ENDURO ACTION: Crankworx Whistler EWS Race Day 5

<b>While much of Whistler was still asleep, we made our first of two trips to the Top of the World. Fog, rain and some lightning made for an ominous start to what would be an incredibly long day.</b> -Trumpore

<b>The 5th stop of the Enduro World Series got under way as riders rolled a huge start ramp that led directly onto the gondola. It's Martin Maes's first time in Canada but he has been quick to adapt and is already adding style on wooden features.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Stage 1 was entirely in the forest, where the usually grippy and loamy soil had turned to deep and slippery dust do to a severe lack of rain.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Jamie Nicoll of New Zealand started of the day in 9th to the surprise of those who had never seem him ride before, and by days end would work his way all the way up to a 3rd place podium position.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Tracy Moseley had a bit of an off day today and had trouble pacing herself through some of the early stages. She mentioned finishing stages with too much energy left and too many seconds left on the clock, leaving her in 2nd place for the first time all season.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Stage 5 wreaked havoc on bikes, and Tracy was lucky to finish with her chain on.</b> -Turman

<b>Jerome Clementz continued his winning ways right from the get go, taking the top stop in stages 1, 3, and 4. He would lose all that time earned to a charging Jared Graves on Stage 5 to end the day in 2nd.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Rene Wildhaber was in the running until a mechanical on the 23+ minute Stage 5 pushed him from 4th back to 13th.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Joe Barnes smashed corners into a 10th place finish today and has been steadily improving at each Enduro World Series round.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Barnes at the finish. This was no walk in the park.</b> -Turman

<b>Tyler Morland, a former World Cup DH racer and current SRAM marketing honcho, still knows how to ride fast when it counts.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Morland struggled on the valley trails and the punchy climbs but threw down a huge run at the end of the day to take 4th on the long, rough, and fast Stage 5.</b> -Trumpore

<b>With LOTS of pedaling and climbing between Stages 2, 3 and 4, the feed stations along the liaison stages were a welcome sight to tired riders. They could grab water and food here, but no outside assistance was allowed to fix mechanicals until the end of Stage 4. Justin Leov on the mic.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Dust, dust, and more dust is the only way to describe the trails in Whistler right now.</b> -Trumpore

<b>The Whistler Valley trails may not be as well known as the bike park trails, but they are every bit as challenging and in most cases more fun to ride late in the summer when the bike park becomes overrun with braking bumps. Jeff Kendall-Weed smashes through the roots as Nathan Riddle gives his take.</b> -Trumpore

<b>If you fall in front of a photographer, hitting them with your bike will only make it more likely that your embarrassing photo ends up on the internet. Kyle Warner (not pictured) doesn't like skinnies.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Classic Whistler rock roll-ins were a common sight on the later half of Stage 2. Italy's Alex Lupato tamed them with ease, as did trials master Jeff Lenosky.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Even after a dislocated shoulder two days prior and 8 stitches in her arm, Cecile Ravenel had no plans to back down. With a win on Stage 3, 2nds on both 2 & 4, and 3rd overall she will have gained some confidence going into the last 2 rounds.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Curtis Keene was in 6th going into his personal favorite Stage 5 knowing it played into all of his strengths. Unfortunately a flat tire half way through the 23 minute stage would end his day and push him way down the board.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Once again, Jerome Clementz showed no weakness by taking the win on a very technical and DH oriented Stage 4 with a very motivated Jared Graves right on his heels.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Riders were not allowed any outside assistance and could not return to the pits during Stages 1-4, so managing risk and mechanicals was key. However the local rocks had other ideas, and I watched this one destroy chain guides, chain rings and at least half a dozen derailleurs.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Chasing riders around for hours and riding all of the tracks to get a variety of shots means you often have to work with what you get. Sometimes you blow it and sometimes you get lucky, and sometimes you get something a bit unexpected like this shot of 5th place finisher Nicolas Lau.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Make no mistake, Joey Schusler is a wild man. Despite having more speed through the technical bits than just about anyone, he struggled a bit on the physical sections this weekend.</b> -Trumpore

<b>16-year-old Martin Maes crushed the hopes of the Junior Men once again this weekend, as well as those of most of the top Pro Men.  Fastest Junior by a mile (literally) and 8th overall.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Don't call it a comeback. Duncan Riffle had another go at the Enduro World Series this weekend simply for the fun of it.</b> -Trumpore

<b>The Women's race was all about Anne Caroline Chausson. Back up to speed after a season defined by injury, she would win 4 of the 5 stages to take her first overall EWS win in convincing fashion, more than a minute clear of the runner up.</b> -Trumpore

<b>With 4 long, hard stages and hours of riding under their belts, racers headed up above the clouds once again. Starting at Top of the World, down through some rowdy trails in the bike park for over 25 minutes and 4k feet of descending, Stage 5 would be a monster.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Last call, final preparations and the only chance riders would have to enjoy the view from the top of Whistler Peak.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Fabien Barel has had an interesting weekend for sure. He would win Stage 3 and place 3rd overall before his 5 minute penalty was added on for alleged "shuttling."</b> -Trumpore

<b>Following a heated post-race argument between Fabien and the organizers, we had the opportunity to sit down with Fab and hear his side of the story. Separate interview to follow... Don't believe everything you have read on twitter just yet.</b> -Turman

<b>Whistler's Strava KOM hero Nick Geddes had his hopes dashed after running near the top 10 in the early stages and having a mechanical on the rough Stage 5.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Adam Craig has always been known for being strong on the pedals, but don't forget that he raced DH on and off through his career. He can thrown down when things get rough, tech and as demonstrated here, a bit buck wild. 5th on the the last stage would be good enough for 4th overall and his best EWS result of the season.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Two course marshals asked me to take a photo of their Son/Brother running the #66 plate, so I did. Turns out #66 is local shredder and 6th place overall finisher, Jesse Melamed, who's impressive stage results were turning heads all day.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Chris Johnston put on an equally impressive show, drawing on his history in the Valley to land him in 8th overall.</b> -Turman

<b>I'm not sure what suffered a worse fate, Fabien's mystery shock or Brandon Turman's wrist. Regardless, it looks like both need a rebuild after a brutal day (and no, for all the haters, that is not oil leaking out of a blown motor on Fab's bike).</b> -Trumpore

<b>Vital's own Brandon Turman snapped a chain and hit the ground hard. Cheers to the organizers for a job well done and great planning. #ouch</b> -Turman

<b>Bonus Jamie Nicoll shot. It's well-deserved for coming in 3rd and being a stand up guy.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Jared Graves is an animal - there isn't mush else to say. 1st place. Finally.</b> -Trumpore

<b>Graves showed his cards at the last round in Winter Park and everyone knows he is superhuman strong, but to take 34 seconds out of Jerome Clementz on Stage 5 is simply unreal.</b> -Turman

<b>Congrats Jared Graves on taking your first Enduro World Series overall win, plus a cool $10,000 in hard-earned prize money! We'll see you all in Val d'Isere.</b> -Trumpore

In just one day, the World's best Enduro racers tackled five incredibly challenging stages plus the distances in-between. We take you to the center of the action to see and hear everything as it unfolded, including the first big wins for two very strong competitors.
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  • Dub

    8/13/2013 9:09 AM

    Top notch, Dave! That's a hell of a race day.

  • onenerdykid*

    8/13/2013 5:55 AM

    well done vital- awesome coverage. Dave, please eat as much sushi for me as possible.

  • jeff.brines

    8/12/2013 10:31 AM

    Wait, Turman, did you do this whole thing with a broken arm? #Beaststatus

  • shutter2ride

    8/12/2013 10:07 AM

    As always, great coverage... And Graves got his win, awesome!!!

  • Mr. P

    8/12/2013 10:05 AM

    That makes me want to ride!!!


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