The hype for the Erzbergrodeo amongst the world’s best Enduro-riders remains unbroken
ERZBERGRODEO XVIII: Offroad Superstars are gearing up for the Iron Giant!
The hype for the Erzbergrodeo amongst the world’s best Enduro-riders remains unbroken – though the most massive attack in 2012 will swap over from the British Island!
It’s the creme de la creme of the international Offroad motorcycle scene, which gathers each year in the middle of Austria to take on the challenge calledErzbergrodeo. The list of world champions, who have collected glory, honours and loads of bruises over the past 18 years at Erzberg, assembles the Who-is-Who of the Motocross-, Enduro-, Trial- and even Rallye-Sports. MX-legends like Heinz Kinigadner (AUT), Jeremy McGrath (USA) and Stefan Everts (BEL) have cherished the fresh Austrian mountain air as well as US Freestyle-icons Travis Pastrana and Ronnie Renner. Enduro-Superstars Giovanni Sala (ITA), Paul Edmondson (UK), Juha Salminen (FIN) and David Knight (UK) have been regulars on the Erzbergrodeo’s podium, and even Dakar dominators Cyril Despres (AND) and Marc Coma (ESP) have left their marks on the mighty mountain. Not to forget the highly skilled trials aces like Chris Pfeiffer (GER), Andreas Lettenbichler (GER), Dougie Lampkin (UK), Taichi Tanaka (JPN), Graham Jarvis (UK) – and the great Taddy Blazusiak (POL), who dominated the „Iron Giant“ over the past five years like no other rider before him.
Remarkably, the number of british athletes to occur in the Erzbergrodeo’s results has obviousely increased over the past few years. Right after David Knight took home the sought-after Red Bull Hare Scramble trophy in 2005 and 2006, a wider part of british offroad community began to discover the unique event in the heart of Austria. Talented and charismatic riders like Paul Bolton, Wayne Braybrook, Paul Edmondson, Mark Jackson, Andrew Reeves, Martin Craven, Andy Cripps, Dougie Lampkin, the brothers Hemingway, Graham Jarvis and lately the new rookie sensation Jonny Walker left their „business cards“ at Erzberg by constantly securing podiums and top-10 finishes.
The run of extremely talented british riders on the Erzbergrodeo remains unbroken as well in 2012. Husaberg’s top-gun Graham Jarvis, 18-times Trials world champion Dougie Lampkin (Gas Gas) and KTM’s rookie-sensation Jonny Walker have already celebrated podium arrivals at the notorious Red Bull Hare Scramble and are definitely hot-bets for the prestigious win of the world’s toughest single-day Xtreme Enduro
The KTM Factory Squad is also preparing the long-awaited return of David Knight to the Erzbergrodeo. After dominating the US-GNCC series in 2007/08, the „Knighter“ returned to the WEC in 2009 and collected his amazing fifth Enduro World Champion title in 2010. Plain to see, that David would be a major threat to the Erzbergrodeo winner’s circle if he can find a free spot in his very busy schedule.
The Brit-Boys will have to face tough competition not only from the rest of Europe but from overseas as well: the Erzbergrodeo is also looking forward to a bunch of great riders coming over the big pond from the USA and Canada in 2012. Due to the increasing coverage on popular networks like Fuel-TV, Speed Channel and FOX Sports, the Erzbergrodeo has found it’s way in the schedules of more and more north american offroad riders. Another major reason for the Erzbergrodeo’s foreign popularity is Taddy Blazusiak’s role as an enthusiastic ambassador for the event. The most successful Erzbergrodeo competitor of all times has put his focus on the US EnduroCross race series lately and beats the drum for the unique motorcycle offroad festival.
5 trophies are (for the time being) enough: Taddy Blazusiak misses out at the 2012 Erzbergrodeo!
It’s exactly this orientation on the fast growing EnduroCross sports in the USA, which will end Taddy’s 5-year long dominant string at the „Iron Giant“ in 2012. The 29-years old crowd favourite from Poland will not appear at the starting gate at the Erzbergrodeo’s 18th issue. „My international career has started at Erzberg in 2007, and I will always feel strongly connected to the Erzbergrodeo. KTM offers me new interesting challenges over in the US, which I’m very glad to accept. That doesn’t mean that I will not return to the Iron Giant in the future, but now it’s time to turn some heads overseas.“, Blazusiak explains his motivations. Taddy has just recently left a very bold impression at the X-Games in Los Angeles.
Sunday, June 10th 2012 will mark the date when more than 40000 enthusiastic fans will celebrate a new winner of the infamous Red Bull Hare Scramble since 5 years, and chances are high that the Union Jack will wave upon the podium. „With outstanding riders like Graham (Jarvis), Dougie (Lampkin), Jonny Walker and hopefully David (Knight) all together at the starting gate, it’s most likely that I’ll have to train my English for this years’s podium ceremony. Each of them will be really hard to beat, so it’ll be very exciting to see how the rest of the world will try to get to the top of the game.“, says Erzbergrodeo-Mastermind Karl Katoch. But Katoch sees some potential for the homegrown riders as well: „24-years old Austrian Lars Enöckl (KTM) has developed into a real world-class rider over the past two years. Lars just recently placed 7th overall at the Tough One in England and has showed his talent at the Hell’s Gate Xtreme Enduro in Italy as well. We expect another great moment from Lars at the Erzbergrodeo this year and will continue to support talented Austrian riders in cooperation with Heinz Kinigadner, KTM and Red Bull in the future.“
1800 competitors from 38 nations!
From Finland to South Africa, from Japan to California, from Argentinia to the Ukraine – the participants of the 18th Erzbergrodeo literally hail from each and every corner of the planet. Even though the majority of riders comes from the German speaking part of Europe, the amazing mix of nations will once again make up for a unique international atmosphere inside the Erzbergrodeo-Arena. 40 participants alone will set their sails to the tiny city of Eisenerz from overseas (North and South America, Australia, New Zealand, Africa and Asia).
The top-10 nations at the Erzbergrodeo 2012:
4. Great Brittain
5. Czech Republic
KTM motorcycles dominate the Erzbergrodeo’s field of competitors!
The motorcycle manufactorer from Mattighofen, Austria not only leads the Erzbergrodeo results since several years, the orange dirt bikes are also a major force inside the entry lists. More than 50% of all Erzbergrodeo competitors rely on a KTM as their weapon of choice for the fight against the Iron Giant. Then again more than 50% of these riders will enter the Erzbergrodeo 2012 on board of one of KTMs 2-stroke models. The KTM 300 EXC remains the most popular dirt bike model at the Erzbergrodeo.
The top-10 motorcycle brands at the Erzbergrodeo 2012:
5. Gas Gas
Erzbergrodeo 2012: Austrias biggest motorsports event is healthier than ever!
Going into its 18th issue, the Erzbergrodeo is presenting itself as an economically healthy event. A sold out entry field, the successful cooperation with long-time partners and growing interest from new branches generate a solid base for Austrias biggest motorsports event. The economic success is also important for the expansion of services offered by the race promotors to all their participants. „We are steadily working to offer improve the infrastructures at Erzberg for our guests. This does not only count for the racing regultaions and safety measures, but as well for important areas like rider paddocks, sanitary facilities and event gastronomy. Each year we literally have to build up a full-blown city-environment for up to 6000 people at the Iron Giant, so improving on infrastructure is a real topic for us. For 2012 we’re really happy with the status of improvements and we’re probably even more excited for the Erzbergrodeo to begin than the riders!“, explains Mark Schilling, the Erzbergrodeo’s head of organisation