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Form Guide: Pinkbike's Predictions for the Châtel EDR World Cup 2023

Sep 15, 2023
by Ed Spratt  
Light and shadow in the Loudenvielle forest

As riders are getting up to speed for the final showdown in France we have taken a look through the data to give our best guess of who might be the ones to watch this weekend in Châtel. Before the Elite riders head out on Sunday morning here are our thoughts on who could be in the running for a top result at the final stop of the 2023 series.

Who's Fast in 2023?

Rhys Verner had a disasterous Stage 5 to tumble down the order to 15th

After starting all the way back in March the 2023 Enduro race season really has flown by as already we are seeing riders take on the final round of racing. The 2023 season has been a rollercoaster of a year for racing with plenty of highs to match some of the difficult low points. While Isabeau Courdurier has been dominant in the Elite Women's racing with four wins the Elite Men's series has amazingly seen a different rider take the win at every round.

Clearly when looking at the Women's field the rider to beat in 2023 is Isabeua Coudurier who incredibly has not dropped outside the top four at any round in 2023 while she has won at four of the six races. Morgane Charre is another rider who has been on impressive form as her worst race result is fifth with one race victory and three second-place finishes. Bex Baraona is the only other Woman to have won in elites this year as she has seen a mixed set of results in 2023. Although she is yet to win in 2023 Hattie Harnden has been another rider laying down consistent finishes as she has only dropped outside of the top five at one race this season.

The Men's racing has seen far less predictable podiums as a different rider has won at every race and only a six riders secured multiple top-five finishes. The riders who have been frequent faces at the top have been the trio of Richie Rude, Alex Rudeau and Jesse Melamed. Of these three only Richie Rude and Jesse Melamed have taken the top step of the podium with Alex Rudeau coming close with two second-place finishes. Interestingly while not ever winning in 2023 Alex Rudeau has never been outside the top three in the races he did make the fastest five riders. A fact that has led him to be just behind overall series leader Richie Rude in the points going into the final race. Charlie Murray and Rhys Verner are also worth a mention with three top-five results. Rhys Verner is also one of the six winning riders in 2023 and is very much in the running for the overall title this weekend.

Round 1 - Maydena

Elite Women

1st. Isabeau Courdurier: 33:15.930
2nd. Morgane Charre: 33:25.510
3rd. Ella Conolly: 33:53.650
4th. Bex Baraona: 33:56.010
5th. Hattie Harnden: 33:59.530

Elite Men

1st. Luke Meier-Smith: 28:55.210
2nd. Dan Booker: 29:01.040
3rd. Connor Fearon: 29:14.450
4th. Rhys Verner: 29:19.780
5th. Troy Brosnan: 29:21.920

Round 2 - Derby

Elite Women

1st. Bex Baraona: 29:52.010
2nd. Hattie Harnden: 30:00.230
3rd. Ella Conolly: 30:17.740
4th. Isabeau Courdurier: 30:40.730
5th. Morgane Charre: 30:41.860

Elite Men

1st. Richie Rude: 25:52.860
2nd. Slawomir Lukasik: 26:00.450
3rd. Jesse Melamed: 26:17.910
4th. Jack Moir: 26:21.420
5th. Martin Maes: 26:24.610

Round 3 - Pietra Ligure

Elite Women

1st. Morgane Charre: 32:22.320
2nd. Gloria Scarsi: 32:35.990
3rd. Isabeau Courdurier: 32:39.080
4th. Raphaela Richter: 32:49.200
5th. Mélanie Pugin: 33:03.640

Elite Men

1st. Jesse Melamed: 28:40.040
2nd. Rhys Verner: 28:45.420
3rd. Alex Rudeau: 28:46.300
4th. Dimitri Tordo: 28:53.840
5th. Charlie Murray: 29:01.480

Round 4 - Leogang

Elite Women

1st. Isabeau Courdurier: 28:35.010
2nd. Gloria Scarsi: 28:49.360
3rd. Morgane Charre: 28:53.570
4th. Raphaela Richter: 29:07.170
5th. Hattie Harnden: 29:09.210

Elite Men

1st. Rhys Verner: 25:08.74
2nd. Richie Rude: 25:11.51
3rd. Alex Rudeau: 25:17.46
4th. Charlie Murray: 25:31.15
5th. Dan Booker: 25:37.61

Round 5 - Val Di Fassa

Elite Women

1st. Isabeau Coudurier: 41:03.360
2nd. Morgane Charre: 41:10.430
3rd. Mélanie Pugin: 41:20.730
4th. Gloria Scarsi: 41:50.530
5th. Hattie Harnden: 41:54.360

Elite Men

1st. Matthew Walker: 35:24.950
2nd. Alex Rudeau: 35:41.540
3rd. Richie Rude: 35:43.280
4th. Charlie Murray: 3:23.980
5th. Jesse Melamed: 35:47.370

Round 6 - Loudenvielle

Elite Women

1st. Isabeau Courdurier: 29:40.880
2nd. Morgane Charre: 30:03.540
3rd. Ella Conolly: 30:13.350
4th. Hattie Harnden: 31:14.330
5th. Noga Korem: 31:16.500

Elite Men

1st. Youn Deniaud: 26:17.670
2nd. Alex Rudeau: 26:18.410
3rd. Louis Jeandel: 26:19.300
4th. Richie Rude: 26:26.150
5th. Jesse Melamed: 26:26.280

Elite Women's Picks

Another dominant day for Isabeau Courdurier to take the win by 20 seconds

Isabeau Courdurier

After a dominant performance in Loudenvielle and as the holder of four wins in 2023, Isabeau Courdurier continues to be the very best when it comes to Women's Enduro racing. For the final round in Châtel, we expect her to once again be at the top of the results sheet as she will be wanted to secure the first-ever Enduro World Cup overall series title.

2nd for Morgane Charre

Morgane Charre

Morgane Charre will be another French rider looking to go fast on home soil as she has the tough task of trying to close the 212-point deficit to Isabeau Courdurier in the overall and take the 2023 title. As the only rider who can now dethrone Isabeau Morgane will have a tough task but as one of only two other race winners this season she has shown she has the speed to do it.

4th for Gloria Scarsi

Gloria Scarsi

Our final main pick for the Elite Women's racing is Gloria Scarsi who is not only performing very well at Enduro this year but is hot off a 5th place finish at last weekend's downhill racing in Les Gets. Gloria came very close to becoming the first non French or British EWS/EDR winner in both Pietra Ligure and Leogang with 2nd-place finishes. With one round left and the potential of taking 3rd place in the overall standings, we think Gloria will be a real threat for the race win.

Elite Men's Picks

Jack Moir was leafing into the last stage before an off track excursion through some broken tape saw him fall down to 6th

Jack Moir

If it hadn't been for a spot of bad course marking we could have seen the return of Jack Moir to the top of the podium in Loudenvielle. While Jack still managed to secure 6th place he was very much in the running for something more as he led into the final stage. Hopefully, Jack can put that past him and show why he is one of the strongest riders with a big result on Sunday.

Last year s winner here Alex Rudeau was looking like the one to beat in training

Alex Rudeau

With four top-five finishes and two 2nd-place results in a row, Alex Rudeau is ending the season in strong form. As we head into another French round we think Alex Rudeau will be one to watch on the live timing as he is one of four riders tied up in the overall points battle. Alex currently sits 2nd and is closest to knocking Richie Rude off the top so we could be in for a wild ride as he goes all-out in the hunt for points.

Jesse Melamed would end the day in 5th

Jesse Melamed

Our final main pick for this weekend's racing is Jesse Melamed who so far has remained fairly consistent throughout the season with one win and four top-five finishes. Currently sitting third in the overall standings Jesse has a lot of work to claw back the 280-point gap but he will have to do something big if he wants to back up his 2022 EWS overall title with this year's World Cup title.

Honourable Mentions

While we have made our main predictions for potential winners above there were other riders who we should mention as potential top performers this weekend.

Back form injury and back on pace Ella Conolly would come 3rd

Ella Conolly

Ella Conolly had an amazing return to the top in Loudenvielle as she came back from injury to take 3rd. With no worries about overall standings Ella can just focus on securing the best result possible and with her coming off a top-three result, there could be another podium spot for her on Sunday.

Series leader Richie Rude started the day strong but would lose time on Stage 2 to finished jiust off the podium in 4th

Richie Rude

There's no doubt that Richie Rude is among the fastest riders this year but he has a very tough task this weekend as raw speed won't necessarily help him with the overall win. With three riders right behind him in the points and with the potential to steal the title from him, Richie will need to play a smart race and not risk a low point scoring round. We expect Richie will still be right up there in the result but we may see him hold a little something back to make sure he leaves Châtel with the 2023 World Cup title. We believe that Richie just needs fifth to take the overall.

Who Would You Pick?

Who Will Win the Elite Women's Race?

Who Will Win the Elite Men's Race?

Author Info:
edspratt avatar

Member since Mar 16, 2017
3,306 articles

  • 47 4
 What's EDR? Anyone know when the EWS season starts?
  • 8 0
 EWS is out with injury, some are saying a career ender. Unfortunately, EDR is not on form this season.
  • 32 2
 Man it must be hard to want to do well when you know you're getting laid off when the job is done
  • 1 0
 fixed-term contract !
  • 8 1
 Nah, these guys and gals are in it for the passion and all their hopes and dreams. I'm sure the fire is burning deep for them to go rip.
  • 3 0
 @heatproofgenie: sure, until they realize that you cant pay your rent with fire and passion
  • 3 0
 @Grononosse: Gig economy!
  • 32 2
 This year has killed the EWS, such a shame
  • 15 1
 I predict there won't be coverage
  • 7 0
 We like dat shiiiiiiiiet!
  • 2 0
 I also think the coverage has been really poor. Ric is clearly knowledgeable but a Warner or an equivalent alongside him
would lift it; the footage is dreadful with the same few sections shown ad infinitum with the split screening pointless over a 50m section and its hard to even find it to watch. we paid for Eurosport to see it this year and the bbc coverage of the worlds dh and xc was much better. same with the T de F which is far superior on Channel 4. i’d speculate that the issue is budget. if eurosport etc can’t have cameras on the whole dh course then theres no chance they can on 5 similar length enduro tracks and without that it’s too bitty. I also think it makes no sense that after joining the uci that there was no EDR worlds this year. But all of the above is new ground in regards coverage so hopefully they’ll learn from the feedback that the coverage has been dreadful. am
still at a loss what the ‘D’ in edr means? is it for ‘downhill?’ if so, why? as enduro involved traverses and climbs and if a rider misses those also timed sectiins they’re disqualified.
  • 4 0
 My money's on Moi Moi. He would have won last time if it wasn't for him being honest and not taking the 'French' line.
  • 4 0
 Can Richie really hold back and ride safe to secure a P5 these days ?
  • 12 4
 Dunno but I'll wager he's gonna be focused on DH next year.

Also dunno why Redbull doesn't just grab the f*cking horns on EWS, yes EWS, and DH (and XC tho UCI can have that, who cares) - and just run their own World Cup.

He'll I'd pay $100 / whatever a year to watch weekly races on the 1199 and see how that goes, much less anything else non Euro-Centric as if that's all there is for DH / enduro, let privateers flourish, and "bring downhill and enduro to the world". This is what Bugs Bunny & Elmer Fudd at Warner Bros SAID they wanted to do, but have done the exact opposite of.
  • 4 1
 @Mtn-Goat-13: I mean, great idea, but theres loads of contracts/ money/ agreements/ sponsorships involved.
If I was wanting to "take over" I'd prolly let it fail a bit longer, makes the purchase price a bit more reasonable...
  • 1 0
 I don't think he will really hold back, more I hope he goes full gas and make the top spot.
  • 5 3
 How about the math of who can still win overall or place where on the podium?
  • 22 1
 I've been working on that today and we should have something posted tomorrow.
  • 11 0
 @edspratt: we love you Ed. We appreciate your bike journalism!
  • 2 1
  • 4 1
 @edspratt: Youre dynamite my man, appreciate the coverage we do get, and any pics you can post.
Must frig you guys right off when the 7th comment is some clown who cant be bothered to look at the overall points, and do some mental math....some peoples kids
  • 2 2
 Hey @heatproofgenie Be the change you want to see in the world, ya pillock
  • 1 0
 @edspratt: thank you Ed!
  • 4 1
 Judging from the compression of Jesse's suspension he's cornering HARD.
  • 3 0
 I'll be keeping an eye on the DH racers. Levesque is over to watch imo
  • 3 1
 For the who's going to win choices, can we add a check box for " no clue"
  • 2 1
 And a "who gives a shit anymore" box.
  • 4 2
 I predict, not many will be watching...
  • 1 0
 Jack looked supper fast in practice!
  • 1 0
 I’d love to see Rudeau take the overall.
  • 1 1
 EDR u still watching?
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