Steve Holcombe wins World Enduro title

Devon rider takes the world E3 crown at final round in Cahours to become Britain’s first enduro world champ since David Knight

Steve Holcombe wins World Enduro title

CHAMPIONSHIPS, so the wise old guys tell us, are won and lost on your bad days and Steve Holcombe just proved as much by winning the World Enduro title.  

He said: “We had a mechanical on the second day of Finland, it was the same in Spain and that was probably my worst point. I was in tears because I thought that was the championship over and done. I’d had pretty much a DNF in terms of points in Finland and then to have another problem in Spain with a gearbox was devastating – I thought that was it.”

The Holcombe trajectory from Christmas tree farmer to World Champion is a steep one: from the European Enduro Championship in 2014, getting support from Beta UK plus a helping hand into GPs with Boano Racing Team where he did enough in one year (2015) to step up to a factory Beta Racing ride in 2016. Not only did this quiet kid from Devon take the opportunity with both hands, he smashed the E3 World Championship in the process.

Now 23, Holcombe switched from schoolboy motocross to racing Hare and Hound enduros in his early teens. He said: “Unfortunately my brother had an accident racing motocross but luckily for me that meant I got his bike. Without him doing that it would have been a different story.

“It’s a funny thing but I’ve got a piece of paper I wrote when I was a six-year-old. It says ‘Stephen is a World Champion!’ It’s obviously a dream when you’re a kid but although you hope you will do it someday you never think you will.”

Holcombe is in fact the last ever E3 class winner. The enduro world championship classes come into line with other motorcycle sports in 2017, in having an Enduro GP and Enduro 2 class as the feature races, though Juniors, Youth and Women’s championships remain unchanged.