Video: Tom Bradshaw’s Return To Enduro Racing Adventure

Nov 9, 2021
by Pinkbike Originals  

Words by Tom Bradshaw

It had been a dangerously long time since I last raced. The Whistler EWS in 2019 was my last outing. Like everyone, I've spent the last two years coming to terms with the fact that you can plan all you like in the current climate, but be ready to throw those plans out the window. This weekend went exactly that way.

Thanks to the legends at Outdoorsy, who arranged for me to hire a RV or trailer and take on two challenges this year. You might've seen my attempt to ride 100 trails in Cumberland on the hottest day of the year. I thought another genius challenge would be to hire a full blown team bus and head off to race my first Enduro race in two years. It would be just like being on a pro team. Right?

Usually for a race weekend, I'd team up with some mates, set up camp in the car park in my dangerously dodgy Ford E-250 (aka 'The Beast') and have a great time from there. When I found the H.M.C.L.S. (Her Majesty's Canadian Land Ship) Fiona on Outdoorsy however, I knew she was the one and immediately pulled trigger. How good would sleeping in a bus that's bigger than my apartment be before my first race in two years?

What I didn't think about was the administration involved navigating a 36-foot, 10-tonne land ship, 1000 kilometres east from Vancouver into the Canadian Rockies and to Panorama Ski Resort...


Welcome to Pano

H.M.C.L.S. (Her Majesty's Canadian Land Ship) Fiona in all her glory.

We were here for the first round of the Canadian National Enduro Series.

The course was set for a huge riding weekend. We were in for a treat.

According to the plan, Sunday was the big day. My Type 2 loving self thought it was awesome. Sunday's course started with 1,480m hike-a-bike to the top of the first stage on Sunday. Yes, you read that right. A 1,500m (4,900 foot) climb to the top of the first stage, Mt Goldie.

It is a beauty, peaking out at 2,680m / 8,792 feet. Riders would be treated to a 17 minute+ stage that descended back to the ski resort over the 1,100m+ descent. You just had to earn it.


After the beautiful alpine mission, the course returned to the Panorama Bike Park for the remaining stages. It gave the riders a challenge of how to structure practice. Do you spend all Friday hiking to the top of Goldie to practice one stage, or do you spend your time focussing on the lower down valley trails and run the longest descent of the weekend blind?


Our plan was to get into the alpine ASAP. Because... look at it. That meant that I could practice Stage 2, and then squeeze in Stage 1 and 3 on Friday evening, leaving the remaining stages to practice before racing started the next day. What a plan. Or so I thought.

As I should've realized, nothing goes to plan anymore. The race organizers did a fantastic job pivoting to provide all the racers a chance still to race in the weekend due to a last minute health restriction change.


No matter the change, what blew me away was how genuinely happy people were to be there, back together again, exploring on their bikes.



The end result was taking plate #69 to the Pro Men podium, a dream result. But at the end of the day it was just a result. I took so much more away. It didn't matter that the event format changed. Seeing 200+ riders stoked, exploring a beautiful part of the world with new and old mates on their bikes, and 36 foot motorhomes, was something special.

Make sure you get a chance to watch the full video, it was a real laugh. A huge thank you to Outdoorsy for making this project possible.

As well as the Canadian National Enduro Series for having us, Jason and the Panorama Mountain Resort team for hosting, the local legends who built fresh loam trails to race, in particular Mayor Jose. And last but not least, all the racers, supporters and volunteers for getting together, rolling with the punches, and having a great event together. You beauties!





47 Comments

  • 43 0
 Dang, Tom shreds super hard for a "good vibes guy"!
  • 23 0
 Thanks @withdignityifnotalacrity, bringing back that "good vibe guy" kinda pace
  • 10 1
 @Tombrad: feels like you would have given those fast boys a run in Season 1 PBA, you know, if there was actual racing to be had Smile
  • 5 0
 @withdignityifnotalacrity: Well, there are "secret pros" this season.
  • 3 0
 @Tombrad: So stoked for you man. Turns out not winning the Academy isn't so bad after all. Keep the content coming!
  • 1 0
 Right?! 3rd in the race but 1st in fun! I bet 1st and 2nd weren't hooting and hollering like that!
  • 2 0
 @MegalodonMatt: Kiwis know how to have a good time.
  • 27 0
 This is one of the best PB productions I've seen to-date! Filming was amazing, and Tom is a fantastic host. This place looks gorgeous as well and the riding looks unreal!!
  • 7 0
 Thanks @bonkmasterflex - it's a team effort Devan and Vince crushed it behind the camera too.
  • 4 0
 Absolutely agreed. Loved many aspects of this! The racing itself, the trails looked sweet, Tom's stoked as heck energy that we can all relate to when hitting up a new race, the filming and editing and the atmosphere of all the other racers. Would be great to see coverage of the other races in the series if that is the plan Big Grin
  • 2 0
 It was such a treat filming with @Tombrad. The dude is a workhorse! Also panorama is 10/10.
  • 17 0
 3rd in Pro racing 2/3 blind is unreal!
  • 9 0
 Yessss Mate! Fabulous weekend away sounds like hahah even if all plans were out the window
  • 7 0
 @christinachappetta thanks maaaaate - imagine the mission if you'd be there too, we'd still be out there haha
  • 8 0
 Is that a Don't Wake the Bear mug Tom is wielding?

Funny.

My kids bought my wife one of those.
  • 3 0
 @pourquois-pas, yes, yes it is. It goes good.
  • 8 0
 What's with all the potatoes?
  • 17 0
 @92hokie haha Mark I'm pretty simple, can't go wrong with simple spuds to keep the carcass ticking away all day
  • 7 0
 See "Tom Bradshaw" in title... instantly know good times to follow!
  • 4 0
 Crash corner claimed me as well. Such good times. So sad we didn't get to race the Alpine. We also used Friday for Goldie and it's just so good.
  • 6 0
 Shout out my boy Kim Jong In for making an appearance
  • 2 0
 Excellent vid again, @Tombrad . Subtitles we're on for me so left them on. They don't seem to understand the Kiwi accent. Hilarious. Particularly at 6:55 - something's going on! "You are beardy!"
  • 9 6
 Why he not riding his hardtail, thought that was the *purest* form of racing
  • 11 7
 Agreed! Be safe be well, Incognito Robin
  • 3 0
 Tom for the win! But the big winner is Pink Bike for hiring him. And all of us for being able to watch his content.
  • 2 0
 This is one of the best segments I've seen in awhile. Awesome work @Tombrad and production team! Can't wait for the crossover episode where you ride with Cathro.
  • 2 0
 Such a great weekend! Slabosaurus was no joke to on sight! Middle line because I knew no better lol!
  • 2 0
 @Tombrad definitely seems like a dude that would be super fun to shred with and kickit. Bradshaw chargin!
  • 2 0
 Nice weekend away there mate. Great team effort on the video and Thanks for th entertainment.
  • 3 0
 Great content.
  • 1 0
 Great video Tom! Love the hoots and stoke. What was the most challenging part of the race for you?
  • 5 4
 @tombrad is like if Kazimer had a personality and if Levy could ride real shit.
  • 1 2
 One day, all is well. The next day, and suddenly the proximity of interaction, and density from the day prior are unsafe.
This is about government bodies saying "jump," and training everyone to respond with "how high?"
  • 1 0
 Anyone have an idea what Garmin mount is being used there on the Commencal Meta in the beginning? Smile
  • 1 0
 Assuming number plate 69 was planned ....
  • 5 0
 Not planned by me... haha
  • 2 0
 you beauty! @Tombrad
  • 1 0
 I'll have a pint of what he's drinking!
  • 1 0
 looked like such a blast! @Tombrad
  • 1 1
 Great video Tom but please please please sort out the music for the next one!!!
  • 1 0
 I want Tom to be my friend, he’s so much fun to watch.
  • 1 0
 *13,000 kms from home….
  • 1 0
 Soooo good
  • 1 0
 Cheers @jbirdz!
  • 1 0
 Finally!
  • 1 0
 #69......nice

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