Pro Bike: Pol Tarres’ Yamaha Ténéré 700 – the best adventure bike on the planet?
Enduro21 catches up with Pol Tarres for more details about his Yamaha Ténéré 700, an adventure bike just as capable on a road trip as it is in an extreme enduro – seriously, he’s going to race it in the Hard Enduro World Championship.
Pol Tarres has been gaining the attention of the off-road and adventure fans for a while. It started with ‘The Seeker’ video and left us open-mouthed when we saw what he was capable of doing with the Yamaha Ténéré 700 – most of us would be more than happy to pull those moves on an enduro bike…
Tarres has given that T7 a make-over for 2021 along with forming a new team, ‘Trece Racing Society’. Enduro21 caught up with the Spaniard to find out more about that bike which is evolving over time to meet the extraordinary demands of the Spanish rider. More than that he also lets slip a few future plans including taking the bike to a round of the Hard Enduro World Championship…
Stock base adapted to the needs of Hard Enduro
“Apart of all the bolt on parts that you can see on the bike, the base is strictly stock,” says Pol. “The guys at Yamaha allow me to tune it a bit, but without getting away from the bike’s base.” It means the T7 stays quite close to the one that any of us could have in our garage.
Pol and his team have simply removed all the unnecessary components such as the exhaust gas recirculation system – on the bike to pass homologations – to make it lighter and easier to ride, while also giving her a more racing look.
For the same reason they have installed a smaller battery and ditched the indicators, mirrors “and other parts that the bike needs to pass the homologations in order to be road legal.” The number plate holder has also been swapped for a smaller one to enhance the ‘enduro racing’ appearance.
Chassis, swingarm and ECU wise, Pol says that the bike is strictly stock because, as we said before, Yamaha wants the Trece Racing Society T7 to remain as close to production as possible. The only goodie the engine has is the Akrapovic exhaust system which is lighter than the OEM one and includes a carbon fibre protector plate in front of the muffler.
No bike is ready for Hard Enduro without some protection so that’s why Pol has gone with the Outback Motortek sump guard with the neat additional linkage protector on the back. The crash bars also come from the same manufacturer.
Even if it seems strange, as it’s one of the things that gets swapped first on a new bike, Pol’s bike still uses the stock handlebars, but he says that he’s going to try new things in the near future.
“I’m going to focus in doing much more stuff with the Ténéré so I want to try to use the same handlebars that I use on my enduro bike, the Renthal 997.” Pol adds. “They’re a bit narrower than the stock ones and make the bike easier to ride. I haven’t had any issues with the stock bars, but I want to see how I do with the 997 bend.”
‘Factory’ rims, exhaust or suspension? No way, stock parts do the job
When you see Pol doing those tricks with the Yamaha it’s inevitable to think that something has to be modified. Who believes that the stock parts on a 200kg bike can handle those crazy moves?
You’d be excused for thinking the rims are not going to be strong enough, but once more Tarres assures us he’s using OEM parts, “the only thing I have changed is the tyres in order to gain the extra traction needed for my type of riding.”
PT13 has gone for the Mitas enduro tyres with tubes, another decision that caught us off guard. “The rim is a 150 and the tyre a 140, even if I have an adventure bike specific mousse the tyre doesn’t pop correctly on the rim. Anyway, this will change soon because I'm going to put the enduro rim rings on the stock Ténéré hubs.”
“Anyone can have the same bike with two hours of work.” – Pol Tarres
“The clutch is also stock, I just swapped the master cylinder for a Magura one,” adds Pol. “They sent me a kit to transform it from cable to hydraulic, I tried and noticed a lighter pull so we decided to install it.”
Tarres told us that he’s going to do some projects – more about them down below – where he’ll be spending some long hours on the saddle so anything to make the ride easier is welcome. This is also the reason to go with the Yamaha parts ‘Rally’ seat which is higher and comfier.
Another big surprise is the stock Suspension which Pol says is not even tuned, just serviced by specialists Eric Augé. The linkage ratio and everything remains the same as any other T7 out there.
Perfecting the brakes
We feel like a stuck record already but the brakes also remain in stock-spec except for the rotors and pads. But instead of upgrading Pol simply uses the OEM size rotors and pads from the Spanish manufacturer Galfer (one of Pol’s sponsors) which he says have better feel.
In these images you can see a Magura master cylinder, but the idea of running it has been cast aside recently. “The people from Magura sent me a brake master cylinder and I installed it, but after testing it I went back to the stock material, in has enough stopping power.” Adds Pol.
“The only thing that we do change about the bike is running one or two rotors in the front, depending on what we’re doing”, says Tarres making us think about where we will be able to see the Ténéré next time.
A Yamaha Ténéré 700 racing the Erzberg, Romaniacs or the Rally du Maroc?
“I can't say anything right now, but you’ll see this bike racing a race at the Hard Enduro World Championship,” Pol reveals leaving us like a fox watching geese. We have already witnessed riders taking on some extreme races with adventure bikes like this, remember when KTM most notably have sent bikes to Erzberg and Quinn Cody even raced the Iron class of Romaniacs on an 1090R KTM. With Tarres’ skills on this bike, it will go to a new level.
“We’ll let people know which races we will be at later on and we also want to race an important rally. If everything goes to plan, we’ll make the second part of ‘The Seeker’ video live and it’s going to be way better than the first one, location and take wise.”
The Seeker movie created a legacy
If one thing hits you at first sight with this bike it’s the looks, something on what Pol and Javi Echevarria, the guy behind the company (The Who) that makes Pol’s videos, have worked on.
“Our inspiration was the first bike build that we created for The Seeker video. We have tried to perfect the first bike with this one.” Pol says. “The first time we created the graphics – from the ‘Living The Bike Life’ brand – in one day and without having the bike in front of us.”
“You can have a great idea and then when you put on the stickers you realize that you could have changed that or made this better. With the experience gained from the first one we have created this second version.”
“If I got to race an extreme race like the Erzbergrodeo or any other we might do a special edition for that event,” Pol concludes.
Maintenance at home with help from Yamaha Spain
Yamaha Spain does all the important work and services on the Ténéré something quite normal because Pol doesn’t have the diagnosis machine at home so he has to head to them.
Tarres has a great workshop at home so all the bolt on parts that you see on the bike and the maintenance is done by him and his mechanics.
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Photo Credit: Javi Echevarria