Interview: Billy Askew – Britain’s big talent impresses in EMX

Billy Askew didn’t have the results he wanted in the EMX250 but the style, technique and speed were all there.

Askew ran third for a long time in race two with eventual overall winner, Lata, not able to find his way around the teenager for a long time. Askew showed to everyone and himself, that he is a fast learner and he has what it takes.

We spoke with Billy to get his thoughts on the day not long after his final moto.

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Billy, your first WMX in terms of a full championship here in Spain, a very tricky track with lots of ruts. How did you find the the weekend on the track and everything?

Yeah, the track was difficult. I’ve never really rode a track as rough and as hard as this and then, riding with that intensity of all the good boys. It’s definitely a lot, definitely difficult. Yesterday was just to get the first moto over and done with, so now I’ve got the first one done, and now I can work on that.

You looked good in practice, your technique and everything really suits these tracks I think, but first moto you think he started outside the top 20 got up to 15th and then dropppd back again, was that just the intensity that you mentioned there?

Yeah very hard with the intensity, but with 5 minutes ago the clutch had a problem and it would just pull down to the lever. So I had to maintain the rest of the race with no clutch and the same with the second moto with 15 minutes ago. Got a few problems with that but we’re going to work towards it in the week and see what we can do.

Second moto you got a great start you were third for a long time and you were holding Lata off. You looked really comfortable, did you feel comfortable or was the pace high for you ?

I was very comfortable in that position. I sort of learned very quickly the speed and adapted to it, so I was very happy with that. And then the clutch went again with 15 minutes ago and I had to finish the rest of the race with no clutch. But it’s definitely a step in the right direction.

I saw you crashed there coming on to the last lap flag, that must have been pretty annoying as well!

Yeah that was! I had use a few outsides so I was very vulnerable to people going up the inside of me but it was just what I had to do, the bike kept cutting out.

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The results, if people didn’t watch the race they probably not the results don’t really reflect how well you were riding but you must get a lot of confidence especially that second moto?

Yeah definitely, a lot of confidence in myself with (running) that position (third).

It was your first really overseas race in terms of this level, how did you find Spain in the whole trip and doing the GP here?

Yeah, it’s different, a lot different to racing in England but I really enjoyed it.

Your front mud guard was flopping all over (in race two). How annoying was that – were you able to focus?!

Yeah, it was very annoying! At some points hit me in the head but to had to look past it and see what I can do.

Yeah, it didn’t seem to slow you down too much seem able to keep your pace good!

Yeah, it was difficult but just had to look past it really.

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Joining this team and I think Tommy still giving you advice here and there as well, how much has that all helped you?

Tommy’s really behind my back a lot and he’s helping me everywhere in the gym with Kirk and yeah, it’s been a really good offseason with Tommy and all the team.

It’s a good British team you and Bobby the sort of the next big hopes for the all the UK do you feel pressure that way or no?

It’s just me and Bobby – just trying to do it for the British and just see what we can do.

I saw a British flag there with all the British names on it, does the support help even if you see that in Spain?

Yeah, the support is definitely good from the fans and everything it gets us through the race.

Interview and images: Jonathan McCready

Cover image: Kevin Frelaud