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Kimi Raikkonen - membru al Familiei Orange

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kimi_are_KTMKimi Raikkonen este cel mai nou membru al Familiei Orange

Campionul mondial de Formula 1 din sezonul 2007 şi actualul pilot al Citroen J-WRC a devenit posesorul unei motociclete KTM 250 SX-F. Cu această motocicletă Kimi Raikkonen şi-a mai adăugat încă un vehicul de curse la colecţie. Iar după ce a dovedit că se descurcă şi pe macadam nu doar pe asfaltul circuitelor de Formula 1, finlandezul îşi va încerca norocul şi pe două roţi urmând să meargă pe câteva circuite de motocross şi la enduro.

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    • De Dementor
      KTM is READY TO RACE WESS
      Posted in Racing KTM’s Factory Enduro stars are READY TO RACE WESS. A brand-new series that searches for the ultimate enduro champion, the World Enduro Super Series kicks off on May 11 at the Extreme XL Lagares in Portugal – one of many events in which the amateur race the pros in the true spirit of Enduro.
      f.l.t.r.: Cody Webb (USA), Nathan Watson (GBR), Taddy Blazusiak (POL), Jonny Walker (GBR) & Josep Garcia (ESP) © Marcin Kin
      Recently crowned SuperEnduro World Champion and FMF KTM Factory Racing’s Cody Webb is joined by the Red Bull KTM Factory Racing line-up of Enduro2 World Champion Josep Garcia, multi-time World Champion Taddy Blazusiak, who is returning to competition from retirement, British-ace Nathan Watson, and multiple hard enduro winning Jonny Walker. It will be an exciting season of seven races that are world-renowned in their own right and the WESS racers will face different challenges that will test their abilities to the maximum with classic enduro, hard enduro and beach racing to find the best all-round rider. The series celebrates a dynamic calendar with a variety of challenges, and goes back to the grass roots at the best-loved enduro events with hundreds of riders battling alongside the pros.
      [embedded content]
      With anticipation building ahead of the start of the WESS championship, and winter testing almost complete, we got an insight of what to expect at the forthcoming races during the recent team shooting in Spain. The riders will compete on both 2-stroke and 4-stroke machinery during the season, whilst not only having to battle each other, but the terrain and thousands of amateur racers and local experts that will line-up at each event. Here’s a few images from Spain and we look forward to the series kick off!
      f.l.t.r.: Josep Garcia (ESP), Cody Webb (USA), Nathan Watson (GBR), Taddy Blazusiak (POL) & Jonny Walker (GBR) © Marcin Kin
      Photos: Marcin Kin
      Video: Future7Media

    • De Dementor
      Rok on DUKEs
      Freestyle stunt rider, Rok Bagoroš, began his professional career in 2011 with the KTM 125 DUKE. Since then, he’s performed around the world on every single cylinder DUKE in the range. KTM BLOG caught up with the Slovenian rider to see what he thinks to the recently updated KTM 125 DUKE, KTM 250 DUKE and KTM 390 DUKE and to ask him what he loves about the new generation and what made the previous models so good for stunting.
      Rok Bagoroš © JBA
      Rok Bagoroš is a man always on the go. If it isn’t him performing gravity-defying tricks on a range of KTM DUKEs at events, then he is dreaming up new tricks, the content of his next video or the designs for his new range of clothing. He’s a hard worker, no doubting that.
      The beginning of Rok’s professional career coincided with the launch of the KTM 125 DUKE and together they showed the world their abilities. When the KTM 690 DUKE was massively updated for 2012, Rok helped wheelie it into the face (not literally) of riders. The same happened with the introduction of the KTM 200 DUKE and then again with the KTM 390 DUKE.
      He is the only stunt rider among the world’s elite using a single-cylinder engine motorcycle. He’s also fresh back from Nepal after performing the world’s highest stunt show in the Himalayas. So, in terms of extreme riding with DUKEs from 125cc to 690cc, there’s no better experienced man than to talk to us about the DUKEs past, present and future.
      © Rok Bagoroš
      KTM BLOG was in Slovenia, visiting Rok in his home town of Murska Sobota for a special media event involving the charismatic rider and the KTM 390 DUKE. The format for the event will see the media ride on the roads around Murska Sobota, crossing the border between Slovenia and Austria several times. Not only will Rok ride ‘The Corner Rocket’ on the road with the media, he’ll also be given them some special riding tips. Very special …
      Before the action with the journalists went down, we took the time with Rok to check out his new Moto Garaža where he and his team prepare the stunt bikes, creates special parts, service motorcycles from the local area and sell his official merchandise.
      “It’s great to spend time with people with the same passion of me,” Rok says behind the counter of the garage. “And some of them can really ride. It’s just that they will all be expecting me to put on a bit of a show at every traffic light and I’ve been told I need to behave as we don’t need trouble with the police – especially in my home town. But sometimes I just can’t help myself.”
      And he’s right. When we rode with Rok the previous day to check the test routes and sight the photo points, it was like being in the middle of a KTM promo video. Every stop sign was an opportunity to test the brakes with a rolling stoppie and each green light chance to launch a wheelie. Worth noting, Rok did ride in this KTM 125 DUKE promo video.
      © Rok Bagoroš
      Anyway, after seven years riding KTM single cylinders – rarely with both wheels on the floor – we asked Rok about the DUKE range; past, present and near future.
      KTM 125 DUKE (using from 2011-2016)
      “The bike I started my pro career with. When I first saw it, I didn’t know how to use the clutch! I came from scooter stunt riding, so it took me a couple of weeks to learn this funny lever! Not much later I got my first wheelie using the clutch and then the other tricks soon followed. The transformation from automatic to manual was quite quick!
      I used the KTM 125 DUKE for two years and people’s minds were blown that I could do wheelies, drifts, burnouts and technical stuff with this small capacity bike. But for me it was easy. For a 125, it has a lot of power. As soon as you put a bigger sprocket on the rear, it is a great base for a stunt bike; it’s a solid machine and you can’t destroy it quickly. It came ready with good equipment, such as the brakes and suspension. A lot of competitor 125cc bikes have slim forks that would soon be bent like a banana with how I ride.
      I still have my original bike with same sticker kit. I will never change that bike.”
      KTM 690 DUKE (using from 2012 on)
      “This was when the 690 moved away from its supermoto styling and became more of a naked roadster, like the 125. It was a huge step for me to go from the 125 to 690! Not just in terms of power, but also the weight – and both are light bikes! So, I had to bulk up; the back and core muscles for stunt riders are under a lot of stress. So, I trained hard.
      The 690 is a wheelie machine – no question – but we had to put a lot of development into preparing this bike for technical stunt riding. It’s a powerful bike, so we could make some seriously epic drifts, but we also softened off the power a lot!”
      KTM 690 DUKE © Rok Bagoroš
      KTM 200 DUKE (using from 2013 to 2016)
      “KTM entered many new markets with the KTM 200 DUKE and, like I did with the KTM 125 DUKE, it allowed me to increase awareness for KTM in a lot of new countries.
      This bike is what really developed my name as a stunt rider and was my favorite KTM, up until now. It has enough power to do drifts but feels perfect when you do the really technical tricks, like wheelie circles, no-hand wheelie circles, combinations and so on. It’s so smooth.
      The engine on my bike is still the same in four years; I’ve never needed to change any pistons, bearings – nothing has broken. It takes the hammering and is so reliable. Probably why it is so loved by owners.”
      KTM 200 DUKE © Rok Bagoroš
      KTM 390 DUKE (using from 2014 to 2016)
      “It has so much more power over the KTM 200 DUKE with not much of an increase on weight. Quite aggressive, an incredible street bike, but I’d became so dialed into the 200 by this point I concentrated on that bike more for most of my shows. Funny, sometimes less power can be more. Then again, my riding is not normal!”
      THE NEW BREED
      With helping KTM produce promotional videos and images for the new DUKEs and attending press launches and other such events, Rok has enjoyed plenty of saddle time on the new KTM 125 DUKE, KTM 250 DUKE and KTM 390 DUKE in standard trim – no special parts, other than KTM PowerParts!
      “Looks wise, the new bikes are once again on another level,” the 27-year old explains. “I was expecting a small update for last year, but it was a brand-new bike – frame, plastics, tank, headlight. It’s like nothing compared to the previous bikes. I love the sharp edges and how it looks like the KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE R.
      I think the 125 and 390’s headlight is the best feature. On my bikes, I usually change the lights to a motocross plate as I don’t want to hang with my legs on the light. But the new model light is slimmer and looks so sick that maybe I can leave the light on it!”
      © Head Lens Media
      KTM 125 DUKE (2017 on)
      “This is a huge change. I’m not saying that because I’m a KTM factory rider. The suspension is a BIG jump in performance. Before, my feeling was that it was too soft. But now it has a great feeling and stability for high speed stoppies and kangaroo stoppies. Also, the shock absorber is much better – this is next level equipment.
      The front brake is also a big improvement in terms of performance and the gear shifting is smoother. The engine has always been good for power and torque, so no problems there.”
      KTM 250 DUKE (2017 on)
      “I love the 250 – it’s the closest to the 200 in terms of the engine. I really got to know this bike in 2017 as I did a lot of shows with it around the world. Even more crazy, I just used it in Nepal to perform the highest stunt show ever recorded at 3664 meters. To get the record I needed to do a 20-minute show.
      Making the job harder, is that we lost 30% of the bike’s power at that altitude because the air is so thin. I also had oxygen on standby! So, we went down from 30hp to 21, but the KTM 250 DUKE still delivered the tricks. Incredible.”
      KTM 390 DUKE (2017 on)
      “I love doing stoppies. This bike has a really powerful front brake and this gives me the ability to do some great stoppies. The sintered brake pads bite hard; you can hear and feel this and I love it.
      The suspension is the same next level jump as with the 125. For sure, it is firmer than the smaller bike and worked really well on all the crazy roads I rode on in Turin at the launch last year – from over the tram lines in the city to the fast sweepers in the mountains.
      Engine wise, I found the previous model was not so smooth with its power delivery. But the new bike is a lot more improved and feels stronger – I saw you Luke [ED – who me?] pulling some very big wheelies on it.”
      KTM 390 DUKE © Rok Bagoroš
      While Rok waits for confirmation from Guinness World Records to see if his Himalayan show made it into the record books, we don’t doubt that he isn’t already making plans for his next extreme adventure. Rok on!
      Photos: JBA | Rok Bagoroš | Head Lens Media
    • De Dementor
      Stop! How braking differs from MXGP to MotoGP™
      MXGP and MotoGPTM are two racing disciplines that are like chalk and cheese in many ways and the aspect of braking is one of the great separators. We gained some insight from the Red Bull KTM factions of both paddocks to understand further …
      OK, simply through the respective nature of road racing and motocross it is easy to see why the subject of brakes and slowing the bike is so diverse. In a series like MotoGPTM the front wheel-eclipsing systems are indispensable to haul the KTM RC16 on the track and from speeds touching 360 km/h as well as for overtaking. In MXGP the same principal applies but many other factors come into play, such as the type of terrain, engine braking and gyroscopic effects in the air. A motocross rider will hardly use the front brake in the sand and overtaking can come through other judgement such as line choice, traction and air-time.
      Bradley Smith (GBR) KTM RC16 Termas de Río Hondo (ARG) 2018 © Gold and Goose
      Braking is an undeniable part of racing, even an art form that a professional will have perfected over years of practice. But it is curious how its importance can vary.
      “It is essential,” says John Eyre, a veteran of almost twenty years in MotoGPTM and now part of Bradley Smith’s technical crew. “We are running mostly carbon brakes in MotoGPTM in both the wet and the dry. We’ll have a 340 mass disc on high-braking circuits like Sepang [Malaysia] and Motegi [Japan] and there is a 320 standard mass option, which we use in the wet with covers. Every motorcycle has to stop and that explains and justifies the cost.”
      That figure can reach staggering levels at the pinnacle of road racing. “When I worked for other manufacturers the budget was a million euros just for brakes,” Eyre says. “We used to have a pallet full of Brembo boxes. When you crash in MotoGPTM then generally you are knocking out a set of pads and discs; a ‘pebble-dashing’ means they are gone. You’re looking at 12,000 euros for discs and another 4-5 for pads. You try and keep your best set for the race and we’ll have one set and transfer that from bike to bike.”
      John Eyre (GBR) KTM RC16 Losail (QAT) 2018 © Marcin Kin
      Why so pricey? The resistance and reliability of the Brembo material KTM uses not only has to perform for sporting reasons but also for absolute safety. “It’s the force,” he says, speaking of the hard G-force demands that strain both the rider and the machinery. “Temperature-wise I know that in Motegi we were running at almost 1000 degrees, which is the limit and why you really need the 340s. Every rider is different with their braking, different forces, so it means a different pad-compound.”
      MotoGPTM will prolong their brake components simply due to the cost factor, MXGP – with the factory team using Dutch specialists Moto-Master – involves a much higher turnover … even if the ‘braking = overtaking’ equation is not as pronounced as road racing. “Speaking specifically about Jeffrey Herlings then he is hard on the rear brake with the bigger bike and generates a lot of heat,” reveals Team Manager Dirk Gruebel of the former MX2 three times world champion and now MXGP star. “They start to squeak and the brake pads get too hot and glaze up so you don’t have the desired performance. We’ll use a disc per weekend and sometimes two if you have a track like Villars-sous-Écot [France] with a lot of downhills.”
      Dirk Gruebel (GER) Valkenswaard (NED) 2018 © Ray Archer
      “The brakes are pretty sturdy; it’s all metal!” the German adds. “In MotoGPTM you’ll have carbon discs, which are quite sensitive to any impact. Here in motocross the brakes are constantly being sprayed with sand or stones or a mud race can be pretty bad for them … but they’ll generally last a weekend.”
      “It is not a super-expensive component of the bike and calipers last a long time,” Gruebel continues. “We run them quite a lot: three-four races without a problem and then for the rest of their lives they’ll be on the practice bike.”
      Of course the use and intensity of braking comes down to personal taste and the way the lever/peg is squeezed and pushed. “You also have the 4-stroke factor,” Gruebel says. “You needed more braking emphasis with the 2-strokes because when you shut-off the gas the bike kept going. Now there is engine-braking which the guys can also adjust – some prefer more and some prefer less – and that affects the setup for brakes. I wouldn’t say that we have super-oversized brakes on our bikes: they are the same dimensions that we were using ten-fifteen years. There might be some variation but we’re talking 260-270. Nothing like they use in road racing.”
      “Different sizes but also different riders as well,” says Briton Eyre. “I worked with Dani Pedrosa for eleven years and he was very finicky with brakes. He’d sometimes use a lower mass because he wasn’t too aggressive whereas others would run it higher because they were really hammering the brakes. So it depends on the rider. In Bradley’s case he seems to like the 340s, which would suit an aggressive braker, but he isn’t really like that. I think he uses it to his benefit in some places where he is just rolling on the brake to help the bike turn; that’s the difference. Brad fluctuates between front and rear. He used the rear a lot more last year and I guess that is just because of setup. We can tell this from the pads: he is not as aggressive as he was last year. On the front he is very similar.”
      Brembo Termas de Río Hondo (ARG) 2018 © Gold and Goose
      A race bike can be like a puzzle. The technicality of MotoGPTM means the KTM RC16 is perhaps more of a ‘500 piece’ challenge compared to the ‘200’ of motocross. The range of parts and solutions to test can be dizzying, particularly in MotoGPTM. According to the engineers, braking is a very valuable area of the pre-season prep process. “Just to get a feeling for the rider, and if it helps him turn better, that they keep the same temperature; any little improvement we can find really,” says Eyre. “We might get development ideas and parts during the season and we’d test them for sure … but probably not use them in race conditions because you know what you have got already.”
      “We test the geometry of the levers, pump diameters and compounds of the brakes and how they harmonize with the discs but I would say we haven’t made a big step in this area for two-three years,” Gruebel says of the MXGP work.
      MXGP can benefit from ideas and evolutions like Moto-Master’s Flame discs (and ‘Wave’ discs generally) and the work in MotoGPTM can eventually feed directly onto the road and the future could bring some surprises according to Eyre. “As with anything technology does not slow and there could be something quite different in three-four years time,” the Brit opines. “It is hard to say where it will go because things change all the time, like the sizes of discs and compounds. It is non-stop and development will continue. Something new will pop up and everyone will start using it … like carbon discs in the wet. It became like a ‘new fashion’ and clearly it must work.”
      Photos: Gold and Goose | Ray Archer | Marcin Kin | KTM
    • De Dementor
      Rok Bagoroš: World record bit in the Himalayas
      The popular Slovenian stunt rider Rok Bagoroš has been traveling the world and bringing excitement to people with his shows and his KTM DUKEs for almost 10 years. With his latest project he wanted to set a new world record …
      It´s every athletes´ dream to become the best of the best and even to hold a world record one day.

      This is why Rok and his team decided to take advantage of their trip to Nepal where Rok performed his show in front of 5000 people before traveling deeper into the Himalaya to make his dream a reality. He and his team went to the highest paved roads they could reach within one day of traveling. After a long and exciting day in the car they finally reached the Mustang Muktinath district that is surrounded by the Dhaulagiri, which is one of the highest peaks in the world with 8172 m. After getting used to the high altitudes they settled down to prepare for the most challenging show in Rok‘s life so far.

      The challenge: 20 minutes of stunt-riding at the highest point above sea level
      It may sound easy, especially if you know that Rok is performing up to 10 times a month. This show, however, comes with a high risk of injury due to heavy breathing, nausea and possible fainting. At the h of 3664 m the air is extremely thin, even the bike works with 30% less power.
      “Holding a world record was a big dream since I started to ride and breathe fuel. After a grueling 17 hours of traveling through the Himalaya we reached the spot where I staged the highest performed stunt show on the planet. 20 minutes, no break, always full throttle and guess what – we did it! Now we just need to wait for a few weeks to receive the official confirmation from the Guinness World Record committee,” said Rok, possibly a soon to be record holder.”
      [embedded content]
      Photos: Rok Bagoroš
      Video: Rok Bagoroš

    • De Dementor
      “SuperEnduro is my biggest title to date” – Cody Webb, 2018 SuperEnduro World Champion
      Posted in People, Racing The 2018 FIM SuperEnduro World Championship title fight was unquestionably a memorable one – a titanic duel between Cody Webb and Taddy Blazusiak. As reigning AMA EnduroCross champion Webb had momentum on his side and was determined to secure his debut world crown at the series finale in Sweden.
      Cody Webb (USA) LIdköping (SWE) 2018 © Future7Media
      Entering the Lidköping Arena with a 17-point cushion over his nearest rival Blazusiak, Webb did exactly what was asked of him to maintain his lead in the title chase. And when Blazusiak exited race two early, the deal was sealed and Cody became champion. With the title celebrations in full swing, it was time to catch up with KTM’s newest world champion to find out about the epic season just gone while also looking forward to his next challenge — the World Enduro Super Series …
      Congratulations Cody, becoming world champion is something you’ve worked towards for a while now, how does it feel to win the SuperEnduro World Championship?
      “Winning the world championship is huge for me – it’s definitely my biggest title to date. This series has the best riders in the world, so to go up against them and beat them is an amazing feeling. We’ve been through a lot this year, we’ve had the highs and also the lows of racing, but overall I’ve been relatively consistent and never gave up without a fight. It’s certainly going to take a while for this victory to sink in but I’m going to enjoy the moment.”
      Cody Webb (USA) Lidköping (SWE) 2018 © Future7Media
      We’ve watched some incredible battles take shape between you and your closest rival Taddy Blazusiak, how have they been?
      “I’ve got incredible respect for all these guys I’m racing but of course it’s special to go up against Taddy like that for the title fight – he’s the most decorated guy in our sport. He was my idol growing up and now here we are banging bars for a world championship. He came out of retirement for this series and he really gave it everything he had, so it is unfortunate for him to have the issues he had. At one stage momentum was on his side by winning the opening race, but I knew that with the 17-point cushion I had it would always give me a little bit more breathing room.”
      Of course, this championship was not just about one race but instead a full season and throughout it all you’ve really shown incredible consistency, did that make the ultimate difference?
      “It’s hard to use the word consistent for a sport like SuperEnduro because it’s just so unpredictable but it is a good way to describe my season. I was always pushing for wins and the top step of the podium. I crashed and made mistakes as much as everyone else but somehow managed to fight back each time. I won seven races this year too, that’s more than everyone else and I was also never far off a top three result when I couldn’t win so I think that did make the difference in the end.”
      Jonny Walker (GBR, #22), Cody Webb (USA, #2) & Taddy Blazusiak (POL, #111) Lidköping (SWE) 2018 © Future7Media
      After a year’s absence from SuperEnduro having missed the 2017 campaign, was it important for you to return Europe?
      “I was really motivated to come back to SuperEnduro having missed the 2017 season and made a big push to do so. Also, the AMA EnduroCross title in my back pocket was a big asset to have when renewing my contract and talking about a SuperEnduro return. So I guess with me making a big push, I think KTM also realized how much I wanted to be a part of it too and made it happen.”
      Did coming in hot after winning the AMA EnduroCross title back in November add pressure to deliver in SuperEnduro?
      “It definitely helped to come straight from winning that title because I had missed a full season of SuperEnduro racing. I was confident because EnduroCross was so good and at this level confidence is a huge part of the game – everyone is so talented that it can go any rider’s way on the night. I’d just won races indoors so that was definitely a big confidence boost to have starting out in Poland.”
      Cody Webb (USA) KTM 350 EXC-F Lidköping (SWE) 2018 © Future7Media
      We’ve seen so much on-track action this year, is that because everyone is riding at the maximum limit?
      “The high intensity short format creates way more action. I think that’s why the highlight reel after each race is so wild. There’s just so much more going on because you don’t have time to wait. Everyone wants to win so a lot of stuff can go bad really quick. The AMA EnduroCross series is more prolonged and stretched out for the main event. It’s nice sometimes because if you don’t have a good start then it’s possible to come from dead last and finish on the podium. With SuperEnduro it’s tough to do that in the six-minute time span. The top five or six guys are riding so good that it depends on the night who’s favor it swings in. The intensity does get super-sketchy and I always get arm pump no matter what. I feel like I can ride really good at 85 per cent lap after lap, but in SuperEnduro it’s all-out, it’s 100 per cent all of the time. We might only do about nine or 10 laps but come the final lap I can barely hold on or pull the clutch. It’s crazy how that extra 10 per cent can put you over the edge like that.”
      Now as a champion of both the AMA and FIM series do you prefer the three-race format of SuperEnduro or the single main event of the AMA?
      “It’s difficult to answer as both have their positives but I think from a spectator’s point of view the short three-race format has got to be more exciting. Shorter races have a higher intensity, so there’s always something going on and with three races you see the top riders on the track more frequently too. People like watching the amateurs race to see the loop outs, but really they come to watch the top guys. With higher intensity and more track time it’s more attractive and definitely a win-win – there’s more racing and passes because you’ve no time to waste. Fans love that stuff. The format is already crossing over into other sports too, even Supercross. They are trying out the Triple Crown Series this year – round one was new with complaints but second time out in Atlanta was a better response.”
      Cody Webb (USA) KTM 350 EXC-F Lidköping (SWE) 2018 © Future7Media
      Looking forward and to the fast approaching World Enduro Super Series, are you ready for it?
      “The whole idea of a mixed-discipline series is awesome but crazy at the same time. It’s like the Mayweather v McGregor fight, no-one knows who’s going to come out on top. We’ve Nathan Watson and Josep Garcia who are super-fast riders but are going to struggle at other races. Also, I’m not known for my moto skills and I know Graham Jarvis definitely isn’t either, so that’s going to be interesting to see how it pans out. But I’m excited about becoming that all-round better rider because of it. It’s an amazing opportunity to get chosen to race WESS and I’m keen to be a part of it. Red Bull Romaniacs, Extreme XL Lagares and Red Bull Knock Out are all events I’ve wanted to do. There’s a lot of travel involved, but I like racing dirt bikes and it’s my job, so it’s a win-win for me.”
      Where do you see your strengths in the WESS series?
      “I’m going to focus on the first two rounds – Extreme XL Lagares and Erzbergrodeo – as they will play to my strengths. The Hard Enduro races will be where my strengths lie. But I know I need to train on the faster stuff to improve my weaknesses too. I rode the ISDE last year because I wanted to be a part of it, but I also realized I’m also off the pace so it’s something to work on there. Classic Enduro is a whole different ball game. I’ll put an effort into going faster in sprinting to get my speed up, but I won’t do that every day simply because I enjoy the hard stuff of getting out riding and exploring.”
      Cody Webb (USA) KTM 350 EXC-F Lidköping (SWE) 2018 © Future7Media
      June’s Erzbergrodeo Red Bull Hare Scramble forms part of WESS and is a race you’ve had two podiums at now, is the top step of the box possible?
      “Erzberg is huge for me. In 2016 I finished as runner-up to Graham Jarvis. It was my first podium there and also the first for an American too. Last year I was leading back and forth with Jonny Walker but I’m not sure what happened, I guess I just whimped out. I got so pumped up that I couldn’t pull the brake lever – it was like I imploded from the inside out. I let Graham by on one section and then let Wade Young by on a road section. I got to my mechanic at Karl´s Dinner and stopped. I had to take a time-out with him to try and destress because I knew I’d get hurt if I carried on the way I was. I got going again about seventh and I couldn’t see Wade in the gnarly bit in Karl’s Dinner. Somehow I found my flow again and at the finish had got back up to third but wanted more. I was happy with third but so frustrated with the middle of my race. This year the focus is on riding a mistake-free race – I don’t want to be upset knowing I could have done more.”
      Finally, back home and what are people’s reaction to your success abroad in Hard Enduro and SuperEnduro?
      “There’s definitely a good reaction, especially from my hometown people who saw me grow up riding trials with my dad wearing no gloves. I always go to my local KTM dealer for their Christmas party every year. They sold me my first bike when I was 19 years old so it’s cool just to hang and chat with everyone. Just recently I did a Bell Helmets ride day with Aaron Plessinger and so many people showed up just to ride with me. That takes me by surprise and puts into perspective what your results mean to others. It’s inspiring to me to see younger kids aspiring to be me because at the end of the day I’m just a dirt bike rider like them, I just happen to ride over rocks quite good.”
      KTM 350 EXC-F © Future7Media
      Photos: Future7Media
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