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Team Honda HRC is currently flourishing.

Both the 250 and 450 class riders are gaining momentum, and at RedBud Chance Hymas picked up his first professional win after three years of preparation.

And no one was happier about it than his teammate: Jo Shimoda.

Shimoda, who has actually been on the rise since the first round at Fox Raceway, had gone 6-5-4-4-3-3 in the first six rounds. And yet here he was at RedBud after the second Moto, hugging his buddy Chance and telling him he was doing great on the podium. “I got third!” Shimoda said. “Let’s go!” He even said he couldn’t have been happier for Hymas during the podium interview.

I was at RedBud and decided to do something different to cover the race and boy am I glad I did. I took it from a fan perspective with my family. Bub Dog, Duke Dog and Ginger Dog were there on the fence for the 250 podium celebration. I got to witness something special for Team Honda HRC. Literally the entire team was there on the podium and the crowd was chanting for Trey Canard at one point.

I’ve been around this team for their celebrations, some of the Lawrence brothers’ wins, and their championship celebrations and parties. I can tell you that everyone on this team really cares about each other and couldn’t be happier with their success along the way.

Coming back to Shimoda, I think Freddie Noren is the most likeable guy on the tour, but young Jo could pose a threat to him.

The way Shimoda carries himself makes him seem like one of the most genuine and caring people in the sport, maybe even the universe. I’m a pretty good judge of character (although sometimes it can take me a while to figure someone out, but I do eventually), and Shimoda is a good guy.

So if I had to choose a teammate, I would wish for it to be Shimoda. His constant reassurance and joy when I do well makes the journey better for everyone. Then I would repay him when he wins.

This Honda team has it figured out. They treat each other like family and it’s amazing. It hasn’t always been that way, it’s never been that way, at Honda in history. The Big Red Machine was known for one thing and that was winning championships and being ruthless about winning. If you couldn’t win on a Honda, you might as well quit because you’re not going to win on any other brand, that was pretty much the mantra.

Now the team wins with a solid support system and Shimoda is a big part of that, as are Jett, Hunter and Hymas. Everyone seems to click at the same time and it’s a well-oiled machine.

If only Shimoda could motivate me the next time I do something, I’d be in great shape!

Best regards, Jo. I want you to be my teammate and help me write this column.

Main Image: Octopi Media