After winning the 2011 FIM Enduro Junior World Championship, Frenchman Jeremy Joly is facing his biggest challenge yet – that of entering the senior ranks of the Enduro World Championship. But as he proved in the recent GP of Chile, its one that he’s already met head on.
Armed with his own Freegun Racing Yamaha team, Joly showed that he’ll be a rider to look out for this year by finishing eight and fourth in Enduro 1.
“I think I surprised everyone including myself. My goal for the weekend was to try and get some good points. I had hoped for maybe fifth or sixth so finishing fourth was a special result,” confirmed Jeremy.
Ending the Friday evening Super Test in fourth, and only one-second slower than eventual Enduro 1 race winner Antoine Meo, Joly certainly off to a good start in Chile.
“The Super Test went really good but I knew the real test would come the next day. My times were good all morning and I was pushing for a top five finish. Unfortunately, I crashed a couple of times in the final Enduro Test and I ended day one in eight.
“I thought a lot about my mistakes over night and was determined to improve on day two. As the day progressed I worked on improving my bike setup and finding better lines in the specials. Finishing fourth and only seven seconds shy of a podium result was a good debut for my team.”
Aside from the GP of Chile being the reigning Junior World Champion’s first ride in the senior ranks, the race also marked the first outing for his privately funded race team.
“After winning the world championship I had the opportunity to ride for a couple of teams but these offers also came with conditions. When it became clear that I couldn’t compete in my national series along with the EWC I decided to go it alone. The French championship is important to my personal sponsors and to me so I needed to find another alternative.”
For any established rider building their own team is a brave move, but as a young rider trying to make his name in the senior ranks Joly’s determination to go it alone makes his move all the more impressive.
“I felt that it was important for me to stay with a Japanese manufacture. When I spoke with Yamaha about my plans they offered to help me out. They organised my bikes and soon the rest of the team came together. My personal sponsor Freegun really helped me to sort a lot of things and I’ve also got some great support from INA TV – a Greek broadcasting company.
“It can be a lot of work acting as both a rider and manager but I’m enjoying the challenge. I can see now how important it is for me to get results, which gives me a greater desire to succeed.”
Jeremy celebrates winning the 2011 Enduro Junior World Championship.