Dutchman Jeffrey Herlings has won the world’s toughest motorbike beach race in the Dunes of The Hague.
By Hayden Gregory
It was a masterful display by the hometown rider, beating home over 1000 riders to reinforce his status as one of the best sand riders in the world. Herlings won both the qualifying race and the main event which included fellow top riders Glenn Coldenhoff, Steve Ramon and Nathan Watson.
The testing 5km beach track was awash with competitors yet the three times MX2 World Champion rose above to become the first Dutchman to win the Knock Out since Marc de Reuver in 2006.
“The track was pretty flat first, which made it easier for everyone,” Herlings reflected. “When it got rougher, it became more like an MXGP track. I felt more at home and could overtake.
“There are a lot of specialist sand racers here. I showed them I can do this as well. It was a great race and I had a great lead. It went really well and that is just amazing.
“I think this is the hardest beach race in the world. I know when I see my bed tonight, I’ll fall asleep immediately.”
British rider Nathan Watson scored second place for the second year running after a race long battle with Glenn Coldenhoff. The pair played out a dramatic duel swapping places lap after lap. Ultimately Watson got the points, yet KTM celebrated a podium clean sweep.
Results Red Bull Knock Out 2016
1. Jeffrey Herlings (NED), KTM,
2. Nathan Watson (GBR), KTM,
3. Glenn Coldenhoff (NED), KTM,
4. Steve Ramon (BEL), Suzuki,
5. Axel Van de Sande (BEL), Yamaha