Danny McCanney Hawkstone interview 1200

Photo credit: Gez Morrison/Future7Media

The EnduroGP series crosses the English channel and heads to the famous Hawkstone Park this weekend. With a new-for-EnduroGP format of a sprint enduro on day one and a three-hour race on day two.

The format and conditions should suit the British riders and Rockstar Husqvarna's Danny McCanney is no exception. We sat down with the 2014 Junior World Champion at his home on the Isle of Man, is he ready for his home event?

So Danny, we’ve got the first World Enduro round in the UK for nearly 10 years. You were a little too young to ride in Wales in 2008. How are you feeling going into the event at Hawkstone Park this weekend?

Danny McCanney: “I am feeling the best I have ever done in my career right now. This is really the first year I have concentrated on my overall fitness rather than just speed on the bike. I have been cycling and spending time in the gym and I think it’s really paying off."

Why the change now?

“It seems that everyone has upped their game that little bit more. To be ultimately competitive you have to be on the same level as everyone else.”

Do you think the way that EnduroGP has evolved over the past few years has made training like this a necessity?

“Personally, I think it has. With more motocross based riders coming into the sport now, they are bringing their level of fitness and techniques and the ‘old-school’ enduro riders can learn from that.”

Danny McCanney Hawkstone interview 1200a

Photo credit: Andrea Belluschi/Future7Media

You are running fifth in Enduro 2 this season, it’s good but perhaps not what you would have been hoping for at the beginning of the year. What are your thoughts on your season so far?

“This season is really not what I expected. I feel really good within myself but there have been a few factors that have stopped me from getting the results I know I’m capable of, including simple bad luck. It’s disappointing because I know I should be fighting for wins, but it just hasn’t worked out.”

With your home event coming up you are going to be racing in front of a lot of British fans – does this add any more pressure?

“It’s weird because there will be a lot of family and friends there which I’m not used to, but to be honest I feel like a kid at Christmas – it can’t come sooner.”

Have you been doing any special training for the event?

“I’ve been doing one-hour sessions with David (Knight) down in the sand at Jurby, and my brother came over for a week to train. It’s a shame we don’t have any three-hour races here on the island, but fitness wise, I just hope what I have been doing up to now will pay off."

Do you think the different format will suit your riding style?

“Yeah I always used to love the British sprints and having a sighting lap to learn the tests really helps. Normally I get faster as the day goes on so I’m hoping to do well.

“I think the most important thing will be the three-hour race on the Sunday, so I don’t want to burn myself out too much on the sprint-enduro.”

Do you think the going will suit the British riders over the Europeans?

“It’s going to be fair for everyone. All the riders have experienced sprint-enduros and you can’t train at Hawkstone at any other time. We’re all going into the event at the same level I think. Our only advantage is going to be the home crowd cheering us on."

Danny McCanney Hawkstone interview 1200b

Photo credit: Andrea Belluschi/Future7Media

How would you rate your podium chances at Hawkstone and the final round of the season in Germany?

“I’m aiming for podiums at both rounds. I have certainly put in the work and I’ve got the speed to be there. I just need everything to go well and a bit of luck."

Thanks Danny, hope it goes well this weekend.

 

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Gez Morrison
Staff Writer