Interview: Neilas Pecatauskas – Lithuanian EMX125 rider

Young Lithuanian rider, Neilas Pecatauskas raced the EMX125 series at Arco di Trento and qualified at the first moment of application, which is an achievement in itself. Pecatauskas will now race the series this weekend in Germany and hope to qualify again.

We caught up with Pecatauskas to discuss his background in the sport, his goals for EMX125 this weekend and more.

GateDrop: Neilas, Lithuania is not widely known as a great motocross country. How is the sport in this country?

Pecatauska: If I’m real, I’ve only run a handful of races there. I was born and raised in Germany so I wasn’t there often. Of course, it’s not the biggest MX country like Belgium, Holland or Italy.

GateDrop: I believe you live in Germany. Why did you move there – was it a motocross decision or?

Pecatauska: Not at all. My dad came here about 30 years ago for work, but like I said I grew up here and started my MX career here as well. Getting to such a high level was not the goal at the start. My dad and I were just normal Sunday runners in good weather and we just wanted to have fun. But as I got older and got faster, we decided to try bigger races.

GateDrop: Arminas Jasikonis is the best Lithuanian pilot, do you know him well and do you admire him?

Pecatauska: I don’t know him well but he is definitely an idol for me. It would be nice to get to such a level like him one day or even better.

GateDrop: You ran the EMX125 round at Arco di Trento and qualified. It’s such an achievement just to do that – you must have been happy to qualify for the main races?

Pecatauskas: It was only my second attempt and I was really happy. I got so many good luck messages from friends and while I was riding I thought of them and I think that helped me (laughs).

GateDrop: Can you tell me about your bikes at Arco di Trento and what is the level of the EMX125 series?

Pecatauska: I was really nervous and had a huge arm pump so the races were kinda shitty. I had two top-15 starts and was passed in two laps. For example, at the German championship or the ADAC MX Masters, you do a few laps and breathe some fresh air. In the EMX, you have to send it from start to finish. Even the guys who don’t qualify are very quick.

GateDrop: You will participate in the EMX125 series in Germany. What are your expectations in this respect and are you looking forward to riding the Teutschenthal track?

Pecatauska: I would like to qualify again and do decent and consistent races. I worked well with my trainer and my condition is really good at the moment. Last year the track was incredibly dirty and muddy on Saturday, so hopefully the track will be nicer.

GateDrop: Do you have any other EMX125 towers planned?

Pecatauska: Unfortunately not at the moment. It’s way too expensive for me to travel so much and not go to school/work.

GateDrop: For 2023, do you have any projects? Is it possible for you to do the full series?

Pecatauska: At the moment I am concentrating on getting good results this season. Hope they help get a little more support for next year. If I don’t get more financial help next year, I don’t think I can run the whole series.

GateDrop: What’s it like to be a privateer and ride against some of the best talent in the world? I bet it’s difficult and a team behind you would be a big help?

Pecatauska: Like I said, I’m going to school and I’ll start working in a few months. The top 5-10 guys are professionals. Few people can afford or be lucky enough to join a great team. I only train on weekends and without a coach. Almost everything I can update, I learned it myself. So yes, that would be a big help!

I would like to thank my private sponsors Inta Transporte, Spengler GmbH and AMX Racing for their help.

Interview: Andy McKinstry

Photo: Kaybrake Photography

Earnest L. Veasey