Tyla Rattray Interview

Newly crowned MX2 world champion Tyla Rattray will make a one-off appearance in the final United Telecom Trophy round in Pierreux. The friendly South-African has just fullfilled  a lifelong ambition, but that doesn’t mean he will be resting on his laurels! Styla wants to prepare for the Red Bull MX of Nations in the best possible way and if everything goes to plan he hopes to land his KTM SX250F on the Pierreux podium among the attending MX1 stars. If anyone can pull this off, it’s probably Tyla…

By Tom Jacobs

I bet you’re walking around with a big smile these days?

Rattray: Absolutely! I feel really good it’s awesome finally to have captured the MX2 title. I’m really happy. You can’t say it’s unexpected or something like that because I have been working for that title so long, but it surely does taste sweet! 

What have you been up to this week?

Rattray: It’s not so much different really. I have been training, riding on Thursday and Friday. It’s been a really long and tough season, but I’m still 100% focused. I’m not over the top yet and I set myself the goal to do well in Donington and that includes racing hard in the Belgian Nationals as well and getting three solid results. I’ll be racing against the 450’s so that’s very similar to the MXoN! Having said that I will need to unwind after the Nations because that’s my last big race of the year. {QUOTE}Do you feel like you have mastered the MX2 bike to perfection now?

Rattray: I certainly feel that I have achieved a lot on that bike, so in that perspective it’s nice to leave the class on a high. I was always going to switch to MX1 anyway, whatever the outcome of this season was going to be. So the timing was just perfect to take the title!

Also I feel I have a good base to step up to MX1. You need to be strong and fit to go fast on the 450 and those are two of my best features. That gives me a lot of confidence. 

Still, there’s always a disadvantage at the start when you line up against the MX1 bikes?

Rattray: I can live with that you know. My KTM is really light and it’s a very powerful bike, so if I can start inside the top five and run with the frontrunners in Pierreux that would be my ideal game plan. I know Christophe Pourcel has done it two years ago in the Belgian championship. So my goal will be to get the overall podium. 

{LINKS}They have a completely new track in Pierreux, but guys like Clément Desalle, Christophe Pourcel and Patrick Caps were all pretty impressed. What do you think?

Rattray: From what I have seen on pictures it looks really well. It’s wide, fast and quite spectacular so I expect we can have some good racing there. I might struggle a little against the 450s on the big uphills but we’ll see. 

There will be a big gap after you leave the MX2 class next year?

Rattray: Definitely, after Tony (Cairoli) got injured it was mostly me and Tommy Searle at the front. That means it will be wide open again, I don’t see anyone who can stand out as much as we did. I guess that’s a similar situation to MX1 where so many riders can win races.