The first time I wrote an article for Enduro Mountainbike Magazine, all I wished for was to share the potential that the Peruvian Andes have for mountain biking. Soon after this trip, the journey continued as I travelled to Chile to race in the renowned Montenbaik series. This time, we set out on a totally different adventure: This is the story of how we organized the first enduro race in the most popular mountain-biking destination of the capital.

Although most Peruvian riders I know share the feeling that Enduro has been around for ages, I wonder what took so long to develop it locally as a racing format. When we decided we were going to organize the race we trusted we could get the cycling community involved but never expected 85 riders and 22 sponsors confirmed for the first edition.

The event outperformed our expectations.
The event outperformed our expectations.

We named the event Mini Enduro and opted for a two-stage-race with the idea of introducing this racing format in a much more friendly version that could be of interest to a wider audience. After scouting and working the land really hard, we managed to put together a 10 Km trail with short but steep liaison stages and epic downhill sections for the special stages.

We wanted to introduce Enduro Racing slowly.
We wanted to introduce enduro racing slowly.

We were concerned about the weather forecast since training sessions were a bit muddy, but Sunday morning was like a dream coming true. The terrain quickly began to dry promising the perfect grip conditions for the race. We gathered all competitors together for a briefing session and right after the first rider left for stage 1.

We were originally concerned about the weather, but on the Morning, sun came out!
We were originally concerned about the weather, but in the morning, sun came out!

Going uphill, the scenery was beautiful. Riders would pedal over green mountains surrounded by birds, sheep and cows. You could even see the ocean from the very top. As a special treat, we added short uphill sections towards the end of the first special stage and were satisfied to see competitors approaching the aid stations looking exhausted but determined to conquer stage 2.

Into the Wild ?
Into the wild?

After refilling their hydrations packs to power up their riding, competitors began their second uphill. The starting point of the final special stage was muddy so we knew it would provide a little extra fun.

The muddy conditions on Stage 2 made for some good drifts!
The muddy conditions on stage 2 made for some good drifts!

We were stoked to see the first riders crossing the finish line! Overall they seemed really happy with their performance and especially, with the well-deserved free cold beer we had ready for them in the pits. We were also pleased to hear they would have enjoyed and additional stage on the race, something we will definitely consider for future editions.

Riding was fun!
Riding was fun!

The barbecue area next to the DJ provided a great spot for riders to chill until the awards ceremony. Before sharing the results, we wanted to applaud what we consider is the future of enduro so we did a special mention to the youngest rider of the event, Alonso Vargas, who is only 12 years old and successfully completed the race track. We also did a merit award to Juan Luis Ugarteche, Vicente Chirinos, and Tomas Rubio, who decided to do an upgrade and race in the elite category. Some riders find it hard to leave their comfort zone; others constantly push their limits and that is something we definitely wanted to celebrate.

One of the faster sections of the 10km Race.
One of the faster sections of the 10km race.

Category winners

Elite- Sebastian Alfaro (Specialized) | Christian Escobar (Holy Trails) | Cristobal Cilloniz (KHS)

Master A- Bruno Consiglieri (Ion) | Fabricio Calderon (Team Chorrillos / Devinci) | Benjamin Cilloniz
Semi Pro- Pablo Alcazar (Only Bikes) | Mario Llapiz (Urqu Bikes) | Joaquin Mejia (Santa Cruz)
Master B- Wayo Stein (Inkas Adventures) | Ilianovich Gallegos (Team Chorrillos) | Dante Zevallos

Junior- Salvador Madueño (Kali Protectives) | Joaquin Co- loma (La Calera) | Matias Zapler
Master C- Guillermo Roda (Plantaciones Tomina / Intibike) | Michel Chabaneix | Jose Luis Salmon (Plantaciones Tomina / Intibike)

Enduro in Peru will be strong!
Enduro in Peru will be strong!

We want to thank all riders, sponsors, friends and family that made this magic day possible. We have confirmed that Peru is ready to embrace this mountain biking phenomenon and we are happy to announce that enduro racing is finally here to stay.

MINI ENDURO was possible thanks to the support of Santa Cruz Bicycles, Sports Lab, Fox Head, Park Tool, KHS, Specialized, Gshock, BMC, Ion, Devinci, Zenq Bar, Wayqui, Ultra Endurance, Dakine, San Mateo, Pilsen, Go Pro, Intu, CT Press, Diproxer, Rema Tip Top, Red Bull, Race Face and Easton Cycling.

Words: Diana Samardzich Photos: INTU

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