Big Mountain Enduro – Crested Butte Colorado

Podium for Clementz in Crested Butte!

After my injury, I had no real plan, but when I came back on my bike on the 10th of august I was feeling good, I decided that a 5 day enduro could be good for getting use to race again.

So I am in the plane for Denver for the Big Mountain Ultra Enduro, 5 days of racing with 1500m of climbing and 40km per day average above 3000m high most of the time.

I arrived in Crested Butte the day before the race with my team mate Marco Osborne and Ben Cruz, just in time for a little ride in order to taste the dirt and understand how thin the air is here.

First day started with the biggest climb up to 3700m and a 9km stage. This one was amazing but it was hard to be in the race mode, so many things were « new » for me. Racing blind on fast trail, taking risks again, giving everything in the pedaling section, to sum up this was a brutal start and I wasn’t really ready.

Fortunately I didn’t forget everything and I improve for 2 days to come back at the decent pace, not forgetting that the level of riders was strong and that I should not crash yet.

On day 3 and 4 I was back in the go mindset, the trails were a bit more technical and the little rain help me to get 2 days win. I was really happy because I mentally didn’t fail, I tried not to rush and take too much risk but riding smart, getting a bit wild on some place and play with the bike. The fatigue was definitely there, especially with the Jetlag and the Altitude and on top of that the days were really tough either uphill with a lot of hike a bike and demanding trail to race down.

The team of Big mountain enduro, puts up a great race that brings us to amazing place, the scenery was just mind blowing and it was a dream to spend 4 days in backcountry Colorado surrounded by amazing peaks, green valleys and long stages. On top of that the logistic was perfect with good food, drinks, a good timing system, smiling staff and a friendly atmosphere with all the rider, pro or not.

To finish this adventure we spent the last day on the bike park of Mt Crested Butte with 3 stages. I was 3rd overall, tired and I had no chance to fill the gap with Ross Schnell for 2nd Spot. I played it safe as I was tired and my fitness is not good enough yet to play hard on big rocky park trail.

When the race was done, most of the rider, still wanted to ride and we made big train on the Jump trail of the bike park until the award ceremony.

This is for me the best part of the sport, we get to race again the clock, we all give our best, there is a winner at the end but we all have respect for each other and more than everything we love to ride bike. So for me this extra run, just made this week even better and I know that I want to live more moment like this in the future.

 Marco Osborne, the young talent from North  California, and also my team mate, dominates  this race and was smart enough to ride away  from any trouble. It’s good to see this kid  taking his first big win and I hope he’ll be able  to prove his skills to the world soon again.

A big thanks to all the riders, the organizer,  the volunteers and the partners who make  this event so cool, we need this on the enduro  scene too. Special thanks to Mavic for the  technical support in the USA and Ben Cruz  and Marco for this fun week together.

Now time to go home and then go to Ischgl  with all the Cannondale Factory racing team  to race the Overmountain Challenge.

Thanks to the Media for the pictures, please use the copyright:

MTBR Eddie – ©Clark media

ENDURO MAG  – ©Daniel Dunn

Big Mountain Enduro – ©Nick Ontiveros