Bringing with him a wealth of experience at the very highest level of indoor racing, Frenchman Eric Sorby also arrives in the UK with a reputation for being an uncompromising and fierce competitor who’s fully prepared to roll his sleeves up and get stuck in.
“As far as being aggressive, yes I am and I’m proud to not be a pussy when someone does something bad to me,” says the 33-year-old Marseille native. “If you play you will lose – damn sure. But I respect every single rider – I am not coming to the UK to take people out but if someone plays with me he will get it back.”
He may talk the talk but Eric also walks the walk and he has nine AMA SX podium finishes to back up his words including a sensational third-placed finish in Houston on his US indoor debut back in 2002. It was a result that made the Yanks sit up and take notice and one that earned him a ride on Mitch Payton’s fabled Pro Circuit team.
“Yeah, I have nine podiums in SX and nine podiums in MX plus a bunch of top 10 finishes. Racing for Mitch was fun on the best bike ever and I have so many good memories – even if I lied to him and said I was training when in real life I wasn’t. But my results were great so whatever…”
The former French SX champ is well known for his friendship with US superstar James Stewart after appearing alongside the American in his reality TV show Bubba’s World. But Eric’s fame in the off-road world has been hard earned and as well as AMA SX he’s also competed in – among other disciplines – GP MX, Supermoto, Endurocross and X Games Enduro X.
“I’ve raced so many things,” he explains. “I enjoy challenges and new things. I hate those stupid routines. So coming to England I am really motivated. I went to the English GP this year and I have so many fans there. I love this country so I can’t wait to be in London.”
So is he in shape for the Arenacross opener at The O2, London, on January 12? And, more importantly, will he be a threat for the podium?
“Yeah! It’s in my blood so I got to do it. Speed and technique I got it. I just need good starts and we will see at the end.”