UIS – Though riders had to negotiate their way through searing heat conditions accompanied by dust and rocks for round three of the Namibian Enduro Championship, at the abandoned Tin mine outside Uis, the Maritz Transport Enduro race produced some fireworks.
The record number of 96 riders grilled each other at the racetrack, which was a mixture of fast riverbeds, rocky single tracks and a huge boulder field that had to be crossed in order to reach the finish line.
Marcel Henle won the Open Class, finishing almost 8 minutes ahead of 2nd placed Henner Rusch. The later was riding with three fractured ribs sustained in a crash, just four weeks before the race, so damage control was the order of the day.
Pascal Henle ended in 3rd position just slightly over a minute adrift of the struggling Rusch. Ruan Gous and Rainer Sentefol rounded out the top 5 – leaving Henle to lead the championship by 3 points over 2nd placed Rusch.
Four riders are separated by 3 points in the race for 3rd position in the championship and judging by the results in the opening 3 rounds, this will go down to the wire for the top 5 positions.
In the Master Class, veteran rider Ingo Waldschmidt proved that he is back to winning ways. Returning from injury, Waldschmidt beat 2nd placed Joern Greiter by almost 4 minutes with Martin Kruger finishing in 3rd after missing a checkpoint.
Championship leader Werner Wiese only managed a 6th position after picking a penalty for missing the checkpoint. Fourth and 5th positions went to Ronald Geiger and Frank Ahlreib respectively.
Jurgen Gladis won in the Support Bikes class, showing his vast experience with a composed and measured approach to the race beating 2nd placed Oliver Rohrmuller by about three minutes and 30 seconds. Big Riaan Kritzinger ended 3rd for his first podium of the season.
Early leaders in the race, Quinton van Rooyen and Jaco Husselman were both disqualified after missing too many checkpoints – leaving Oliver Rohrmuller the sole clear leader in the Championship.
JL Opperman continued his unbeaten run in the Rookie Bike class and was unstoppable as he beat Swakopmund rider Eugene Koen into second with Andre Marais tailing in 3rd spot whilst the pair of Rhys Cragg and Axel Foerster rounded up the top 5.
Class 11 winner was Dylan Hilfiker, with Jossie Maritz Jnr and Zoe Waldschmidt in 2nd and 3rd places, respectively.
The next race will take place on Farm Abbabis in the Karibib area and will again be a huge challenge for the top classes, as riders will do battle on arguably the toughest track of the season.