Steve Holcombe Holds Firm at Top of EnduroGP World Championship
Steve Holcombe’s hopes of securing the 2017 EnduroGP World Championship title at the GP of Great Britain frustratingly failed to materialise following a challenging three-hour cross-country race on day two of the event.
Topping the result sheets in style at the end of day one’s enduro sprint, Holcombe set the pace at the start of the second day’s XC event but an issue with his rear wheel brought his hopes of winning to an end. Finishing fifth, Steve remains at the head of the EnduroGP championship standings, 40 points ahead of his nearest rival Loic Larrieu.
Dominating the first half of the opening day’s enduro sprint event, Holcombe topped all six enduro special tests. Aware that he would have his work cut out doing the same around the shorter motocross test, he nevertheless ended the day some 31 seconds ahead of runner-up Nathan Watson. Day two saw Steve secure the holeshot at the start of the cross-country race, before opening up a healthy lead. Forced into the pits so his team could work on his bike, Steve was soon back on track pushing on relentlessly before finally finishing the race in a hard-fought fifth.
“Despite things going so, so well on the first day here at Hawkstone I can hardly put into words how disappointing it is to have a simple technical problem undo what was looking like being another great and potentially winning result. Everything went exactly to plan at the start of the cross-country race – I got the holeshot, opened up a good lead and felt great. Then I had problems with my rear wheel. I had no option but to come into the pits, which cost me the lead and five to 10 minutes. That was the win gone, so I just pushed as hard as I could to try and salvage the best result I could. Fifth is what it is, but I know it could have been so much better. Thankfully, the sprint enduro went much better. Winning the first six enduro tests was amazing. I knew it would be hard to beat the ex GP motocross riders on the six motocross tests we had but I hung on in there and got the day win. Despite the issue on day two I still have a 40-point lead going into the final round of the series. So many people helped me prepare for this event, and supported me during the weekend, I owe them a huge thank you,” he said.
Round eight of the 2017 FIM EnduroGP World Championship takes place in Zschopau, Germany on October 20-22.
CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS – ENDUROGP WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP (AFTER ROUND 7)
1. Steve Holcombe (Beta) 300 points
2. Loic Larrieu (Yamaha) 260
3. Nathan Watson (KTM) 247