Enduro racing in Europe

The last few weeks have been pretty busy with 4 races over the last 3 weeks ! Preparation for the first World Enduro was really important for me so I decided to do a couple of races in France on my way out to Italy.

First stop was a midweek race in the north east corner of France to take part in a Bluegrass Enduro tour event in Rombach-Le-Franc. An superb local grass roots event put on by the local bike club with the help of Jerome Clementz and his girlfriend.

There were 6 stages over the day which you could ride to without start times, so it was a pretty leisurely day. All stages were on pretty new freshly cut trails with no practice allowed !! Wicked fun !

There was lunch in the town square during the day and the final stage finished in the square where all the locals had come out to watch ! A really great event and good training on some long descents.

From there I travelled 3 hours south to Metabief. Home to the 1993 World Champs and many French DH races back in the day. It poured with rain all weekend and the stages were pretty much full on DH tracks and they were pretty tough !!

2 days of DHing on my enduro bike…..I survived and took the win, but my body felt it the next day !

From Metabief it was then the long drive down to Punta Ala for the first ever World Enduro ! It was definietly a much anticpiated race and it seemed as though the entire ‘who’s who’ or mountain biking from the last 20yrs was there !! I had a good week running up to the event. I chose to ride my new Trek Remedy 29er bike as there was a lot of pedalling and flowing trails and I loved how the bike felt at speed. I rode the entire 60km course twice before the race to try and learn the stages a little and work out how hard I would need to push on the transitions. We had a mixture of weather during the week but fortunately the sun came out for race day and dried the trails as we rode !

To come away with the win was just amazing. It was sad that Anne Caro crashed out in the first stage as I was really looking forward to racing her again after so many years. But with Anne out I was pushed hard all day by 2 x World DH champion Emmeline Ragot ! It was a big race to win and the perfect start to my season and I am now looking forward to the next round at the end of June.

From Italy it was then home for the 3rd round of the Uk Gravity Enduro Series at Hamsterley. A weekend of sunshine and a really fun short enduro loop was just what I needed to top off a great trip. Another win and now time for a few easy days to recover and recharge for the next trip !

Thanks to Doc Ward for the picture from Hamsterley

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