Like so many events, the Red Bull Erzbergrodeo hard enduro event ended up taking an unplanned break due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The last event was held in 2019—and hard enduro enthusiasts, both professional and amateur, were extremely eager to get back to climbing up the Erzberg mountain. Thankfully, they finally got their chance again in 2022.
Of the 1,200 official entrants who started the event, only 500 (!) managed to qualify for the main race, which took place on Sunday of the four-day festival that ran from June 16 through 19, 2022. By the time the event was over, only eight riders in total had managed to finish within the four-hour time limit.
Germany’s Manuel Lettenbichler won, and was the only rider to finish in under three hours. This was not only Manuel’s first win; it was also an historic one for the race. His father, Andreas, also won Erzbergrodeo just seven years ago. As of 2022, they’re the only father and son team to accomplish that feat—so clearly, it runs in the family.
In this video, we get to see just a taste of what the top eight finishers endured in order to finish the 2022 Erzbergrodeo Hare Scramble. In a way, that name is a bit funny—more than once, while watching the riders rock-hopping, I wondered if it shouldn’t be called a Goat Scramble instead? In any case, we get to see Mario Roman (who finished in second), Trystan Hart, Billy Bolt, Alfredo Gomez, Michael Walkner, Wade Young, and Matthew Green as well.
Outside the top eight, we also get to spend a little time with five-time Erzbergrodeo winner Graham Jarvis. Unfortunately, he ended up with mechanical problems that kept him stuck at the starting line for over an hour, which essentially ended his race before it really had the chance to begin. He managed to complete quite a lot, even despite that fact—but was unable to complete the entire event in under four hours.
As you’ll see in this video, the thing about Erzbergrodeo isn’t falling. You and your bike are both going to fall—and fall a LOT. You’re going to slide. You’re going to have to redo things you thought you already did, and it’s going to be frustrating. Still, if you fall down four times and get back up five, and you managed to get up the hill on that fifth try, you know what? You win.