Isabeau Courdurier (Lapierre Zipp Collective) and Matt Walker (Pivot Factory Racing) held nothing back to win round five of the UCI Enduro World Cup in Val Di Fassa Trentino.
The hugely-physical five-stage race in the Italian Dolomites was a test of technique and fitness but also sheer strength and proved properly challenging as bright sunshine brought premium track conditions but also temperatures approaching 30C.
Courdurier won the first, third and fifth stages
In the pro women’s race, Courdurier was dominant from the gun, taking the first stage of the day, and winning two more on her way to victory. The series leader has won three times in Val Di Fassa before but her compatriot Morgane Charre (Pivot Factory Racing) pushed her all the way, leading into the final stage by less than a second. In the end Courdurier won that stage and the race pushing Charre into second. WeRide Fulgur Factory Team’s Melanie Pugin was third, making it an all French podium.
In the men’s race, Matt Walker’s win was a hugely popular one and his first at this level, despite coming close with a top three last season. The Kiwi won the day’s last two stages and gained strength as others faded. France’s Alex Rudeau (Commencal Enduro Project) was second on the day after taking two stages, Richie Rude (Yeti/Fox Factory Race Team) ended up third after losing some 30 seconds with a puncture on stage four. Rude though will carry the series leader’s jersey into round six.
Rudeau's technical skills suited the Val Di Fassa tracks well
In the U21 women’s race, it was another win for Canada’s Emmy Lan (Forbidden Synthesis Team), her fourth of the season. France’s Lily Planquart won three of the day's five stages but would be hit with a five-minute penalty for starting a stage late. Italy’s Sophie Riva (Sunn French Co by Alpe D’Huez) was second and Elly Hoskin of Canada was third.
France’s Lisandru Bertini (Lapierre Zipp Collective) dominated the U21 men’s race, winning four of the five stages. Alexis Icardo (Canyon CLLCTV Dainese) won the remaining one and was second on the day. Canada’s Johnathan Helly was third.
In the third round of the UCI E-enduro World Cup, it was wins for France’s Kevin Marry (Lapierre Zipp Collective) and Miranda Factory Team’s Laura Charles.
Marry won two of the day’s eight stages while a puncture saw series leader and downhill legend Fabien Barel lose some six minutes to leave him in last place. GasGas SRAM Racing’s Alex Marin was second and France’s Hugo Pigeon (Scott SR Suntour Enduro Team) was third.
France's Kevin Marry was consistent when it mattered
Charles won two stages but her consistency saw her beat series leader Florencia Espineira (Orbea Fox Enduro Team) by some five seconds. Germany’s Ines Thoma won the day’s final stage and ended up third.
Team of the day were Lapierre Zipp Collective. Yeti/Fox Factory Race Team lead the series.
Individual rankings and team rankings are on the event page here
To follow all the action from the UCI Enduro World Cup, tune in to the UCI Mountain Bike World Series YouTube channel for the official race highlights, bike checks and exclusive athlete interviews.
The world’s best enduro and e-enduro racers have a break now but are back in action for round six of the series in France’s Loudenvielle Peyragudes from September 1 - 3.
Don’t miss next week’s UCI Mountain Bike World Series action from Val Di Sole Trentino where the stars of downhill and cross-country will be in action.
Here’s where to watch everything that goes down there in round three of the downhill and round four of the cross-country.