The King of Supercross vs The Mountain

A look back at the 2006 ErzbergRodeo, in what was a vintage year.
Erzberg Rodeo 2009
Classic Erzberg © Red Bull Content Pool
By Jonty Edmunds

Celebrating its 12th running, the event saw David Knight complete an impressive double, topping the time sheets in the now defunct twin-cylinder race before racing to a deserved victory in the Hare Scramble.

Joining in on the fun were two of the biggest names in US Motocross/Supercross – Travis Pastrana and Jeremy McGrath. With Pastrana making a return to the mountain having failed to finish the Hare Scramble in 2005, the then Suzuki mounted action sport legend got the job done and finished 11th.

Wanting to challenge himself in a race he knew little about the ‘King of Supercross’ Jeremy McGrath instantly impressed by setting a prologue qualifying time just four seconds slower than David Knight . “I don’t have any problems with the high speed stuff,” commented the Honda rider back in 2006. “I just wish there were a few more jumps in the course.”

The main event – the Red Bull Hare Scramble – didn't go to plan for McGrath. Numerous mistakes early in the race saw the seven-time AMA 250cc Supercross champion almost instantly switch to survival mode.

“Oh man, I made so many mistakes early in the race,” commented McGrath. “I messed up the first and third hill and then rode like a maniac to catch the riders ahead of me. I would pass all my buddies then crash and have to pass them back again. I did that a bunch of times.

It is probably the hardest thing I have ever done on a motorcycle.

“Finishing the event was awesome though as it is probably the hardest thing I have ever done on a motorcycle. Some of the rock sections were incredible. I certainly learned a lot during the race. I didn’t ever think about giving up, it was always my goal to just keep battling on and try my best to get to the finish.

“It sure was tiring, I had to take a rest a few times. I’m not sure if there is anything that I could have done better to prepare myself, I guess a decent start would have helped me. It wouldn’t have made that much of a difference because I was a fish out of water in the wooded sections.”

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