Barcelona Eastside Story: BMX & Dirt meets Enduro – with Andreu Lacon
Note: Don’t take this article too seriously, just like the people involved. This article may contain some words you won’t understand as they are in original castellano or catalan.
What happens when you put the sickest Dirt- and BMX- riders of the planet on an enduro bike? Well, we had no idea, but we tried it anyway! Enduro is fast becoming a serious business, but it is important to remember that it was forged on the spirit of fun and good times. In celebration of the foundations of enduro, we went for a ride with people that are normally found rocking the dirt jumps and BMX tracks of the world, and throwing down in legendary events like the Red Bull Rampage. It was time to do something different, and see what happened…
The absurd idea began on a dirt bike session in Barcelona’s famous bike park La Poma, late one Saturday night. As soon as the plan was suggested, talk soon turned to fitness, endurance and everyone had their own ideas on the right preparation for the next day. Many questions started flying around, what kind of trousers to wear? what food to carry? what helmet? Basic things had to be clarified. It was all pretty standard talk for a big ride in the hills, but I had the feeling that the next day’s enduro ride would be a whole new experience.
At 11.00 am we met at “The BikeVillage” (the premises of a busy online-shop) to get our test bikes ready and prepared for a ride on Andreu Lacondeguy’s hometrails. We loaded the bikes on the pick-up and were soon bouncing our way to the arranged meeting place where we picked up some more XC-riders keen to join the ride.
Finally, at around 12.00 am everyone was ready to go. Excitement was high and it was clear that some of our group had some kind of hyper-motivation going on. Hitting the first climb over-energized riders raced off only to end up sweating and panting!
Nevertheless everybody made it to the top with a smile on their face and a healthy sense of achievement. This is what it is all about, no goals or targets – just enjoying the effort and the camaraderie.
“Muy bestia” – Andreu’s essential equipment: UNIT pullover, old-school Shimano shoes for click pedals and lycra! Lo maximo! And a massive backpack for all the energy bars he didn’t carry.
“At home I ride my YT Industries enduro bike at least twice a week – it’s just fun and the easiest way to get around without needing a shuttle, keeps me fit too.” Andreu Lacondeguy
German mate Philipp Heller down the track – after the ride he told us that now he wants to sell his DH-bike and go for more enduro-fun!
Styles for miles: Hector didn’t have baggy shorts – no problem, skinny lycra shorts and knee protection is his fashion prediction for 2014. Due to a serious knee injury he can’t ride dirt jumps at the moment – but enduro is all good! Great fun for him and a definite relief from road cycling!
Sergi “Topo” normally rides BMX and was totally blown away by the performance of the Cube Stereo 160 with modern 650B-wheels. Bigger wheels make faster! Pinta brutaaaal: Topo and his unique style: No gloves, dirt helmet and sunglasses “tipo explorer / redneck”.
As if this was not enough he showed us a new “business” riding style…
… and had a massive crash. Vaya crack!
Lluis Lacondeguy just signed with BMX brand Radio Bikes, no wonder that he was throwing down some BMX style: Tight Jeans and pullover. People might not know it, but Lluis has twice been the catalan DH-champion and Spanish Vice-Champion as well. This time he hit a tree – for fun of course! Muy loco …
ION BIKE rider Nick Pescetto pinning it on one of the descents. You might know this Italian guy from last year’s Whip World Championships in Whistler, nailing an insane backflip over the big jump.
Due to the different rider levels and our late start, and with hunger starting to build, we decided to head to a restaurant for lunch – after just 12.52km in 1h 12min, with 472m ascent and 406m descent. It was a short ride, but overflowing with fun and smiles.
For lunch we went for some typical catalan food. “Calçots a la brasa” – very delicious!
The good thing about Topo’s outfit: He doesn’t have to change to go to a fine restaurant for the after-ride-lunch …
… except his behavior: Senseless stretching exercises at the bar.
To finish we just had to visit Andreu’s world famous compound with it’s insane jumps.
Sometimes you have to forget about all the serious stuff and just go out riding. You will have fun, that’s a promise!
A few days later we went to a mate’s finca with the Dirt- and BMX-Crew to make plans for some dirt jumps in an amazing location, backdropped by beautiful mountains. After the fun we had had on the enduro ride, it was no surprise that even Andreu Lacondeguy mentioned enduro here and enduro there – enduro everywhere. “Ya ves” (castellano: “Here we go”) – our next trip is coming!
Words: Robin Schmitt / Trevor Worsey Photos: Philip Hiller (1), Nicola Pescetto (1), Robin Schmitt
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