Large field of racers test their skills and their machines against Otjihase’s humps
The racetrack at Otjihase near Windhoek was a hive of frenetic activity on Saturday as about 120 riders entered for the first-ever Funduro organised by the Namibian Enduro Club. The day-long racing was enthusiastically supported by an unexpectedly large crowd of spectators.
The draw card of a Funduro day is that just about any biker on an offroad bike can enter. This saw a very wide range of bikes taking part from a tiny 50cc Yampie to an oversized 1200cc, Beemer HP2.
Three races were run during the day. Thirty seven team lined up for the first race, each team comprising three riders. The time catch in this relay race is when the timing transponders have to be handed from one team member to the next before the following lap can by raced.
A very fast first lap produced mild chaos in the pits as the transponder bracelets changed arms. In a relay lap time is of the essence. Over the first lap, Marcel Henle returned to the pits first, but in the second lap. Karl Heinz Erni brave attack brought his team back into the loop. It was only during the third lap that it became obvious why consistent performance is so important.
After three laps, the team of Heiko Stranghoehner, Ronnie Adams and Derrick Clark took the honours. In second place was Teddy Kausch, Karl Heinz Erni and Andre Steinfurth. And despite Henle mad first lap, he and team mates Axel Foerster and Mark Roesner eventually had to settle for third position.
The second race for the day started just after lunch. For this race, slower riders had to go first while the more nimble speed freaks had to wait for the last lap. The outcome however, was not that different from the first race with Stranghoehner, Adams and Clark again taking the laurels.
Erni took a bad fall which also cost his team their earlier second position.
For the third race, Kai Hennes replaced Derrick Clark but the team clung onto their winning streak. The Henle, Foerster, Roesner team moved up one notch with Olaf Pack, Johan Meyer and Francois Steyn third on the podium.
The second Funduro is scheduled for 17 March at Farm Omakawara near Witvlei. This track, notorious for its many turn, is popular with all classes of racers and it is expected to produce another break-out for the Namibian Enduro Club.
Caption: Consistency was the name of the game for Heiko Stranghoehner at Saturday’s first-ever Funduro race at Othjihase outside Windhoek.