Portugal Enduro National Championships - Race Recap

Jul 20, 2017 at 7:15
by Yaroslav Alpizar  


This past weekend in the small town of Murça, known since Celtic ages, a group of warriors gathered to celebrate the annual ritual of Portugal Enduro Championships. Only one would be National Champion. Several known riders from all over Portugal came to the gathering, such as Ze Manel Borges (BH & Miranda Bike parts) reigning champ for two years in a row, Emanuel Pombo (GT Bicycles), Marco Fidalgo (Sram RockShox Factory Team), Jose Oliveira (Enduro BTT Braga), Joao Rodrigues and Miguel Pardal (Penacova DH). On the women's side, a good fight was expected from the two main contenders, Ana Costa (Casa do Povo de Abrunheira) and Ana Leite (Enduro BTT Braga).

Two long days awaited for the riders, 35km, 1,300m cumulative climb and about 1,600m descent, with 6 stages, shortest one 1,200m and longest 3,500m. On official training day, Saturday, each special stage you don't show up, is a 30-second penalization for Sunday race. So, if you choose not to train at all and do a "blind race" you could to it, but you would start with three minutes penalty. This is unusual in Spain, but in Portugal seems normal. On next day, eight riders had a three-minute penalty, meaning they chose not to check out the stages.

Ze Manel Borges wanted to have his third championship in a row on the Elite category. While Emanuel Pombo, Jose Oliveira, Marco Fidalgo and others were constantly upon him, scratching as many seconds as possible on each state. But Ze was relentless and won all stages, winning the race with a 30-second advantage over the second classified, Emanuel Pombo and 1-minute 44 seconds over Jose Oliveira in third.

On the Elite Women category, Carolina Costa came ready to win the title from Ana Leite and she managed to do it, by 11 seconds over Leite that had a crash on the third stage. Leite won the first stage but Costa managed to win all the remaining four stages, recovering the time lost on the first one. In third position came Leandra Gomes, 1-minute 15second difference of Costa.

Final results can be checked on the Portugal Cycling Federation site..

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Queue for inscriptions on Saturday.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Up we go, any transportation is helpful in the heat.

It was hot, really hot in the area, up to 40 degrees on Sunday. Thanks to the organization that managed to have liquid and food stations in several places during the route for all the riders. The terrain was dry and loose. Drifting and crashes due to lack of traction was common to all riders. With not too steep or technical sections, riders focused on keeping the flow, pedaling fast between trees and trying to see through the enormous quantity of dust in the air when following other riders in front.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
I really don't want to know. Is Ze Manel Borges trying to bring back 90's and lycra?

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Emanuel Pombo (Ciclo Madeira Clube Desportivo, GT Bicycles) on fire through the rocks.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Portugal Enduro National Championships
Stage 2 was the largest and physical of all, Pombo and Borges tucked on a high-speed section.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
It's a long way to the top if you wanna rock and roll. On the way up to Stage 1.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Marco Fidalgo warming up before Stage 1 starts.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Joao Rodrigues, ready to send on the 3rd stage.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Every turn counts.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Pombo having fun before the storm rolls in.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Portugal Enduro National Championships
Lino Correia and Marco Fidalgo shredding on Stage 2 and 3.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
The pack at the start of the rockiest and most technical stage.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Tomás Barreiro (Adar/Ofimoto) third on the Junior podium.
Portugal Enduro National Championships
José Oliveira (Enduro BTT Braga) third man in the Elite category.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
The start of Stage 3 was impressive.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Tiago Ladeira, winner on Junior category, on Stage 3.
Portugal Enduro National Championships
José Vieira, 5th Men+30 category.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Paulo Basilio, pinned on the 4th stage.
Portugal Enduro National Championships
Diogo Silva, pointing down the technical section on the 5th stage

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Ana Costa, winner of Elite Women category.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Ana Leite, 2nd in Elite Women.
Portugal Enduro National Championships
Jose Salgueiro (MCF/Xdream2Rodas) M50 winner

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Portugal Enduro National Championships
3 fires in the area, one of them directly affected the final liaison, so stage 6 was canceled.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Emanuel Pombo having some fun.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Portugal Enduro National Championships
Marco Fidalgo, Leandra, Gabriela and other riders relaxing and waiting for the podium awards.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Team podium.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Girls just want to have fun!

Portugal Enduro National Championships
What a team, Moto Club Faro/Xdream2Rodas.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Vasconha BTT Vozuela, fun is guaranteed with them.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Checking final standings.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
All Portugal's champions together.

Portugal Enduro National Championships
Ana Leite and Raquel Martins glad to have finished in one piece.



MENTIONS: @russianyaz




18 Comments

  • 6 0
 Nice Work, see you in Terras de Bouro if you go
  • 2 0
 Thanks! Don't know yet if I will go or not, hope I can.
  • 3 0
 @russianyaz: it's a great place, www.pinkbike.com/photo/13591838
  • 2 0
 @tiagomano: ohhhh!!! awesome!!
  • 3 0
 Boas fotos e reportagem...
Parabéns
www.facebook.com/clubemontanhademurca
  • 1 0
 Obrigado!
  • 3 0
 Well done! Nice recap guys! Have fun!
  • 1 0
 Thanks Carapau! All the fun in the world! \m/
  • 3 0
 Thanks for the work Yaroslav!
  • 2 0
 U R welcome Tiago! \m/
  • 3 0
 Awesome Job !!! U the man! ????
  • 2 0
 Thanks!! \m/ but all you riders, volunteers and organization are the ones that make this possible Wink
  • 3 0
 Thanks for the nice recap.
  • 1 0
 Thanks to you for reading!
  • 3 0
 Borges with lycra?????? wtf lol
  • 1 0
 That's whay I thougt!! jajaja!! Wink
  • 3 0
 Nice work dude!!! Thanks for The other photos!!! :top:
  • 1 0
 U R welcome! Obrigado!

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