the first two rounds of the Lucas Oil Pro Motocross season. He finished 10th overall in the first race with a 14-11 in the two motos. His second race landed him fourth with a 6-4.

By the way: Shimoda doesn’t watch movies, but he is looking for some new music recommendations.