The Longest Day - Enduro World Series, Round 6 - Whistler

Aug 11, 2014 at 1:01
by Matt Wragg  
The longest day. Nearly 9 hours on the bike. More than 65km covered. 2,300m of climbing, 3,300m of descending. This was a big day in every sense of the word, and that is before you even talk about the stakes for the race, both for the series and the huge prize money...

This race course was all about textures... from blown out loose dirt to loose over hard to pointy rocks that want to kill your wheel to well laid rock armor to wheel wrecking mine fields to water crossings to wood slat bridges to luxurious loam to combinations of root rocks and loose blown out dirt... this track had it all.
  This race course was all about textures... from blown out loose dirt to loose over hard, to pointy rocks that want to kill your wheel to well laid rock armor to wheel wrecking mine fields to water crossings to wood slat bridges to luxurious loam to combinations of root, rocks, and loose blown out dirt... this track had it all.

Nico Lau was showing his support for Canada today.
  Nico Lau was showing his support for Canada today.

Errr yeah.
  Errr, yeah.

Cecile Ravanel dropping into the very start of the best day of Enduro racing she s ever had...
  Cecile Ravanel dropping into the very start of the best day of Enduro racing she's ever had...

Anne-Caroline Chausson had a solid day on the stages winning stages 2 3 and 4.
  Anne-Caroline Chausson had a solid day on the stages, winning stages 2, 3 and 4.

T-Mo in stage two I rode like crap today to be honest. My arms and legs felt like wood. I just couldn t really get it together until stage 5. I was able to relax and have fun in there. But the rest... I just rode like crap.
  T-Mo in stage two: "I rode like crap today, to be honest. My arms and legs felt like wood. I just couldn't really get it together until stage 5. I was able to relax and have fun in there. But the rest... I just rode like crap."

Lorraine Truong put in a big ride to take fifth - a great result for a self-supported privateer.
  Lorraine Truong put in a big ride to take fifth - a great result for a self-supported privateer.

Jared s fork blew on the first stage this morning and even a top rider like him isn t allowed support on track so he had to re-inflate it with a CO2 canister to keep going.
  Jared's fork blew on the first stage this morning, and even a top rider like him isn't allowed support on track, so he had to re-inflate it with a CO2 canister to keep going.

Richie Rude had some mixed luck today and couldn t repeat his podium performance from the last round but still put in a top twenty ride.
  Richie Rude had some mixed luck today, and couldn't repeat his podium performance from the last round, but still put in a top twenty ride.

Lucky number 13 Florian Nicolai ripping the loamy goodness of stage one aka Microclimate.
  Lucky number 13: Florian Nicolai ripping the loamy goodness of stage one, aka Microclimate.

Martin Maes won stages 2 and 4 today taking a 12 second leand into the final stage.
  Martin Maes won stages 2 and 4 today, taking a 12 second leand into the final stage.

Ben Cruz in stage two. His time had him ballpark in the top ten for the stage but a mechanical issue took him out of starting stage five resulting in a DQ.
  Ben Cruz in stage two. His time had him ballpark in the top ten for the stage, but a mechanical issue took him out of starting stage five, resulting in a DQ.

Francois Bailly-Maitre was up there on stages today but wasn t quite able to get onto the podium.
  Francois Bailly-Maitre was up there on stages today, but wasn't quite able to get onto the podium.

Yoann Barelli charging hard in stage 3.
  Yoann Barelli charging hard in stage 3.

Local rider Jesse Melamed was the star of the morning. He wiped out three times on the first stage and still managed fifth. Then he won the second stage his first ever EWS stage win.
  Local rider Jesse Melamed was the star of the morning. He wiped out three times on the first stage and still managed fifth. Then he won the second stage, his first ever EWS stage win.

Marco Osborne getting a little scrub on over a root line in stage 3. A top twenty showing for Osborne makes it 4 Americans in the top twenty.
  Marco Osborne getting a little scrub on over a root line in stage 3. A top twenty showing for Osborne makes it 4 Americans in the top twenty.

To any naysayers who considered Curtis Keene to be not that talented it seems as if the American Dream is coming into his own third place here in Whistler. I love this place. This place is so awesome that everytime I come here I turn it up. Last year I was doing well but flatted.
  To any naysayers who considered Curtis Keene to be not that talented, it seems as if the "American Dream" is coming into his own: third place here in Whistler. "I love this place. This place is so awesome that everytime I come here, I turn it up. Last year I was doing well, but flatted."

Anneke Beerten getting wild on stage 3.
  Anneke Beerten getting wild on stage 3.

Complete focus from Oton. He s cemented his position as consistent contender in the last few races.
  Complete focus from Oton. He's cemented his position as consistent contender in the last few races.

Joe Barnes blistering in the sun on the climb to stage 4. Sure a chunk of the climb was pavement...hot sticky asphalt without a speck of shade.
  Joe Barnes blistering in the sun on the climb to stage 4. Sure, a chunk of the climb was pavement...hot, sticky, asphalt without a speck of shade.

Cecile Ravanel won the first stage today then capitalised on a puncture for ACC to take the win.
  Cecile Ravanel won the first stage today, then capitalised on a puncture for ACC to take the win.

After a run of podium finishes Rene Wildhaber was slightly further back today finishing 11th.
  After a run of podium finishes, Rene Wildhaber was slightly further back today, finishing 11th.

Damien Oton dons the armour for the final brutal stage of the day.
  Damien Oton dons the armour for the final, brutal stage of the day.

Cecile Ravanel blowing smoke on Top of the World. Ravanel s time seems to have finally come with multiple stage wins on the day including two minutes over T-Mo on the final stage and five minutes on Chausson to her credit Anne Caro flatted somewhere on the stage so finishing only five minutes down was no small feat .
  Cecile Ravanel blowing smoke on Top of the World. Ravanel's time seems to have finally come, with multiple stage wins on the day, including two minutes over T-Mo on the final stage, and five minutes on Chausson (to her credit, Anne Caro flatted somewhere on the stage, so finishing only five minutes down was no small feat).

Rocky Mountain blowing dust on the trails....
  Rocky Mountain blowing dust on the trails....

Ines Thoma cranking corners up on Top of the World.
  Ines Thoma cranking corners up on Top of the World.

Giant s Kelli Emmett cornering hard on Top of the World.
  Giant's Kelli Emmett cornering hard on Top of the World.

Mark Weir back racing
  Mark Weir back racing!

The number of media at the top of the world was incredible today.
  The number of media at the top of the world was incredible today.

It was another big ride for Marco Osborne today. At this rate he s going to be much in demand for a full EWS season next year.
  It was another big ride for Marco Osborne today. At this rate he's going to be much in demand for a full EWS season next year.

Privateer Greg Callaghan put in his best ride of the season today to take 15th.
  Privateer Greg Callaghan put in his best ride of the season today to take 15th.

Nico Lau was so close today after nearly an hour of racing he lost out to Jared Graves by just 2.5 seconds.
  Nico Lau was so close today after nearly an hour of racing he lost out to Jared Graves by just 2.5 seconds.

Dan Atherton getting back on the horse on the Top of the World. Fourteenth for Affy on the day it s good to see him getting back to form.
  Dan Atherton getting back on the horse on the Top of the World. Fourteenth for Affy on the day; it's good to see him getting back to form.

Jared was dominant on the final stage. He came in a good way off the lead and dimolished everbody.After a tough morning with a blown fork it s solid testament of why you should never give up.
  Jared was dominant on the final stage. He came in a good way off the lead and dimolished everbody.After a tough morning with a blown fork, it's solid testament of why you should never give up.

Anne-Caroline Chausson was close so close to victory today but the rocks of stage five could be cruel.
  Anne-Caroline Chausson was close, so close to victory today, but the rocks of stage five could be cruel.

This was the end of Martin Maes victory hopes.
  This was the end of Martin Maes victory hopes.

Jared needed a moment or two to compose himself before he could talk about the day s exexrtions.
  Jared needed a moment or two to compose himself before he could talk about the day's exertions.

After such a long hot day Nico Lau needed some serious refreshment.
  After such a long, hot day Nico Lau needed some serious refreshment.

Bubbles for the winners.
  Bubbles for the winners.

This was Cecile Ravanels maiden EWS victory and she clearly enjoyed every moment of it.
  This was Cecile Ravanels maiden EWS victory and she clearly enjoyed every moment of it.

So that the sun setting on another great weekend of racing in Whistler. The series concludes in Finale Ligure on the first weekend in October. See you there.
  So that the sun setting on another great weekend of racing in Whistler. The series concludes in Finale Ligure on the first weekend in October. See you there.



72 Comments

  • + 47
 Came here for pics of Cedric. Left disappointed.
  • + 6
 He is way too fast my good man !
  • + 22
 Sooo many beautiful pics for my desktop..
Props to you all photographers (Matt Wragg, Colin Meagher, and Margus Riga)
And thanks to you too my days at the office fells soo boring..
  • + 5
 Margus's pics into the sun are very nice. Great pics.
  • + 1
 the sram tape color came out really well in the pics too
  • + 13
 Cheers guys! And cuban-b, it's companies like SRAM supporting these races that make them possible, so take your whining elsewhere.
  • + 30
 i wasn't whining. I actually think that was a cool color that came out in pics. you misinterpreted my comment.
  • + 14
 Ah, Rosara Joseph was 5th in the womens, Lorraine was 6th, Rosara is continually head of the factory pros fighting it out hard in the top10 regualry yet no piccs of her out theyre or mention, she continually does what Jamie Nichol was doing last year, but flies under the radar, Meg Bichard another kiwi in 8th, Im not being biased but what other country right now, has so many riders not fully sponsored beating established factory stars and big names, 5 kiwi girls in the top 20, check out mens as well, stacked in theyre. Graves that was an amazing comeback true competitor not to give up and win like that. Great to see Cecile win as well, regardless of ACC, thats racing to win you have to finish first, manage body and bike to the end, ACC to her credit acknowledged that too, great spirit from the best ever rider in MTB. Great round Canada
  • + 5
 Oops. my bad. And yes, it was a great ride by Rosara. I have no idea how much support Yeti offer her, but I chose to run the shot of Lorraine because she came into this season completely without sponsors, but still got herself to Canada to race.
  • + 12
 There's no doubting Yeti's decision to focus on Enduro and stop their world cup DH team. They've had awesome success and more exposure than they would of had in UCI DH, and in the segment that's the real money maker for bike companies, trail bikes. (endure is a race format people, not a type of bike)
  • + 7
 Clearly the key to victory is having a completely fresh kit for the last stage of the day. (Maybe a new rule next year- no clothing changes). Anyhoos, congrats Gravsey! That's a hell of a day of racing, coming back from a blown fork.
  • - 3
 If that bothered you, then definitely do not read the article about Oton's bike and the many many changes he makes in between runs.
  • + 2
 Pretty sure that was a joke mugeybaby
  • + 6
 I've been critical of Curtis Keene's performance in the past mainly due to how Specialized and redbull market him so hard. It feels good to say that I'm excited by how well he did at this race and hope he carries this through to the next. He is the american I am most ready to see step it up to consistent podium status.
  • + 0
 Imagine that, signing up an athlete and using them in your marketing! what a concept! Little known fact, if you invest in an athlete, regardless of 'results' you still must use and promote them, or your investment is worthless.
  • + 1
 My previous comments had to do with the fact that I felt like his sponsors may be overusing him and distracting him from his racing. There is a fine line between sponsoring an athlete and running him into the ground with photo shoots and filming.
  • + 4
 Hardest thing I've ever done but wouldn't change a thing. Just made stage 4 transition by a couple of minutes. That climb nearly broke me. Other than the water issue across the first couple of stages, the day ran smoothly and Crankworx put on a top event. I was in amateur masters and this was only my second race ever but you won't hear me whinging.
  • + 3
 Heard a good few people whinging about the transition times, but obviously not fit enough!
  • + 2
 Good effort! I'd have been whining but then I'm not used to those temps being from Scotland!
  • + 4
 Hardest event I've ever been in. Harder then 24h races, solo 6h races, BCBR, 12h two-man races, marathon XC races and any and all DH races I've ever participated in! Hope some more photos of us amateurs get up too!
  • + 7
 That podium photo of the girls is awesome - it's like a blizzard.
  • + 3
 Watched the end of the broadcast - exciting stuff indeed. This really is what MTB is all about for me. I rode from home on Saturday - 44km and 1450 m of climbing with some dh runs on the way down.
  • + 2
 Good race, just want to have more online videos not just of the last meters of the race, it will be awasome to have more video from inside the race...

Jared what a race !!! YETI FAN 10000%
  • + 5
 Jared is a beast, but our french guys are so close grrrrrr
  • + 4
 Bad luck for Anne Caro, but well done to Cecile, she's been knocking on the door for a while now.
  • + 5
 By the looks of Martin Maes' bike, Shimano's 1x ring doesn't work too well
  • + 8
 I've been a Shimano man all my life but this year... SRAM - they already got my money. Very happy with X01.
  • + 8
 It's not about the chainring! If you look close, you'll see that his derailleur hanger is, if not broken, completely down and out of the frame
  • + 3
 Martin is the future, still remember him cheering for his dad when he was 2 years old.
  • + 3
 oh i'm pretty sure it's still better than SRAM. Big Grin
  • + 4
 I'd need to check my photos, but I don't think Martin was running a chainguide at all and the last stage was so rough in places that it doesn't matter what company makes your kit, when the tracks get that ugly, things can go wrong.
  • + 0
 oh i see where you thought i was whining now LOL. man, people are sensitive on these boards. i was just poking fun at the original comment of "shimano's 1x ring doesn't work too well". so he's the only one who can whine about a company? why can't I? that's discrimantory Wink
  • + 0
 Was I whining?
I was just pointing out the fact that Maes was running the Shimano 1x proto and came down without his chain on.
I'm not whining, Shimano 4 life!
  • - 1
 LOL relax son. i like shimano too. i actually run full rock shox on my dh bike so i should be butt hurt about my own comments.
  • + 3
 I raced yesterday in the amateur category and the Sram X1 I was riding (borrowed bike as I bent my frame Saturday evening in a crash) dropped a chain on Top Of the World just before Kyhbers Pass, lost time needing to stop and put it back on but it stayed on after that one drop. The bike wasn't set up with a chain guide. Many guys running 1x without chainguides no matter what manufacture had issues with dropped chains out there yesterday. Upper guide is needed for racing.
  • + 3
 yep. sure the narrow-wide rings reduce drops significantly, but when there's so much at stake, i don't understand why anyone wouldn't run at least a top guide. perhaps maes was mandated to run the ring naked for optics (i.e., demonstrating retention capability prior to the inevitable market release), but that must have been a piss off to know it was probably avoidable.
  • + 3
 @mattwragg You totally won the enduro photo contest. So many great pics all in one day. Bravo, mate. That Nico Lau one makes me want to give up shooting.
  • + 4
 Jared looks exhausted. This must have been a hard race.
  • + 3
 Understatement of the month...!
  • + 5
 Nine hours on a bike is a brute of a day, and these are top riders. I'd still be out there this morning ...
  • + 5
 Hard race barely even comes close: Longest toughest day I've ever had on a bike. I had an absolute blast, but that was brutal. The transition times were tight and a LOT of people never made it to S4, or got there after 1h:10 of slogging up only to be turned around as they missed their start. And, as Jared said at the finish: a lot of stages we do have gnarly sections, but every section of every track here today was gnarly. That was really hard.
  • + 6
 I agree, that was brutal. The transitions for 2 to 3 and 3 to 4 really took it out of me, I made it to 4 with 1 minute to spare, no water left & borderline hallucinating, then I had to try and race ride don't slide...

I flatted on it anyway, so took it easy, I was going to throw in the towel but kept on trucking in the end, and finished it. So many people missed their starts on the transitions, to even finish this was an achievement.

That's the toughest thing I've ever done on a bike.
  • + 3
 I'll third that it was a hard day on the bike for us desk jockey weekend warriors, but I wouldn't ask for it to be made easier. Props to Crankworx for putting together what might be the hardest EWS ever. It will be interesting to see if they tone it down for next year if too many of the amateur riders complain, really hope they don't.
  • + 2
 Without sounding harsh, it is the World Series so I hope they don't listen too much to any amateur whinings. If you're not strong enough to finish, don't enter. The worst thing for me yesterday was no water for Master Men for the first three stages. It was 30 deg ffs! Big oversight.
  • + 2
 No way, they shouldn't make it easier, this is meant to be the pinnacle of the sport, we are lucky we get to race with the pro's! It should be out of us mortals comfort zone, if it's not, it's probably too easy. This wasn't easy, up or down! The water thing wasn't cool though, I stopped at rainbow park on the way to 4, otherwise I wouldn't have made it.
  • + 3
 I agree stages shouldn't be easier-but it might not be the end of the world if the amateurs, who help make these events financially feasible, go a little more transition time.
  • + 4
 Glad I over filled my water bladder in the morning. My original plan was to pack just enough water for 1 and 2. Lucky I had just enough to take me to the end of 3 and they had water there when I got down (30-39 men plate 547).

I thanked Seb in the finish corral at the end of 5 for the hard work his team puts in and the first thing he did was apologize for the screw up on water for the early riders. I know that doesn't fix things, but they know they dropped the ball on that.
  • + 2
 Yeah, they had water at 3 for the girls and most of 30-39 but when I got down (501) they were out.

Seb did a solid job on Crazy Train; Zander and the Gravity Logic guys on Boyd's; and Paul and Dave on Microclimate. My small contribution was with Zander and Trev punching in that climbing trail from the road to CT/CM in three hot days.
  • + 6
 Sorry I meant Seb Fremont with WB not Kemp. But yes Kemp and Irish Pete did a killer job on Crazy Train.
  • + 1
 Have to say well done, be proud!
  • + 1
 Enduro is multiple timed stages broken up by un-timed transfer stages. The timed stages should try no more then 80% dh and 20% flat/climbing but they could be 100% dh.
  • + 1
 "To any naysayers who considered Curtis Keene to be not that talented..."

Seriously? I never knew people said that about Keene. He has mad skills.
  • + 1
 I have an idea. When will the trails used by Enduro, get repaired. They are still messed up many days after the circus left town.
  • + 3
 Can't wait for Jared's post race write up. Should be a good one!
  • + 4
 stellar pics!! thanks!
  • + 1
 I know its not about the money but does anyone know the prize money breakdown?
  • + 1
 What an awesome result for Jared! And for Yeti! To come back after a blown fork is def a great effort.
  • + 1
 came here for pictures of hannah barnes all i got was a few of her brother.....
  • + 2
 f*ck Yeah Gravy Stains!
(..seems like I'm always writing this... )
  • + 2
 collection of pods
  • + 1
 I want those canada socks
  • + 1
 Is this the EWS coverage, or a pic of soon to be POD's?
  • + 0
 Martin maes with a 12 second "leand".
  • - 1
 Still don't know what enduro is.
  • + 14
 The hardest thing you'll ever do.
  • + 16
 I think everyone that makes enduro jokes online should be forced to attempt that course from yesterday. All the enduro hate would end full stop.
  • + 1
 @shirk-007 so true !!!
  • + 2
 @shirk-007 I'm being serious. Can someone please explain this to me?
  • + 5
 Enduro is multiple timed stages broken up by un-timed transfer stages. The timed stages should try no more then 80% dh and 20% flat/climbing but they could be 100% dh.
  • + 3
 @shirk-007 So you go down then back up five times in one day? That sounds like hell. But also sounds like a good time. Respect.

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