KTM factory riders American Cody Webb and Jonny Walker of Britain fought their way to the top two podium positions at the second round of the FIM SuperEnduro World Championship on Saturday night at Riesa, Germany.
Cody Webb, winner of the opening round took a 1-2-5 result in the three finals of the prestige class to finish the night just a single point ahead of Jonny Walker who rounded off his evening with a 4-3-1 result. Colton Haaker (USA) was third and Walker’s teammate in the Red Bull KTM Factory Racing Team, Taddy Blazusiak of Poland, was fourth.
Another two KTM factory riders, Alfredo Gomez of Spain and American Taylor Robert finished 5-6 overall on a night where a very technical track left no room for error and many riders crashed at least once. Robert ended his evening with a possible thumb and finger injury after coming unstuck, and Blazusiak made a strong comeback in the finals after crashing hard in the second time practice in the afternoon session.
Webb: “I’m super happy to come away with the win tonight. Two overall victories from two starts is a perfect start to the championship for me. The track was tough tonight. There was no real room for error and it was a fine line between staying up and crashing. In race one I just sort of rode steady and the win came to me. I got up to second in race two and almost got Alfredo for the win but had to settle for second. Then race three I finally had some bad luck, and ended fifth I think. But thankfully it was enough for the top step of the podium.”
Walker: “It’s been a hard night but I’m happy with second. The racing was so close. Everyone was on the limit out there. I had a good first race going but tangled with a lapped rider in the log pit and he ended up standing on my bike. It was a freak thing but cost me a chance of winning there. I was riding good in race two and then gave it everything in race three. It felt great to get the win in that one and to end the night one point behind Cody is a bonus really. After two rounds we’re separated by two points so it’s still very close.”
Blazusiak: “My speed was good, I feel like I’m riding good too, I just ran out of luck a couple of times and that cost me. It felt good to lead race one, I needed that, but then I crashed and lost it. It was a hard track tonight. There was no room for error and all the guys were pushing hard. Some mistakes were your own and others weren’t. That’s just kind of the way it went really.”
Gomez: “I’m happy with how thing went. It was great to win race two. I led from start to finish so it shows just how important a good start is out there.”
Meanwhile in the junior class, KTM’s Manuel Lettenbichler had a golden night riding in front of his home crowd in Germany. The teenager won all three of his finals to leave with a perfect scorecard of 60 points. After two rounds he now has an impressive 34-point lead over his closest rival and looks set to have a great season.
Lettenbichler: “Three wins in front of my home crowd is just perfect. It was a great night. I’m so happy with how things went. I just want to keep this winning momentum going now for as long as possible.”
Riesa’s 7,000-seat SachsenArena was sold out for this event, an indication of the growing popularity of the sport of SuperEnduro.
Overall Results Prestige Class
1. Cody Webb (USA), KTM 49 points
2. Jonny Walker (GBR), KTM 48
3. Colton Haaker (USA), Husqvarna 46
4. Taddy Blazusiak (POL), KTM 40
5. Alfredo Gomez (ESP), KTM 37
6. Robert Taylor (USA), KTM 32
Prestige Standings after Round 2
1. Webb 102 points
2. Walker 100
3. Haaker 84
4. Blazusiak 79
5. Robert, 70
Overall Results Junior Class
1. Manuel Lettenbichler (GER), KTM 60 points
2. Blake Gutzeit (RSA), Husqvarna 47
3. Luis Oliveira (POR), Yamaha 39
4. Tim Apolle (GER), Husqvarna 34
5. Emil Juszczak (POL), Sherco 34
Junior Standings after Round 2
1. Lettenbichler 120
2. Oliveira 86
3. Gutzeit 82
Round Three: January 16, 2016 GP of Italy at Milan