Bizarre end to Erzberg

Four finishers share the win at the hardest race in the world
In a totally unprecedented race result, the 2015 Erzberg Rodeo had not one but four joint winners on Sunday. The Iron Giant is always one of the most challenging and hard-core races of the year, but the organisers had out-done themselves by building a track that was so hard that there were only five finishers and those only completed the course by working together to get themselves and their bikes to the finish line. While it might have proved to be a truly memorable event, you have to think that this was not the result they were looking for.

Last year's winner Jonny Walker took an early lead on his KTM, but fellow Briton Graham Jarvis was not far behind in fourth after the succession of massive hillclimbs to exit the vast quarry. Further work from Jarvis took him forward to second but still two minutes off Walker, but was able to get his Husqvarna closer to Walker in the infamous rock-field section known as Carl's Diner. As Walker got into problems, Jarvis took the lead going into the newly-added Downtown section.

Yet after an incredible ten unsuccessful attempts to get through the section, Jarvis initially teamed up with fellow Husky rider Alfredo Gomez before it became evident that even a two-man effort was not going to work. So in a super-human effort that is maybe at the roots of enduro riding Walker, Jarvis, Gomez, Andreas Lettenbichler and Wade Young teamed up to conquer the terrain, even then taking over an hour to get the five bikes and riders through.

After such a team effort, the riders took the decision to cross the finish line together but in a further cruel twist, Wade Young was pulled over yards before the finish and disqualified for a missed check earlier in the day.

Graham Jarvis: β€œIt's been a bit of a strange Red Bull Hare Scramble. What can I say really – four winners. I finally got a decent start and was riding well. I knew Jonny would charge in the early sections so I didn't panic, as I knew the race was going to be a hard one. He had a problem and when we got to Carl's Diner the gap was two minutes. I could see him. I took another few seconds from him there and shortly after Carl's Diner he had stopped to fix his radiator and I got into the lead. But then we arrived to this secret new section called Downtown. It was an impossible hill climb with virgin terrain. I tried 10 times to get up it but it was impossible. Alfredo arrived second and we talked about what to do, we decided to team up but ended up needing Jonny, Letti and Wade Young to get up the hill. For me the race ended there as we all rode together back to the finish. It's an odd way to win a race but I'm happy to make it back to the finish in one piece.”

Mirja Geh / Red Bull Content Pool

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