Is the thing you enjoy most in life going downhill on your mountain bike, but you also have enough endurance to push yourself up the uphill tracks? Would you like to test yourself in an Enduro race format like a pro and are less than 19 years old? Then the Rookies Enduro Challenge is for you!

Getting to the top under your own strength and then getting down with secure riding technique; for Enduro you need the endurance of a cross country racer and the riding technique of a downhiller. “It’s not that difficult”, says Georgy Grogger, the technical representative for the European Enduro Series and head of Trail Solutions. “All good downhillers are in a very good physical condition, but if you want to be at the head of the pack in XC, then on the downhill you must be very courageous technically. It is not without reason that Enduro is so popular, it’s the best compromise these two worlds can offer.”

Nachwuchs Star Raphaela Richter beim Uphill mit Anneke Beerten. Foto: Axel Brunst
Youngster Raphaela Richter pedaling up with Anneke Beerten. Picture: Axel Brunst

For enthusiastic enduro riders over 18 there are other racing events in this new style. However, for the first time, in order to also accommodate adolescents in this branch of the mountain biking sport, an Enduro race for young all-round riders will take place as part of the Kona MTB Festival Serfaus-Fiss-Ladis.

Foto: Tom Bause
Picture: Tom Bause

Those who want to get their first taste of enduro racing, get to know about the organization and operations of a race, and would like to test themselves against others of the same age group, will be given a chance at the Rookies Enduro Challenge. You should be equipped with a good amount of endurance because the way up to the stages must be done under your own power; however, the time won’t be taken into account, just like in a professional race. For the three scored downhill sections, the young enduro racers can look forward to plenty of trail fun!

The Tyrolean Cross Country coach and riding technique expert Kurt Exenberger, founder of the Bike Academy in Kirchberg, Tyrol, thinks that enduro races are a perfect opportunity for XC’s young riders. “For my kids with a XC background, enduro races are the perfect training,” he says, proudly standing behind Austria’s first mountain bike school, “the situation you find yourself in during a race trains mental strength and the skilled sections teach you how to keep a cool head and to catch up on the way down.”

At the beginning of August, everything in Serfaus-Fiss-Ladis will revolve around mountain biking’s young riders, and the young all-rounders are bound to get their money’s worth.

Rookies Enduro Challenge programme

  • Saturday 9 August 2014: Rookies Enduro Challenge Training
  • Saturday 10 August 2014: Rookies Enduro Challenge Race

More information and registration click

Words: PM Trailsolutions Pictures: Axel Brunst / Tom Bause

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