BMW Husqvarna Motorsport – EWC Rd. 5, Grand Prix of Slovakia Race Report
BMW Husqvarna Motorsport rider Marko Tarkkala has claimed his and the new BMW powered Husqvarna 450cc enduro bike’s highest placing results so far this season having placed sixth in the competitive Enduro 2 class at the GP of Slovakia, round five of the ’10 EWC series. An event that many riders considered to be the toughest of the championship so far due to a challenging enduro special test and rain soaked motocross and extreme tests, Tarkkala ended both days having performed well and having kept mistakes to a minimum. Extremely wet and muddy at the start of day one conditions were thankfully drier on day two, but nevertheless still very tough.
The first time the new BMW powered Husqvarna Enduro 2 class bike has been raced in such wet and demanding conditions, Tarkkala performed well on both days remaining largely mistake free. Like all riders Marko had no option but to be extremely cautious during the first half of the opening day as the wet, grass motocross special test and the slippery tree covered enduro test proved extremely challenging. Improving his speed during the second half of the day Marko claimed a deserved sixth place result, 26 seconds behind fifth placed rider Fabien Planet from France and less than two minutes behind class winner Mika Ahola from Finland.
Day two started with Marko recording the fourth fastest Enduro 2 class time on the opening enduro special test, which set him up well for a another sixth place result. Remaining mistake free and going on to again finish fourth in class on one other enduro test later in the day, Marko continued to ride well on all tests and in matching his day one result of sixth in class further proved the competitiveness and reliability of the new BMW powered 450cc Husqvarna machine.
The BMW Husqvarna Motorsport team will next be in action in the Enduro World Championship at the GP of Greece, which takes place on August 28/29, where Juha Salminen will make his return to competition following the ankle injury that forced him to miss the third, fourth and fifth rounds of the series.
Marko Tarkkala – Enduro 2 class: ‘Sixth on both days is an extremely positive result for both myself and the team. The conditions have been really slippery and tougher than at any other round of the championship this year, so to finish both days without any problems at all and in sixth position is great. Day one was really slippery during the morning, so it was hard to push hard. You had to survive really and just try and not make mistakes. Things improved during the afternoon and I was able to ride harder. I finished fourth on the enduro test on the third lap, so I was pleased with that. The second day also went well. I was fourth again on the opening enduro test, which started the day well, and I then stayed consistent. These have been my best results so far and I’m seventh in the championship so it’s been a really good weekend.’
2010 Enduro World Championship, Grand Prix of Slovakia – Day 1
1. Mika Ahola (Honda) 54.21:30; 2. Rodrig Thain (TM) 54.29:34; 3. Thomas Oldrati (KTM) 54.55:75; 4. Ivan Cervantes (KTM) 55.23:61; 5. Fabien Planet (Sherco) 55.50.70; 6. Marko Tarkkala (BMW Husqvarna Motorsport) 56:17.03; 7. Pierre Alexandre Renet (KTM) 56.19:76; 8. Joakim Ljunggren (Husaberg) 56.25:20; 9. Valtteri Salonen (Husaberg) 56.26:56; 10. Jeff Goblet (Yamaha) 57.39:28; 11. Oscar Balletti (Honda) 58.56:29; 12. Hans Vogels (Husaberg) 58.59:58; 13. Bert Meyer (Honda) 59.17:54; 14. Jordi Figueras (Gas Gas) 59.57:33; 15. Koikeda Takeshi (KTM) 1.02:45.16; 16. Marco Neubert (KTM) 1.04:10.68
2010 Enduro World Championship, Grand Prix of Slovakia – Day 2
1. Thomas Oldrati (KTM) 56.22:56; 2. Mika Ahola (Honda) 56.40:36; 3. Ivan Cervantes (KTM) 56.54:95; 4. Pierre Alexandre Renet (KTM) 57.20:14; 5. Joakim Ljunggren (Husaberg) 58.25:47; 6. Marko Tarkkala (BMW Husqvarna Motorsport) 58.52:92; 7. Valtteri Salonen (Husaberg) 58.53:91; 8. Fabien Planet (Sherco) 59.24:44; 9. Hans Vogels (Husaberg) 59.30:91; 10. Oscar Balletti (Honda) 59.32:67; 11. Jeff Goblet (Yamaha) 59.34:09; 12. Bert Meyer (Honda) 1.02:28.27; 13. Jordi Figueras (Gas Gas) 1.03:03.66; 14. Marco Neubert (KTM) 1.03:56.31; 15. Koikeda Takeshi (KTM) 1.06:27.09