An epic battle between South Africa’s enduro giants is about to unfold as the first round of the National Enduro Championship swiftly approaches. Set against the backdrop of the Magaliesberg mountain range, the season opener will be hosted by Titans Extreme Enduro track in Hartbeespoort, Gauteng.
Rockstar Energy Husqvarna’s Brett Swanepoel will line up on Saturday as the reigning National E2 Champion. As a Natal-based rider, he has placed a very specific focus on preparing for the Gauteng track that is infamous for its unrelenting terrain and rocky trails.
“I haven’t felt this prepared for a race in a long time. I’ve been working really hard on making sure my fitness and bike setup are exactly where they need to be. Coming from Natal, I’m fully aware of the kind of rocky terrain Gauteng has in store but I feel ready for it – I know what my TE 300i can do and what my body can handle.”
With a line-up that is set to showcase South Africa’s top enduro talent, an excited Swanepoel added, “This is the most competitive line-up I’ve seen at an enduro race in years! All the top riders are going to be there – it’s going to be a big one.”
Adding a particular sense of excitement to the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna camp is the debut national race of Heinrich Aust. The talent-stacked rider was recruited to represent the team in the E1 Class this season. As a Gauteng based rider, Aust will enter the event with the advantage of having spent countless hours using the rocky outcrop as his training ground.
With a fresh sense of confidence on his TE 150i, Aust comments on feeling fully equipped to enter what will undoubtedly be an epic battle: “With the little rain we’ve had this week, I’m definitely going into this prepared for a dusty and demanding route. Suspension will be a key component of having a comfortable ride this weekend, so I’ll go a bit harder om my clickers and rebound to suit this type of terrain. I’m so keen to go racing – and this time on home turf!”
Published by: Fred Fensham
Picture Caption: Brett Swanepoel ahead of the National Enduro Championship.