Will Whatley Win?
16 February 2017Go Back Former Maxxis ACU British MX1 champion Kristian Whatley hasnít had the smoothest of starts to the season after jumping ship from his new MVR-D Husqvarna team but everything seems to have slotted into place for the 27-year-old.
Following his departure from the MVR-D team without even turning a wheel in competition, Kristian Ė the 2013 Maxxis champion Ė was snapped up by Apico Husqvarna.
ďI really love the bike and am riding it really good,Ē he said. ďI feel like Iím back to the form I had on the Embo Yamaha Ė it feels like itís flowing again so hopefully everythingís coming together.
ďNothingís ever simple in my life but Iíve got my head down, Iím training hard, I feel like Iím riding really good. You know when youíre riding good and youíre in the flow. I havenít felt like Iíve been in the flow for a few years now and it feels good to have it back. Iím re-energised and re-motivated.Ē
Fortunately, heíd already got some saddletime in on the FC 450 heíll race this season before switching teams so knew the bike suited him but, even so, itís still a last-minute complication he could have done without.
ďWeíve had to be on the ball. Weíve got organised and everythingís in place and Iím really happy to be with Apico Husqvarna. Richard Clarkeís helping me out as well with CNC Doors. Iím really grateful for the ride and everything thatís being put into place at such short notice.
ďIíve also spoken with Steve Payne at Multitek and heís willing to do some suspension for me and help me out throughout the year. He knows what I like, he knows what I want, straight away he can get a good base setting for the bike.Ē
Kristianís change of machinery puts him at a disadvantage compared to his main rivals for the Maxxis title but with his confidence running high heís not stressing.
ďI think itís going to be between me, Tommy [Searle], Jake [Nicholls] and Graeme [Irwin] this year. Definitely. Weíre all going to be on the pace. A lot of the boys have already had at least a year on their bikes so theyíre a little bit of a step ahead of me but thatís all right as long as I keep knuckling down and get the settings I like on the bike.
ďSo Iíve got more work to do but I feel fresh and ready for it. Iím going out to win the British championship this year Ė I feel that good and I feel that positive and motivated yíknow. Iíve got a lot of people to prove wrong so Iím going to come out all guns blazing. I canít wait for it to start. Iíve never been so eager to start.Ē
Picture: Nuno Laranjeira