Cannondale wrapped up its two-day Factory Racing team launch in Italy on Thursday, treating riders, staff, and a collection of journalists to a mini-version of the famed SuperEnduro race that’s held annually here in Finale Ligure.
Riders rolled out of the seaside town two-by-two, then slogged their way up a series of steep road climbs, topping out at about 1,000 feet. After that it was game on, with riders taking off one by one and charging (or slowly rolling in some cases) down a snaky line of rough, rocky — and occasionally very steep — single track. Times ranged from 5 to 7 minutes.
Following another road grinder, there was one final timed downhill section, this one tamer and shorter than the first go round, but still lots of fun. When the dust settled, American Ben Cruz had posted the day’s fastest two-segment time, just edging out French teammate Jerome Clementz. Check out the complete route map.
Here’s a look at some of the sights and scenes from the two day press launch. Stay tuned to Mtbr.com in the coming weeks for multiple Pro Bike galleries, plus pro tips on tire choice, and an inside look at what it takes to be a successful enduro racer.
All photos courtesy Cannondale / Ale Di Lullo