Extreme Enduro

Gotland Grand National turned into a giant mud bath – here is all you need to know

Gotland Grand National 2018

Gotland Grand National 2018 (Image: Future7Media/Red Bull Content Pool)

Swede Albin Elowson wins muddy round seven of the World Enduro Super Series.

A treble of home riders stood on the podium of the Gotland Grand National in Sweden as round seven of the World Enduro Super Series turned into a giant mud bath. Here is all you need to know:

– Albin Elowson (Husqvarna) claimed victory for the first time at the race in front of compatriots Robert Kvarnstrom (Yamaha) and Ken Bengston (Husqvarna).

– This was the 35th edition of the iconic event, renowned as the world’s largest Enduro race with over 3,000 riders competing this year.

– Riders take on a 22km circuit through Scandinavian forest on the island of Gotland.

– Nearly 600 hobby riders enjoyed perfect conditions on Friday but the weather turned overnight ensuring the main race will be remembered as one of the wettest in history.

– Thousands of riders jostled for position in the mud. Elowson moved into the race lead on lap one followed by Kvarnstrom. The duo then went head-to-head before Elowson pulled clear to claim a convincing win at the end of the sixth and final lap. Bengtson rounded out the podium in third.

– For the WESS title contenders, Spain’s Josep Garcia crossed the finish line in 12th to slightly close the gap to series leader Billy Bolt, who finished 13th.

– Bolt extended his advantage over Manuel Lettenbichler to 275 points with just one round of the Championships remaining.

– The World Enduro Super Series concludes with the eighth and final round, Red Bull Knockout on November 10.

Related: Highlights of gnarly Gotland

Albin Elowson: “I’m so happy to take the win here in Gotland. I knew I had the speed before the race, but you never know what can happen around here, especially in these conditions. I got a decent start and tried to make some passes in the early chaos. I went through a lot of goggles – that’s one of the main things at this race, you have to keep your eyes clear in order to ride properly. I know I have the speed, I just have to build my confidence a little and hopefully I can get some more good results in the future.”

Robert Kvarnstrom: “That was a really tough race. It was so wet and so muddy. I think it was one of the toughest editions of GGN that we’ve ever done. I got a good start and was running with Albin Elowson early on, but a few mistakes and some issues with the traffic cost me time and he gapped me. I found some more speed towards the end, but it wasn’t quite enough to pressure Albin for the lead.”

Billy Bolt: “I had a tough first lap. Another rider crashed in front of me and I managed to stop, but then someone else crashed into me from behind and we were all stuck in a mud puddle. I got going again but got mixed up in another crash and went down again – that’s when I broke the throttle tube. I made the mistake of stopping to try and fix it and lost so many places as a result. I’m a little bit disappointed not to have finished higher – I think without the problems I could have – but importantly I have stretched my lead at the top of the standings as we now look towards the final round in Holland.”

Results – World Enduro Super Series, Round 7

  1. Albin Elowson (Husqvarna – SWE) 6 laps, 2:59:02
  2. Robert Kvarnstrom (Yamaha – SWE) 3:01:52
  3. Ken Bengston (Husqvarna – SWE) 3:03:38
  4. Taddy Blazusiak (KTM – POL) 3:06:59
  5. Sebastian Martensson (Husqvarna – SWE) 3:08:33

World Enduro Super Series Standings (After round 7)

  1. Billy Bolt (Husqvarna – GB) 4420
  2. Manuel Lettenbichler (KTM – GER) 4145
  3. Josep Garcia (KTM – ESP) 3700
  4. Taddy Blazusiak (KTM – POL) 3675
  5. Wade Young 3220

WORLD ENDURO SUPER SERIES – 2018 SCHEDULE

Rnd 1. Extreme XL Lagares (Portugal) May 11-13
Rnd 2. Erzbergrodeo Red Bull Hare Scramble (Austria) May 31-June 3
Rnd 3. Trèfle Lozérien AMV (France) June 8-10
Rnd 4. Red Bull Romaniacs (Romania) July 24-28
Rnd 5. Red Bull 111 Megawatt (Poland) September 8-9
Rnd 6. Hawkstone Park Cross-Country (England) September 22-23
Rnd 7. Gotland Grand National (Sweden) October 26-27
Rnd 8. Red Bull Knock Out (The Netherlands) November 10