Marking the start of the 2013 hard enduro season, the 9th edition of the annual The Tough One attracted the very best extreme enduro riders in the world with 26 riders entered in the main event.
Beating his rivals in the uphill Le Mans style start, trials ace Alex Wigg (Gas Gas) was the first rider to his machine and grabbed the holeshot. 2012 Roof of Africa winner Wade Young (Husaberg) also proved quick on his feet to start second with Jarvis closely behind in third.
Immediately setting a fast pace Jarvis overtook both Young and Wigg during the early stages of lap one to establish himself at the front of the field. Behind him the KTM duo of Jonny Walker and Paul Bolton overcame difficult starts to end lap one in second and third place respectively.
Running into trouble on lap two, Walker was forced to change his gloves. The mistake momentarily allowed Bolton through into second place until Walker forced his way past a lap later.
Setting about closing the gap to Jarvis, the KTM rapidly began to reel him in. However, Jarvis soon responded to the attack and was able to maintain a comfortable 30-second advantage as they moved past the halfway point in the three-hour race.
With the laps winding down, Jarvis began to increase his speed. Feeling confident in the incredibly slippery and muddy terrain, the Husaberg continued his unrelenting pace and eventually secured the win by almost eight minutes.
Unable to respond to the late charge of his Husaberg rival, Walker was forced to settle for second.
Although challenging the leaders during the early stages of the race, Bolton was unable to maintain his rhythm. Feeling the effects of winter flu, he slipped back into the clutches of the hard charging Manxman Danny McCanney (Gas Gas).
Relishing in the torturous conditions, McCanney delivered a stunning pace during the final two laps. Working his way past Bolton and onto the third step of the podium the Gas Gas rider finished just three minutes behind Walker.
With Bolton ending his race in fourth, Spain’s Alfredo Gomez (Husaberg) completed the top five.
Welshman Owain Humpheries (KTM) finished a lap clear of his nearest rivals to top the Expert class, while KTM mounted Andrew Reeves claimed the overall win the two-hour morning race.
The Tough One
1. Graham Jarvis (Husaberg) 03:05:02; 2. Jonny Walker (KTM) 03:13:56; 3. Danny McCanney (Gas Gas); 4. Paul Bolton (KTM) 03:18:39; 5. Alfredo Gomez (Husberg) 03:10:10; 6. Ben Hemingway (Beta) 03:12:29; 7. Fabien Planet (Sherco) 03:13:23; 8. Wayne Braybrook (Sherco) 03:17:17; 9. Xavi Galindo (Husaberg) 03:21:08; 10. Alex Wigg (Gas Gas) 03:23:10…
Enduro21.com video to follow, stay tuned...