The curtains of the National Enduro Championship officially drew to a close in Bronkhorstspruit, Gauteng, this weekend.
For PEPSON PLASTICS HUSQVARNA RACING, the double-header season finale proved to be the most nail-biting events of the season when the E1 Championship was decided by less than a minute.
Husqvarna’s 2018 recruit William Oosthuizen was only points away from securing the coveted title, but needed to win at least one of the two days of racing ahead of rival Kyle Flanagan.
A second place finish on Saturday meant that the final round of the series would determine the overall winner. After an intense day of blazing through some brutal terrain, Oosthuizen crossed the finish line only seconds ahead of Flanagan, but a 45 second lead was needed to take the overall win on corrected time.
Despite the disappointment, a second overall in the premier class is more than the 20-year old could have dreamed of before the start of the season. Oosthuizen’s riding career changed dramatically this year when he got the call to Husqvarna to sign up with his first professional racing team.
With a new-found motivation to unlock his full potential as an enduro rider, Oosthuizen commented:
“I fought with Kyle until the very end, and I gave everything I had. This was my first season of really pushing to take the victory, and I couldn’t be more proud with how everything turned out. The opportunity to race for Husqvarna has given me immense motivation to pursue the dreams I have as an enduro rider,” said Oosthuizen.
Snatching up another spot on the podium for PEPSON PLASTICS HUSQVARNA was Matt Green, who finished third behind his teammate overall.
At just 17-years old, the rider made the step up to the E1 Class this year after winning the High School Championship.
What was predicted to be a ‘learning curve’ for Green quickly became a stand-out season where the rising talent proved to be more than capable of running with South Africa’s best in this field.
His National podium finish came just after the rider made headlines with an exceptional performance at the iconic Red Bull Sea to Sky, where he finished 5th behind the world’s enduro giants in the Gold Class.
“It was a big decision to make to step up to the E1 Class, but it’s the best thing I ever did. I’ve grown so much this season, and I’ve enjoyed every step of the way. To come away with third overall in E1 and a solid international finish was big for me! Now onto some final preparations before the Roof of Africa,” said Green.
As the event drew to a close, Husqvarna South Africa Brand Manager Fred Fensham wraps up what has been a truly memorable season for the brand:
“It’s unbelievable that an entire season came down to just seconds. William did an incredible job and I’m immensely proud of him. And to have our young Matt also pull off a podium finish, after running off the podium most of the season, is more than I could have asked for. I can’t wait to see what the 2019 season holds!”
Published by: Husqvarna Media
Picture Caption: William Oosthuizen and Matt Green, South Africa's rising enduro talents.
Photography by: www.zcmc.co.za
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