KTM Ride Orange manager Mark Hyde talks with Enduro360 about the upcoming 2013 Romaniacs
E360 – I see you and Alan Randt are headed for Romaniacs. How did that come about?
Mark – When we were riding in S Africa on an Alfie Cox tour (which I highly recommend) we got to talking about where we would like to go next. Romania came up and Alfie said he knew the promoter so the next thing we know we have flights and bikes booked. It is also right after the USA KTM Dealer meeting that just happens to be in Austria at the factory this year.
E360 – Have you ever raced an extreme enduro before?
Mark – None of the current style ones, but over the years I have ridden a few races that turned extreme.
E360 – What made you decide on Romaniacs?
Mark – It all started on our ride in S Africa and since I will be in Austria it’s only about 10-12hrs away. When your that close to a race like this you have to go.
E360 – What will you be riding?
Mark – KTM 300 on the rental form, it was the only choice, but that’s what I would have picked any way.
E360 – When was the last time you race something “big”, like a national enduro or similar?
Mark – I rode the Alligator Enduro this year plus I pre-ride all the Nat Enduro’s. I also usually hit the morning race at 1-2 GNCC’s and 2 years ago I did the LL AM MX Championships 3rd in +50
E360 – Tell us a little about what you do at KTM these days.
Mark – I run the Ride Orange Demo program for KTM plus a few other hospitality and customer related events. Along with the demo’s we do 4 Fan Experience events that are hospitality events at National MX. Then there is our KTM Adventure Rider Rally that we put on for our 690/990 customers. This years event is in Steamboat Springs CO ,September 13-15. We also do track side support at the big AM MX events plus something at every Nat Enduro.
E360 – Do you still get much time to ride?
Mark – Not as much as I would like to but I still do ok
E360 – What is your current favorite bike?
Mark – If I had to choose just one it would be a KTM 300 it does everything great. When I go to a moto track I take the 150SX and for our winter rides the 500XCW is pretty killer
E360 – Are you doing anything special to train or prepare for Romaniacs?
Mark – No…..I didn’t train when I raced so why start now?
E360 – I see you are riding the Expert Single class. It is common for riders at Romaniacs to team up to help each other in the rough spots. Do you and Alan plan to do that?
Mark – Since Alan and I pre-ride all the Nat Enduro’s together I think we are going to do the same thing in Romania. Ride a good pace but nothing crazy, take turns leading and make fun of the other guy when he screws up and then help him. Alfie says he is going to ride with us too but I don’t think that will last very long. He seems like he is on Red Bull 24/7 so his pace will be a little more brisk. If he gets hung up we might see him on the trail.
E360 – In your racing career, you were known at Mr. Blackwater. It was an extreme event in its own right. What was the secret to being so successful at that race?
Mark – You had to pick really good lines, ride smart and be a really good technical rider plus have some speed. That event was the original extreme race and Dave Coombs tried to make it easy. The terrain in Davis West Virginia was just very difficult in that area.
E360 – You also won a National Hare Scrambles championship, what year was that and what bike were you riding.
Mark – That was 1986 on a Husky 430 Automatic. I won two Reliability Enduro Championships (ISDE Qualifers) in 83 & 84.
E360 – What was your favorite race bike of all time?
Mark – KTM 200SX that bike just worked really good for me.
E360 – Alright Mark, thanks for checking in with us. We will see you and Alan in a couple of weeks in Romania and don’t make too much fun of me for riding in the hobby class!