MOTOCROSSTIME - NEWS FROM REDBULL KTM
There was a shock on the opening day of the 2017 Roof of Africa, the 50th edition of the event, when unexpected snow fell overnight in the hills of Lesotho in southern Africa.Temperatures fell to below freezing, which made conditions that little bit harder for the field of over 250 riders.
KTM 300 EXC mounted Alfredo Gomez got his campaign off to a good start on the ‘Round the Houses’ Prologue, setting the third quickest time on the incredibly fast course. The afternoon’s time-trial also went well, with Gomez taking fifth.
On Friday, day one of the main event, Gomez started off well pushing hard and making up time on the leaders. Unfortunately, two hours into the race, a minor wrist injury sustained whilst training the week before leaving for Africa started to play up and slowed Alfredo’s pace. After five long hours of riding, Gomez placed sixth with one more day to go.
Saturday’s route followed a similar course to the day before with the addition of a couple of extra hill-climbs. Gomez was able to make up time on the leaders in the first half of the day’s racing, narrowing the deficit to third placed Graham Jarvis to just six minutes at the service point. With the final two hours of the day proving to be the toughest, Alfredo again had trouble with his wrist – the rougher terrain now making it hard for him to hold on to the bike.
At the end of the event, Gomez gallantly held on to an excellent fifth place overall. Although disappointed not to finish on the podium, he was still happy with the result.
Gomez: “I really enjoyed the event, it’s just unfortunate I had to ride with a slight injury to my wrist. The Round the Houses Prologue was great, I really love the speed and was pleased to finish third. Day one was good, but after a couple of hours my wrist really began to ache and I wasn’t able to ride as I should.
“The same thing happened on Saturday, the route was really good and I enjoyed the hill-climbs, but on the bumpy tracks I just couldn’t hold on properly. I had a good battle with Mario towards the end and managed to pass him near the finish to take fifth, so that was fun. Now I will look forward to the Superenduro season and try to get back to 100% for that.”
KTM rider, Travis Teasdale rode a great race to claim the runner-up position. The South African even placed second on day one despite losing a footpeg early in the race. The result backs up Teasdale’s second place at the Hell’s Gate hard enduro at the beginning of the year. Manuel Lettenbichler brought his KTM home in sixth, with team-mate Scott Bouverie close behind in seventh. Andreas Lettenbichler rode to a strong ninth place with the top-ten rounded out by David Cyprian on his KTM.
Results – Roof of Africa 2017
1. Wade Young (RSA), Sherco, 10:41:28
2. Travis Teasdale (RSA), KTM, 10:52:34
3. Graham Jarvis (GBR), Husqvarna, 11:04:06
4. Blake Gutzeit (RSA), Yamaha, 11:06:36
5. Alfredo Gomez (ESP), KTM, 11:13:15
6. Manuel Lettenbichler (GER), KTM, 11:19:25
7. Scott Bouverie (RSA), KTM, 11:19:35
9. Andreas Lettenbichler (GER), KTM, 11:30:58
10. David Cyprian (CZE), KTM, 11:57:10
Source : KTM