Since then, he has been the star of Dutch road racing: Torleif Hartelman

Torleif Hartelman – Season 1998 | Photo © Henk Teerink

Dutch road racing champion last year, where did he go, what he does today and how he views the current road racing sport. We regularly present the best Dutch road races from the past in the “The Best Dutch Road Races Since Then” section and ask them all a series of (same) questions. Today: Torleif Hartelman.

How’s Toriv Hartlemann doing?

  • Noun: Torleif Hartelman
  • Nickname: Turbest (then)
  • Boy: 03-30-1969
  • residence: Hengelo leather
  • partner: Enter Ox
  • Start a road racing career: 1993
  • Active in: 1993 – 2003
  • Number of titles: 1 (1998)
  • The end of the road racing career: SPA 2003 last led by ONK
  • current occupation: MotoGP Racer Analyst, Freelance Employer
  • Facebook social network:
  • Twitter:
  • Instagram:

How did you deal with road racing back then?

Due to a long shoulder injury in motocross, Mile Bajic – who I did my fitness training with – convinced me to ride a racer!

Who is the driver who fought the best fights on the racetrack?

With many, but with Jan Hanson, Kero Verstreten, Mile Bajic and Wilko Zellenberg, it was always fun and fair fights on the track, but then we often enjoyed it together.

Best motorcycle I’ve ever ridden and why?

Is my Honda 125cc HRC Motorcycle from 1992, I ran so great and fast that I was able to compete in the top five of the ONK again, despite my shoulder injury.

What is your favorite track that you rode and why?

Spa-Francorchamps, fast with a difference in altitude and you are on the road for a long time with your motorbike. The contestant will understand what I mean!

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What’s the weirdest and funniest thing you’ve seen in a race?

That was last year, i.e. Petronas withdrew as a championship sponsor from our Grand Prix team [Petronas Sepang Racing].

What is the best thing you learned from racing?

All the memories, connections around the world and the different titles I’ve been able to achieve with so many riders!

What did you do after your active road racing career?

Yamaha NL’s Mang Yuan advised me at the end of 2003 to start mentoring other riders and I still do so today, with pleasure.

Do you still exercise in any way?

Working as a Riders Analyst (Psychologist) at WITHU Yamaha RNF MotoGP Team.

Torleif Hartelman with his Yamaha YZF-R6 (35) from ex-pupil Cal Crutchlow right | Photo © Damon Trink

Which current driver do you respect the most and why?

Sam Lowes is sociable and has amazing willpower to keep getting the most out of him. Ditto Valentino Rossi, he surprised me up close this year what a world topper still!

Who do you see as the greatest (currently active) road racing talent in the Netherlands and why?

Michael van de Marc, watch his results at the FIFA World Superbike Championship.

How do you view the current races, both nationally and internationally, from your experience?

At the moment, I’m not involved in national races anymore to judge that. Internationally, the different cup races stand out the best and you can see that in the nearby races in all categories even MotoGP.

Wednesday 12-30-2021: Dutch road racing champion at the time: Peter den Heiger.

Yes, you read that right, Thursday 30th December is already the next ‘best Dutch road race since then’. Due to the holidays and a quiet period in road racing, we will be publishing this section for a number of consecutive days from Christmas Day. Famous names like Jarno Janssen, Harry van Beek, Rudi Markinck, Gus van Dongen, Turleif Hartelmann and a few more surprising names and “toppers” since then will tell their story in this section in the coming days.

Do you have a suggestion on the “best road racing since” that you think would fit right in for this category (ex-Dutch champion, Grand Prix – or WorldSBK driver or Dutch TT race participant, for example). Let us know at [email protected] In this email, please include the driver’s name and contact details where and how we can access this “road racing from behind at the time”.

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