Our picks for the top spots at this year's EWS
It’s almost time for the race season to begin. Let’s take a look at some of the EWS racers who shone last year and have potential to win in 2019.
If last year is anything to go by, 2019 is shaping up to give us some of the most exciting racing yet. Across the board (well possibly with the Ravanel-ed women’s Enduro World Series as an exception) the racing has been blown wide open with the range of talent unleashed on the world circuit.
1. Sam Hill
We can’t have a round up of EWS racers without mentioning Hill. Four wins and a second place in the first six rounds led to a pretty firm grasp on the 2018 overall title, so could we expect a repeat for 2019? Hill seemed to go a little off the boil at the end of the season but expect him to come out swinging in Rotorua.
2. Martin Maes
Hailing from a country not renowned for its elevation and extreme terrain, Maes’ skill and speed saw him collect several podiums including a win at Whistler. It was only a dropped round and a poor result in the final race that saw him pushed into fourth on the overall.
3. Cecile Ravanel
UPDATE: EWS champ Cecile Ravanel breaks vertebrae in crash – “The third round of the EWS is on May 11th in Madeira. There are eight rounds in the EWS season in total this year. We wouldn’t put it past Ravanel to come back mid-season and still win the overall title.”
Total domination is the only way you can describe Ravanel’s 2018 EWS campaign. Clean sweeping her way to the overall, the French Commencal Vallnord rider made short work of the competition. Only her fellow countrywoman Isabeau Courdurier could get within a minute of her in all but the last round.
4. Isabeau Courdurier
The only racer to look like upsetting Cecile’s unassailable position, Isabeau got to within a few seconds of her first EWS race win of 2018 at the last round in Finale, Italy. A year of being bridesmaid on the podium should fire her up to put in a real attempt at unseating the queen of EWS in 2019.
5. Damien Oton
Apart from uncharacteristic 11thand 12thplace finishes in Chile and Canada, the Unior Devinci Factory rider has enjoyed a consistency that few other racers could match. Finishing no lower than 6thin all other rounds, Oton finished out the 2018 season with two podium spots.