Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Graham Jarvis has secured what is arguably the biggest win of his career by topping the 25th running of the Erzbergrodeo Hare Scramble. With this victory, he matches the record of five wins for the world’s toughest one-day enduro.
Victorious 12 months ago, Jarvis came into the 2019 Erzbergrodeo both confident of claiming yet another win but also well-aware that a stacked field would require nothing less than his absolute best. As he has so many times before, Jarvis worked his way towards the front of the Pro class following a cautious start, once again showing his true class by delivering a calm and calculated performance and a pace that no other rider could match.
“This feels amazing. I think this could be the most important Erzberg victory of my career," said Graham Jarvis. "A lot of people were talking about my age, and at 44, I did have some doubts about my fitness for the full race. But I just kept my focus and kept pushing...It’s amazing to be a five-time Erzberg winner.” he added.
Safely through the event’s first check point but down in 14th position, Jarvis methodically started working his way forward, passing rider-after-rider to reach the one-hour mark in third position and well-placed to challenge for the lead. Calmly through the first refuelling stop and once into the infamous Carl’s Dinner section, he delivered what would be the winning blow. Pulling away from Manni Lettenbichler, his then closest challenger, Graham arrived at the Green Hell section as the all-important race leader.
Unable to scale the near-vertical climb in one go, Graham maintained his cool despite seeing Lettenbichler arrive at his rear-wheel. After pushing his way to the top, he made light work of the remaining and often troublesome Dynamite and Lazy Noon sections to complete the 35.2-kilometre course in a time of two hours and 27 minutes and collect a well-deserved fifth Erzbergrodeo victory.
Although falling just short of a place on the podium, Jarvis's teammate, Alfredo Gomez put in one of the event’s strongest performances to place fourth, getting tangled up in a multi-bike pile-up on the first climb following the start. Battling hard to catch-up with the race leaders, Alfredo charged his way through the power-sapping Carl’s Dinner section to close in on countryman, Mario Roman. Moving ahead of Wade Young and into fourth at check point 23, Alfredo eventually finished just over four minutes from third.
To give you an idea what Erzberg Rodeo Hare Scramble is, just watch this short video from RedbullTV.
Continuing his return from an injury enforced lay-off, fellow Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing rider, Billy Bolt endured a challenging Erzbergrodeo to eventually finish seventh. Running into troubles on some of the earlier climbs, Billy gave his all and despite his relative lack of race fitness, and battled his way to a deserved top-10 result.
"It was certainly a tough one. I struggled a lot in the beginning. I had to push up a number of climbs that were rideable, so that set me back a lot and used a lot of energy." said Billy Bolt. "It’s so intense, right from the start. If you don’t get into your groove, like I didn’t, it’s just so hard to push on." Bolt added.
With three rounds of the 2019 World Enduro Super Series now complete, Graham Jarvis sits third in the championship standings with teammates Billy Bolt and Alfredo Gomez in sixth and seventh respectively.
Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing will return to WESS competition at the Hixpania Hard Enduro, in Spain, on June 21-23.