By Vernon Felton
The buzz of late has been enduro racing. Enduro is a style of competition that bears a curious resemblance to what most of us actually enjoy doing on a bike; namely, making it up the hills in a respectable fashion and then trying to destroy our buddies’ egos on the descents.
The UCI announced in September of 2011 that they were working on creating an international enduro series, which made a lot of people think, “Cool! The UCI will get involved!” and many more people think, “Oh, crap! The UCI will get involved!”
If you’re unfamiliar with the UCI, here’s a recap: they are cycling’s international governing body. Most of the time, the organization is invisible. There are rumors of fantastic, closed-door brunches in Switzerland, but most of the time we cyclists don’t hear from the UCI, that is, until the overlords waken from their stupor, wipe the vomit off their tweed jackets and issue some sort of vague and non-sensical ruling about handlebar width, disc brakes or downhill racing fashion.
The UCI, in short, isn’t famous for pleasing its core constituency.
So, the good news is the world will receive a seven-event international enduro series in 2013 and that the UCI will not be running the show. Win-win, really. The official racing calendar won’t be released until Tuesday December 4th, but in the meantime, here’s the press release.
The Enduro World Series will take place in 2013, thanks to the efforts of Chris Ball, formerly of the UCI, and the unified event organizing powers of the Enduro Series (Coupe de France), SuperEnduro and Crankworx. As a seven-stop tour taking place over the course of the entire 2013 mountain bike season, including the Enduro des Nations, the Enduro World Series aims to build a lasting event series for riders, teams and the mountain bike industry.
“I’ve heard the demand for this type of series for quite some time. Along with SuperEnduro, the Enduro Series and Crankworx, we want to develop the sport of Enduro mountain bike racing so it can grow as a sustainable worldwide discipline,” says Chris Ball, managing director of the Enduro World Series.
“The execution of this tour for 2013 has been of the utmost importance to the organizing teams at Crankworx, the Enduro Series and SuperEnduro. We aim for its existence under our collective umbrella to cater to the needs of athletes, the mountain biking public and the bike industry.”
While the racing calendar for 2013 will be released on Tuesday, December 4, the Enduro World Series will be the official global race series of the newly formed Enduro Mountain Bike Association. Made up of a board of directors including Chris Ball, Fred Glo of the Enduro Series, Enrico Guala of the SuperEnduro Series and Darren Kinnaird of Crankworx Events Inc., the Enduro Mountain Bike Association will look to support from the riders, teams and industry.
More information regarding supporter and membership packages will be released soon, including the launch of the Enduro Mountain Bike Association website.