The penultimate round of the ’09 US Endurocross series is set to be one of the most important races of Taddy Blazusiak’s career. After injury derailed his championship winning hopes in ’08, this year he has dominated the series and has every chance of securing the prestigious #1 plate this coming weekend in Denver, Colorado. With the opening round of the Indoor Enduro World Cup then taking place one week later in Sheffield, England the KTM Enduro Factory Team/Red Bull backed rider has been busy training and testing ahead of these two important events.
Winning the ’09 US Endurocross title is a very real possibility this weekend, are you aiming to win the race in Denver or simply do enough to secure the championship?
Taddy: ‘I have a pretty decent lead in the championship so I’m looking for another win. It’s the second round of the Triple Crown, which is important, as there’s a big prize available there. But the championship is the most important thing to me. Ideally, I’d like to win the championship by finishing on top of the podium.’
So what do you think it’s going to take to secure the Endurocross title this coming weekend?
Taddy: ‘The same as it usually takes to win any race – a good start and a mistake free race. Getting away at the start makes such a big difference. My starts have been pretty good this season so I’m hoping I can make things easier for myself by getting out front early. After that I need to make no mistakes. It’s not easy staying out of trouble for eight laps, but that’s what I’m hoping to do.’
Have you been practicing hard or taking it easy in recent weeks?
Taddy: ‘I’ve been working hard. We’ve been testing a lot as well as getting lots of time on both Endurocross and motocross tracks. I feel like I’m in good shape and I’m really enjoying riding so I’ve been doing lots of training and riding recently.’
After your second place result at the last round of the Endurocross championship you raced the Powerline Park GNCC, and finished sixth in XC1. Were you surprised by your performance?
Taddy: ‘I wasn’t 100 per cent sure what to expect before the event, but I have done a few cross-country races in Europe. I rode my Endurocross practice bike with soft suspension and a small tank. I really enjoyed the race, and was fourth in XC1 for a while. It was great practice and a great work out. I had to stop for fuel more often than most riders but I still ended up with a decent result, which I was pleased with. It was just a one-off ride though.”
It seems every aspect of your racing is better than ever at the moment. Are you happy with the way you’ve come back from your injury last season?
Taddy: ‘Yeah, definitely. When I first started racing extreme and indoor enduro events I had the skills and speed to be at the top but I didn’t have the experience. I’d never been behind a start gate before and wasn’t used to racing side-by-side with other riders. I know what to expect now, and how to race with others. I’m a bit more in control now, too. Everything has come together - I have a couple of years of experience and have learned a lot about racing an enduro bike.’
Finally, what would it mean to you to be able to start the opening round of the Indoor Enduro World Cup on October 31st knowing you are the US Endurocross champion?
Taddy: ‘It would be great. If I had the Endurocross championship wrapped up I’d really be able to give the first IEWC race everything. I’m really looking forward to the event because European indoor enduro racing is very different to Endurocross in the States. I guess winning the Endurocross championship this weekend would take some weight off my shoulders. I could give the last round in Vegas everything then, too.’