But will help aspiring pro riders

A new qualification system for the Enduro World Series will cut places for amateur riders.

The Enduro World Series has always prided itself on providing amateur riders a platform to compete against the very best in the world, however this new system will mean fewer places are open to hobbyists in favour of aspiring racers.

The qualification system will grant reserved places on the EWS for an extra 80 men and 30 women based on a series of races throughout the year. The reserve list currently caters for the top 100 ranked men and 25 women, plus four riders from each official EWS team. Under the new system there could be close to 250 reserve places filled before entry is open to the public.

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The EWS has specially selected a number of races from around the world at which racers can earn qualification points. At the end of the season, the best three results from these races will be used to create a qualification ranking. The top ranked riders at the end of the year will be the ones to gain a reserve place.

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For 2016 these will be with existing EWS partners however the plan for the future is to expand them to other organisations. The full list is below:

EWS Qualification schedule_edited-1

After the reserve places have been filled, the remaining places will be offered out to amateurs using the current lottery system.

Chris Ball, organiser of the EWS, said: “Of course there will be slightly fewer amateur places available, but we have to make sure we have an equally fair system for riders who really want to reach the top, secure a spot and get their chance at the big title and a professional career.

“I truly believe we are at the start of a whole new era in which the EWS, and it’s associated communities and organisations, can work together to make sure any rider really wanting to make it on the world stage has a fair chance.”

The first qualifier for 2017 will start on Wednesday at Crankworx Rotorua. The EWS kicks off in Chile in Corral Chile, at the end of this month