The last race of the season is always intense, but the final round of the 2021 Enduro World Series took things to the next level, bringing the drama to the rolling hills of Southern Scotland. So much so that the week of cold driving rain, unrelenting wind, and challenging conditions served as a mere backdrop to the final showdown of the season.
Saturday’s Pro Stage took an unexpected twist when Richie Rude’s championship campaign ended abruptly after leaving the course markings, resulting in a disqualification. This would hand the championship to series leader Jack Moir with no further contest. Moir would go on to win the stage, setting him up with a three-second advantage into the remaining five stages.
To kick off Sunday's drama, a crash on the first stage of the day saw Moir’s race chances begin to slip away, with Martin Maes taking the stage win and with it the race lead. From here on in it was Maes’ race to lose and he knew it, putting down the power to win his first race this season by over six seconds. Jesse Melamed would win two stages, and while he got within just two seconds of Maes going into the last stage, he could go no better and was rewarded with second place. Adrien Dailly saw a return to form to round out the top three.
Jack Moir’s impressive five race wins saw him crowned the overall 2021 Enduro World Series Champion, with Richie Rude finishing just behind him in second and Jesse Melamed in third.
In the women’s competition, Bex Baraona made her intentions clear early with a decisive win in the Pro Stage. Sunday however got off to a shaky start for her with a ninth on stage two, and she was then forced to play catchup in front of the hometown crowd. Harriet Harnden had other plans and almost stole it away, leading into the final stage. But Baraona fought back to win the stage and with it the first EWS win of her career. Harnden had to settle for second with Morgane Charre coming third.
However, none of them could match Melanie Pugin’s record of two wins and the consistency of five podium finishes, which saw the French rider named the overall Enduro World Series Champion by a comfortable margin. Morgane Charre finished just behind her in second place, with outgoing champ Isabeau Courdurier in third.
That's it for 2021, but we will see you right back in the Tweed Valley next June for the opening round when the EWS Championship battle begins all over again.
Tape it up and send it, the offseason is just a day away
Saurday's Pro Stage was a washout with heavy rain and wind throughout the day
If the slick mud doesn't get you, the freshly watered grass sure will
No amount of sun on race day could undo the damage down from a week of rain
Morgane Charre loving the flat pedals during the Pro Stage downpour
Raphaela Richter on the Pro Stage
Estelle Charles seemed at home in the Scottish conditions and finished 6th.
A strong ride from Kelan Grant into 15th.
Greg Callaghan climbed a few positions on the final stage for his first top 10 in quite a while. Nice work Greg.
Kasper Woolley with his 3rd top 10 in three races. Look for him to be fighting for the podium in 2022
Richie Rude on the final moments of an ill-fated run. Regardless of how the final played out, he put up a fight all season and gave the fans an epic battle with Jack Moir that pushed both racers to the limit round after round.
Dark and moody Scottish woods
After what feels like a week of nonstop rain, the sun and blue sky finally made an appearance for much of Sunday
Harriet Harnden was leading going into the final stage but would struggle to keep pace, eventually slipping to 2nd.
Jack Moir was hungry for the win today but couldn't quite much the front running pace and slipped back to 4th.
Adam Brayton trying his hand at the EWS on Stage 2
Miranda Miller into the dark and slick woods
Isabeau Courdurier on the long climb to the top of stage 3.
Wyn Masters and some Scottish artwork on Stage 3
An off weekend for Melanie Pugin would see her do just enough to take home the overall title
4th on the day for Noga Korem
Semi-retired from racing and in 9th for Sam Dale
12th for Mark Scott after not racing an EWS in quite some time
Lewis Buchanan threw down an awesome time to kick things of on Saturday's Pro Stage but would slip down the order come Sunday
Hometown hero Katy Winton could well have had the loudest cheers of all today.
Another strong ride from Charlie Murray into 5th place.
Adrien Dailly finishes off his 2021 season with a third place.
9th place for Ella Conolly on home soil.
6th place today for Matt Walker in the challenging conditions.
How dark are the woods here in Scotland? About that dark
4 seasons in a day in Scotland.
What could have been for Jess Stone. She was leading up until a crash which broke her finger... Look closely at her left hand. She still won the stage.
Morgane Charre didn't have enough for the win today but finishes the season on a high note with a 2nd in the overall
Each race Evan Wall seems to go just a little bit quicker as he gains experience. Ending the season with a 14th will surely give him plenty of confidence while he preps for 2022
Damion Oton in his final EWS race of what has been an incredible career
Aggression right to the end for Jesse Melamed who would take 2nd on the day and 3rd in the series
Charlie Murray once again quietly doing about his business and landing in the top 5
Remi Gauvin through the rain forest on Stage 2
Martin Maes was flying all day to take his first win of the year
First for Bex Baraona, taking her maiden EWS win on home soil in front of friends and family
Morgane Charre missed out on the top spot by a mere 1.5 seconds after 30 minutes of racing.
Hattie Harnden waits nervously for the final riders having led into the last stage.
This moment will take a while to sink in for Bex Baraona.
Robin Wallner celebrates his EWS racing career coming to a close with teammate and good friend Zakarias Johansen.
Greg Callahan is back inside the EWS top 10 once again.
After an up and down season Martin Maes finally found his form and delivered a win to close out 2021
A face of relief for Jack Moir after a long season fighting for the title on nearly every stage with Richie Rude
Jack Moir can toss that number 21 board in the bin, as he'll be running the number 1 plate next season
Polly Henderson took the win on home soil in the U21 women, she was ahead of Sophie Riva and Ellen Flewitt.
Jamie Edmondson took the win in U21 men in front of Jack Menzies and Jake Ebdon.
Sophie Riva took the U21 Women's overall in front of Polly Henderson, the absent Simona Kuchynkova taking third.
Jamie Edmondson won in style taking the overall as well. Francescu Camoin and Luke Meier Smith were second and third overall in 2021.
What a way to end the season at home for Bex Baraona. Her first EWS win and on home soil. 2nd would go to another Brit, Harriet Harnden, with France's Morgane Charre in 3rd
Race Winner Martin Maes goes bottoms up with Jesse Melamed and Adrien Dailly
Melanie Pugin takes the overall title with Morgane Charre in 2nd and outgoing champ Isabeau Courdurier in 3rd
Jack Moir is the new EWS Champion, followed by Richie Rude and Jesse Melamed
See you in the spring Scotland, as the Tweed Valley will be the opening round of 2022