British rider Jed Etchells takes his maiden day victory on day one of the European Enduro Championship final round of 2019 in Heinola, Finland.
Heavy rain on day one of the European Enduro Championship in Heinola, Finland made conditions on the special tests particularly difficult and demanding. On the slippery stones and polished roots riders struggled to set the times but, in conditions the British rider is very used to, MRS Sherco rider Jed Etchells pulled the first overall EEC victory of his career.
Roni Kytönen was able to use his home advantage and took the early lead on the timing sheets but running further back in the field, Etchells was in a good position to understand the conditions.
After the first lap there was little in it but after the second lap Etchells took a narrow lead by less than a second. In the next special stage Kytönen took the lead back again but then Etchells pulled the pin to post a test time 13 seconds faster than all other riders which laid the foundation for his first overall victory.
“In the rain, mud and through the woods I am really at home because it is where I train a lot. Conditions like these suit me.” Said the 18-year-old Junior afterwards.
Kytönen takes control of the championship
In the overall championship, Kristof Kouble was a non-starter due to leg injury and Albin Elowson, who was on for third place in the championship, dropped out after a crash in the morning on his way to the first special stage.
The net result was Roni Kytönen took over the points lead in the championship and set himself up for a victory baring a disaster over the weekend.
One rider making an appearance on day one was a certain Eero Remes. Though not eligible for a result in the EEC, the Johansson Yamaha EnduroGP rider was getting in some quality training.
In the cubic capacity classes, the first champion was already crowned today: Patrik Markvart from the Czech Republic is already celebrating as the champion in the 250 cc four-stroke engine class.
The KTM rider had already won all the races this year and is therefore already unbeatable with two days to go.
Berzelius closes in on Women’s crown
In the women's class, day winner Hanna Berzelius from Sweden may be able to secure her title on the second of the three this weekend. Her nearest competitor, Nieve Holmes from the UK is still suffering from her injured shoulder and, to add salt into the wound, her chain jumped off twice in the special stage, losing here further ground on her rival.
Top 30 results, day one EEC Heinola 2019:
Live timing from Heinola: live.kalkku.fi
More information: European-Enduro.com
Photo Credit: European Enduro/Robert Pairan Jon PearsonEnduro21 Editor and Bike Testerjon.firstname.lastname@example.org