Winner Manuel Lettenbichler poses for a portrait during the Red Bull Erzbergrodeo 2024 in Eisenerz, Austria on June 2, 2024
© Philip Platzer/Red Bull Content Pool
Enduro

King of Erzbergrodeo again! How did Manuel Lettenbichler do it?

Mani Lettenbichler unleashed his riding skills at Red Bull Erzbergrodeo once again and stunned the crowds with his third win in a row. How come the enduro rider from Germany is so hard to beat?
Written by Manuela Maier
5 min readUpdated on
Anyone who wins at Red Bull Erzbergrodeo once is a legend. And anyone who wins here three times is superhuman. Twenty-six-year-old German KTM rider Mani Lettenbichler crowned himself king of the toughest one-day hard enduro race in the world in the Austrian mining town Erzberg once again, finishing first out of 500 riders on the final day showdown to equal Taddy Blazusiak's record of three consecutive victories. So, just what is Lettenbichler’s secret to Red Bull Erzbergrodeo success?
01

Motorcycling was not his first love – but it changed because of a rock

Being born into Andi Lettenbichler’s family, a motorcycle legend, you’d think Lettenbichler junior was destined to ride bikes – but that’s not the case.
Growing up on a farm with 13 horses in southern Germany, he preferred horse riding to sitting on the little motorbike his dad gave him when he was five. But that all changed when he turned six.
"There was a rock, about 30cm high," he explains. "I rode my motorbike over it and that was it – I was completely enamored with the sport. From one day to the next it completely gripped me."
Manuel Lettenbichler performs during the Red Bull Erzbergrodeo 2024 in Eisenerz, Austria on June 2, 2024

The Red Bull Erzbergrodeo is one of the world's toughest enduro races

© Philip Platzer/Red Bull Content Pool

A life-defining passion was defined by a random rock? “Yes, only because of a rock. Simply riding over it just flashed me and I thought, 'Wow! Crazy! This is fun!' and then I did trial-motorcycling until I was 15, switching to Enduro racing in 2014.”
02

He has enduro genes – and the perfect inner circle

Manuel Lettenbichler’s father, Andi, is a bonafide hard enduro legend. A former KTM factory rider, he won the 2015 Red Bull Erzbergrodeo and introduced his son to enduro action, giving him a taste of a new sporting discipline, and helped set him on a course towards the world of hard enduro racing. “He's my best friend, and that’s why our relationship is so good,” says Mani about the special connection he shares with his dad.
Manuel Lettenbichler and Andreas Lettenbichler prepare for Red Bull 111 Megawatt, Poland on September 17, 2016.

Like father, like son

© Lukasz Nazdraczew/Red Bull Content Pool

Andi also accompanies Lettenbichler to every race, acting as an adviser and right-hand man. Lettenbichler senior claims: “Manuel is motivated, consistent, very focused, he has fun and is in a good environment with his girlfriend and family. It's the whole package.”
Manuel and Andreas Lettenbichler.

Manuel and Andreas Lettenbichler

© Future7Media

He's my best friend, and that’s why our relationship is so good
03

A change in mindset kicked off his enduro racing success

Mani came close to winning the Red Bull Erzbergrodeo multiple times before 2022, but didn’t quite make it. That year, something was different – his mindset. It all changed in a conversation with a mental coach, who asked, “What do you do differently in races other than at Erzberg?”
Admitting that he felt more under pressure riding that specific race helped him realise he was overthinking it and losing focus. What the mental coach told him completely changed his mindset going into the 2022 edition – it was the beginning of his winning streak.
“When you’re thinking about results, or what could happen or go wrong, you’re living in the future," the mental coach said. "But when you're in the present, you’re so much more connected to yourself.”
Manuel Lettenbichler performs during the Red Bull Erzbergrodeo in Eisenerz, Austria on June 2, 2024.

Mani lives in the present

© Joerg Mitter/Red Bull Content Pool

04

He thrives under pressure

Everyone was chasing Manuel Lettenbichler – it was the motto for Red Bull Erzbergrodeo 2024! He already had two victories at Erzberg under his belt and had also won the first race of the 2024 FIM Hard Enduro World Championship. Even Red Bull Erzbergrodeo mastermind Karl Katoch predicted a fight: "We'll be excited to see how Lettenbichler deals with the pressure." However, he proved to have nerves of steel on the iron giant.
Mani didn’t take the lead until the first check-point and big climb – but kept extending it after he shook off his competition. Even in the late slippery forest sections that were game-changing for so many, he was able to reset and clear each test. “It's often a disadvantage when you go first,” he commented after the race. “You have to build a track first. But I was able to take my time and take it easy.”
Manuel Lettenbichler performs during the Red Bull Erzbergrodeo 2024 in Eisenerz, Austria on June 2, 2024

Pressure is a privilege to Mani

© Philip Platzer/Red Bull Content Pool

05

He mixes up his training for ultimate enduro fitness

Mani’s number-one priority is to be passionate about what he does and have fun doing it. He’s confident he’d immediately switch paths if racing didn’t make him happy anymore. But how exactly does he keep the passion alive?
“I have a break, because otherwise, I’d lose my passion for motorsports and then it gets dangerous for me,” he says. “I’ll go cycling or hiking, anything to get back my motivation for riding."
Manuel Lettenbichler races during the Red Bull Erzbergrodeo 2022 in Eisenerz, Austria on June 19, 2022

Mani mixes things up to keep training fun

© Philip Platzer/Red Bull Content Pool

He even changed his training program to accommodate his need for a more diverse routine. “I had a trainer, which was cool and very beneficial for me in terms of how to make the most out of endurance training and weight training. But I often felt that it was too much.”
It’s way too much for me to be only riding my bike and that’s it
So he told his trainer he wanted to try on his own. “Since then, I only do stuff I like, such as mountain biking or ski touring, or hiking. I love doing other stuff. It’s way too much for me to be only riding my bike and that’s it. I’m also so much better at motorcycling when I have fun.” He even put his endurance to a test at the 2024 Wings For Life World Run – completing an impressive 22.3km before the catcher car got him.
Red Bull Erzbergrodeo 2024: Rewatch the fight against the Iron Giant
Did you miss the Red Bull Erzbergrodeo 2024 or do you want to watch the battle in the rocks again? No problem! You can watch the enduro race in full on Red Bull TV.

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