This past weekend was the round n.º 5 of the enduro world series in the mecca of mountain biking – WHISTLER (Yeeaahhhh booooyyyy).
It was a stressful and crazy race and at the end two riders stood up from the rest of the pack, Anne Caroline Chausson and Jared Graves. Anne is back to her peak form and Graves finally got his reward for his effort.
Press release from Enduroworldseries:
It was the most grueling, technical round of the Enduro World Series so far. The five stage, single day format, with almost 50 minutes of racing, and approximately 50km of riding, challenged racers on every level – even demanding serious consideration as to what to pack for a mostly self-sufficient race across both sides of Whistler Valley.
After eight hours in the saddle, Australia’s Jared Graves (Yeti Fox Factory Racing), and France’s Anne Caroline Chausson (Ibis), took the victories, marking the first time this year that either has stood atop the top step of the Enduro World Series. Graves’ time was 47:57.18 and Chausson’s was 55:24.14.
Belgium’s Martin Maes (GT Factory Racing) continued his streak as the Young Untouchable, dominating the Junior race and winning every stage to take another convincing victory with a total time of 50:25.292, seven minutes ahead of his nearest Junior competitor, a time that would have put him amongst the top 10 of the Open Men’s finishers.
Nerves were high as riders dropped down the start ramp at 8:00 am Sunday morning – and the stakes were high, given that only 300 points separated the top five racers in the Men’s Overall Series. Overall Series Leader France’s Jérôme Clementz (Cannondale Overmountain) took an early lead, winning the first two stages and the fourth.
Having won 12 of the 19 stages in the first four rounds of the Enduro World Series, Clementz and Graves were the pace-setters for the day. Graves went into stage 5 in second place, gunning for the win in the final descent. The fast and furious finale took riders from Top of the World down to the Whistler Plaza – a 10.63km, 1450m vertical, top-to-bottom link-up. Graves played the stage perfectly to eat up Clementz’s commanding 21 second lead and take a well-deserved stage and race win.
France’s Fabien Barel (Canyon Factory) had top 4 finishes in every stage, winning the third stage, but a five minute penalty issued for accepting outside assistance during training effectively neutralized any advantage that may have been gained from use of a vehicle, dropping him to 49th position, and opening up the third step of today’s podium for New Zealand’s Jamie Nicoll, an unsponsored rider who will use his Crankworx prize money to support flights and entry into the final two rounds.
Anne Caroline Chausson’s comeback from injury in Punta Ala proved complete, with her win of four out of five stages to take her first Enduro World Series victory.
Tracy Moseley who has dominated the Women’s series so far rode a solid race, sitting third for most of the day, then edging out Cecile Ravanel (GT Skoda) on the final stage to secure second place overall. Ravanel who was carrying a small elbow injury was very happy with her day and third place result.
Despite Sunday’s freshly constituted podiums, the current oversall standings, with five out of seven races completed, remains the same, with France’s Jérôme Clementz (Cannondale Overmountain) and Great Britain’s Tracy Moseley (Trek Factory Racing) leading the Men’s Individual and Women’s Individual series, and Belgium’s Martin Maes (GT Factory Racing) topping the Junior division.
Says Enduro World Series Managing Director, Chris Ball, “It was truly an epic day and a true test for everybody. The course delivered, the Crankworx team put on an amazing event and the racers delivered. Feedback from the riders was incredible – they enjoyed every stage.”
The Enduro World Series moves next, August 24-25, to Val d’Isere in France for a combined event that includes Round 6 of the Enduro World Series and the Enduro of Nations.
The Enduro of Nations is a team event that will crown the best national team. National teams will be comprised of the top three riders from each country currently in the EWS rankings.
1- Jared Graves (47:57.18 )
2- Jerome Clementz
3- Jamie Nicoll
4- Adam Craig
5- Nicolas Lau
6- Jesse Melamed
7- Remy Absalon
8- Chris Johnston
9- Lukas Anrig
10- Joe Barnes
12 – Cedric Garcia (with a flat tire in the last stage….crazy guy)
49 – Barel with 5 min penalty. without this penalty he finished in Third
1 – Anne Caro Chausson (55:24.14)
2 – Tracy Moseley
3 – Cecile Ravanel
4- Anneke Beerten
5- Ines Thoma
6- Rosara Joseph
7- Pauline Dieffenthaler
8- Kelli Emmett
9- Anka Martin
10- Anita Gehrig
Thanks again Enduroworldseries and Blake Jorgenson for the Photos