What Is Enduro Mountain Bike Racing?
Simply put, enduro mountain bike racing focuses on timed downhills and untimed uphills. It’s a great form of racing that amateurs and pros can get stuck into.
If you’re at all familiar with rally car racing or motorbike enduro, you’ll recognise the format of mountain bike enduro. There are between three and six timed descents mixed with untimed uphill climbs. Whoever has the fastest combined time after all stages, wins.
Why Choose Enduro Mountain Bike Racing?
Downhill racing is not for the faint-hearted, and with long, challenging, and technical descents ridden at considerable speed, it takes a lot of experience to enter a downhill race. Additionally, the cost of downhill bikes and the equipment you’ll need is enough to dissuade a lot of prospective riders.
Cross country races can be equally off-putting to amateur riders, as they’re a real test of fitness and stamina. Enduro races, on the other hand, are a nice middle ground between these two pretty extreme types of race. Although you’ll still require decent levels of fitness and bike handling skills.
Riders set off at timed intervals, so there’s less chance of being passed or passing another rider on the trail. This can make things a bit less intimidating. It’s also worth noting that for your entrance fee, you’ll get to spend more time on the bike than with a downhill event.
Pro riders also compete in enduro races, but what’s great about them is the fact that whether you’re a novice or a seasoned veteran, you’ll be riding on the same track. Partly because of this, there’s a great friendly atmosphere at enduro events.
What Type Of Bike Is Best For Enduro Races?
With a lot of time spent going downhill, you’ll probably want to opt for a full-suspension bike for enduro races, with travel between 140mm and 170mm.
With the downhill element in mind, it’d be sensible to wear a full face helmet. This is compulsory in many European events. Riding uphill in a full face helmet means you’ll need to ensure it’s breathable or consider wearing a convertible helmet. Other safety equipment is advised as with any MTB event – check out our post on MTB safety tips.
Entering An Enduro Race
Check out this calendar from More Dirt for a list of UK enduro races you can enter!