Los­ing mind’

Scott Red­ding, BSB champ and WSB con­tender, is gag­ging to go rac­ing af­ter months of coro­n­avirus de­lays. He talks about life dur­ing lock­down, pre-race rave-ups, and redis­cov­er­ing his love for rac­ing

Bike India - - INTERVIEW SCOTT REDDING - Mat Ox­ley Du­cati/Red­ding

In­ter­viewed by:

TPho­tog­ra­phy: his in­ter­view was con­ducted ac­cord­ing to strict so­cial dis­tanc­ing guide­lines: scott red­ding was 6,000 miles (9,655 kilo­me­tres) and eight hours away from where i was. when i face­timed him, it was 4.30 pm in Lon­don, 8.30 am in Mal­ibu, Cal­i­for­nia. he an­swered his phone and all i saw was bleary eyes, bed hair, mus­cles, and tat­toos.

‘You’re not naked, are you?’ i asked. red­ding low­ered his phone to re­veal that he was wear­ing un­der­pants but noth­ing else. then he kicked back on his couch, ac­cepted a cup of cof­fee from his girl­friend, Jacey hay­den, and then the in­ter­view be­gan.

the reign­ing BsB cham­pion is sev­eral weeks into Cal­i­for­nia’s coro­n­avirus lock­down, go­ing slightly crazy, like ev­ery­one else. in fact, even cra­zier, be­cause rac­ers live their lives strung tight like a bow and arrow — the bow string stretched as taut as it’ll go, ready to un­leash hell.

‘it’s mad. it feels like i’ve re­tired!’ he said. ‘i’ve strug­gled with that. i thought the feel­ing would blow over af­ter a few weeks, but then the talk about go­ing rac­ing got later and later. i’m think­ing, what am i go­ing to do? then i’m think­ing, is it worth train­ing or should i just be do­ing all?

‘it’s wrecked my mind, be­cause i can’t just do noth­ing, so i’ve been los­ing my mind! i have to re­ally fo­cus on some­thing, be­cause, when you’re a racer, you al­ways fo­cus on the next sea­son and when the sea­son starts, you break it down to each race week­end, tick­ing them off. af­ter each race week­end you’re fo­cus­ing on the next race and you’re al­ways look­ing for im­prove­ments.

‘that’s what i did af­ter the first world su­per­bike round at Phillip is­land [in early March]. i thought about the races we did there and i knew where i could im­prove, so i was ready to go to the next race and drop some bombs. and then there was no next round...’

Due to the on­go­ing coro­n­avirus cri­sis red­ding still isn’t 100 per cent sure when he will get to race his fac­tory Du­cati Pani­gale v4r again. wsB rights-hold­ers Dorna hope to con­tinue the sea­son prob­a­bly from au­gust, health pro­to­cols per­mit­ting, but red­ding still feels like an an­gry junkie, won­der­ing where and when he will get his next fix.

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