Enduro

Husqvarna Factory Racing Riders Struggle At Tr̬fle Loz̩rien

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Colton Haaker was the best of the Husqvarna Team coming in 17th. The American is now 13th in the WESS standings after 3 rounds. Photo: Future7Media
Following their success the previous week at the Red Bull Erzbergrodeo, the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing team struggled with the wildly differnet conditions at round three of the World Enduro Super Series (WESS) ‰ÛÒ France‰Ûªs Tr̬fle LozÌ©rien AMV

Tr̬fle Loz̩rien saw WESS riders switched from Hard Enduro to Classic Enduro.

Staged over three days, the Tr̬fle LozÌ©rien AMV is France‰Ûªs most-important Classic Enduro and due to its deceptively challenging grass-covered special tests is a uniquely specialist event. Determined to collect maximum possible points, the Husqvarna trio of Colton Haaker, Billy Bolt and Graham Jarvis faired well despite their unfamiliarity with the conditions.

Claiming the team‰Ûªs best result of 17th overall out of 600 competitors, Haaker performed strongly on his Classic Enduro debut. Ending the opening day of racing just outside the top 20, he began to improve his pace as the event progressed. Moving up to 17th on day two, he backed that up with 15th on day three to secure an overall result of 17th.

‰ÛÏWith this being my first ever Classic Enduro it was for sure a whole new experience for me," Haaker explained. "I think I‰Ûªm a well-rounded rider who can race Hard Enduro, SuperEnduro and Motocross, but racing slippery, grassy special tests is so unique and something I‰Ûªve never experienced before.

"It took me a long time to adapt to that new way of riding a bike," Haaker continued. "Day three was probably my best performance as they changed the starting order and that meant the top guys had a line to follow in the tests. I was more comfortable with the dirt sections than fresh grass. But overall I really enjoyed the experience and being taken out of my comfort zone like that. The Classic Enduro format is cool and I‰Ûªd love to ride them more. All told, 17th overall against some very specialised riders in this type of competition is rewarding.‰Û
Round one winner Billy Bolt finished 38th but still maintains third in the WESS standings. Photo: Future7Media
For Billy Bolt, his event started out strongly with 18th on day one. Despite struggling to find his rhythm on day two the British rider finished in 21st. Looking to recover time on day three, the 20-year-old impressed with the 11th fastest time on the second special test. Frustratingly, a technical issue cost him valuable time and ultimately dropped him to an unfortunate 38th overall. However, Bolt holds onto third in the WESS standings.

‰ÛÏIt‰Ûªs been a fun weekend and definitely worlds apart from last weekend‰Ûªs Erzbergrodeo," Bolt said. "I have done a couple of Classic Enduro races in preparation for Tr̬fle LozÌ©rien but this race is very unique in terms of the slippery, grassy special tests. I was happy with my riding on day one but struggled on day two to find a decent rhythm and so dropped a bit of time. I was recovering well on day three but had a small technical issue and lost a lot of places. Now I‰Ûªm looking forward to getting back into Hard Enduro mode and preparing for Romaniacs in July.‰Û
Erzbergrodeo winner Graham Jarvis found the switch from insane Austrian terrain to grassy French country side a challenge. Jarvis finished the event 44th but is still 4th in the WESS Standings. . Photo: Future7Media
Winner of WESS round two ‰ÛÒ Erzbergrodeo ‰ÛÒ Graham Jarvis knew that the Classic Enduro format at round three would be worlds away from what he was accustomed to. Despite not having raced a traditional timecard enduro format event for many years, and with little time to recover from the demands of racing at Erzberg, Jarvis began the Tr̬fle LozÌ©rien AMV with an open mind and hoping for the best. Chipping away at each special test and adjusting to the high speeds ensured he held a good pace throughout to record a top 50 result of 44th. In doing so he maintained his top five position in the WESS championship standings.

‰ÛÏWith this race coming a couple of days after the Erzbergrodeo I always knew it would be difficult," Jarvis said. "Winning Erzberg took a lot out of me both in terms of preparation and the race itself. I hadn‰Ûªt raced Classic Enduro for many years either and had to ease my way into things. Despite a few small crashes there were no major dramas and although I‰Ûªd love a better result I‰Ûªm pleased enough ‰ÛÒ I always knew it would be difficult to do well here. Romaniacs is next on the list and of course the focus is to go there and win.‰Û
Colton Haaker gets that traditional enduro feeling. Photo: Future7Media
World Enduro Super Series Standings (After Round 3)
1 Jonny WALKER - KTM 1700 Points
2 Graham JARVIS - HUSQVARNA 1610 Points
2 Billy BOLT - HUSQVARNA 1610 Points
4 Manuel LETTENBICHLER - KTM 1540 Points
5 Wade YOUNG - SHERCO 1220 Points
6 Tadeusz BLAZUSIAK - KTM 1180 Points
7 Travis TEASDALE - BETA 1030 Points
8 Paul BOLTON - KTM 1020 Points
9 Pol TARRES - HUSQVARNA 890 Points
10 Blake GUTZEIT - YAMAHA 760 Points
11 Lars ENÌÐCKL - GASGAS 705 Points
12 Josep GARCIA MONTANA - KTM 655 Points
13 Colton HAAKER - HUSQVARNA 620 Points
14 Jozsa NORBERT-LEVENTE - KTM 595 Points
15 Michele BOSI - BETA 584 Points
16 Cody WEBB - KTM 570 Points
17 Diogo VIEIRA - YAMAHA 547 Points
18 Paul BURY - BETA 515 Points
19 Eloi SALSENCH - KTM 513 Points
19 Ivan PUEYO GIL - KTM 513 Points
21 Nathan WATSON - KTM 478 Points

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