Race Day Photo Epic: EWS Finale Ligure 2021

Sep 19, 2021
by Dave Trumpore  



The scene was set perfectly with Saturday’s Pro Stage, when in the women’s race Isabeau Courdurier claimed the win, but second placed Melanie Pugin and Miranda Miller were within touching distance at just two and three seconds back respectively.

However it was Morgane Charre who made her intentions clear straight out the start gate on Sundays four stages. Charre would win stage two, but it was her 16 second win on stage three that changed the course of the race. From there she was in control of the race and that is where she remained. Charre finished the day an impressive 17 seconds clear of second placed Courdurier, with Bex Baraona back on the podium in third.

In the men’s race Martin Maes won the Pro Stage by a single second, with Jack Moir in second and Richie Rude claiming third. Maes’ reign at the top proved to be short lived, with Moir’s championship hopes on the line he proved to be unstoppable, winning three of Sunday’s four stages to secure the win.

Behind Moir the battle for second place was raging all day, with just half a second separating second placed Jesse Melamed and Kevin Miquel as they lined up for the final stage of the day. Melamed proved faster to take second place with Miquel rounding out the top three. Spare a thought for Maes who finished in fourth place, missing out on a podium spot by just four tenths of a second. Rude would finish the day just behind Maes in fifth.

The series attention now turns to the final race of the year in Scotland and with it the overall Championship standings. Tweed Valley will be the deciding race for both the men’s and women’s titles this year as the racing goes down to the wire. In the women’s competition Melanie Pugin has a sizable lead, but the title is not guaranteed as Charre is gaining and there’s now less than 500 points between them.

Slow down relax don t worry. You re in Italy.

Riding through the history of human settlement along the Mediterranean coastline.

The mountains that ride out of the sea above Finale hold some of the finest trails you could ever hope to ride.

It s a different ind of start gate vibe here in Finale
It's a different kind of start gate vibe here in Finale

Jack Moir pushed through injury to take the win today and the overall lead
Jack Moir pushed through injury to take the win today and the overall lead

Just of the podium for Melanie Pugin
Just off the podium for Melanie Pugin

Dry leaves have been falling in the woods making for some very slick conditions in spots
Dry leaves have been falling in the woods making for some very slick conditions in spots

The sand wasn t only at the beach this year
The sand wasn't only at the beach this year

5th for Noga Korem
5th for Noga Korem

Zakarias Johanson took 6th
Zakarias Johanson took 6th

it was tight and in the trees on every stage in finale
It was tight and in the trees on every stage in Finale

Mitch Ropelato on Stage 1
Mitch Ropelato on Stage 1

9th for Dmitri Tordo
9th for Dmitri Tordo

7th and consistently in the top 10 the last few rounds for Kasper Woolley
7th and consistently in the top 10 the last few rounds for Kasper Woolley

Back on the podium after a few years absence for Bex Baraona
Back on the podium after a few years absence for Bex Baraona

Damien Oton on Stage 1
Damien Oton on Stage 1

ALN coming back from injury but not quite up to pace just yet
ALN coming back from injury but not quite up to pace just yet

6th for Harriet Harnden
6th for Harriet Harnden

Sam Hill looking forward to 2022
Sam Hill looking forward to 2022

muscles cramps and fatigue couldn t stop Jesse Melamed from taking 2nd today
Muscles cramps and fatigue couldn't stop Jesse Melamed from taking 2nd today

Jose Borges rounded out the top 10
Jose Borges rounded out the top 10

Harsh light tricky shadows and lose dirt greeted riders today
Harsh light, tricky shadows, and loose dirt greeted riders today

Charlie Murray on stage 4
Charlie Murray on stage 4

Raphaela Richter on stage 4
Raphaela Richter on stage 4

Another top 10 for Slawomir Lukasik
Another top 10 for Slawomir Lukasik

An off day saw Richie Rude finish in 5th
An off day saw Richie Rude finish in 5th

Domination in Finale for Morgane Charre
Domination in Finale for Morgane Charre

Morgane Charre powering up the climb on stage 4
Morgane Charre powering up the climb on stage 4

3rd for Kevin Miquel
3rd for Kevin Miquel

Miranda Miller stared 3rd and would end the weekend in 7th
Miranda Miller started 3rd and would end the weekend in 7th

A hard earned beer for Jesse Melamed
A hard earned beer for Jesse Melamed

After a handful of podiums Morgane Charre took her first win of the year ahead of Isabeau Courdurier and Bex Baraona
After a handful of podiums Morgane Charre took her first win of the year ahead of Isabeau Courdurier and Bex Baraona

Jack Moir back on top and leading the series buy the slimmest of margins
Jack Moir back on top and leading the series by the slimmest of margins

The hazy mornings have been burning off to fill the days with sunshine but all of that could change on Saturday as a storm is predicted to roll through.



27 Comments

  • 30 3
 Noga Korem and Kasper Woolley opting for the smaller 36’s instead of 38’s? Good enough for the pro’s, good enough for you.
Something to think about for weekend warriors on poorly set up grip2 36’s, who think buying 38’s will make them fast.
  • 10 0
 There is no „performance“ difference between the 36 and 38 Grip2. Its just a different stanchion diameter aka stiffniss so the 36 is often prefered for lighter riders like Noga and Kasper!
  • 1 0
 Came down here to say this.. I want my new enduro bike with a 36 to drop my acs3 spring in there.. all builds come with a zeb or 38, wtf haha
  • 5 0
 @walkenpeter: not accurate, the 38 has a different airchamber, also a bit more linear.
also noga korem is very small an light, kasper woolley is about 64kg incl. riding gear. martin maes is on a 36, but only 160mm travel which is the better option. plus isabeau is on a ZEB.
  • 1 4
 The 38 is a e-bike fork,but to bump up sales is also marketed for enduro.
  • 3 2
 I am so much faster weekends on my 38… and I am also really happy to be a marketing victim - sometime you just have to make the step and throw out the money - seriously the fork is tells great
  • 1 0
 Don’t forget about Martin Maes…
  • 12 0
 Was that a camelback on Sam? Watch now all hip packs will slowly go by the way side and the new backpack with a bladder will be used! Just like mom jeans….
  • 21 2
 where was Sam? just saw the unknown beauty to his left Big Grin
  • 2 0
 @dakine69: Classy
  • 4 0
 To be fair, Camelbak was not a silly choice for this race. The first climb up to NATO is ~2h/1000m vert in the blazing sun with only a feed station halfway up the hill and maybe 2-3 public fountains along the way. And it was hot with ~26°C in the valley when the top 10 started.
  • 1 0
 @pensamtb: for these guys this climb is what I went through in Cran Montana race.. the good thing is I stopped everytime the small creek was crossing under the road .. ; ).. its crazy how many pros were suffering of cramps and fatigue.. underestimated the race..
  • 4 0
 That was an interesting looking fork on Raphaela Richters bike
What brand was that?
  • 1 0
 It's an Intend Bandit. Pretty cool company, interesting choice for the fork.
  • 1 0
 Intend Bandit fork and Intend Hover shock, the latter of which isn't currently sold to private customers.
  • 4 0
 waiting for spy shots from the Rock Shox system on Charlie Murray´s bike Wink
  • 4 0
 what happen to sam hill?
  • 6 0
 family, and a year off.
  • 8 0
 About halfway through the season, Nigel Page (team manager) said something along the lines of how they would have to make Sam Hill love riding his bike again. Maybe no motivation? The guy has won everything in gravity mountain biking after all. Literally no mountain left to climb for him.
  • 5 0
 A year off is no joke for the pointy end of the field. He's kind of hard to gage from his interviews, never the most expressive of athletes. One thing to consider tho, is that, while his results are low for him, he's still ahead of many great riders. Considering the current field, being consistently around P30 is not like he suddenly unlearned how to ride
  • 2 0
 Awesome. Absolutely love Finale Ligure! If you havent been, i highly recommend you go.
  • 2 0
 (That is not sand)
  • 1 0
 Really like these photo stories !
  • 2 0
 MOI MOI!
  • 1 0
 LOL. Hill's caption, kinda harsh breh.
  • 1 0
 Surely the sunrise photo should be as the first image, not the last?

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