Do you dream about holding onto a Beta 300RR Racing or Gasser EC 300 as it blasts you near vertically up a boulder strewn slope, from one bench to the next, in an old abandoned mine pit, just like they do in Erzberg.
Do you dream about popping and hopping over tractor tyres the size of a Fiat Punto, just like Taddy Blazusiak.Do you have a poster of Jonny Walker 'sending it' blu-tacked to your wall?
We all have dreams; and then there is reality. Reality is where most of us sit as riders and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. But, to dream of one day being a competitive Hard Enduro racer is not a bad thing either! Our dreams keep us moving; they keep us motivated. They keep us living.
Please just ensure that, if you are dreaming of riding the W.A. Hard Enduro Series, the path you set yourself to learn and develop your skills is well considered, progressive and measured.
If your skill level is representative of the vast majority of riders out there (i.e. you are an every-other weekend warrior) and you are looking to get into Hard Enduro, then your riding goals most likely look a little something like this:
- You don't want to have to grab a fist-full of front brake, dismount and dead-lift your ride every time you encounter a massive log across your path;
- You don't want to sift anxiously through your fanny pack for a protractor and slide rule every time you reach the foot-slopes of some gnarly hill;
- You don't want to have to retro-fit an aqua-lung to your airbox every time you pull up at a creek crossing; and
- You don't want to dig out your iPhone and update your health insurance premiums every time your front end dangles over the edge of a decent drop off.
- a little bit of courage;
- a lot of tenacity; and
- lashings of humility.
Courage in Hard Enduro is the willingness back yourself and your ability; not sporadically, but constantly. Courage is the willingness to idle up to an obstacle, whilst trying to maintain balance and posture, and then twist the throttle wide open and drop the clutch knowing full well you may not make it the first, second or even third time.
Tenacity is the ability to get up again and again knowing that, at some point, you will get over it; whatever 'it' is. What went wrong that time? What didn’t you do or what could you have done better? You know it turned to custard; you felt it was coming on the approach, and by the time you hit the ground you had already figured out what you need to do differently next time. That is tenacity. The ability to peel yourself off your bike, get up off the ground, and give it another crack.
Humility is the ability to accept that there are, and always will be many people better than you at what you are trying to do. Yes, you probably do look like douche as you clip a tyre and send the back-end east, causing you drop like Brazil’s Neymar Jr. (he is one of those theatrical World Cup football players). Yes, you will probably look like a tool as you lay under your bike because a series of slippery coppers logs quick unpicked your apparently seamless approach. But if you can accept that these things happen in the learning process then you have humility.
But above and beyond all of that, the most important thing you will need is support. Support for you and support for your machine.
At Moto Dynamics we have everything to keep you riding, so if your bike does suffer during the learning process we can help you sort it out.
As for you, well we recommend a little training and a lot of practice. We can help with that too. Jump over to trialandenduroskills.com and book yourself in to get your Hard Enduro training underway. Ride Better Ride Different with Neil and keep riding with Moto Dynamics.
(Trials and Enduro Writer)