Women's Cycling Editor/Bike Radar.
The Enduro World Series has been nothing if not dramatic thus far, and it looks like Round 4 in Wicklow, Ireland is continuing the trend.
After several days of sunny weather, the promise of the first dry round of the year was broken on Saturday when the heavens opened. While the skies are dry for race day, the trails most definitely are not, so expect some loose moves and dramatic crashes.
Meanwhile, down in the pits, BikeRadar has been scoping out the shiny bikes and tech ridden by the world’s best enduro riders. Have a look and a drool, we certainly have been!
The battle for number one
Photo: Greg Callaghan starts the race number 1 in the overall rankings, but Sam Hill isn't far behind
Greg Callaghan comes into the fourth round of the EWS fresh from a win at Madeira and with two previous wins in Ireland, and it being the home race for him it's fair to say there's a wee bit of pressure.
It's something that Callaghan certainly seems to be taking in his stride, however. "Pressure makes diamonds," he commented on-stage before setting off to rapturous applause.
Photo: A closer look at that amazing green, white and gold paint job on Greg Callaghan's Cube
Lauded in Ireland, Callaghan has had plenty of mainstream media attention with segments on RTE news, the national news network, and articles in broadsheets such as the Irish Independent.
The country is clearly very proud of its mountain biking son, so can he pull another win out of the bag here or is he chasing the overall title? After all, he ranks number one overall going into round four.
E-mountain bikes galore!
Photo: Notice anything unusual about this e-MTB?
E-MTBs are a common sight at EWS rounds, as they're pretty darn useful for media and organisers for getting in and around the different stages.
This plush looking beast is owned by Claus Wachsmann, the Cube team manager. Take a closer look and you might notice a few unusual features... not least the different size wheels: 29 up front, 27.5 at the back.
Photo: While it's most certainly not being ridden by the racers, Lapierre was showing off it's new e-MTB
Cube wasn't the only brand showing off an e-bike. The new Lapierre Overvault AM600 was attracting a fair bit of attention too.
Photo: While the battery is currently supplied by Bosch, we wonder what that interesting shaped down tube has been designed to accommodate?
It's got a carbon frame, and while it's currently powered by a Bosch motor and battery, there's an interesting looking space on the down tube — what might be in store for filling that?
Plenty of new bikes too
Photo: Santa Cruz rider Mark Scott... and is there something different about that Hightower?
Mark Scott and the Santa Cruz team have some of the brightest bikes on the hill, but there seems to be something interesting going on with the Hightower.
Photo: Moto foam should help stop mud clogging up the works
Apart form the moto foam, which will hopefully keep the mud at bay, there seems to be no sign of the usual dual geometry options on the rocker link. New longer travel Hightower perhaps?
Photo: Anita Gehrig and Caroline Gehrig on shiny new Ibis HD4s
Also spotted was the the new Ibis HD4 enduro bike, ridden by Anita and Caroline Gehrig, and team.
Longer, slacker, more aggressive and with a lower bottom bracket and standover; it's clearly appreciated by the riders.
- Published in Sports