Photo Epic: Practice - EWS Finale Ligure 2018

Sep 29, 2018
by Matthew DeLorme  


Finale seems more on pace with vacation than bike race this year. Practice of the four stages was dealt with in one day and riders were given Saturday off as the Challenger race took place. That's not to say practice was uneventful. With a helicopter evacuation on the top of stage two and a resulting hour and change delay, the day proved longer than most expected. Saturday, well..... not much but good living going on before the final showdown.

Richie Rude joined a plethora of rider including Curtis Keene Shawn Near McKay Vezina and the entire staff of Yeti amp Specialized to shave JerryHawks into their heads in support of Jared Graves.
Richie Rude joined a plethora of rider including Curtis Keene, Shawn Near, McKay Vezina and the entire staff of Yeti & Specialized to shave JerryHawks into their heads in support of Jared Graves.

A great reminder about the important things as riders reach the top of the long climb to Stage 2.
A great reminder about the important things as riders reach the top of the long climb to Stage 2.

Chris Ball took a bit of time to soak in the view on stage two before the riders appeared.
Chris Ball took a bit of time to soak in the view on stage two before the riders appeared.

Big shuttle trucks are in hot demand during an EWS week in Finale so Richie Rude and Shawn Neer went with a smaller local option to get themselves around.
Big shuttle trucks are in hot demand during an EWS week in Finale so Richie Rude and Shawn Neer went with a smaller local option to get themselves around.

Miranda Miller heading for the beach.
Miranda Miller heading for the beach.

The views from stage 3 are out of this world although the riders can t exactly pay them much attention once they ve dropped in...
The views from stage 3 are out of this world, although the riders can't exactly pay them much attention once they've dropped in...

Florian Nicolai will hope to go a few spots better than Ainsa and get back on the podium steps.
Florian Nicolai hopes to go a few spots better than Ainsa and get back on the podium steps.

Isabeau Courdurier cutting through the dust at the bottom of stage three.
Isabeau Courdurier cutting through the dust at the bottom of stage three.

Sam Hill just need to ride smart and consistent this weekend to take his second world title for the second year in a row.
Sam Hill just needs to ride smart and consistent this weekend to take his second world title for the second year in a row.

Last years winner hear was Damien Oton and with his results at the last few rounds we know he will be one to watch here once again.
Last year's winner here was Damien Oton, and with his results at the last few rounds, we know he will be one to watch here once again.

Mark Scott hasn t had the best of seasons and will be looking to go out on a high note in Finale.
Mark Scott hasn't had the best of seasons and will be looking to go out on a high note in Finale.

Martha Gill on the sharp rocks at the top of Stage 2.
Martha Gill on the sharp rocks at the top of Stage 2.

Andreane Lanthier Nadeau has been getting faster with each race and her podium finish last week in Spain proves she can mix it up with the best riders at the front of the race.
Andreane Lanthier Nadeau has been getting faster with each race and her podium finish last week in Spain proves she can mix it up with the best riders at the front of the race.

Lewis Buchanan is nursing a painfully bruised foot and sprained ankle this week but with Teammate Robin Wallner out of action he is pushing on to help Ibis preserve their team ranking in the overall points race.
Lewis Buchanan is nursing a painfully bruised foot and sprained ankle this week, but with Teammate Robin Wallner out of action he is pushing on to help Ibis preserve their team ranking in the overall points race.

Florian Nicolai has been looking quick in practice. Expect another top result from the Frenchman.
Florian Nicolai has been looking quick in practice. Expect another top result from the Frenchman.

Casey Brown rolls the white rock.
Casey Brown rolls the white rock.

Zakarias Johansen will be looking to follow up Ainsa with another top ten result. This may be the place to do it.
Zakarias Johansen will be looking to follow up Ainsa with another top ten result. This may be the place to do it.

Remi Gauvin through the rough on stage two opening the taps.
Remi Gauvin through the rough on stage two opening the taps.

Cody Kelly emerges from in between some fine Ligurian rock.
Cody Kelly emerges from in between some fine Ligurian rock.

Jesse Melamed sends it down the rocky ridge atop Stage 3. If you dig through the archives of the decades past you might recognize this section of trail from Cranked 2.
Jesse Melamed sends it down the rocky ridge atop Stage 3. If you dig through the archives of the decades past you might recognize this section of trail from Cranked 2.

Joe Smith is having a little EWS fun now that the World Cup season is over.
Joe Smith is having a little EWS fun now that the World Cup season is over.

Melanie Pugin navigates a narrow ridge on Stage 3 where riders will struggle not to be distracted by the beautiful views.
Melanie Pugin navigates a narrow ridge on Stage 3 where riders will struggle not to be distracted by the beautiful views.

Richie Rude finding the limits of the loose gravel on stage 2.
Richie Rude finding the limits of the loose gravel on stage 2.

Lewis Buchanan cracking on despite a broken foot.
Lewis Buchanan cracking on despite a broken foot.

Ruaridh Cunningham will be looking for redemption after nursing his destroyed wheel across the line in Ainsa.
Ruaridh Cunningham will be looking for redemption after nursing his destroyed wheel across the line in Ainsa.

Remi Gauvin powering through the dust lingering in the air.
Remi Gauvin powering through the dust lingering in the air.

Richie Rude looks to be on a fast pace here in Finale and with a win in similar conditions last week in Spain we know the trails in Finale will suit him well.
Richie Rude looks to be on a fast pace here in Finale, and with a win in similar conditions last week in Spain, we know the trails in Finale will suit him well.

Killian Bron snakes through the thick brush on the classic Stage 4.
Killian Bron snakes through the thick brush on the classic Stage 4.

Isabel Courdurier blasts down the freshly built Stage 3 that gives riders a beautiful view of the sea from top to bottom.
Isabel Courdurier blasts down the freshly built Stage 3 that gives riders a beautiful view of the sea from top to bottom.

Ruaridh Cunningham looking to close out the season on a high note.
Ruaridh Cunningham looking to close out the season on a high note.

Noga Korem navigates the gnar on the top of stage two.
Noga Korem navigates the gnar on the top of stage two.

 You reckon if we drink enough maple syrup we can huck that whole section eh Heck yeah.
"You reckon if we drink enough maple syrup we can huck that whole section eh?" "Heck yeah."

Tracy Mosely is out on track with the Trek team to help out with line choice and such. It s good to see her bag at the races.
Tracy Mosely is out on track with the Trek team to help out with line choice and such. It's good to see her back at the races.

Eliot Heap is on pace to take home the title in the U-21 category this weekend in Finale Ligure.
Eliot Heap is on pace to take home the title in the U-21 category this weekend in Finale Ligure.

Cecile Ravanel fins the fast line through the door traffic at the top of Stage 2.
Cecile Ravanel finds the fast line through the door traffic at the top of Stage 2.

The top of stage 2 was thick with riders in the line as they all jammed into the track to scope out one particular rocky chute. Only when a rider approached would they part like the Red Sea.
The top of stage 2 was thick with riders in the line as they all jammed into the track to scope out one particular rocky chute. Only when a rider approached would they part like the Red Sea.

Martin Maes has won here in the past and with the current form he is on it would be unlikely to see him finish any worse than second.
Martin Maes has won here in the past and with the current form he is on it would be unlikely to see him finish any worse than second.

Cecile Ravanel is looking to close out the year with a clean sweep of victories.
Cecile Ravanel is looking to close out the year with a clean sweep of victories.

T Lap is certainly looking for better luck this time around.
T Lap is certainly looking for better luck this time around.

Nigel parts the riders.
Nigel parts the riders.

Martin Maes on the hunt for the win once last time here in Finale. Will he pull it off
Martin Maes on the hunt for the win one last time here in Finale. Will he pull it off?

Damien Oton. Captian consistent. Can t imagine him far off a podium finish.
Damien Oton. Captian consistent. Can't imagine him far off a podium finish.

Keegan Wright tries to fins the line through some sharp off camber rocks.
Keegan Wright tries to find the line through some sharp off camber rocks.

Unfortunately a serious injury closed down training on Stage 2 for over an hour stranding many riders at the top while a helicopter was called in. We all wish the the injured racer a speedy recovery.
Unfortunately a serious injury closed down training on Stage 2 for over an hour, stranding many riders at the top while a helicopter was called in. We all wish the injured racer a speedy recovery.

Last week s 4th place finisher Kevin Miguel is riding with confidence right now and has his sights set on the podium to close out the 2018 season.
Last week's 4th place finisher Kevin Miguel is riding with confidence right now and has his sights set on the podium to close out the 2018 season.

Remi Gauvin heads for the sea on Stage 3.
Remi Gauvin heads for the sea on Stage 3.

Hot and hazy in Finale Ligure
Hot and hazy in Finale Ligure

On lookers scatter as Sam gets down to it. They probably saw that video clip from Whistler and didn t want a scolding.
Onlookers scatter as Sam gets down to it. They probably saw that video clip from Whistler and didn't want a scolding.

Cecile smooths out the jaggedness of stage two. Other racers take notes.
Cecile smooths out the jaggedness of stage two. Other racers take notes.

All aboard the Commencal train.
All aboard the Commencal train.

Everyone is spending a fair bit of time in the sea.
Everyone is spending a fair bit of time in the sea.

Saturday a day to just let it all hang out.
Saturday, a day to just let it all hang out.

IN an uncharacteristic move Practice was all helps on Friday and racing on Sunday. This left Saturday open for riders to use as a rest day. Some rested better than other
In an uncharacteristic move, practice was all held on Friday and racing on Sunday. This left Saturday open for riders to use as a rest day. Some rested better than others

Can the EWS schedule rest days on the Mediterranean Sea more often
Can the EWS schedule rest days on the Mediterranean Sea more often?

One last swim before racing.
One last swim before racing.

The less posh end of Finale. It s still posh.
The less posh end of Finale. It's still posh.

Another beautiful day and with more of the same on tap as racing gets underway Sunday morning in Finale Ligure.
Another beautiful day and with more of the same on tap as racing gets underway Sunday morning in Finale Ligure.



36 Comments

  • + 22
 Hope the Privateer comes back for the EWS next season! Not stoked on his injury healing vibes his way
  • + 1
 Was the privateer the one being helicoptered away? What happened to him?
  • + 2
 @laBoeuf: Seems like Adam is out but judging by the clip on his insta he wasn't the one that had to be airlifted out

www.instagram.com/p/BoUnRNuByy-/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link
  • + 1
 @ArchSerpo: dang-it! Was looking forward to seeing him in this one as well
  • + 1
 @ArchSerpo: with shoulder and elbow he would have been perfectly fine.

I understand that this makes it somewhat warmer but it really saves the joints - when I fell hard with 25 km/h straight on my shoulder and broke the collar bone I did not have even a bruise on the shoulder.
  • + 4
 Dang! Being in the EWS/on a factory team and getting to race there, relax on an Italian beach on the Mediterranean ... that's their "work"! That place is gorgeous ! Figuratively speaking, I'd kill to be in their spot. Just look at those pics... Drool
  • + 4
 You're right to be envious. You're lucky there are no pics of the food...
  • + 2
 @BenPea: If it's anything like the food posted from the TransCascadia... it's like the formal dining area on the cruise ship I went on.
  • + 1
 Doesn’t exactly seem like something with many avenues to enter when your young unless you have some sort of financial backing
  • + 4
 Ape 50 for the shuttle truck win.
  • + 2
 funny -all the hate on ebikes and all the shuttletrucks are booked out.
  • + 2
 @optimumnotmaximum: Not to mention everyone pushing the bike everywhere that isn't down nowadays.
  • + 4
 How the hell is Lewis Buchanan racing with a broken foot? Hard as nails.
  • + 2
 @mrtoodles. Not taking anything away from lewis, but it depends on where the break is. I broke my foot several years ago. I couldnt walk on it all , but standing and riding was fine. Also it might be a typo from the editor, as theres an earlier pic in the article saying its a bruised foot and sprained ankle.
  • + 3
 So what happened to the rider that got the heli ride?
  • + 2
 Think it was Alexander Kangas judging by his Insta. He's got some broken fingers and deep cuts but nothing more serious. Maybe the Heli was a safety precaution before a proper spinal assessment?
  • + 1
 Amazing photos and the exact reason we love this place so much -

www.facebook.com/MTBBEDS/videos/1933747903356406
  • + 2
 Sam Hill with that inside line... wild
  • + 2
 Hill for the win!! Woot woot!
  • + 2
 Such a beautiful place.
  • + 1
 Just looked at watching live? Can’t see any good news??
  • + 1
 Who got airlifted?
  • - 1
 Anyone else notice Keegan Wrights right leg being skinnier than his left??
  • + 0
 Lol that does look weird
  • + 1
 @mtbikeaddict: yea anybody know why that is??
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