KTM Motorcycle Enduro South Africa 2014
FANTASTIC FIVE CLASS VICTORIES FOR KTM AT ENDURO SEASON OPENER!
The KTM Enduro Factory Racing team kicked off its championship campaign in style at the opening round of the Enduro World Championship in Solsona, Catalunya with an outstanding five class victories over the weekend.
Saturday’s season opener proved to be particularly fruitful for the KTM squad with wins in all three senior classes and two second places in E1 and E3, which put all five factory riders in the spotlight. On Sunday the factory racers took wins in E1 and E3, with a podium second in E2 and a podium third in E3 to round off a great first weekend of enduro racing.
KTM Motorcycle E1
On what was described by Frenchman Antoine Meo as a return to the days of very hard Enduro riding, the 2013 E3 World Champion Christophe Nambotin took victory in Saturday’s E1 class on the nimble KTM 250 EXC-F, by impressively scoring wins in six of the tests. Teammate Cristobal Guerrero of Spain was back to top form and injury free to finish in a superb second position.
Nambotin was again in great form in the E1 class on Sunday to be fastest in seven of the nine tests for another decisive victory. Teammate Guerrero looked set to seal another second position, but a crash cost him three places and 12 seconds, forcing the Spaniard to settle for fourth position.
KTM Motorcycle E2
Antoine Meo (2013 E1 World Champion) was the top rider in the highly competitive E2 class and led the field all day Saturday, despite nursing a small foot injury. “It’s a long time since we had a race like that. The stages were long and very difficult. But I like the bike (KTM 350 EXC-F)a lot and the team has worked very well through the winter. The E2 is a tough class, but its fun for me.”
Meo returned on Sunday to pull off a second place in E2, as despite a strong finish in the last three tests, the KTM racer did eventually lose out to Pierre Renet of France by just one second.
KTM Motorcycle E3
Ivan Cervantes, like Guerrero, was well supported by the Spanish fans and had a great day out on Saturday to take the E3 victory. However, the factory team’s rookie, Australian Matt Phillips, did not make it easy for him, as the two riders on their KTM 300 EXC machines sealed the top two spots with a dominating performance in the E3 class.
Cervantes was again the leading E3 rider on Sunday to comfortably take the top podium place. Phillips had a problem in the second extreme test, but recovered well to hang onto a podium third on Sunday to signal the rookie will be a major player in the class this season.
Team boss Fabio Farioli said it had been a very solid weekend for the team. “Of course we would have liked to have also taken the win on Sunday in the E2 class, but it was a good weekend, and a strong start to the season. There were some very good fights for victory and we are now looking forward to the next round in Portugal next weekend.”
Enduro World Championship Round 1/2 GP of Catalunya
Standings & Results E1 after 2 of 16 rounds
- Christophe Nambotin (FRA), KTM, 40 points (1-1)
- Cristobal Guerrero (ESP), KTM, 30 (2-4)
- Anthony Boissiere (FRA), Sherco, 27 (6-2)
- Eero Remes (FIN), TM, 26 (5-3)
- Jeremy Tarroux (FRA), Sherco, 26 (3-5)
Standings & Results E2 after 2 of 16 rounds
- Antoine Meo (FRA), KTM, 37 points (1-2)
- Pierre-Alexandre Renet (FRA), Husqvarna, 35 (3-1)
- Johnny Aubert (FRA), Beta, 32 (2-3)
- Lorenzo Santolino (ESP), Sherco, 23 (4-6)
- Alex Salvini (ITA), Honda, 21 (6-5)
Standings & Results E3 after 2 of 16 rounds
- Ivan Cervantes (ESP), KTM, 40 points (1-1)
- Matthew Phillips (AUS), KTM, 32 (2-3)
- Matti Seistola (FIN), Sherco, 27 (6-2)
- Luis Correa (POR), Beta, 26 (4-4)
- Mathias Bellino (FRA), Husqvarna, 25 (3-6)