On the first weekend in June, thousands of off-road enthusiasts will make their way to Eisenerz in the heart of Austria for the 16th Erzbergrodeo – the world’s biggest motorcycle off-road event that attracts many of the top riders from the worlds of Enduro, Motocross and Trials, as well as enthusiastic amateur and hobby riders from four continents.
Among them will be BMW Motorrad Motorsport’s Andreas Lettenbichler, who finished the gruelling event in third place last year and is looking to go even better on the BMW G450X sport enduro in 2010.
Riding for Team BMW Motorrad Motorsport, ‘Letti’ raced onto the podium of the famous Hare Scramble, arguably the world’s toughest one-day Extreme Enduro. Interestingly, out of 1,500 riders that tried to qualify for the Hare Scramble, and the 500 who made the start line, only 21 made it to the mountaintop. It took ‘Letti’ two hours, 25 minutes and 17 seconds to complete the treacherous course and he finished in third, behind Poland’s Taddy Blazusiak and Britain’s Graham Jarvis. However, the popular German had special reason to be satisfied with his result, as his BMW G450 X was by far the best four-stroke performer among a sea of lightweight two-strokes.
This year, the highly anticipated Hare Scramble will start at its usual time of 12 noon on Sunday 6 June and ‘Letti’ will be hoping to use his formidable trials skills, high fitness levels and the excellent traction of his G450X to achieve his goal of another podium finish.
“It’s my fifth start at the legendary Erzberg,” said the BMW Motorrad Motorsport team rider. “Before such an event, I always make sure I train as much as possible – not only on my Enduro bike, but also on a Trials bike because of the skills you need for success. For sure the Erzberg is the most popular extreme Enduro challenge in the world and the media coverage of the event is amazing. You’ll see all kinds of expert riders participating, many of whom have a Trials, Motocross or Extreme Enduro background, and the level of competition is very high, even from the amateur riders. I have a very clear target for Erzberg 2010 – there is no other option than to win the Hare Scramble and I will give all I can to be on top.”
In addition to ‘Letti’, who will surely be starting as one of the favourites for the victory, there will also be two other BMW riders taking on the challenge of the Hare Scramble. Gerhard Forster has finished in the top ten twice in the past two years and for three-times Austrian Cross Country Champion Rudi Pöschl, his main goal this year is to win at Erzberg. Don’t bet against any of these guys doing the business on their BMWs.
So popular is the Erzbergrodeo that all the starting places were sold out within two weeks of them being released. This has helped establish it as not only Austria’s biggest motorsports event, but also one of the world’s premier Extreme Enduro events as well. Off-road enthusiasts from all over Europe, Australia, Africa, South America and the USA and Canada will travel thousands of kilometres just to get a taste of the unique atmosphere and to take up the challenge of the ‘Iron Mountain’.
For more information on this amazing event, visit www.erzberg.at.
Watch this clip of the action: