Desflurane's Romaniacs Blog

Chronicle of My Participation in the World's Toughest Enduro Rally – Again…

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Prologue report

Posted by desflurane on June 14, 2012

Link To Prologue Highlights Video!!

Link to story on Red Bull website.

Here is the official press release from Volker:

Red Bull Romaniacs 2012 edition takes off with a fascinating Prologue in perfect weather and in front of thousands of spectators

Jonny Walker wins with huge lead, Galindo 2nd, Lettenbichler 3rd in most thrilling finals

Sibiu, Romania, June 13th, 2012 – Traditionally the Red Bull Romaniacs 2012 started with a prologue in downtown Sibiu, a course of man-made obstacles with scary names like “Kidney massage”, “Guillotine” and “Minefield”. Rock music and live commentary combined with adrenalin-soaked Hard-Enduro action attracted the biggest crowd ever and the spectators did not get disappointed by the fierce battles between the top riders of each class.


The line-up of obstacles was slightly different from last year and again managed to quite intimidate many of the Hobby-class riders. Prologue-manager Andy Fazekas had aimed to create slightly more technical obstacles but still keep them manageable for the majority of participants, especially in case of rain. Surprisingly, despitedark clouds over Sibiu in the morning, it stayed dry – which made the course significantly faster. Jonny Walker stunned everyone through the qualification rounds with a winning time of less than 18 seconds and he was followed by Graham Jarvis and Xavi Galindo. The finals were dominated by Walker again, with Xavi Galindo on 2nd and Andreas “Letti” Lettenbichler on 3rd place. It was great to see Galindo back on the bike and in shape after a brutal crash at the Erzberg.

Jonny Walker: “This is my first time at the Red Bull Romaniacs, I loved the prologue, this is my game. Some of the obstacles could have been a bit more flowy, so I could have taken them faster… In general this is my favorite part, after that I am only looking forward to my flight back home!” Especially the perspective of relying on a GPS device in the Romanian wilderness did not make him particularly look forward to the Offroad days, since he had never used one before. But Martin “Frejn” Freinademetz comforted him: “You will only need it if it getsfoggy, otherwise you can rely on the work of our trackmanagers (600km of well-marked track!) and if everything goes wrong, you`ll just be eaten by the bears!” Walker considers it a disadvantage that after winning the prologue, he will be the first on the track tomorrow.

Xavi Galindo: “I am very happy about the prologue result today. I love the Red Bull Romaniacs because it includes so many different elements. My favorite is the navigation! This race is not won by full speed but by strategy and I am really happy about the nice weather this time, which plays in my favor!”
Andreas Lettenbichler: “The Red Bull Romaniacs is one of my favorite races: Everybody is so friendly and has a good time, coming back and meeting all the people feels like we’re a big family. Of course we all have our expectations when we come here, and a place on the podium would be great, but the first and foremost thing is, to have fun Enduro riding. The prologue had been set up nicely: there was a good selection of different lines, and I was hoping for the hobby riders that it would notrain! For me it was all the same… and I certainly enjoyed it!”

Graham Jarvis: “I love Romania and it is so great to ride Enduro here! It takes a bit of courage to participate in the Red Bull Romaniacs, there are some gnarly downhills in Martin`s box of surprises. The prologue was different from last year, more technical, a bit tougher and slower in pace – but nicely rideable, especially considering the dry weather! Today I started my race with the prologue on abrand new bike – mine took too much of a beating last week but fortunately there were no surprises! All top riders are also in good shape – so if nobody makes any mistakes, it’s gonna be a nice and equal fight.”
Chris Birch: “The Red Bull Romaniacs is my favorite race! If I had to design a race it would be like this. The mix of the terrain is perfect. The trails are perfect for Enduro, slippery but not to slippery, steep but not to steep. It was a very nice prologue, but we didn`t expect anything else from the Red Bull Romaniacs team! My first run was ok, but in the 2nd one I went over the handlebar! In general, rain would have added some spice, but it was good to once have a prologue without… It still is quite easy to get hurt, especially for the hobby riders – and I can`t understand that there is still people riding without a neckbrace. I have two friends who can`t walk anymore and it is terrible!”

The results:
More extensive information is now also available about all riders, about the daily results and much more at:
Red Bull Romaniacs, the toughest Hard-Enduro rallye on earth!
4 days of competition along a difficult and enthralling course, which leads through the Southern Carpathian Mountains and redefines the meaning of “Extreme Enduro”. The Rally is tailored for ultimate offroad and Enduro fun – combined with challenges that bring the participants of each individual class (HobbySingle, Hobby Team, Expert Single, Expert Team, PRO) to their limits. Due to these challenges and the difficulty level, high abandon rates are common. Therefore: To FINISH is to be a WINNER. The track is unfolding along well-chosen mountain areas, rocky grounds, hills and valleys; tarmac is avoided as much as possible. Despite the tough challenges, all competitors agree that the Red Bull Romaniacs is one of the most beautiful Enduro races. The breathtaking countryside, the Romanian hospitality and the fact, that it is a race from riders for riders, make every event a long lasting memory for participants and fans alike. The daily distances covered range from 100km to 200km.
Red Bull Romaniacs

All photos are courtesy of Dragos Lula Z


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