Enduro Racing

What is Enduro Racing?

Enduro is a form of mountain bike racing.  Mountain bike racing, also known as MTB or ATB, is a competitive sport and is held off-road, usually in rough terrain.  This cycle sport was recognised in 1990 by the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) when it endorsed the world championships in Colorado.  It was in 1996 that mountain bike racing was included in the Olympic Games.  Enduro racing is a type of off road racing where the downhill’s are timed, but the uphill’s are not.  Enduro riders will be timed in stages that are mostly downhill and there are what are known as neutral transfer stages between.  These transfer stages must be done with a certain time limit but this time does not form of the total time.

The Enduro World Series Rule Book says that each event must have a minimum of four stages and three different courses, and the calculation of the final results is done by adding all of the stage times for every rider.

Enduro is different from crosscountry (XC).  XC places more emphasis on cardiovascular fitness and less of an emphasis on technical skill, so if you play a lot of casino no deposit games and don’t exercise much, this isn’t the sport for you!  There is also less pure downhill racing and has very little or no crosscountry.  Enduro riders have more breadth of skill.  The lightweight XC bikes may not have the suspension that is required for fast downhill control, while the downhill bikes may not have the requirements for a rider to climb the uphill sections properly.

Origins of Enduro

Enduro racing seems to have its origins in car rallies such as the World Rally Championship and motorbike enduro racing.  Enduro is considered to be the competitive part of mountain biking and is also known as “All Mountain”.  It came about through every day mountain biking, which was originally racing up and down a mountain.

The first enduro race reported and the first one using the modern format was hosted in Val D’Allos in 2003.  There were races following the enduro style in Italy, New Zealand, UK and these were local races held in the 1980s.

How does it Work?

The winner of an enduro race is the racer who has the lowest time from all of the timed downhill sections of the race.  These enduro races usually take place over one or two days, but there are some races that take place over a week such as the Trans Provence in France, the Andes Pacifico in Chile and in the USA is the Pisgah Stage Race.  The majority of one-day enduro’s have about 3 to 5 timed stages and these stages are usually done on rough terrain and have sections of single track.  These tracks are very narrow which may be smooth and may also have technical sections such as rocks, tree roots, jumps and drops.  The stages are linked mostly by ascending transfer stages and even though the transfer stages do not in any way affect the overall outcome they will usually be subject to some kind of time limit or a maximum arrival time for the beginning of the subsequent stage.