If you were looking for a post today that would finally not involve me dropping the word ENDURO in capitals endlessly, then I’m afraid you’re going to be seethingly disappointed… Yes, I am compelled to do a bit of a wrap up from the awesome Perth mini-mission and lace it with material that has popped out of a Roo pouch. I am also trying to keep the dream alive and ward off the onset of PED, no, not Performance Enhancing Drugs, something much worse and insidious than that:
Post Enduro Depression
Don’t fucken laugh, its actually a real condition that many of us struggle with daily. It can be brought on by even the smallest things, like when you head into the office, when you tag in the front door you may find yourself sprinting to tag into the internal door. You then realise that its not a stage and all you’ve done is accelerate your arrival back to someones mediocre PowerPoint presentation to assault your senses.
It hasn’t helped that whilst we were slopping around in the mud on Sunday, the final round of the ENDURO World Series was being held in funnily enough, Finale, Italy. Because ENDURO loves cool cunts, the coolest of them all was crowned World Champion. Yes, Grubby pulled it off and when I grow up I basically want to be him… He’ll be pleased to know he has now moved into the top spot in the DN Most Wanted stalking list:
Yes, more easily influenced than a drunk 19 year old, I now basically want to stalk out as much of the 2015 EWS series as possible, perhaps even angling how I could do one of the races (and get absolutely smoked to fuck in the process), may as well have some goals for next year right?
Closer to reality, a bit of a recap on the weekend and its ENDURO racing culmination. Who knew that goggles with a half shell helmet would ever be deemed acceptable?
So, what was it about ENDURO racing that appealed so much? Well, 4 things really… Allow me to elaborate without making this a giant post:
1. Maaaaaaates – I have waxed philosophically before about the best riding being because of the people you roll with. Well, this is still true and ENDURO is the first format I have experienced where it manages to incorporate your crew into a race setting. Sure, there are elements of this in DH, but I would say that not to the same level as what I experienced on the weekend. You hang with your posse, roll to the stage, racing it as you want to and then regroup at the end to shit talk, debrief and say FUCK MAN, a lot. I witnessed this a lot and the place was buzzing with a vibe that was even more relaxed than a DH race. It was a welcome change from XC racing to be honest… You won’t see anyone on wind trainers not talking to each other here.
2. New locations – Cycling is an odd mixture of absolute repetition (see weekly road training as an example) and then amazing exploration to new locations, roads and trails. Whilst some would be satisfied with endless laps of the cunting Train Line in Singapore, Mountain Biking is all about getting out and hitting new zones and lines. Enduro absolutely ticks this box, but with a race format attached. Even some of the stages at the Goat Farm were newly cut to keep the locals enthused, so its a great example of getting people stoked to travel and ride, Wolf a case study:
3. Its how the fuck we roll – Pretty obvious this one, but racing an Enduro is pretty much how we all ride these days… DUH, probably why its gone so feral and the events sell out like a mofo. Yes, ENDURO pretty much has XC bent over the couch and is dropping the hammer on it, its like racing how you ride, if that makes sense. Not only does it provide you with the distinctive aroma of how you usually roll on a group ride, but it also gives you that sweet tart taste of competition that is always lurking below the surface on an MTB ride and that you know you NEED. You get to sift and then smash it as hard as you can manage. Such a simple recipe and a bit of a head scratcher why this wasn’t ‘invented’ in 1998.
4. Its given us the Nomad 3 – Slightly abstract, but now is an absolutely GOLDEN time to be a Mountain Biker… The gear we are riding and get access to is ridiculously awesome. Yes, its always improving, but right at this point in time we are fortunate enough to be enjoying some excellent kit. The Nomad 3 is a perfect example of this, there will be a mega RANT coming soon, but the fact that we have a bike like this that is able to do what it does is no doubt fuelled by the ENDURO tsunami fever. If a category drives the industry to not just ram us with new shit (make no mistake, that’s a key driver, I am not mainlining corporate cuntaid here), but also provide better shit, then thats a win in my books.
I probably don’t need to provide any further tips on ENDURO racing, as its all pretty obvious really, besides, if you’re a mountain biker then you have already been doing it since 1998 without knowing. My only advice is round up your Homeboys or Mud Bunnies and get to the next race you can find, especially if its in Italy.
Unfortunately the final round of the WA ENDURO series we did over the weekend wasn’t able to provide any results after the timing equipment got massively fingered by the rain, but oddly, no one seemed to care (except I presume those fighting for series honours)… We had a classic day, so the results were almost secondary to the experience. Big ups to the organisers, they did an awesome job that was fuelled by passion and a love for the sport… Fuck… that’s… COOL. Thanks for putting on a banger of an event.
Speaking of experiences, Wolf finally got to experience my Excess Baggage angst on the way home, here he is mid emergency repack to avoid an SQ fisting… Wait… Is that… No, can’t be… Is that a fucking toilet seat?
And with that alarming discovery, I am heading back to the Shrediting room to bring you some of the sweet Perth action from the Drone cam… Watch this space.