ROCKSTAR ENERGY HUSQVARNA FACTORY RACING’S BILLY BOLT AND ALFREDO GOMEZ FINISH TOP FIVE AT ROUND FOUR OF THE WORLD ENDURO SUPER SERIES
Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Billy Bolt and Alfredo Gomez have delivered strong performances at round four of the World Enduro Super Series – Romaniacs Hard Enduro Rallye – where the duo finished fourth and fifth respectively at the end of the five-day race.
Marking the halfway point in this year’s WESS championship, the Husqvarna riders were eager to challenge for podium results. As the winner of the series opener in Portugal, 20-year-old Bolt arrived in Sibiu, Romania keen to show his form. Impressing in the opening day’s prologue, he claimed a convincing win by lapping the entire field of riders. With the race heading out into the mountains for four demanding days of Enduro riding, Bolt placed sixth on Off-Road Day 1. Improving as the race progressed, he worked his way up the leaderboard to eventually finish fourth overall.
Returning to competitive action following his knee injury sustained in February, Gomez simply wanted to use the race as a way to build up his pace. Spending the opening days settling into the rhythm of the event, the Spaniard’s confidence grew day-by-day. Upping his pace to finish fourth on each of the final two days, the Husqvarna rider was more than pleased to end the world’s toughest Hard Enduro Rallye in fifth overall.
As the 2017 winner of Romaniacs, Graham Jarvis began the 15th edition of the race aiming to claim his seventh victory. Finishing fourth on the opening day in the mountains, but 17 minutes behind the leaders, the Husqvarna rider was not happy with his riding. However, despite citing a lack of energy, he battled through Off Road Day 2 to maintain fourth. Starting the penultimate day feeling low on energy and fatigued, he was forced to withdraw from the race before the midday service point.
The World Enduro Super Series continues with round four at Red Bull 111 Megawatt on September 8/9.
Billy Bolt: “I’m happy to be stood here in one piece and with fourth position because I gave so much time away in the first couple of days. It’s so hard to make up that lost time, especially when conditions are as hard as they have been this year. Looking at the positives though, I won the prologue and was fastest in a few checkpoints, too. Now I’m starting to gauge the pace that you need to stay near the front. You really have to minimise your mistakes in a race like this. Fourth is good as I’ve earned more solid points for the championship and I have learned a lot. I’m still not quite at the pace I want to be riding around here, but I am a lot closer than I was this time last year.”
Alfredo Gomez: “It’s been a really good event for me. For the last two days I have felt really good on the bike. My pace wasn’t quite fast enough, but it’s been great to be able to race again and my knee is feeling a lot stronger. Overall, I am happy with how things have gone, especially having had such little time to train. The final day was my best day and that is really encouraging, after the service point I still felt very strong. I’m looking forward now to the next race in the championship. Finishing this race in fifth shows that I’m fit, strong and able to race and that’s the most important thing.”
Graham Jarvis: “Deciding to stop on Off Road Day 3 was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do but it was the most sensible option to take. I simply had no more energy to continue and knew the safest thing to do was retire from the race. The race this year was tough, one of the toughest for a very long time and right from the off I just wasn’t feeling right. I didn’t get into that groove like I normally do and was struggling in places where I knew I shouldn’t have been. I really wanted to challenge for a seventh Romaniacs win this year but it wasn’t to be. My focus now is to rest and recuperate and get back to full fitness and energy for the rest of the WESS championship.”
World Enduro Super Series, Round 4 – Provisional Final Overall Classification
1. Wade Young (Sherco) 26:03:15
2. Manuel Lettenbichler (KTM) 26:05:30
3. Jonny Walker (KTM) 26:39:22
4. Billy Bolt (Husqvarna) 28:27:36
5. Alfredo Gomez (Husqvarna) 28:55:17
6. Paul Bolton (KTM) 29:43:36
Provisional World Enduro Super Series Standings (after 4 of 8 rounds)
1. Jonny Walker (GBR) 2900 points
2. Manuel Lettenbichler (GER) 2715 pts
3. Billy Bolt (GBR) 2520 pts
4. Wade Young (RSA) 2220 pts
5. Paul Bolton (GBR) 1832 pts
6. Graham Jarvis (GBR) 1818 pts
Words and images courtesy Husqvarna