Round seven of the Enduro World Series, EWS Northstar California, isn't just the penultimate race of the year, it's also the first time this season some of the biggest names in the sport will take to the same start line.
Richie Rude, Martin Maes and Sam Hill will go head to head in the ultimate clash of the titans. Of the three races he’s competed in this season, Rude has won two. Reigning champion Hill has yet to win a race in 2019 - but he sits third in the rankings and has let it be known that he’s not planning on relinquishing that title yet. Meanwhile Maes will be keen to prove he’s not lost any form as he returns to competition for the first time since Madeira.
And riding high from his first win at round five will be Eddie Masters, who also sits second in the series rankings and is another contender for the 2019 Championship. But all four will have to topple current series leader Florian Nicolai who will fight hard to stay at the top. However, with Northstar famous for its rocky, dusty trails and unrelenting heat, round seven offers up some very different terrain from any of the series’ previous rounds.
In the women’s competition Isabeau Courdurier enters round seven with a perfect season behind her, having won every race so far. She’s yet to wrap up her first championship title though - Isabeau will need to fend off second ranked Noga Korem to do that. Morgane Charre lies third in the rankings - but just 15 points behind her lies Andreane Lanthier Nadeau in fourth.
All that lies between the riders and glory are six rocky, dusty stages under a searing Californian sun - so who better to check out what they're up against than Irishman Ric McLaughlin and Scotsman Chris Ball?