Last year was Dylan Walsh’s first season competing in the EMX250 championship and after his learning year behind him he’s improved massively this season.
Walsh was with the Carglass Honda team for his rookie season and ended up twenty-seventh in the championship as a rookie, he would have wanted much more! He did manage to get himself on the podium though in Russia which was his highlight during the 2017 season.
Walsh inked a deal with the DIGA-Procross Husqvarna team for the 2018 season and he’s massively improved. After three rounds of the series he sits second in the championship and only three points behind the championship leader.
We decided to catch up with Dylan to discuss his strong start to the season.
Gatedrop: Dylan, we’ve had three rounds of the EMX250 series so far this year. Could you summarize how the first three rounds went for you?
Dylan Walsh: Yeah coming into the season I was carrying a back injury so I didn’t get any pre season races or the best preparation but the team and myself have been working hard to get better weekend by weekend and slowly my fitness is coming back but I’m really happy with the bike and I’m pumped to be second in the championship.
Gatedrop: You spent a lot of your time racing in New Zealand but I believe you were actually born in the UK. What was the reason for your upcoming being in New Zealand and what’s the level of motocross like there?
Dylan Walsh: Yes, actually I was born in London and moved to New Zealand when I was three just because my parents wanted to give myself and my siblings a better up bringing. The motocross in New Zealand is okay, they have loads of amazing tracks and the New Zealand riders know how to go fast on the local tracks so it’s good competition.
Gatedrop: The Carglass Honda team decided to sign you for the EMX250 championship last year. You must be pleased they give you the opportunity to race in Europe? How would you describe your time with the team?
Dylan Walsh: I was certainly very excited to come to Europe and see how they do it over here, I had a very hard time last year with the team and the bike but it was a good learning experience. I learnt a lot and made some life long memory’s with Jed so I can’t complain.
Gatedrop: How did you adjust to live in Europe and just how different is it too New Zealand?
Dylan Walsh: Well, I haven’t lived in New Zealand for 4 years now because I spent 3 years in the USA before coming to Europe but it was hard at the start with language barrier and not knowing anybody but I get to do what I love every day and getting to travel Europe was something I always wanted to do so I quickly got over it!
Gatedrop: You’re with the Diga Procross Husqvarna team this year. So far it seems like a good combination!
Dylan Walsh: I’m loving my time with the team I have a good relationship with every one here and they generally care and want the best for me, So everything works well which I’m very happy about!
Gatedrop: How does the Husqvarna compare to the Honda you were riding last year?
Dylan Walsh: Totally different bikes, like this year I’ve been able to test suspension and the team have worked around the bike for what I like so I couldn’t even compare them.
Gatedrop: How’s the level in the EMX250 Championship this year compare to last year? Your starts seem to be better and that’s helping!
Dylan Walsh: The EMX250 class I think every year is crazy! There’s a lot of young talent and then older guys dropping back down so I don’t think people around the world understand just how gnarly this class really is!
Gatedrop: What’s your expectations for the rest of the season?
Dylan Walsh: Obviously my goal is to win the championship but my main focus is to just keep consistent and building each weekend.
Gatedrop: Have you a long-term target you’ve set yourself and what is it?
Dylan Walsh: Yeah, I want to move up to the MX2 world championship next year and race that class until I’m too old then hopefully go back to USA for a 250 team and race the AMA Supercross.
Gatedrop: Have you any plans to race any MX2 World Championship races this year that don’t collide with the EMX250 series?
Dylan Walsh: Yes, my plan is to race at Teutschenthal, Loket and Imola.
Gatedrop: Anyone you’d like to thank?
Dylan Walsh: I’d just like to thank my team for the opportunity they’ve given me, my personal sponsors 6D, CTI , Scott, Alpinestars, my parents for all there support and Josh Coppins for the guidance while I’m in Europe.
Interview: Andy McKinstry
Pic: Niek Kamper