KTM goes into the 2012 Enduro World Championship with a very strong team in all categories and will be aiming for victory in a string of titles in the current season. The team has now returned to full strength after injury problems in 2011 and has been significantly reinforced with proven new talent.
In what is shaping up to be a very positive year for the KTM line-up, the factory team under Fabio Farioli (I) has a great cross section of youth and experience in all classes. French rider Antoine Meo, a double French national champion who already has E1 and E2 world titles to his name joins Eero Remes of Finland in E1. Eero comes off a very positive 2011 season where he finished second in E1 and was the most outstanding rider in the 2011 ISDE and also anchored his title winning national team. Meo and Remes will ride the KTM 250 EXC-F.
Frenchman Johnny Aubert and Spaniard Cristobal Guerrero are again ready to go for the E2 title. Aubert, who was knocked out with injury after a crash in the 2011 GP of Greece has nothing to prove regarding his fitness. He finished a superb overall 14th in his debut ride in the Dakar 2012 on a series KTM 450 Rally Replica. Guerrero who finished overall second to Meo in the 2011 E2 is also reported to be in good form. Aubert will ride the 450 EXC and Guerrero will be on the 350 EXC-F.
The E3 KTM team also has had some heavy-duty reinforcement with French rider Christophe Nambotin joining multiple titleholder David Knight of the UK. David has now completely recovered from double hip surgery that kept him out last year and his early form in the British Enduro and Sprint Enduro championship rounds indicates he is definitely “Ready to Race”. Nambotin, who was second in the E3 class last year, is also the reigning French Champion. Knight rides the 500 EXC in 2012 and Nambotin is on the two-stroke 300 EXC.
Extreme specialist Taddy Blazusiak of Poland rounds off the factory lineup and he goes into the season after a golden past year where he was untouchable in the US EnduroCross, won his fifth Erzberg Hare Scramble, won the inaugural X-Games EnduroCross Gold and took his third World title in SuperEnduro. Taddy rides the KTM 350 EXC-F.
Pit Beirer, Head of KTM Motorsports and team boss Fabio Farioli have high expectations for the KTM Enduro Factory Team in 2012. “We have an excellent selection of riders who have all been working hard to prepare well ahead of the opening races. We’re sure we’re going to be across-the-board title contenders in all three top classes in 2012,” Beirer said. Farioli agrees: “We start the 2012 season with a goal of chasing titles in all three senior classes and also in the juniors, and with the quality of our team this is definitely within our reach.”
This year’s World Championship season starts in South America with a double header of two race weekends in Chile and Argentina at the end of March before returning to Europe for the four Iberian races in May. Italy, Sweden, Finland and France complete the calendar with the final on October 21-22, 2012 in Brignoles.
KTM Enduro Factory Team 2012 (from left): Blazusiak (PL), Remes (FIN), Meo (F), Aubert (F), Guerrero (E), Nambotin (F), Knight (UK)
New at the Factory Team – Antoine Meo, who starts on the KTM 250 EXC-F in the E1 class
French connection: Meo (E1), Johnny Aubert (E2) & Christophe Nambotin (E3/300 EXC – only two-stroke)
Taddy Blazusiak on his KTM 350 EXC-F will focus again on US EnduroCross, X-Games and SuperEnduro