Enduro World Series Round 3, Madeira – Event Preview

May 11, 2017 at 14:25
by Matthew DeLorme  




Here we are on this speck of an island in the east Atlantic. It's about 600 miles to the mainland in Lisbon, Portugal, and a place we have been hearing about quite frequently of late—the trails and culture are said to be quite unique. It's Madeira, and we are here for round three of the Enduro World Series. So far we are in love with the people and the trails. The weather? Well, that looks like it is going to be more of the same this round, except the rain is much colder than it was in Tassie or Rotorua. But for now, go on a tour of some of this amazing islands trails with us.


The mornings down at sea level are usually warm and sunny. Up on some of the stage starts it s been another story.
The mornings down at sea level are usually warm and sunny. Up on some of the stage starts it's been another story.

Here we are for another edition of the Enduro World Series. So far we are digging Madeira.
Here we are for another edition of the Enduro World Series. So far, we are digging Madeira.

A sunrise and an impending storm. Welcome to Madeira.
A sunrise and an impending storm. Welcome to Madeira.

Always moist in Madeira.
Always moist in Madeira.

Enduro World Series Round 3 Madeira Event Preview

Stage 1 is a bit of a physical one and when it rains the red clay surface is as slick as ice.
Stage 1 is a bit of a physical one and when it rains the red clay surface is as slick as ice.

Stage four may have been our personal favorite. Lots of loam These stairs will be a wild ride come race day.
Stage 4 may have been our personal favorite. Lots of loam! These stairs will be a wild ride come race day.

Stage six has a solid mix of drops roots and big rocks.
Stage 6 has a solid mix of drops, roots and big rocks.

After a forty minute drive the shuttles dumped us off and headed to great us at the bottom of stage on. Racers will have some shuttle assistance as well.
After a forty minute drive the shuttles dumped us off and headed to greet us at the bottom of Stage 1. Racers will have some shuttle assistance as well.

The woods on day two are filled with some golden dirt.
The woods on day two are filled with golden dirt.

Big ruts slick rocks and a bit of good old loam. Madeira has a bit of it all.
Big ruts, slick rocks, and a bit of good old loam. Madeira has a bit of it all.

John From Freeride Madeira is the man with the plan. He shows us how it s done.
John from Freeride Madeira is the man with the plan. He shows us how it's done.

Inside middle or outside. Lots of lines to choose from in some spots.
Inside, middle, or outside. Lots of lines to choose from in some spots.

Stage 4 is a super flow natural affair through some big trees and loamy dirt.
Stage 4 is a super flow natural affair through some big trees and loamy dirt.

The liaisons have some spectacular views.
The liaisons have some spectacular views.

More loamy goodness in stage four. Rick getting the tunnel vision on the course preview.
More loamy goodness on Stage 4. Rick getting the tunnel vision on the course preview.

While the sides of stage 3 are lush and soft the track itself is full of jagged rock.
While the sides of Stage 3 are lush and soft, the track itself is full of jagged rock.

Sven gets his tweak on.
Sven gets his tweak on.

Anytime you see ferns this big and green you can be sure that it rains and rains often.
Anytime you see ferns this big and green, you can be sure that it rains and rains often.

It s a relief on stage 3 anytime your tires are on dirt and not slipping about on rocks.
It's a relief on Stage 3 anytime your tires are on dirt and not slipping about on rocks.

Matt Delorme navigates the never-ending slick as snot rock garden on stage 3.
Matt Delorme navigates the never-ending slick as snot rock garden on Stage 3.

While stages 1 and 2 traverse the high ride lines above Machico stage 3 dives into the trees.
While Stages 1 and 2 traverse the high ride lines above Machico, Stage 3 dives into the trees.

Enduro World Series filter Nick Armstrong no pun intended had a rough one today and spent the night having some new hardware installed in his left arm... Heal up Nick
Enduro World Series filter, Nick Armstrong (no pun intended) had a rough one today and spent the night having some new hardware installed in his left arm... Heal up Nick

We didn t make it all the way to the end of day two but we tried real hard. Squiding ain t easy.
We didn't make it all the way to the end of day two, but we tried real hard. Squiding ain't easy.

Half way down stage 3 there s a bit of a view. Of course it usually fills in with fog and rain every 10 minutes but now and then it s actually quite clear.
Half way down Stage 3 there's a bit of a view. Of course it usually fills in with fog and rain every 10 minutes, but now and then it's actually quite clear.

Delorme navigates the roots on stage 7.
Delorme navigates the roots on Stage 7.

Refreshing Poncha served up cold in the pits is the only way to end the day.
Refreshing Poncha, served up cold in the pits is the only way to end the day.

Sugar cane. It s the sweetest thing growing round these parts. It also gets distilled into Cachaca.
Sugar cane. It's the sweetest thing growing 'round these parts. It also gets distilled into Cachaca.

Dave finding his flow while the sun starts getting low.
Dave finding his flow while the sun starts getting low.

John Parkin making quick work out of stage seven.
John Parkin making quick work out of Stage 7.

Stage 7 is made up mostly of an old DH track and if full of massive roots.
Stage 7 is made up mostly of an old DH track and if full of massive roots.

The Pope of Enduro Enrico Guala drops into the rocks on stage 7.
The Pope of Enduro, Enrico Guala drops into the rocks on Stage 7.

Dave linking up some turns on stage one.
Dave linking up some turns on Stage 1.

Greasy conditions are no worry for our fearless leader Chris Ball.
Greasy conditions are no worry for our fearless leader, Chris Ball.

Anka Martin shows how to get through the super slick rock gardens that make up the top third of stage three.
Anka Martin shows how to get through the super slick rock gardens that make up the top third of Stage 3.

We Had a few close calls on stage three.
We had a few close calls on Stage 3.

We love the little details around Madeira.
We love the little details around Madeira.

Chris Ball goes over the the rules of the weekend with the team managers and mechanics before things get rolling.
Chris Ball goes over the the rules of the weekend with the team managers and mechanics before things get rolling.

The bike washes will be incredibly busy if the top side weather keeps it up.
The bike washes will be incredibly busy if the top side weather keeps it up.

Enduro World Series Round 3 Madeira Event Preview

Enduro World Series Round 3 Madeira Event Preview

Cheers Madeira we re in for one probably wet and wild weekend.
Cheers Madeira, we're in for one (probably wet) and wild weekend.



35 Comments

  • + 18
 I better go visit grandma soon this time ill bring the bike. riveira brava here i come!
  • + 54
 Can I visit your grandma too?
  • + 3
 @wpplayer18: u all got brush up on your Portuguese and ur more then we'll come
  • + 2
 @NJrookie: it's gonna be a party with your avó!
  • + 3
 @wpplayer18: he'll yeah bring the poncha,I'll bring the bacalao and the broa.
  • + 8
 Don't be enjoying that Poncha too much! We want to hear about the racing not the hangovers, it'll give you a mean hangover by the way.
  • + 7
 If the riding is as good as it looks we should be in for a awesome race Photography Top notch as usaul
  • + 5
 Madeira and Funchal are one of the most beautiful places I have visited! Wish I could come back for a month long vacation with my bike!
  • + 1
 Ditto. I got to ride one day with @freeridemadeira when I was there, and I wished I "almost" lost my passport so I could stay and ride more Smile
  • + 5
 " Inside, middle, or outside. Lots of lines to choose from in some spots".

Nah, that's just a f*cking mess.
  • + 2
 I'm not even racing these events and I'm getting tired of the rain! Hope this series turns into more than just a test to see which rider can best keep his/her bike upright in the slop.
  • + 1
 Not to be too much of a downer but the extended forecast for Wicklow, Ireland in two weeks is not looking great Frown I hope its wrong...
  • + 5
 I would like the ews to have one race in asia next year.
  • + 2
 More rain! Riders must be fed up with these racing conditions! Hopefully the weather turns around and for once there's sun on race day!
  • + 4
 You're allowed to ride e-bikes?
  • + 5
 media crew all get one to make it easier to lug around all their gear
  • + 2
 at least in Portugal you don't have any rules against riding them if you were talking about using them in ews, only the media and organizares can ride it , not the racers
  • + 1
 Beats looking at them I suppose.
  • + 9
 Yes, the bottom ten riders from the previous race get to ride e-bikes for the next round. It's a way to try to level out the playing field. Pretty cool, huh?
  • + 1
 I think a fair few of the races in Europe have an e-bike category. Not sure that's the case here though, may just be that when you're one of the people responsible for creating Enduro as an international race format you can do what you like!
  • + 13
 Sad when you can't even enjoy an Enduro Porn spread without getting a full frontal from an e-MTB ruining the vibe. Wink
  • - 6
flag harrybrottman (May 11, 2017 at 18:09) (Below Threshold)
 Most of the top pros (Aaron Gwin) have been riding ebikes for years - next year Chris froome will win alps dues chainless and everyone will gush on him saying "wow..... he is amazing....."

Wake the f*ck up ............
  • + 2
 @harrybrottman: the f*ck u on
  • + 1
 @nozes I meant at this time of year. that's three races in row affected by rain. So half the time your results will depend on what time your start is at.
  • + 2
 The "Pope of Enduro" riding an ebike is proof there is no god.
  • + 2
 Amazing the Place !!!!!!!!
  • + 1
 Madeira weather is crazy! Long and fun trails but have to be lucky or you will finish drinking something in the bar
  • + 1
 The hell is he doing on an e-bike?! get that shit out of here!
  • + 1
 Looking good! Can't wait to see what the carnage brings!
  • + 1
 Awesome ! One day......... I will get my but over there
  • - 1
 oh no ........ no beer in Madeira?
  • + 3
 Plenty of beer. But the newcomers are always atracted to the poncha ,at least until they find out about the hungover Big Grin
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