Dear Alta Motors, Shut Up Already…

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…and just tell us that you’re racing in the Erzberg Rodeo. ?

For the last week, Alta Motors has been teasing a big announcement on social media, an announcement that features enduro racers Ty Tremaine and Lyndon Poskitt, along with the hashtag #hardenduro.

The news that we should hear officially tomorrow, as our Bothan spies tell us, is that Alta Motors is going racing in the hardest single-day motorcycle race in the worldthe Erzberg Rodeo.

Shut out from more traditional competition avenues – like AMA Supercross and Loretta Lynn’s AMA Amateur National Motocross Championship – Alta Motors is taking a different tack, and going into the belly beast while they’re at it.

Held in a giant mine in Austria, the Erzberg Rodeo is on KTM’s home turf – KTM also being Alta’s biggest competitor in the premium off-road space (and the only other OEM with a serious electric motorcycle program running).

Competing in the Erzberg Rodeo is no easy feat either, with only a handful of finishers each year. However, Alta may hold an advantage over the grueling course, with its low-speed handling aided by its electric drivetrain.

A high-profile event, where expectations on finishing are already low, entry into the Erzberg Rodeo is a low-risk venture for the San Franciscan startup. Also, with Red Bull the marquee sponsor, there will be plenty of exposure to be had. This makes the Erzberg Rodeo a smart endeavor for Alta.

What will be interesting to see though is how Alta’s riders handle the more technical aspects of the course, especially in instances where one would traditionally manipulate the clutch to get a wheel over an obstacle. 

Of course the real news here is that the dawn of electric motorcycles competing head-to-head against gas machines. We have seen similar matchups at the Isle of Man TT and Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, but Erzberg will hold the first commingled starting line.

The powers that be might not be ready for it (we have certainly seen pushback from the AMA in recent months), with performance balancing being the chief concern for racing series, but with Alta racing at Erzberg, others are surely to follow.

The flood gates have been opened. May you live in interesting times.

Source: Bothan Spies; Photo: Alta Motors