Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Josep Garcia has finished an intense pre-season of testing and training and is now ready to take on the first race of his 2023 calendar – round one of the Spanish Enduro Championship from A Coruna in northwest Spain.
Choosing to make the switch to the hotly contested Enduro1 category for 2023, Garcia has spent the off-season training and familiarizing himself with the KTM 250 EXC-F that he will ride in both the Spanish Enduro Championship and the FIM EnduroGP World Championship. Josep has shown excellent form on the 250cc 4-stroke machine in the past with the bike carrying him to his first world championship title in 2017.
This weekend, February 18-19, will see Garcia begin his title defense in the Spanish Enduro Championship. Winning both the Enduro2 and overall ‘scratch’ classes in 2022, the 26-year-old will face a new challenge this year as he takes on the E1 category while fighting to claim his sixth consecutive overall crown in his own national series.
The highly competitive championship will give Garcia the perfect opportunity to further hone his skills in preparation for the opening round of the FIM EnduroGP World Championship – the GP of Italy in San Remo – held from March 31 to April 2.
Josep Garcia: “I can’t wait to get my 2023 season underway. After switching to the KTM 250 EXC-F for this year, I’ve done a lot of preparation over the winter to get ready for this new challenge. I have been working really hard, both on and off the bike, and I feel I’m better prepared than ever to fight for the championship in EnduroGP and of course the Spanish championship.
“As we saw last year, a 250 is definitely capable of fighting for victory in the overall EnduroGP class, and I feel the bike really suits my style, too. I’ve been working a lot with the team and I think we’ve definitely got the bike dialed in well but the real proof will come when we start racing. My goal for this year is of course to fight for wins and ultimately the championship. To do that, I know I have to stay healthy and injury-free for the whole season. I definitely had the pace last year to fight for the EnduroGP title, but missing one full round due to injury was just too much when things are so tight in the fight for the crown.
“Racing at the highest level of enduro is made so much easier by having the right people around me, and everyone at Red Bull KTM Factory Racing is like family to me. Having such a good relationship with the team is definitely key when it comes to fighting for a championship. The first real test for me and the team comes this weekend at round one of the Spanish Enduro Championship. Hopefully with a strong start there we can build momentum and make the best possible start to the world championship at the end of March.”
Fabio Farioli – Red Bull KTM Factory Racing Enduro Team Manager: “The team’s plans for 2023 are to develop the new bike and put it on top of the podium. We’ll be participating in EnduroGP, the ISDE, the Spanish Enduro Championship, and some other classic races. Josep has switched from E2 to E1 this year to give him new motivation and to attack to EnduroGP with a smaller bike, which is a better fit for his style. The decision was taken together between us and the rider, with the final decision coming from Josep. The feeling within the team is great, and that helps even when there is a lot of work to do – developing a new bike for example. But we have always had a good technical base and advanced starting point from the company, so that makes our life easier. The goals for 2023 are to win everything – EnduroGP, E1, the Six Days, and the Spanish Championship! We won’t be happy until we have achieved the whole list.”