photos Jonty Edmunds
From Husaberg – Getting his 2013 extreme enduro season off to a winning start, Husaberg Extreme Racing Team’s Graham Jarvis dominated The Tough One at Nantmawr Quarry in Shropshire, England. Adding to the team’s success Spaniard Alfredo Gomez produced a strong ride to claim fifth, while Xavi Galindo finished inside the top ten with ninth place overall.
“I’m really pleased to have won,” told Jarvis following the podium celebrations. “There were a lot of world class riders entered and with this being the first race of the season it’s always difficult to know just how the race will go.”
Entering the event as a two-time Tough One winner, Jarvis executed an almost perfect race from start to finish to secure the win. With riders facing a Le Mans style uphill run to reach their bikes, Jarvis proved to be every bit as athletic as his younger challengers and reached his Husaberg TE 300 in third position. Wasting little time in moving forwards the British rider then charged his way into the lead on the first of the challenging hill climbs, ending the opening lap of the three-hour race in first position.
“I managed to get a good run up the hill from the start and reached my bike in third place. At the first tricky climb I worked my way into the lead and took control of the race. From then on I just tried to control my pace and maintain an advantage over my rivals.”
With Jarvis’ only difficulties coming during the opening couple of laps when he struggled slightly with arm pump, the Husaberg rider was able to increase his pace in the latter stages of the race. Feeling much more confident in his riding, while finding some better lines in the toughest sections of the course, Jarvis set a pace that nobody could match. Extending his lead to almost eight minutes, he comfortably secured his first win of the 2013 season.
“At about the two-hour mark I felt strong and was able to push on. I found some better lines and fought hard to extend my race lead. Starting the final lap my lead was almost eight minutes so I took it steady to ensure the win. Getting my third consecutive win at The Tough One has been a great way to start 2013, it gives me a lot of confidence for the year ahead.”
Satisfied with his performance in the extremely slippery and muddy terrain, Spaniard Gomez ended his race in fifth overall. Although not overly confident in the difficult conditions, Alfredo gradually overcame a slow start to move into the top five by the midway point in the race.
“My start wasn’t brilliant,” confirmed a tired but pleased Gomez. “I didn’t get a good run up the hill and then had to pass quite a lot of riders in the early laps. At about the halfway point I worked my way into fifth position and was able to hold it until the finish. I’m still getting used to slippery, muddy conditions and trying hard to improve. In Spain we don’t get to ride these conditions too often so it’s still an area I need to improve on – but I enjoyed it. I’m satisfied with my fifth place result today. It’s the first race of the season for the new team so I’m pleased with my performance.”
Completing a trio of top ten results for the Husaberg Extreme Racing Team was Xavi Galindo. Placing ninth overall Galindo was pleased with his and the team’s results.
“Personally, I very happy with my results today. Finishing ninth is more than I initially hoped for. My strategy was to ride smooth and not make any mistakes. The track was tough but not overly extreme. In the high-speed sections the grassy tracks were incredibly slippery so it was difficult to push to the limit there. But it’s been a great event for the team.”
Adding to Husaberg’s success, 16-year-old South African Wade Young delivered a solid performance in unfamiliar conditions to place 11th overall.
From KTM – Jonny Walker has finished as runner-up at the 2013 Tough One Hard Enduro. Competing in the event for the first time, Walker completed 12 laps of a very wet and slippery course at the Nantmawr Quarry venue to place on the podium along with race winner Graham Jarvis and third placed Danny McCanney.
As the traditional Hard Enduro season opener, the 2013 Tough One event proved to be every bit as challenging as in previous years, despite several of the harder sections of the track being eased in anticipation of the wet weather. With early morning snow covering the quarry in a temporary white blanket, the start of the Pro race thankfully took place under dry skies.
Eager to make a good start Walker found himself down in eighth as he fired his KTM 300 EXC into life. Battling his way up the leader board Jonny was quickly among the race leaders but in trying to pass eventual winner Graham Jarvis fell, losing valuable time and covering his hands in mud. Forced to stop and remove his gloves, having tried to ride on for several laps, Walker then pulled into the pits for fresh gloves and goggles. Losing sight of Jarvis, Jonny pushed hard to close the gap but was unable to reduce the deficit. Riding unchallenged for the majority of the race Jonny comfortably claimed the runner-up result.
Jonny Walker (KTM 300 EXC): “I didn’t get the best of starts as it was pretty full-on when the flag dropped. As everyone started I was getting pulled and pushed, but I made it to my bike ok, just a little further behind the leader than I had hoped. I was about eighth as I started but managed to move forward several places quite quickly. But then I fell trying to pass Graham – he went one way and I went anther, and it didn’t work out for me. My gloves got completely covered in mud, and then I started getting arm-pump because I couldn’t hold on properly. I decided to remove my gloves and then had to stop for clean ones, and that’s when I lost Graham’s wheel. I pushed hard to try and catch him, and did manage to close the gap at one stage, but he was riding really well and I just wasn’t able to get back in contention with him. The course was plenty extreme enough. There were no big stoppers, but it was really enjoyable. I didn’t get stuck behind any riders, which was good, but once Graham opened up a gap I just couldn’t close it. I’m pleased to start the year with a podium result, and enjoyed the race despite things not quite going to plan early on. I know where I can make improvements so I’ll work hard to be ready for my next race.”
Results – The Tough One 2013
1. Graham Jarvis (Husaberg) 12 laps, 3.5:52
2. Jonny Walker (KTM) 12 laps, 3.13:56;
3. Danny McCanney (Gas Gas) 12 laps, 3.17:10;
4. Paul Bolton (KTM) 12 laps, 3.18:39;
5. Alfredo Gomez (Husaberg) 11 laps, 3.10:10…