With the GP of Italy in Castiglion Fiorentino marking the second half of the 2012 Enduro World Championship season it also brings about a major change for David Knight.
After campaigning his trusted KTM 500 EXC for the first four races this year, the Manxman has made a radical switch to two-stroke machinery and the KTM 300 EXC.
“I felt I needed to try something new,” explained David as he dealt with technical control on Friday afternoon in Italy. “Something hasn’t quite clicked this year and I’m not sure why. I feel like I’ve been riding good and although the four-stroke is bigger, it’s also better than before yet my times still weren’t there. I think there’s been a shift in events. This season the special tests have really suited the lighter and nimble two-stroke.”
Although making a brief appearance on the two-stroke at the recent Erzberg Rodeo, it was that short spin that favoured David towards bringing the 300 EXC to the EWC.
"David... your bike looks a little different than before?" ©Enduro21.com
“When I was training for Erzberg it was mostly across extremely technical terrain but afterwards I tried it out on some special tests at home. Straight away I felt an improvement, which is why I’m here with it in Italy.”
“Using it in back to back tests with the four-stoke, I found the 300 EXC to be lighter and more nimble, which I suppose is to be expected,” continued David.
With David now confirmed that he will contest the KTM 300 EXC for the remainder of the season, what are his goals for Italy and beyond?
“To win again!” smiled the KTM rider. “I don’t feel that I cant. The major thing that will hold me back is a lack of testing so ideally this weekend will be about progress.
“My goals are to bridge the gap to Christophe (Nambotin) and start winning some tests again. I know I can do that in the extreme test so I’ll be looking to improve in both the cross and enduro tests. Even after four hours of testing on Thursday I can already see progress so hopefully after this weekend we’ll be in a better position to attack in Sweden and Finland.”