After claiming the series-shortened Extreme Indoor World Enduro Championship, KTM’s Taddy Blazusiak is preparing for a new challenge, the 2011 Enduro World championship, which kicks off this weekend in Spain. Recently, the extreme enduro specialist from Poland, warmed up by competing in enduro championship events in Italy and Spain and did quite well. As of now, Blazusiak does not plan on riding the entire series, but that could change after the first three rounds.
Here is a short interview with Taddy, where he talks about the upcoming championship, one of the most prestigious in the off-road world.
Firstly Taddy, the premature end to the ’11 Indoor Enduro World Championship must be something you’re disappointed about, but on the flip side you must be thrilled to have won the title?
“It’s always sad when a championship gets cancelled early. My job is to compete in the races and do as best I can, which I did. What happened with the last two races getting cancelled was out of my hands, but I’m happy that I won the title. I had to ride with broken ribs at the first round after I crashed, and I’m so pleased I did now. If I hadn’t I wouldn’t have been able to win the title. I’d have loved more races, and hopefully things will get sorted out for next year. But I got the title and I’m thrilled about that.”
Did the early cancelation of the IEWC series change your plans in any way?
“Not so much. Obviously, I was planning on sticking to my indoor enduro training until the series was over, when it finished early it gave me three or four weeks to have a little fun and mix my training up a little. I’ve been able to get some great training done with no pressure at all.”
The ’11 Enduro World Championship kicks off this weekend, which you’re competing in. Was that always your plan?
“Yes, I was always planning on doing some EWC races, like I did last year. The only thing that’s different is that I’ve been brought into the KTM Enduro Factory Team this year, I’m not an additional rider. Other than that not a lot’s changed. I’m still the indoor and extreme enduro rider, I’m just doing some EWC races as well. The events I raced last year went well, so I’m hoping for some more good results this year. I’ll race Spain, Portugal and Italy and see how things are going.”
So far you’ve enjoyed good results in the opening rounds of the Italian and Spanish Enduro championships, were you surprised by your results?
“I wasn’t really surprised because I’ve been working hard to improve my speed over the last three years, but I think some people were surprised. The first Italian race was great. I used the event to test the bike for the world championship as I’m riding a 300 and not a 250, like at the indoor races. There was no extreme test, which made the result of fourth overall even better for me. It was a very positive race for me.”
Last weekend saw the first Spanish Enduro Championship event. Did you expect a result as good as second overall there?
“I didn’t really go into the event expecting or wanting to finish with any definite result, but I’m pleased it went so well. I was the fastest E3-class rider and was leading until the midway stage of the event. I made some mistakes because I was trying too hard, that’s when I dropped from first to third. I got back to second, which I’m really pleased with.”
So what are you expecting from this weekend’s GP of Spain?
“It’s going to be tough but my approach will be the same as for all events – I’m just going to do my best. I have my title, the IEWC title, so there’s no pressure on me really. I’ll give it my all and see how it goes. I know my speed is good, my bike is great, and my fitness is good, too. I’m not too worried about my result but I’ll give 100 per cent and see how it goes, I’m really looking forward to it.”