He's 24 years-old, from Krakow, Poland and he's shaking up some major competitions on two wheels in his first year as a KTM factory rider.
Taddy Blazusiak went out this weekend in Bulcher, Texas and became Red Bull's Last Man Standing in what is one of the most gruelling races on the calendar.
Making his debut in the race, Blazusiak claimed the victory and American Geoff Aaron was the only other finisher. Both riders were onboard KTM machines. Blazusiak caught the attention of KTM during the legendary Erzberg Rodeo on Austria's notorious Iron Mountain in the summer of 2007 and he was signed to compete as a factory rider.
But what was a halcyon day - and night - in this unique event for the young Polish professional, it was also a bitter moment for KTM hero David Knight. The reigning US GNCC champion saw his hopes of claiming a third Red Bull Last Man Standing title disappear when he had to withdraw an hour and 13 minutes into the night lap and trailing Blazusiak by five minutes. Knight said he was "gutted" that he was unable to finish because of asthma like symptoms, but he was generous in his praise for the Polish and the American riders. He also said he thought it was the toughest LMS event in which he had competed.
Blazusiak captured both the daytime lap and the night time laps - each of 40 miles (64.37 kilometres), while 10-times national trials champion Geoff Aaron, from Colorado, was the only other rider to finish both laps at the Red River Motorcycle Trails course on the Texas/Oklahoma border.
"This was a very tough race and my bike worked perfectly," said Blazusiak, who completed the night lap in 3:37:54." He compared the Last Man Standing with the Erzberg competition and said there was no time to relax. "David and I were riding against each other in the first lap, and again in the second lap, we were really pushing each other, trading the lead several times. When I heard he pulled out, I was able to relax a little, but racing against him kept me focused," the Polish rider said. Aaron persevered after David Knight was forced to withdraw and crossed the line 31 minutes behind Blazusiak.
Of the 100 riders who started in the day race, 97 failed to finish within one hour of Blazusiak's blistering time, leaving only him, Knight and Aaron to contest the night time lap. More than 2500 spectators were undeterred by the cold and overcast weather and came out to lend their support to the riders and to set an attendance record for the event.