Light the blue touch paper...
E-bikes are the future for enduro racing, outstripping traditional pedal-powered events by their sheer weight of numbers. That’s the view of Ali Jamieson from Trail Addiction, which organises races like the Trans-Savoie around Mont Blanc and Enduro2 in Les Arcs.
“E-bikes are going to be the next revolution,” Ali told mbr.
How might e-enduros work then?
Bigger adventures, accessing more trails for regular rides, Ali says.
“Imagine the Trans-Savoie but on e-bikes — I could put together an absolutely epic course with three times the amount of descent in it, and be totally unrestricted to be able to go wherever the best and most epic trails.”
Current enduro race organisers are tied to using trails that are either road accessible for van uplifting, near a ski lift, or within the limits of rider’s pedal power.
Welcome to the evolution
The revolution is already here too, Ali reckons, with most hardcore riders in denial.
So are e-bike enduros already with us? We’re not so sure, there’s been a real backlash in some circles.
The British Enduro Series has long banned the use of e-bikes and now bans riders from getting help from anyone on an e-bike.
It’s true, there are a few e-bike categories springing up inside enduros, like the Night Enduro at Llandegla, or the French e-bike series by Moustache Bikes, but they’re pretty rare still.
For Ali and Trail Addiction the future is also about more sociable enduro races. “Bands, beers, a real festival atmosphere,” he says. “That’s what makes any event memorable – the social interactions and new friendships that you make along the way.”
We think e-bike enduro racing will become more popular and readily available as more of us start to own e-bikes.
We’ve heard arguments that e-bikes ruin the trails, harm trail access and destroy the ‘spirit’ of cycling: We don’t think that’s really true in any of those cases, and it’s also exactly the same argument used against mountain biking for decades.
Our take is that e-bikes are just another form of mountain biking.