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Monster Energy Interview | FIM Speedway Grand Prix Champion Tai Woofinden

Published On:: 24/04/2024

Monster Energy’s Tai Woffinden, a 3-time FIM Speedway Grand Prix champion and living/racing legend, sets out on an unbelievable 15th season in the high speed, high stakes – no brakes – sport of FIM Speedway GP racing.

Monster Energy’s Tai Woffinden, a 3-time FIM Speedway Grand Prix champion and living/racing legend, sets out this weekend, in Croatia, on an unbelievable 15th season in the high speed, high stakes – no brakes – sport of FIM Speedway GP racing.

Britain’s most heralded speedway racer of all-time, “Woffy” is a consistent favorite with the rabid speedway fans of Eastern Europe, the UK, Germany, Sweden and Denmark who pack sizable soccer and special-built speedway stadiums from April through September to watch, with the same intensity as World Cup soccer, this trilling ‘microwave’ version of classic sideways American dirt track oval motorcycle racing.

Woffinden’s speedway career is highlighted by all sorts of impressive milestones.

  • Britain’s first-ever triple world champion
  • Winner of the ’13 Speedway GP World Championship as a 500-to-1 underdog
  • An unprecedented six Speedway GP World Championship medals from 2013 to ‘20
  • Helped Britain to its first world team title in 32 years at the ’21 FIM Speedway of Nations
  • 243 Heat wins in 746 races, 47 Finals and 11 overall SGP wins
  • 3 British  Championships, 2 British U21 Championships, 2 British U18 Championships

The past few years, probably more, have been tough on Woffinden in terms of injuries (as you’ll read below). His victories, podiums and main events have been harder to come as he at times stuggles, like any older professional motorcycle racer, to keep his body and speed at pace with the fiery/fearless younger racers.

But to his credit, Woffinden answers the bell more often than not. And his presence alone in the paddock and Speedway GP Fanzone never fails to get those in attendance, other racers, media and anyone else around hyped on speedway racing.

As he prepares for this weekend’s FIM Speedway GP opener at Croatia’s Speedway Stadium Milenium, Monster Energy caught up with Woffinden to discuss what’s been happening in the off season and his mindset on the upcoming season. Take it away, Woffy!


Monster Energy: Tai! What’s happening, Daddy-O? Got the leathers out, dusted off?

Tai Woffinden: All good here, thanks. Been ripping for a few weeks now, so I can’t complain!

ME: Talk a bit about your off season, off of the bike. You got those girls ripping around the yard on mini bikes yet?

TW: The off season was great had a good training load and was able to be back home in Australia for the summer! The kids (Rylee-cru, whos’ 6, and 4-year-old Calle) started school over there, which they do Terms 1 and 4, and then we home school during the race season. And yeah, they have some little 16-inch e-bikes they fly around the park on. It’s so fun watching them grow and learn new things! 

ME: That’s awesome. Let’s start with training here. Talk a bit how you prepared your body for the rigors of the 11-round global FIM Speedway GP series. You’ve dealt with some injuries in recent years, and most recently a hand injury – which slowed your ’23 season down. You all fine-tuned, ready for the gate to drop this weekend in Croatia?

TW: Yeah, for sure. I do three days a week strength and conditioning this year, focused a lot on old injuries that I never let fully heal. I was able to get that all on lock, especially my shoulder, which I dislocated in 2011 and never really got it back to where it should be. Since 2019 I have broken the following bones: two vertebrae in my back, a shoulder blade, three hand metatarsals, a foot, tibia & femur fracture and smashed shoulder ligaments. But we get the fuck up and keep on keeping on. All that said, I’m excited for the season ahead and can’t wait for the gate drop in Croatia.

ME: Yeah, buddy! Those are some Knievel numbers right there. Is it tough to weigh the fact that you’re still, by far, one of the most popular racer on the pro speedway tour – despite the fact that the results, er, consistent results haven’t been where you ‘ve admittedly wanted them to be in recent years? How are you able to handle this situation – something that many other athletes in all areas of sport share?

TW: To be honest, man, it’s not hard. I just be myself. Stay true to myself and never change. Remember where I came from and say; ‘It as it is,’ regardless of the consequences. What you see with me is what you get. Some people like it, but I think just as many don’t like it. But they still tune in to see what I’m up to, regardless. 

ME: Good take! Let’s get down to business for 2024. Talk about your Monster Energy-sponsored team this year. Who do you have coming back (mechanic, tuner, engine guy, team manager, etc.) and how important are they to your success on the track?

TW: This year were locked in! With the team the way it is, all I have to do is focus on training on and of the bike. Faye Woffinden (logistics coordinator), Peter Adams (manager since ’13), John Jorgensen (returning technical supporter), Konrad Darwinski (chief mechanic since ’13), Dominik Murjas (returning mechanic) and Jake Rose (returning mechanic).

ME: One thing that’s impressive to race fans here in the states is the schedule you guys run. Whereas supercross and motocross races pretty much just run on Saturdays, speedway racers quadruple the start gate time during any given week. Talk a bit about the amount of racing you do, the commitment between club and FIM World Speedway GP. Explain that, how much you race during the season and what it takes – both physically and mentally – to run that impressive race schedule.

TW: Yeah it seems like a lot to other people, but to be fair it’s all I have done since 2006, so I don't know any other way (laughter). But like I said before, with that team it makes it seamless. For example, I just flew into Poland today and got rained out. So driving three hours to the airport to fly back to UK tonight and staying in a hotel that Faye just booked me, so I can race in the UK tomorrow. I’ll race Ipswich (UK) on the 25th, Wroclaw (Poland) on the 26th and Donji Kraljevec (Croatia) on the 27th. Light work (laughter).

ME: That’s just flat out badass. … You had an interesting quote the other day when you were asked about Poland’s Bartosz Zmarzlik being the ‘Man to beat’ on the FIM Speedway GP tour this year. You basically answered: “Everyone is there to be beaten and everyone can be beaten.” You’ve won three world titles and definitely have the mindset to prevail at any given race – and all of them if you can get on roll and remain healthy. That said, do you feel you can still tap into the speed that won you your last World Championship in 2018?

TW: Yes, that’s right. We’re all human, right? I feel I have ticked the boxes and have the team around me to allow me to do that job this year. The season started well in the UK and Poland, big scores there. And I look to take that with me all year. 

ME: Things are different now that you’re married and have two daughters. “Girl Dad,” as they say here in the States, though the term “Rad” Girl Dad might be better suited. Talk a bit about how your family life and race life go together, and if, at all, being a family man now has sharpened your race senses and maybe geared you more towards smart strategy than all-in throttle twisting speed.

TW: Being a dad hasn’t changed anything from my racing side of things. I’ll always be a throttle jockey – that’s the only way to ride these beasts! I’m just super blessed that we have a healthy happy family.

ME: Looking ahead on the FIM Speedway GP season, what races to you have circled on your mind’s calendar that really stand out at your favorites to race (and why)?

TW: The two biggest events of the year are Warsaw (Poland) and Cardiff (Wales). Both have the best atmosphere, tricky tracks and huge crowds! Warsaw sells out every year - 55,000 people!

ME: That’s bananas. Across the pond in the U.S. here, one of your fellow Monster Energy racers, AMA Flat Track’s Jared Mees, is going for his record-setting 10th AMA Grand National Championship. Mees is currently tied with all-time great Scotty Parker at nine Grand National titles. Any words of encouragement for Mees as he gets set to start the Half-Mile portion of the season, sideways and flat out, like you and your mates?

TW: I think if he keeps riding that Indian like that he will have more no doubt! And a beautiful family! Don’t ya just love to see it!

ME: Lastly, and since we’re on the subject of flat track racing, it’s been long rumored that FIM Speedway GP is interested in sticking series round here in the States. Would that be something you’re in to? And, given what you know about the U.S. racing scene, do you think FIM Speedway GP would be a big hit over here?

TW: Yes, I know they (FIM) want to do more events, but it will come down to bums on seats and $$$. I think anywhere they go will be good because speedway is such a bad ass sport and easy to promote with the correct promoter. 

ME: Tai, again, thanks for taking the time to speak with us. The Monster Energy HQ in Corona, Calif., is always interested in, and tuned into your guys’ speedway racing programs. Best of luck to you this year. Stay healthy, smart and fast our friend.

TW:  Thanks heaps to Monster Energy! I look forward to finally making it over to the Cali HQ. And I think a 2024 world championship bike would look good in the office. LET’S GO!!!


Up next…

The 30th annual FIM Speedway GP season opens on April 27th with the running of the Croatian Speedway GP at Donji Kraljevec’s Speedway Stadium Milenium. For further information, including the season race schedule, racer bios and timely results, link to: