11 December 2013
BSB Q&A - James Ellison
“I thought, 'Fair enough' and that made my decision to go with Mark's offer a no brainer” - James Ellison.
An exclusive interview with MCE British Superbike star - and new father - James Ellison.
Fourth in this year's BSB championship with Milwaukee Yamaha, Ellison will join Chris Walker at the new-look GBmoto Kawasaki team in 2014…
How is the new addition to the family?
Really good, I'm loving every minute. We just had a little boy two weeks ago and we've called him 'Ryder'.
Has that got anything to do with your profession?
No, not really though it's true that I've got a good mate who's keen on fishing who's just called his son 'Fisher'. No, it's just a name that we both liked which happened to tally with what I do. When you look at him he just looks like a 'Ryder'. He's also half American, Ryder's not a popular name there either, we just wanted something fairly unique for a unique little boy.
What was easier then, the birth of your son or riding the triple at Brands?
I'd have to say riding the triple at Brands. It was just that I was worried about Sarah, it's hard to see someone you love go through so much without you being able to control anything. When I'm racing I'm at least in control. You just feel so helpless, Sarah was mega throughout the whole thing but I was just worrying all the time. Once Ryder was there that was all forgotten about and it's just perfect. Looking at his feet, I think he might be a runner in the future because they're just massive!
Coming back to racing, when you look back at 2013, do you feel frustrated or satisfied?
Really frustrated because we should have been in the hunt for the title in the last round and we weren't and I put that down to inconsistency throughout the year. Some of that was due to me crashing, but there's no denying that we had more than our fair share of mechanical problems.
I don't want to make excuses or point the finger, but that's just a fact. We had a lot of mechanical problems be that in practice, qualifying or during the race. I think there were three occasions when I missed a Q3 session when I was looking good for the front row. So instead of starting on the front row, you're starting three or four rows back and then have to fight your way to the front. It was a frustrating because we could have done a lot better.
The way we started at Brands was typical because we won the second race but couldn't get a result in the first because my visor came off on the grid and I was pulled off the grid. We started off well though, we'd tested well, left both Brands and Thruxton with the fastest lap and were always good for a podium. It was just that gremlins then meant that we started getting podiums and DNFs.
I crashed out of three races and totally take the blame for those because they were my fault, but three crashes shouldn't cost you the championship.
Did you feel that you had the bike to win the championship?
Yeah, we definitely had the bike to do it and that was the frustrating thing. I don't feel like 'Ah well, we did our best and even without the problems we wouldn't have won anyway', which you often do. I feel that with the team, the bike and the preparation which went into it we were top of the list to get the title this year. I felt it slip away as the year went on and that was really hard. Yeah, we definitely had the bike to do it. I wouldn't even say it was bad luck because you make your own luck.
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