Pro Bike: Closer look at the hottest topic right now, Taddy Blazusiak’s Stark Varg
Enduro21 takes a closer look at the hottest topic in enduro right now, the Stark Varg electric motorcycle Taddy Blazusiak was set to debut at round one of the 2024 SuperEnduro World Championship in France.
This one escalated quickly didn’t it?! First the news Taddy Blazusiak was departing KTM/Pierer Group after a stellar career on their orange and lately red bikes. Next that he had signed with Stark Future and, in as many days, that he would debut in the 2024 SuperEnduro World Championship round one in France.
All of this was big news for Taddy and SuperEnduro but also big news as the first official enduro version of the Stark Varg we’ve seen in the flesh. We took the chance to wheel it out, blinking in the autumn sunshine, for a closer look.
Making a statement
Like Stark and Taddy, Enduro21 headed to Lievin in Northern France for the season opener looking forward to the start of the indoor season in Europe but also seeing how he and the bike would match up against Billy, Jonny and the boys.
Only when we all arrived things had changed. Specifically, the rules had changed and despite Stark adamantly believing they met and surpassed every FIM technical regulation, the “Open” racing classification for the Prestige and Junior classes (ordinarily E1, E2 and E3 machines) suddenly had a line drawn through the words electric motorcycles. Latterly the wording was removed altogether.
At the time of writing it is still unclear exactly why they were not allowed to race.
SuperEnduro and EnduroCross is where Enduro21 at as much as we are about EnduroGP, Hard Enduro and riding in the woods ourselves. SuperEnduro is the spectacular and rowdy version of our sport but it’s still part of our sport and we love it.
Taddy also is a rider we have had a huge relationship over his more than 15-year career so far and we’re behind the next step of that journey. He’s a professional racer extending his career with a new manufacturer – it just happens to be an electric bike manufacturer. Make no mistake though, this was a big step for him to make and it’s clear he feels the FIM slammed a door in his face.
SuperEnduro for us, indoor racing is a natural first place to pitch an electric enduro bike against a petrol-powered bikes. No sound is not the same but have you ever stood up in the top of an arena like Lievin’s Stade Couvert and breathed the exhaust fumes on a race night? The smell of two-stroke on a Sunday morning is life but the dense fug hanging in the air of an arena ain’t always so sweet.
The point is we can’t ignore electric bikes and for short circuit racing like this it makes absolute sense. Especially if we want to keep racing dirt bikes indoors.
Take a look at the bike though…
We’ve ridden the Stark Varg and rated it (Tested: Stark Varg electric off-road motorcycle – we rode it). No, it’s not the same, it’s different, but it can do the same things and that is part of Taddy’s role here. Developing the bike for enduro and proving the Stark is capable, as well as working on different options to adapt the power delivery and make it work at the highest level.
His few laps of the track in France showed it will be no walk in the park, there’s work to do here for Taddy adapting his riding to the insane hit of torque and behaviour of the bike compared to a rotating masses of all his many previous machines. The Varg will have to meet the challenges of punching the hell out of logs as well.
Just to be clear, the battery thing is off the table for this style of enduro racing. This bike could have raced all night on one charge Stark told us. They might have plugged in to their neat paddock stand booster for a top-up to be safe on power but the Varg could have partied all night.
To put that in context, Stade Couvert stadium regulations meant none of the other competitors were allowed to refuel anywhere in the stadium. Bikes had to be wheeled outside for a top up of fuel.
We’ll draw a line there. Feast your eyes on the bike, make up your own minds on FIM decisions, like comment, all that. In the meantime Enduro21 will aim to get some quality time on the Varg to really put it to an enduro test. Fancy a ride out Taddy? Got the time on your hands?
Photo Credit: Future7Media | Nicki Martinez