Video: Full Highlights from EWS-E Crans-Montana 2021

Sep 10, 2021
by Ed Spratt  

bigquotesWe've had 9 fantastic stages of racing here at the Specialized EWS-E Round 1 in Crans-Montana Switzerland. With 8 action-packed special stages and one of the most challenging Power Stages we've had the pleasure of tackling, we're kicking off the short 2021 E-MTB race season with a banger. Electric Mountain Bike Network

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edspratt avatar

Member since Mar 16, 2017
3,050 articles

  • 19 3
 The uphills in these races is such a great measuring stick for what systems are actually engineered for sustainable abuse. It should be interesting to watch how this category of racing pushes the engineers to keep levelling up.
After having a friend let me confiscate his kenevo for a week this summer, it was such a eye opener into what new challenges come with riding e bikes. It made me look at trails completely different. Growing up riding moto I always found the steep and gnarly climbs to be the most fun. I found e bikes can definitely have that same level of fun factor on climbing routes I wouldn’t even think of attempting on a normal trail bike.
Also - it’s funny reading the comments coming from people that have never ridden e bikes and their only motive is to maintain the “core riders” perspective to slander them. Pretty childish
  • 9 0
 I have to admit that I thought that e-bike racing was kinda pointless but this format makes sense. The sheer volume of stages and the distance must be exhausting. Wrestling a heavy-ass e-bike for that long becomes more of an all-body workout. Throwing in some tech steep climbing that rewards skills and fitness is awesome too since that is also a very fun part of the e-bike experience IMHO.
  • 8 0
 Doh! Not great that the spesh riders motor packed up during a race sponsored by specialized. Love my kenevo though, 12 months in with no issues.
  • 7 0
 I remember watching Nico ride at warp speed at world champs in Cairns in '96. It seems he has not slowed down much!
  • 2 7
flag islandforlife (Sep 10, 2021 at 8:11) (Below Threshold)
 Just needs a motor now.
  • 4 0
 So much info packed into this summary!

Loved the visual overview with the satellite map and course outline, to see just what kind of terrain these riders are tackling, with an athlete's sound bite to match. 23 km 1000m (1-2 hr in unforgiving alpine terrain) and some intense race stages sounds enough for 1 outing (for me). Epic to imagine riding 3 of these loops, giving my 100% for over 25 minutes total over 9 intense stages, in a day! My jaw dropped when I saw the mountain they had to climb for the 3rd loop. Props to the girl who finished that day unassisted!

Fascinating to see the terrain at ground level too. Was kind of disappointed that the action footage was mostly on grass turns for the first loop, but the later footage helped share the story of the exciting battle for women's gold. I at least got an idea of how agility was tested. I'm liking this theme of mountain biking, with a stronger emphasis on *mountain*.

I was trying to visualize handling/guiding my bike with my hips/legs to sort of imagine how the racers were coping. Inspired me to try giving my 100% up something like a power stage. Lapierre riders demonstrating how to ride emtbs can fly like normal bikes despite the extra 7kg! Love seeing what can be done on a bike. I wanna see if there's any rider POVs of this now, but at the same time I wanna try riding something similar to this kind of terrain.

Props to EMBN for great work on the vid! That one slow-mo clip at 8:34... so good! +1 on the overlay graphics too.
  • 8 0
  • 10 8
 Can someone explain to me why they’re breathing hard after going up that hill? I thought the motor did it for them and that all ebikers were all lazy, bad mannered, fat pieces of shite that had never ridden a bike before. Clarification please. Thank you.
  • 7 3
 Can you please explain to me why you need a straw man argument to ridicule other opinions? Clarification please. Thank you.
  • 6 0
 Indeed. After reading pb comments from those who have never ridden an ebike or a motorbike, I though a twist of the throttle was all that was needed and they would be roosting up the hill barging pedalbikers out the way.
  • 1 3
 Think you just answered your own question...
  • 8 1
 @Blablablup123: because this is pinkbike where we must pick a side based on nothing and then be a dick about it from the safety of our keyboards. Does that clear it up? Thank you.
  • 2 0
 There are people who have publicly commented that they would pack a firearm, pulling it out if any ebiker happened to pass them on a trail. Would that not make you breathe hard?
  • 3 2
 I think these are the coolest stages of these races, by far, because they really show what an ebike is capable of and how it excels over a standard bike. But that said, come the fuck on. Very few people riding ebikes are doing power stages on steep uphills like this and pushing themselves to the limit. They're sitting on their ass and zooming up a fire road twice as quickly as a standard bike, but with half the effort.
  • 5 0
 Kind of like shuttle riders blast up at 10 times the speed or sitting on a chairlift. Does that get you breathing hard?such stupid arguments. @jayacheess:
  • 2 1
 @manitunc: You're totally misunderstanding me.

It's not an argument against them. It's a statement of how they're used, and how that usage differs from how they're used in an EWS race.
  • 4 0
 @jayacheess: more than half the time im using mine for exactly that. Doing our trails totally different than i normally would. I link different sections that i classify as "problems" like rock climbers would do bouldering. Boost and gased at the top and sessioning the problems. Then i link those sections in differing loops on my daily rides.
More than 50% of the time in the spring and fall because its wet rooty time and either melting snow in the spring or new snow in the fall. It sucks in the fall with a regular bike. With the eeb its super fun tech riding. The last 4 weeks of last year i saw 6 other riders in those 4 weeks. Any rider was on green trails or ez blues because new snow. In the spring its wet tech up and down to bang off the early season rust. Super tech , because its wet,with low consequence(you mess up you just put a foot down)until the steep tech opens after spring melt. Great way to bang off the rust, boost the fitness and comfort on the bike safely in the early season
  • 3 0
 @won-sean-animal-chin: Sick. Yeah, that's how I expect I'd use one, as well.
  • 4 0
 @jayacheess: ya early season or after an injury is the easiest time to get another injury because the rust is built up and confidence isnt high. Ots a confidence game, same days you feel like a nut some days you dont. More vert = more confidence.. At this point ive had enough injuries and the emtb has made getting back up to speed quicker and safer. If im not comfy sending things the first lap, ive got the 2nd or 3rd to build to it, or the next days laps. Just saying the other day to eeb riding bud that we're flashing through sections that were problems a few months ago. Slow 2 way trails but no issue and super fun. Do a section and off to another. Common to just keep adding on to the ride and running out of battery and now in the fall running out of light
  • 5 0
  • 4 0
 Radical!!! Interesting to see the Lyrik used instead of the Zeb.
  • 1 0
 Isn't it depending of the bike's travel ? Those having 160 go for a Lyrik, those with 180 for a Zeb ? I don't know just a guess.
  • 2 0
 So full victory for NV. For his riding skills and fitness untouchable, for the bike he developed, for the team/kids he picked and teach...
  • 2 0
 9 stages in 1 day?
do they have to complete everything on 1 battery or how does it work?
  • 2 0
 Their batteries can be changed/charged.

- The course will be 3 loops (minimum of 2 different loops) with 2-4 Special Stages in each loop. Each
loop will take 1hr - 2hr to complete and with an estimated 1000m climbing.
- Each loop will be split with a 30 minute rest in the paddock (for battery change and/or charging,
mechanical assistance and athlete recovery).
- Maximum of 3500m elevation climbed in a one-day event (+10% in agreed circumstances)
- All Special Stages are timed and count towards the final time and therefore race result.
- Minimum of 25 minutes total competition time for the fastest rider in the General Classification
  • 2 0
 3 batteries
  • 3 0
 LOL the levo's motor failed, that's a surprise ...said no one ever.
  • 3 0
 This is awesome!
  • 5 3
  • 2 3
 a bicycle use to have a smaller footprint on the trail, we are getting backwards in that concern
  • 3 5
 This race was electrifying.
  • 2 4
 Road racing is more exciting
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