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Images fro the final round of the 2017 Speedway GP season from Melbourne, Australia

Behind the Helmet with Patryk Dudek

May 092018

He’s the all-action Polish sensation who charged to second place in his debut Speedway Grand Prix season, but off the track he’s quiet and care-free, so who exactly is Patryk Dudek?

The 25-year-old racer is preparing for his second season in the SGP Series after taking 2017 by storm, starting by racing in front of 50,000 home fans in Warsaw’s Stadion Narodowy in the season opener on Saturday night (12 May).

He burst onto the scene as a teenage prodigy before slowly building his way to the top of the sport, and after a jaw-dropping rookie year he heads into the 2018 Series with increased expectation. Patryk, though, is just going to do what he’s always done – ride his bike.

Check out our catch up with him to learn a bit more about the man they call ‘DuZers’…

"I didn’t really think about any targets or anything like that, I went into the season wanting to have a lot of fun and stay healthy."

Hi Patryk, first of all - what did you expect to achieve last season?

I didn’t really think about any targets or anything like that, I went into the season wanting to have a lot of fun and stay healthy. That was my only goal, I didn’t put any pressure on myself to achieve a target.

Were you surprised at how well you did in the GP’s in your first year?

A lot of things were really new for me and my team, to race in the Grand Prix series you need a lot of organisation with things like logistics, equipment, bikes, travel. It is a big committment but we learned a lot last season and I think the end result wasn’t too bad! I don’t know if it was a surprise, but there was a lot to learn and I think we’ll be much smarter this year.

After such a good rookie season, do you feel more pressure this year?

I know people will want me to make better results than last year but I want to say here and now that my goal is exactly the same as it was last year; to have fun and be healthy. If I do that I will make as many points as I can and the rest will come, I want to stay in the series for a long time so I hope I will have more success to come but I won’t be setting any targets for myself. I just want to enjoy racing and stay healthy, then we’ll see what happens.

What was your favourite event in 2017?

I don’t have just one. Melbourne was cool because I was a long way from home and all the pressure, I felt really chilled there before the meeting and that was good. The atmosphere in Warsaw is amazing and it gave me chills because the fans are so loud, but also there’s big pressure on Polish riders there so it isn’t easy! Of course Torun was superb because I won my first Grand Prix there, but because it was in Poland I didn’t have much time to celebrate after because we were so busy.

How would you describe yourself in three words?

Hmm… Patryk DuZers Dudek. That is all!

"I’m just a normal young guy who likes to travel and spend time with my friends and my girlfriend."

Tell us something about you that people don’t know...

I don’t know what people do or don’t know about me! I’m just a normal young guy who likes to travel and spend time with my friends and my girlfriend. I also love to discover new cuisines and try new food, maybe people didn’t know that!

Who is your sports hero and why?

I have a lot of sporting heroes. I read a lot of different sports autobiographies but one person that stands out is Zlatan Ibrahimovic, I love his confidence and his lifestyle.

If you weren’t a Speedway racer, what would you do instead?

I don’t think about things which are in the past, or what could’ve been, so I really don’t know what else I would do! The only thing I do from the past is read about set-up’s from the previous year for some of the tracks we race on. Apart from that, I always just look forward!

And finally, what do you hope to be doing in 20 years?

I hope that I will be travelling a lot, having a lot of fun with my girlfriend next to me and a big smile on my face!