The EWS is the latest organising body to try their hand at an ebike racing series. Working with the UCI, the EWS-E series will kick off next year with three rounds in France, Switzerland and Italy.
EWS-E races will be held on different courses to regular EWS races and they will feature timed uphill as well as downhill special stages with tighter liaisons to keep the races challenging. The first event will be a standalone in Vallberg in July, however the next two will run alongside the EWS finals in Zermatt and the Trophy of Nations in Finale Ligure, so don't expect many riders to double up between the two series.
It sounds like the EWS has been planning this move for a while and it even held an under-the-radar test event in Finale Ligure in October last year
. A number of top EWS teams attended but the EWS decided to hold off on launching the series until now so they could fine-tune the format and find "a solution to the monitoring of motor assistance."
This means there are now three competing ebike race series, The FIM E-Bike Enduro World Cup, which we all had a good laugh at in August
; the WES World E-Bike Series, which ran in 2019 and was won by Sofia Wiedenroth and Nicolas Quéré, and now the EWS-E.
Full details are yet to be revealed but everything we know so far is in the full release below:
PRESS RELEASE: EWS
The Enduro World Series (EWS) is excited to announce it is extending its partnership with the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) to include the management and development of e-bike enduro racing from 2020 onwards.
The Enduro World Series will develop the format and growth of e-bike enduro internationally alongside the UCI and will launch a new flagship international series in 2020, Enduro World Series-E (EWS-E). The series will feature three rounds across Europe in France, Switzerland and Italy - with the overall winners crowned the Enduro World Series.
The EWS first held an e-bike test event in Finale Ligure in Italy in 2018, but delayed launching a full series until both the format of racing could be fine tuned, and a solution to the monitoring of motor assistance could be answered. Two years later the EWS now believe it is time to bring this new format to the highest level, beginning in Europe.
This new format will retain the core values of existing Enduro World Series races but held on separate courses that will challenge riders on a vast variety of terrain and feature racing on a mix of uphill and downhill highly technical Special Stages. The addition of technical climbing will not be the only difference to traditional EWS enduro racing though, as EWS-E will also bring the Liaison Stages into the challenge with tighter times and more singletrack than ever before. This combination will push both the rider’s physical and bike handling limits to the max in a multi-loop and intense course, driving forwards the development of e-bike technology and e-bike trail management and design.
"Based on the experience and know-how of the Enduro World Series (EWS), this innovative format of competition will offer spectacular racing while ensuring the highest standard of sporting integrity." David Lappartient, UCI President
For the past two years the EWS has also been working behind the scenes to develop the technology that can monitor e-bike power output, to ensure EWS-E can offer truly fair competition. More information about this new system will be available in early 2020.
The first EWS-E race will take place as a stand alone event in Valberg, France over July 17-18 2020, followed by a race alongside the existing EWS finals in Zermatt, Switzerland (August 29 - 30), finishing in Finale Ligure, Italy alongside the Trophy of Nations on a big final weekend of racing for the season on September 25-26, 2020.
A statement from the Enduro World Series Board of Directors said: “We have always aimed to innovate within the EWS and so we are delighted to begin an exciting journey in the development of an e-bike enduro format that will push riders and technology and create a whole new form of exciting enduro-format racing”.
“We are motivated to help drive technological development, including the launch of electronic monitoring of E-bike motors for fair sport and work to make sure trail access and important developments for the future of this discipline are carefully managed. Starting in central Europe in 2020, we will work to expand the EWS-E to new countries when the time is right”
UCI President David Lappartient said: “The UCI is looking forward to the introduction of an electric-powered version of Enduro with the launch of the EWS-E from 2020. Based on the experience and know-how of the Enduro World Series (EWS), this innovative format of competition will offer spectacular racing while ensuring the highest standard of sporting integrity. This new series confirms the current status of E-MTB as a fast-moving cycling discipline.”
Specific rules and regulations for EWS-E will be released in early 2020.