The penultimate round of the 2016 7idp Enduro Series took place in the majestic Les Orres resort at the heart of the French Alps.
With this year’s season coming to an end and with point gaps getting smaller and smaller, the tension between the pilots was tangible. With an unpredictable weather juggling between full sun and rain curtains, nothing better to play on the riders nerves.
The race format has been optimized for a very tough profile with long and physical stages, an important vertical drop burning every disc, on a ranged playground showing open spaces on the summits with crushed rocks and slippery roots in the undergrowth. All of this in order to provide the opportunity for the pilots to express their best on some well-known paths.
On Saturday the organizers proposed two timed stages, the second one being repeated twice. Nevertheless, the weather came to spoil the party and forced the organizers to split the second stage in the afternoon in half a make only one timed run.
Some of the riders were able to take advantage of this rough situation just like Ludovic Oget who felt very comfortable in muddy trails what allowed him to finish the day with a 10 seconds lead ahead the second Irenée Menjou.
Sunday was more merciful in terms of weather. On a long stage more than 8 minutes long and ridden 4 times during the day ( once as a practice run and 3 times as a timed run) riders were able to demonstrate their talent gaining confidence after each run on segments they could anticipate faster and faster. In this long and steep stage, with scavenger curves at almost every turn, physical strength was an element not to be overlooked to finish the run. In a dramatic final, Irenée Menjou made it through and won over Ludovic Oget who got a flat tire on the final stage and Camille Servant that avoids crash 20 meters from the finish line but who left the track and takes a 30 seconds penalty.
Morgane Sush reaches the first step of the podium, followed closely by Morgane Jonnier victim of mechanical problems during day 1 but who takes the lead in the general.
The juniors are attending more and more regularly the top 10 of the scratch showing their presence in the professional riders community.
The fifth and final round of the 2016 7idp Enduro Series in Samoëns promises to be really exciting.