At the finals in Finale Ligure, Italy, Cecile Ravanel (Commencal Vallnord Enduro) won her first Enduro World Series overall title, and Richie Rude (Yeti/Fox Shox) became the first man to be crowned back-to-back series champ. Full series and event results are here. All photos are courtesy Enduro World Series.
Meanwhile, two legends of the sport, Nico Vouilloz (Lapierre Gravity Republic) and Anne Caroline Chausson (Ibis Cycles Enduro Race Team) announced their retirement from the sport. And if that wasn’t enough, Martin Maes (GT Factory Racing) took his first ever race win.
Starting high in the Ligurian mountains, the 400 riders competing spent two days and seven stages riding their way through sun drenched trails down to the inviting waters of the Mediterranean Sea below. In the men’s race Maes stated his intention clearly on day one, winning all three stages. He eased off the gas on Sunday to secure his position and the tactic paid off, as he took his first win by a margin of 17 seconds over second placed Rude. Consistency all weekend topped by a stage win saw Nico Lau (Cube Action Team) in third place.
“To lead the series from the first race and then to come second today and get the overall again feels amazing,” said Rude. “I was playing it safe today but I was having a lot of fun too. This was my chance to get the double and I got it. Now I’m just looking forward to a couple of weeks off.”
Check out the event’s testing course and weekend action in these two videos.
In the women’s race, the event results perfectly reflected the overall series rankings, with Ravanel coming first, Isabeau Courdurier (SUNN) in second, and Anita Gehrig (Ibis Cycles Enduro Race Team) in third. The overall series podium was the same.
“I had a little crash on stage one and that woke me up,” said Ravanel. “I knew I had the title already so I was just riding for pleasure today. I’ve been working towards this moment all year and so have my team, so it’s great to be able to do this for them.”
In the men’s master’s category Karim Amour won the race, while Michael Broderick took the series title. His dominance all year meant that even racing with broken ribs sustained in Valberg couldn’t stop him from claiming the series.
Raphaela Richter (Radon Magura Factory Racing) stormed to victory in both the race and the series in the U21 women’s category. Her U21 male counterpart Adrien Dailly (Lapierre Gravity Republic) followed suit winning the race and becoming the series champion in the process. In the team competition Rocky Mountain Urge bp continued their strong season to leave Finale with the team title.
Click through to page 2 to see lots more photos from the finals in Finale.