Off Road

Toby Price conquers Finke at his first attempt

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Toby Price on his way to vitctory at Finke. Photo: KTM
KTM's Toby Price has won the the 2010 Tattersall's Finke Desert Race on his first attempt, beating home experienced campaigners Todd Smith and Ryan Branford. After winning the Finke Prolouge the Australian Enduro champion went on to open up a 10 minute lead on day one with a time of 1.58:42. With a large lead Price backed it off a little to preserve bike and rider on day two finishing leg two of the 460km sprint race from Alice Springs to Finke and back in a time of 2.04:43. Ryan Branford was the fastest on the run back to Alice Springs but was only 30 seconds faster than Price. Todd Smith finished second overall with Branford only 26 seconds behind in third. "I have no words to describe my win at Finke," said Price. "It‰Ûªs an awesome feeling. To just survive Finke is a challenge in itself, and for these guys who do it all the time it‰Ûªs hats off to them they‰Ûªre amazing. "I qualified 3rd in prologue, and was only one second off Ben Grabham‰Ûªs time. He got around 4 minutes 57 and I got 4 minutes 58. "On the way down to Finke it was fairly smooth and good going, the whoop section was pretty hard, but on the way back to Alice Springs, the track got chopped up big, and thankfully I had a good lead, and I could preserve the bike where necessary, and make sure it got me home and give KTM another win. "I got into second pretty quickly on day one behind Grabbo, and I didn‰Ûªt catch too much dust. By the end of the 230 odd kilometres riding into Finke, I could see his dust so I knew I was on the pace to ride near him. "Grabbo was around 8 kilometres short of the finish line and engine failure stopped his race, but if he didn‰Ûªt DNF it would have been a pretty close race into Finke between the two of us. It was hard riding past Grabbo as my team mate, especially since I was all behind him getting his forth Finke Desert Race win in a row, but I‰Ûªm sure he will come back bigger and stronger next year.
Toby Price
"On day two for the return leg from Finke to Alice Springs, I had a ten minute lead on the competition. I just rode consistent and picked my sections off one by one. I had a few off moments on the track, but the bike handled well and I felt good so it was a solid package. "On the way to Finke it took me 1 hour and 58 minutes, and on the way home it took me 2 hours and 4 minutes. I was preserving myself on the way back, and making sure the bike survived the high speeds and tough conditions. "I just want to say a big hats off Motorex KTM Off-Road Racing and the HSE Group for all the support they threw in to give me the chance to ride Finke, and a big personal thanks goes to Brad Williscroft and Ben Grabham, who together were an open book with their knowledge of the track and set up, they didn‰Ûªt hold back on sharing with me their years of experience, and trade secrets, they definitely helped me get to this point, and I feel my win is a big tribute to their contribution." Last years winner Ben Grabham failed to finish after an engine faliure saw him end his weekend 8km short of the finish line. "I was disappointed to DNF 8 kilometres from the finish line, but still a lot of positives came out of this year‰Ûªs Finke Desert Race, and for that I‰Ûªm thankful," said Grabham. "I look at every race I enter as a learning experience, and I took away valuable learning experience from this race. There were so many positives out of this year‰Ûªs Finke, like not injuring myself, my great speed, my time in prologue, and my lead on the way to Finke. Even the engine failure was a learning experience that I can take into next year‰Ûªs race.






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