A Canadian rider finished second in this year’s KTM Ultimate Race, and another Canuck finished eighth.
The KTM Ultimate Race is a six-day race through the Moroccan desert that runs at the same time as the Merzouga Rally. It’s an in-house event for riders who win the regional KTM Adventure Rally events around the world. Those top finishers earn a trip to the Ultimate Race.
In many ways, it’s similar to BMW’s long-standing GS Trophy events, which see riders battle it out in regional competitions for the chance to display their skills at a larger, international event.
This year’s Ultimate Race had each rider blasting through 1,000 km of dunes and desert aboard an identical KTM 790 Adventure R. American rider Scott Myers won, but he was pushed hard by Canadian Radek Burkat (pictured above). Burkat was second overall, with fellow Canadian Vasile Scurtu earning an eighth. Congrats to them! See the official KTM press release below:
KTM: THE ULTIMATE WINNER!
Canadian Radek Burkat takes 2nd place!
After 6 days and over 1000 kilometers, the KTM ULTIMATE RACE winner has been crowned!
Scott Myers has defeated the desert in order to become the winner of the first ever KTM ULTIMATE RACE.
After six days of racing in the Moroccan sands as part of the Merzouga Rally against eleven other KTM ULTIMATE RACE qualifiers on equally prepared KTM 790 ADVENTURE Rs, it was the 50-year-old from the USA who tasted victory.
Myers was chased hard by second place finisher Radek Burkat, 45, from Canada! Burkat was a mere 59 minutes and 55 seconds back. He said: “That was awesome. Fantastic. I’ve never ridden anything like that in my life. Such an awesome event; the Merzouga Rally and the Ultimate Race. This is the epitome of adventure biking. Like the highest level. The pinnacle of cool stuff you can do with an adventure bike. Thank you very much.”
Entry to the KTM ULTIMATE RACE was available to any rider who took part in one of the six KTM ADVENTURE RALLIES held during 2018 and at the start of this year. The special qualification events tested the riders to show if they had the excellent machine control, navigational skill and competent mechanical ability required in order to line up on a rally-prepared KTM 790 ADVENTURE R for a special class held within the Merzouga Rally.
Only the top two riders from each event would be chosen and, further proving this was the opportunity of a lifetime for these KTM Adventure riders, they were supported like KTM Factory riders at the KTM ULTIMATE RACE. Backed up by four mechanics and 14 members of KTM staff, in the lead up to the event and throughout, the competitors were also coached by some of the world’s finest and fastest offroad riders like Chris Birch, Marc Coma and Quinn Cody.
On finishing the race, Scott Myers (USA) said: “This is the best feeling in the world. You have no idea how happy I am right now. It was extremely tough, especially in the last stage. I just kept watching and thinking this has got to end! It was so hard. I was following Jordan (Huibregtse), he crashed, then he followed me, then I crashed. And we just kept doing that for the whole stage. But what an awesome experience. So cool.”
Behind Radek Burkat in third place was Jordan Huibregtse, 27, from the USA who was just ten minutes further back to complete an all-KTM 790 ADVENTURE R podium, of course. He said: “It was a blast. Riding in Morocco on a KTM 790 ADVENTURE R with a bunch of great people from around the world. That’s an awesome experience. Seriously cool. I’m thrilled that I made it. Thrilled the bike made it and that I kept my podium spot.”
Hubert Trunkenpolz (CMO KTM AG): “The KTM ADVENTURE RALLIES and the KTM ULTIMATE RACE demonstrate what makes KTM Adventure riders different and that the READY TO RACE spirit is alive in our customers. I want to congratulate all twelve riders who took part, especially as the race was extremely tough on them and the KTM 790 ADVENTURE R. These are normal people and not Factory riders, but they saw the opportunity for an incredible adventure and tackled it head on.”
KTM ULTIMATE RACE 2020
For those who are attending this year’s KTM ADVENTURE RALLIES on a twin-cylinder KTM ADVENTURE bike, KTM is excited to announce the renewed possibility to compete for a place at the KTM ULTIMATE RACE in 2020 – registration can be done directly at the online booking of a KTM ADVENTURE RALLY event. Register here for the 2019 Canadian KTM Adventure Rally at Red Mountain in Rossland, BC.
KTM ULTIMATE RACE 2019 RESULTS
1. Scott Myers (USA)
2. Radek Burkat (CAN)
3. Jordan Huibregtse (USA)
4. Sebastian Blum (GER)
5. Christiaan Odendaal (RSA)
6. Kevin Archer (NZL)
7. Elliot Kent (NZL)
8. Vasile Scurtu (CAN)
9. Greg Hodgskin (RSA)
10. Steve Robertson (AUS)
11. Stefano Sassaro (ITA)
12. Robert Nowak (AUS)