Jonny Walker leads the World Enduro Super Series to round three in France and the 32nd edition of the Trèfle Lozérien AMV – traditional enduro specialists looking to make their mark. 

 

With no time to wait after last weekend’s Erzbergrodeo Red Bull Hare Scramble in Austria, WESS competitors switch disciplines from Hard Enduro to Classic Enduro in the multi-disciplined WESS schedule.

After two runners-up finishes in the series so far, Red Bull KTM Factory Racing’s Jonny Walker (GB) heads to France with a championship lead. With 550 riders entered for the Trèfle, including many of the world’s best Classic Enduro specialists, he faces a challenging weekend.

Staged over three days in Mende, the Trèfle Lozérien is France’s most prestigious Enduro. Following the traditional format of Classic Enduro, it requires a unique and different set of skills to those needed to succeed at rounds one and two. 

 

Trefle Lozerien WESS Enduro21 560

 

Speed is of the essence with each of the 200-kilometre long days broken down into a series of liaison and timed special stages. A predetermined time is set for riders to complete each of the liaison stages and where a rider arrives early or late to the end of each liaison a penalty is added. 

Special stages — featuring a mixture of open grass fields and forestry tracks — are all about speed and racing as fast as possible. The winner is the rider with the fastest times when the special stages and liaison penalties are tallied up. 

In total, competitors will complete a demanding 600 kilometres and 15 unique special tests during the three-days of racing.

The quality and depth of entries in this year’s 32nd edition of the race is arguably as strong as it’s ever been. Factoring in the main WESS contenders, France’s top Enduro riders and talent hopping across from the EnduroGP championship ensures the fight for victory will go right down to the wire.

 

billy.bolt Lagares WESS 2018 Rnd1 12282 Enduro21 560

Photo Credit: Future7Media

 

Walker will look for a strong outing in France and is keen to show he boasts both the speed and skills needed for Classic Enduro. He’s not alone in needing a change of tack from the more familiar Extreme Enduro skill set. Joint second in this year’s championship chase, Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s Graham Jarvis and Billy Bolt — already WESS winners in 2018 — will look to keep their run of form alive, as will this year’s sensation Manuel Lettenbichler (KTM - GER) who finished third at rounds one and two.

Following two impressive top 15 rides in the opening Hard Enduro races, the Trèfle Lozérien is an event Spain’s Josep Garcia (KTM) has patiently waited for. As reigning Enduro 2 World Champion, Garcia is one of the sport’s fastest Classic Enduro specialists and will want to make that clear in France. A win this weekend would bring him right into the championship fight, but also create history as the first non-French winner of the race.

Teammate to Garcia, Nathan Watson is another rider eager to capitalise on his Classic Enduro skills. Feeling more at home on the fast rolling grassy special tests, Watson looks to put his name at the sharp end of the results sheet.

 

nathan.watson ErzbergRodeo 2018 Enduro21 560

Photo Credit: Future7Media

 

Making a one-off team appearance in WESS is the French-based Outsiders Yamaha Racing Team including Jamie McCanney (Yamaha - GB) who was the event’s runner-up in 2017 and knows well what it takes to win this time around.

French riders have won the Trèfle Lozérien throughout its history and McCanney's teammate, Loic Larrieu, will want to add Yamaha’s tally of 19 race victories as well as take a first-time Trèfle Lozérien win

 

loic.larrieu Yamaha Enduro Team Trefle enduro21 560

Photo Credit: Future7Media

 

So too will the huge pedigree of national riders including former world enduro champion Mathias Bellino (Honda), Johnny Aubert (Gas Gas), young talent Theo Espinasse (Sherco), Marc Bourgeois (Yamaha), Julien Gauthier (Yamaha) and Jeremy Miroir (Husqvarna). Previously a winner in 2007, Albepart Emmanuel (Yamaha) placed third overall in 2017.

The Trèfle Lozérien AMV, WESS round three, takes place in Mende, France on June 8-10.

 

Trèfle Lozérien Facts: 

600: Distance in kilometres competitors will ride during the three-day race

32: 2018 will mark the 32nd edition of the French Classic Enduro

19: Yamaha are the most successful manufacturer with 19 victories

15: Number of unique special tests in the Trèfle Lozérien

9: Stephane Peterhansel holds the most race wins

6: Consecutive times David Frétigné won between 1999 and 2004

4: Time in minutes in which this year’s 550 entries were snapped up

0: Number of non-French winners of the Trèfle Lozérien AMV

 

Trèfle Lozérien AMV 2018 Schedule:

  • Friday, June 8: Gorges du Tarn circuit
  • Saturday, June 9: Gévaudan Aubrac circuit
  • Sunday, June 10: Margeride circuit

The paddock located in the heart of Mende at the Place du Foirail.

 

2017 Trèfle Lozérien Podium:

1. Jeremy Tarroux (Sherco) 2. Jamie McCanney (Yamaha) 3. Emmanuel Albepart (Beta)