With the opening round of the 2018 World Enduro Super Series now just 10 days away, it’s time to take a closer look at some of the Riders To Watch. With WESS offering a varied mix of disciplines and terrains it’s unsurprising that those vying for glory are equally as diverse as the championship itself.
With Enduro World Champions, Indoor Enduro World Champions, Beach Race winners plus Hard Enduro and Cross-Country specialists all taking to the start line, we can be sure that the battle to become this year’s ULTIMATE ENDURO CHAMPION will be both closely contested and unpredictable…
Billy Bolt – Great Britain
At just 20 years of age, Billy Bolt is one of the youngest WESS competitors. But what he lacks in experience over some of his expected closest rivals, the British youngster more than makes up for with raw natural talent. Most comfortable in Hard Enduro, the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing rider has worked tirelessly pre-season to improve his Classic Enduro skills and could prove a dark horse in this year’s title chase.
Cody Webb – USA
Arguably one of America’s leading off-road riders, Cody Webb looks to fight for victory with Europe’s best. Fired up for glory outdoors following his SuperEnduro world title, the FMF KTM Factory Racing rider will be a fierce competitor at the opening two Hard Enduro rounds where he has his sights set on the top step of the podium.
Taddy Blazusiak – Poland
As one of the most decorated Enduro riders, Taddy Blazusiak was enticed out of retirement by the World Enduro Super Series. Considering it ‘the championship he’s been waiting for all of his career’ the vastly experienced Polish star has his sights set on ending 2018 as the ULTIMATE ENDURO CHAMPION.
Jonny Walker – Great Britain
Best known for his Hard Enduro skills, Jonny Walker also has a very strong turn of speed when it comes to Classic Enduro, Cross-Country and even Beach Racing. Possessing a well-rounded skill set, the Red Bull KTM Factory Racing rider is unquestionably among the favourites for overall top honours.
Josep Garcia – Spain
As the reigning Enduro 2 World Champion, Spaniard Josep Garcia’s talent, speed and focus are unquestionable. Simply world class when it comes to Classic Enduro and high-speed riding, the Red Bull KTM Factory Racing rider will be the man to beat between the special test timing beams.
Graham Jarvis – Great Britain
Regarded as the greatest Hard Enduro rider of all time, Graham Jarvis looks for a new challenge of proving himself as one of Enduro’s best all-rounders. Already a multi-time winner of three WESS events – Extreme XL Lagares, Erzbergrodeo Red Bull Hare Scramble and Red Bull Romaniacs – the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing rider will be a favourite for top honours in all Hard Enduro rounds. How well can Graham do in the Classic Enduro, Cross-Country and Beach Race events?
Alfredo Gomez – Spain
Injured in pre-season training, Alfredo Gomez will hope to race his way back up to speed when he begins his 2018 WESS campaign at round four – Red Bull Romaniacs. As a three-time Extreme XL Lagares winner and 2017 Erzbergrodeo Red Bull Hare Scramble champion, the Spaniard will undoubtedly have ambitions of securing podium results as soon as he returns to competition.
Colton Haaker – USA
With a solid work ethic and desire to succeed, USA’s Colton Haaker looks to transform his Indoor Enduro success into outdoor wins during the 2018 WESS season. Supremely capable across all terrain and disciplines, Haaker will no doubt consistently challenge for his place at the sharp end of the results.
Mario Roman – Spain
Already claiming multiple pre-season victories, Spain’s Mario Roman will be a formidable threat for the top step of the podium at the series’ opener in Portugal. Clearly firing on all cylinders, the Sherco Factory Racing rider is striving for nothing less than the win in WESS.
Wade Young – South Africa
As the 2017 Extreme XL Lagares winner, it’s South Africa’s Wade Young who beings round one of WESS in Portugal with the largest target on his back. Eager to prove last year’s victory was no fluke, the Sherco Factory Racing rider will hope to grab some early momentum over his rivals.
Paul Bolton – Great Britain
Privateer Paul Bolton is not just one of Enduro’s most charismatic personalities, he’s lightning fast too. A podium finisher in the 2017 Red Bull Romaniacs, the British rider will aim for a repeat performance there in July, while also looking for additional podium results throughout the championship.
Nathan Watson – Great Britain
During the last couple of years Nathan Watson has proved himself as one of off-road motorcycling’s most versatile riders. Making a seamless switch from Motocross to Enduro and Beach Racing, the quietly spoken British rider has claimed multiple victories and podiums at the highest level possible. Fast to adapt and quick to learn, Watson will be a force to be reckoned with in WESS.
Lars Enöckl – Austria
Switching to Gas Gas Factory Racing for 2018, Austria’s Lars Enöckl has the factory support he’s waited for all his career. Incredibly strong in Hard Enduro, expect Enöckl to cause some upset results.
Travis Teasdale – South Africa
Focused on the Hard Enduro races with Beta Factory Racing, South Africa’s Travis Teasdale is a rising talent in Enduro. Runner-up to Wade Young in the 2017 Roof of Africa, he’s made of tough stuff and will want to make his presence felt in WESS.
Adding further spice to the mix, Enduro’s leading women riders Kirsten Landman (South Africa) and Sandra Gomez (Spain) will take on the WESS challenge at selected rounds. The duo will be determined to show their male counterparts a thing or two, while playing their part in this year’s search for the ULTIMATE ENDURO CHAMPION.
The 2018 World Enduro Super Series begins at Extreme XL Lagares in Portugal, May 11-13.