• Text size      
  • Send this article to a friend
  • Print this article

Weekender: an introduction to enduro

There is a long history of mountain biking in Scotland - from the trails of Glentress to the downhill world cup track at Fort William, the country packs one hell of a cycling punch.

And this summer there's a new kid on the block, as enduro makes its UK debut at the TweedLove festival.

Enduro is a fusion of downhill and cross-country mountain biking, following a similar format to car rallies, with multiple stages combining to an overall finish time. With the emphasis on testing a rider's all-round skills, races combine punishing climbs with steep and technical descents. The discipline has long been flirting round the periphery of competitive mountain biking, but only really came of age last year with the first formalised global race league, the Enduro World Series.

Linking a number of existing international events, the world series marks a new style of racing. Instead of restricting entries to the upper echelons of mountain biking, amateur riders can enter alongside and race the same courses as their heroes. The fact that every round last year - including stops in France, Italy, the US and Canada - sold out within minutes is testament to its popularity.

The managing director of the series, Chris Ball, explains: "Enduro has captured the imagination of so many riders because it replicates what we all want to do every weekend; exploring new trails with friends, pacing ourselves on the climbs then racing back down. Combining amateurs and professionals on the same course adds to the relaxed atmosphere and has helped build a huge community within the sport."

And despite the international field of competitors, it's local talent that Ball believes we should be keeping an eye on. "There's some amazing enduro talent here in Scotland, and although the course is kept secret ahead of the race, those riders that are used to the weather conditions here will be at a definite advantage. I think Tweed Valley riders Katy Winton and Gary Forrest will be looking to pull something out the bag for their home crowd."

The series will make its first UK appearance at the TweedLove Festival in May. Now the country's largest cycling festival, the two-week celebration of all things two-wheeled, will see some of the biggest names in mountain biking descend on the Tweed Valley for the race. With the 2014 season taking in such famous destinations as the French Alps, Whistler in Canada and the Chilean Andes, The Enduro World Series's decision to come to TweedLove further cements Scotland's reputation as offering some of the world's best mountain biking.

TweedLove, May 24-June 8, Tweed Valley, Scottish Borders. The Enduro World Series race takes place over the weekend of May 30.

tweedlove.com or enduroworldseries.com

Contextual targeting label: 
Sport

Commenting & Moderation

We moderate all comments on HeraldScotland on either a pre-moderated or post-moderated basis.
If you're a relatively new user then your comments will be reviewed before publication and if we know you well and trust you then your comments will be subject to moderation only if other users or the moderators believe you've broken the rules

Moderation is undertaken full-time 9am-6pm on weekdays, and on a part-time basis outwith those hours. Please be patient if your posts are not approved instantly.

217779