Welcome to enduro Luis, can you tell us a little about yourself?
Luis Correia: “I’m originally from motocross where I raced both the MX3 World Motocross Championship and also the national Portuguese motocross championship. This year I’m concentrating on the Enduro World Championship with the Yamaha O. Pons team, where hopefully I can achieve some good success.”
Although it’s your first season in the EWC, you’ve raced enduro before?
“Yes, back in 2009 I raced in the ISDE when it was held in Portugal. I enjoyed the race but at the time I still had some goals to achieve in motocross. Now that I’ve reached them I feel the time is right to enter enduro.”
Why you have decided to join the Maxxis FIM Enduro World Championship this year?
“Last year during the ISDE in Finland I really understood what the real enduro was. It was a tough Six Days and I quickly felt good with the bike. Afterwards I spoke with both Oriol Pons and Yamaha about joining the EWC and they were happy for me to join the team.”
Did you always intend to race in Enduro 2?
“I’ve always preferred racing the 450f so it was a natural choice for me to race in Enduro 2.”
How was your first Grand Prix?
“The conditions at the GP of Euskadi were very difficult so I’m pleased to have finished both days. It rained each evening and the track was very physical and muddy. So considering the circumstances I’m pleased with my performance. I’ve got a lot to learn about this year, a new team, a new bike and new style of racing but hopefully I can achieve my aim of finishing in the top ten.”
Do you regret leaving motocross?
“No I really don’t regret it. I’ve had a good career in motocross with some excellent success but I felt it was time to move on. I’m enjoying enduro and want to have a long career in this discipline.”
Your second Grand Prix will be the GP of Portugal. Does that add extra pressure to perform?
“Even though it’s my home race there is no extra expectation to perform. I will try my best even though the terrain is not my favourite. But I know the special tests quite well and if I can limit my mistakes the hopefully I can produce a top result.”
What are your long-term goals in the EWC?
“My main goal in the future is to win the world title. I think that each rider in the paddock is thinking about this title but for me, it seems to be possible. With a lot of training and a good team behind me I can do it. My goal is to be successful in enduro.”
Finally, what will be your advices to a MX rider who want to go to Enduro?
“If you like challenges, something really different and a new riding style, then enduro is made for you. The most important thing is to stay on two wheels during the two days and protect your bike. Unlike motocross where you race for only 20 minutes, in enduro you race for two days. That makes it tough on body and mind so you need to think wisely about a lot of things to ensure a finish.”
Words/Images: ABC Communications