On Saturday morning at the 2017 Spring Creek MX, members of the media assembled at the Red Bull KTM team truck to hear Trey Canard’s retirement speech. The moment was heartfelt and tearful at times, with Canard thanking the people that had been a part of his successful career. Below is a full transcript of his seventeen-minute speech. Congrats, TC41.
I thought this was going to be a lot easier than it is. I want to thank everyone for coming out, I know you have a very busy day, but thank you for being here. As many of you know, I’m picking today as my last day, I’m hanging up the boots. I want to take a few minutes to thank everyone here for a lifetime of memories. All of the love and support you guys have given me has been amazing throughout my career. I’ve met and become so close with many wonderful people and I’m forever grateful for the blessed life I’ve been able to live here in the motocross community. I’m sad to say goodbye to my professional career as a racer, but I’m also extremely grateful for the last ten years of my life. I never could have imagined that I’d get to experience the life that I’ve lived and actually fulfill a childhood dream, and do it successfully. My hope is that my time in this sport has reached people on many different levels and has brought some sort of joy and positivity to at least some of your lives, that my career gave some of you something to find a sense of joy and inspiration.
In case you didn’t know, I’ve been hurt a few times. I’m thinking about trademarking “Canard goes down again.” I think I could actually make some money off of that at some point. I’ve always done my best to come back and I think I’ve done that quite well. These have actually been some of the most rewarding and cherished moments of my career –coming back from some of these difficult things – and I hope that’s been encouraging. I feel I’m no longer able to push myself to that point. I don’t feel that I can represent the companies that have been behind me at the level that they need to be represented. I don’t think that I can push myself past some of these injuries. Up until this point, with each injury I’ve had the fire in me to come back and be strong and fight for more. That’s what I’ve always tried to do. I feel that in my heart now that I know I’m not where I need to be mentally to race up front and represent the people that have stuck behind me in big ways. It’s been a difficult decision. These last two weeks have been very difficult for me. I’ve talked to Shorty [Andrew Short] and KDub [Kevin Windham] and I’ve talked to Timmy Ferry, and they’ve all said the same thing, “It’s going to be a very difficult decision,” and it has. I know within my heart that it’s the right one.
With all of that said, I want to take a few minutes to thank a few people. I wish I could thank everyone that’s been influential in my career, but I know you all have a busy day to get back to. I can be a bit long winded so I’ll try to keep it pretty short. First, I’ve got to thank my family. This was always my dad’s dream, so to do what I’ve done for him is incredible. For my mom who raised us three boys by herself, and also gave me a chance to do what I love, I owe her the world. Also, my older brother Aaron and my younger brother Jackson, and my extended family. I also want to thank so many people who have become my family within this industry. One of those first people I want to thank is Brent Presnell. When I was 12 years-old I lost my father, and he dropped out of college and came and actually lived in the room that I lived in because we didn’t have a place for him to stay. He gave up a lot to come work for a 12-year-old kid who really had no guarantee of making it anywhere. I’m forever grateful to him. The Albertson family, you guys have always been my friends and that’s something I’ll always cherish. Everyone in Oklahoma, Robbie Reynard and like I said, I could go on and on with all of these people that have been so good to me. Timmy Ferry, Dean Golich, people like Greg DiRenzo and Shannon Niday who really helped me get here. There are so many people, like those I’ve done ministry with, I could go on and on. I’ve got to thank FLY Racing; they’ve been an outstanding company to work with. Max Steffens – I’ve tried to make his life miserable a lot of times, and it worked a lot of times. Craig Shoemaker and Terry at FLY, thank you so much. People like John Knowles, he always said I was the dirtiest guy on the track, he was right a lot of times. I liked peoples roost for some reason, I don’t know. Leatt, Gabriel and everyone at Alpinestars, you guys are unreal at cleaning boots and man, you guys do it good. I got to live a lot of my career in your boots.
To two manufacturers that I’ve spent my career with. Not many guys spend their careers working with the people I’ve gotten to work with. I’ve had the full support of amazing people and I’ve got to thank a couple of them right now. To the whole Red Bull KTM crew, what an awesome opportunity to ride for you guys and to ride an amazing bike, sorry I broke it so much this year. I didn’t try to, it just kind of happened. I thought the number 41 looked really good on it, though, and it was so much fun developing and working and getting to be a part of your program. Pit Beirer, Roger [DeCoster], Ian [Harrison], I’ve always looked up to you guys and to be a part of this last year has been incredible and it shows why you’re so successful. It’s been a privilege. My mechanic Jade [Dungey], J-Train, people are going to be calling Ryan Jade’s brother at some point, and you’ve got a long ways ahead of you. I hope you get the rider that really propels your career because I believe that you’ve got everything that it takes. I was going to thank Frankie, but I won’t do that [laughs]. Thank you Frankie, Carlos, Matt, Don, Joel, Mo, Steph, Jen, Leslie, my teammates Ryan and Marvin and your wives, it’s been incredible to get to know you.
At Honda, I’ve made so many long-lasting friendships that I know will be there for my life and I owe you guys so much. I want to thank Eric Kehoe. I know he’s not around a lot, but he’s been such a good mentor to be a such a good mentor to so many people. He will always have an impact on me. Dan Betley, I think you believed in me more than I believed in me and more than a lot of people believed in me. I really appreciate what you’ve done for me in my career. Jeff and Ziggy from GEICO Honda, I remember eleven years ago, being at Loretta’s and Ziggy walked up to me and he mentioned the fact that I might ride for his team. It blew my mind, I had no idea that things would go this way and we did it. We had some great wins and some championships and started something in the amateur scene that has lasted. I’m so grateful to so many people at Honda, that I wish I could list all of you. I wish we had the time. I hope you guys know that you really made an impact on my life and in my career.
Dunlop tires, you guys don’t get enough credit. You guys are working so hard every single weekend changing tires. I rode my whole career on Dunlop’s and I’m really thankful for my time. Everyone at the AMA, MX Sports, FELD, thank you for giving us a chance and a platform to do what we do. I’ve also got to thank the Asterisk Mobile Medical unit. It’s kind of ironic to thank them. They’ve probably got their money’s worth out of me and I know they’re going to miss my frequent visits. I can’t say enough about them. What they do for our sport is incredible and I’m grateful for their support. Steve Hudson, I can’t tell you what an impact he’s had. Also Jake Vanada, I’m not sure if I said that right but I’m sure he won’t care. Everyone that I’ve been a part of ministry with in this sport, thank you.
Like I said, I could go on and on, I’m so grateful for so many peoples support and I hope to talk to each of you personally at some point and just say thank you and express my appreciation. I hope that the feeling is mutual as well.
I’ve got to thank my wife, Hannah, four years ago she jumped into this and she thought this was my hobby, she didn’t even know that I did this for a job. She would say things like, “You look wobbly in the whoops,” or, “You skidded this.” She made the guys laugh at the truck because she would yell at me and get onto me, but she jumped full speed into this thing with me not knowing at all what she was getting into. I’m just so happy to spend the rest of my life with her, and this is the start of something. I’m really grateful for her.
All of you know that faith has been a huge part of my journey. I really hope that you guys have seen something really good in that through me and that I’ve portrayed something good that you can take something away from. I really hope that I’ve portrayed Jesus to some of you. I’m grateful that a lot of you let me express that and live that. It’s a huge part of me. That’s about it. Like I said, I could go on and on and on, I know you guys have got to go do the sport that you love. Thank you guys so much, thank you for this chance, and hopefully I see you guys at the races soon.