TADDY BLAZUSIAK - WESS IS WHAT ENDURO NEEDS AND I WANT TO WIN IT

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4/28/2018 11:41 PM

Taddy’s back and his goal are simple, win the 2018 World Enduro Super Series …

Taddy Blazusiak is a rider who needs little introduction to fans of enduro and off-road motorcycle racing. A five-time consecutive Erzbergrodeo winner, as the most dominant indoor enduro rider ever, on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean, Taddy’s pretty much conquered it all. All except the World Enduro Super Series.
Hanging up his professional racing boots in December 2016, Taddy called time on what was an illustrious racing career. But no sooner he had ridden off towards a well-deserved retirement, the ripening apple that is WESS quickly enticed him to return. Tempted by the mixed-discipline series that combines hard enduro, classic enduro, cross-country and beach racing across some of the world’s most prestigious events, Taddy knew he had some unfinished business to attend to. And with the title of ‘Ultimate Enduro Champion’ up for grabs, the Polish maestro now has his sights set on the sweet taste of success in 2018.[LINK TO IMAGE]

“To be honest I’ve been waiting for a championship like this for years. I think WESS is the real enduro series I’ve been looking for,” tells Blazusiak. “I love the concept. The calendar offers a varied mix of events starting in rocky Portugal and ending on the beach in The Netherlands with classic enduro, hard enduro and cross-country racing in-between.”

“Personally, I feel that this is what enduro needs – this is what our sport needs to advance. Enduro has many individual disciplines, so I think this will be a series for the real all-around, offroad racer. It fits a rider who can ride technical terrain or go sixth gear flat out down a beach.”

“Personally, I feel that this is what enduro needs – this is what our sport needs to advance.”

Starting in Portugal with the Extreme XL Lagares in May, the seven-round WESS championship takes in the iconic Erzbergrodeo Red Bull Hare Scramble during the first weekend of June. With little time to catch their breath, it then moves to France where riders will compete five days later at Trèfle Lozérien AMV. Switching gears, July’s Red Bull Romaniacs hosts round four before Taddy’s signature race, Red Bull 111 Megawatt, marks round five in September. Finally, Sweden’s Gotland Grand National and The Netherlands Red Bull Knock Out close out the WESS 2018 at the end of October and beginning of November respectively. Covering a vast array of events, WESS brings together a wealth of different disciplines that will see competitors dig deep into their skill set during the year. A championship where experience counts, Taddy feels that will be where his strengths lie.[LINK TO IMAGE]

“I’m a pretty good all-around guy – I can adapt. I’ve been around for a long time now so I know all the disciplines we’ll race. I know how to prepare for each one and prepare my bike too. I can swap from a 2-stroke bike to a 4-stroke bike easily enough depending on where we are racing, so I think that the ability to adapt will help me a lot.”

“Starting the series strongly is critical so we will focus hard to be ready for rounds one and two while trying to work on the speed elements necessary for round three at Trèfle Lozérien. After that, we can dedicate more time specifically to each event because we have a decent window of testing between each round.”

Known for his success in hard enduro, it’s actually the classic enduro format of the Trèfle Lozérien in France which excites Taddy the most. As the oldest discipline of enduro, he feels the history attached to traditional timecard racing needs to be embraced and celebrated. One of the purest forms of racing, it’s rider and machine against the clock – the fastest man wins.

“Of course, I’m known for SuperEnduro and hard enduro but I would like to see more classic enduro events added as the series develops,” offers Taddy. “I’ve done a lot of those races over the years and I love the discipline. It’s the pure sprinting aspect of timed special test racing that makes it special for me. It’s going to be hard competing against some of the grass track specialists at the Trèfle Lozérien but that’s also the challenge of WESS – adapting to different disciplines as best you can.”

“In all other disciplines, you race your competitors shoulder-to-shoulder on the track at the same time, whereas with classic enduro it’s head-to-head against the clock. You are basically riding with 100 percent commitment to go as fast as you can during each special test. It’s a cool way of racing that has so much history attached to it – it’s something that shouldn’t be forgotten about.”[LINK TO IMAGE]

Mixing old with new, the Red Bull 111 Megawatt – Taddy’s signature race – is the youngest event on the 2018 WESS calendar. While events like the Trèfle Lozérien and Gotland Grand National are long established races with over 35 years of history each, September will mark the fourth edition of Megawatt. But despite its youth, it has quickly become Poland’s largest offroad race with the 1000 strong entry selling out in minutes. For Taddy, having the event as part of WESS brings an immense sense of pride. With its unique style Red Bull 111 Megawatt unquestionably embodies the spirit of WESS.

“Our race has grown so much in the last couple of years and it’s great to see it as part of WESS for 2018 – it’s a perfect fit for the series too,” explains Taddy. “Red Bull 111 Megawatt is labeled as hard enduro but it steers towards cross-country and even beach racing due to the sandy, multi-lap format of Sunday’s main event. Saturday’s qualifications are essentially special tests, so it even ticks the classic enduro box too a little. The Red Bull 111 Megawatt is WESS all in the one race.”

“But what’s more important is that it is about rider participation, something that’s unique to enduro, which no other form of motorcycling has. We’ve got over 1,000 riders of all ability, all racing together at the same time on the same track. It removes the elitist element from the sport – on the start line everyone is equal.”[LINK TO IMAGE]

As a five-time winner of the Erzbergrodeo Red Bull Hare Scramble, the KTM rider knows what it’s like to stare down 1,800 entrants chasing the top step of the podium. With those wins coming consecutively from 2007 until 2011 on KTM machinery, it not only launched Blazusiak to the top of the world stage but ensured his name became synonymous with the Austrian race. When you talk about Erzbergrodeo’s Iron Giant, Blazusiak’s name is only ever a breath away.[LINK TO IMAGE]

“I have a lot of history with the Red Bull Hare Scramble, it’s helped build my career to where it is today. Never in my wildest dreams did I see myself winning it five times in a row with KTM. That will always stand as one of my greatest achievements in my career.”

“But I love the Erzbergrodeo because it’s so much more than just a race – it’s become a real dirt bike festival. Everyone is there because they all love the same thing, which is doing crazy things on enduro bikes. The level of competition has grown so much and there are a lot of guys easily capable of winning but I also feel that I’m one of them.”

And where the outcome of this year’s World Enduro Super Series is concerned, he feels he can take on the best of them and win. Never one to do things half-heartedly, he’s got his eyes set on the biggest trophy of them all – that of becoming the Ultimate Enduro Champion.

“I didn’t come out of retirement to just ‘make up the numbers’,” asserts Taddy. “I race to win championships, so if I’m doing something I’m in it to do it right, at maximum effort. Winning WESS would be massive like I said, it’s a dream championship for me and it’s the reason why I’m back.”

Red Bull KTM Factory Racing begin their participation in the seven-round World Enduro Super Series in Portugal with the Extreme XL Lagares on May 11-13.

Source: Red Bull KTM Factory Racing - Photo: Marcin Kin

 

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4/29/2018 9:18 AM

This'll be a great series and all the top riders are in for it.

My money is on Billy Bolt.

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I used to be indecisive, but now I'm not so sure.

4/29/2018 1:28 PM

This looks awesome. I always wondered why these races weren't combined into a championship of some sort. Any word on TV/stream coverage? I know Erzberg is usually streamed live on Redbull TV but I didn't see anything on their website one way or the other.

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4/29/2018 1:41 PM

111!!! Taddy will be going flatout, indeed.

So glad to have him back!

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4/29/2018 5:10 PM

I'm hoping they will come out with a Taddy B Special Edition 350 XCF

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2019 KTM 350 XCF
Single Track Warrior



4/29/2018 5:23 PM

Taddy is such a bad ass. He was so dominant when he ran the GNCC series here years ago. He will definitely have a tough time beating Johnny walker, Cody Webb and the rest of the top guys who are 15-20 years younger than him but he's got the experience to win it all for sure. I'm excited for this series, it's got the potential to really be great.

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4/29/2018 5:27 PM

agn5009 wrote:

Taddy is such a bad ass. He was so dominant when he ran the GNCC series here years ago. He will definitely have a tough time ...more

Graham Jarvis is 43 years old, he's just as fast or faster than the young guys.

Taddy is 35.

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4/30/2018 12:43 PM

Taddy in the GNCC Series?

No.

Juha or Knighter - Yes.

Taddy has done a few EWC races, but never won one. Though, bloody hell, he was spectacular in some of the special tests - sending spectators scattering / running for their lives!

They've tried to make a series out of the Big Extreme events over the last few years, but there was considerable reluctance from some of the event promoters because it was felt by some that it would dilute their individual events. They've now got a bit of a 'mix' in this series.

I wonder how much of it is down to Red Bull 'ownership' of many / most of them?

Should be interesting, whatever comes of it.

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4/30/2018 1:18 PM

It is yet to be determined how well this series does anything. At the moment, it is a split off Pirate series which has big bucks behind it in KTM/Husky and Red Bull. Big venues with big crowds and Red Bull's video program and a variety of disciplines is a huge step in the right direction. Walking away from the traditions of World Enduro Championships and the latter change to EnduroGP is a bold move, although with big change comes big risk.

Meanwhile, in the EnduroGP of Spain this weekend, Alex Salvini on a Husky 4t won Saturday, and Steve Holcombe on a Beta 2t won the Overall on Sunday, moving him into contention for a 3rd World Title.

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5/13/2018 8:11 AM
Edited Date/Time: 5/13/2018 8:11 AM

Jonny Walker's Prologue Run at Extreme XL Lagares.

The speed he carries through those narrow lanes is utterly ridiculous.

https://www.redbull.tv/video/AP-1VN93P8891W11/jonny-walkers-prologue-run

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I used to be indecisive, but now I'm not so sure.