Red Bull KTM’s Manuel Lettenbichler has been docked a two-hour time penalty after reportedly receiving outside assistance on day one of the 2022 Red Bull Romaniacs.

Lettenbichler suffered a “technical issue” with his clutch and was forced to fix the problem on the course today, day one of the FIM Hard Enduro World Championship round five. The clutch issue was apparent during the day one live broadcast this morning.

With the clutch fixed, Mani continued and hauled back a chunk of time lost to finish initially in seventh place. But that P7 has since become P17 after a two-hour time penalty for being “helped” on the course was added to the KTM rider’s final tally.

At time of writing, Lettenbichler will start tomorrow’s stage with a huge deficit to his HEWC rivals. But, with three days of racing still to go and his unreal speed at this event, we could easily see him back into the points standings come Saturday.

The amended finishing position and time penalty note...


The keen followers of the Hard Enduro World Championship will naturally remember the same ‘no outside assistance’ scenario fell on Graham Jarvis at this year’s Erzbergrodeo. A fuel line issue took Jarvis an hour to fix but, despite making a meteoric comeback towards a top 10 finish, Graham was eventually disqualified because a member of his team touched the bike.

The Erzberg organisers and the HEWC series promoters took a lot of flack for that decision, saying at the time there is little doubt Graham being allowed to keep the result, or even win a race, is easily the best outcome for all concerned. But that ultimately rules are rules.

“I was pissing about for an hour” Graham Jarvis explains his Erzbergrodeo nightmare

Enduro21 stands alone, has no axes to grind and naturally massively respects riders, teams and race organisers. The best thing would be if everyone was able to get on with it and race, right?

Romaniacs is a different race with a different, independent organiser but this is an FIM World Championship and the HEWC, plus former WESS series, already takes some flack for being “a KTM championship” and it certainly doesn’t put those flames out if seemingly different rules apply at different races.

We await further news, including the outcome of protests from other teams which we understand are going on this evening. Like Romaniacs isn’t dramatic enough already!


Photo Credit: Future7Media