There are Enduro racers, Hard Enduro racers, Extreme Enduro racers, and then there is Graham Jarvis. His resume reads like an impossible bit of fiction, winning the Scottish Six Days Trial four times, and if that wasn’t hardcore enough he has dominated the Scott Trail a record holding nine times. That’s the same number of wins as Ferris Bueller took days off, if you are keeping track, so we are expecting a movie from Graham any day now. He does have a book out, so the groundwork is set.
His sponsors at the Husqvarna Rockstar Factory Team have to be pretty stoked that he has stood on the top of the box at a number of energy drink rival Red Bull hosted events, such as six wins at the Red Bull Romaniacs and Red Bull Sea to Sky Extreme Enduros, and five wins at the Erzberg Rodeo Red Bull Hare Scramble. Let’s not forget his five Hell’s Gate wins, either. This guy is a beast.
We convinced him to take some time out of his day to chat with us, because in addition to being a badass on the bike, he is a genuine motorcycle guy that loves talking bikes.
“People recognize dirtbikes, don’t they so it’s just dirtbikes on gnarly terrain in’it, basically.” - Graham Jarvis on how he explains what Hard Enduro is.
For him, maybe, but sometimes for us it is more like hiking with a dirtbike.
We talked with Graham about his recent injury on the second day of Romaniacs. His mechanic told him to just maintain pace as Graham had a sizeable lead over second place, but in true Graham Jarvis fashion, that wasn’t enough.
“Why fucking just get a bit of time on him, you know what I mean”, he thought, and when pushing a bit harder he hit a rut and was faced with the choice we have all made hundreds of times - put a foot down or fall off the bike. At Javis’ pace, putting a foot down means it is hitting the ground at a pretty good clip, and even with knee braces on “somethings gotta give, especially when you are tired as well, in’it.” He had an ACL injury 20 years before, so he knew that he was in for months of recovery.
We asked what advice he had for people that are just starting out, asking him to keep in mind that in our sport there are young people full of enthusiasm with no cash, and then there are older people that are just starting out with the same enthusiasm as the young bucks but are getting into the sport later in life.
“You see it a lot that guys had perhaps ridden bikes when they were younger, then have a career, family, and all the rest of it and then are coming back into it. Probably the first thing to say is to, you know, make sure that your fitness and stuff is good, in’it, to avoid injury as much as you can. Get back into it slowly. And then get the basics of the riding, and the schools and stuff”.
We also talked to him about trials riding, cross training, the unreal speed in his videos, generating content for Instagram, shed remodeling, motocross, schooling youngsters in the gnarly stuff, the growth of Extreme Enduro, not being able to walk a course pre race, appropriate clutch technique, testing with the factory team, mooses vs tubeless, not riding motorcycles (blasphemy!), running tours in Spain, hoping that his tours are coming to America, experience vs youthful exuberance, the mental game and wanting it more badly, hydration, and of course Graham Jarvis’ businesses.
That reminds us, Graham has an online training subscription coming soon to grahamjarvis.org, in addition to the information about his signature tours that are held in eight countries, with two more in the works. While you are there, check out the Jarvis Race Team page and how you can help support these riders by purchasing some signature gear.
But first, watch the whole Graham Jarvis interview on our YouTube channel for all of the above and more! Hit the subscribe button as this is just the beginning!