The Big Mountain Enduro Series Finale will again grace the rugged trails outside of Moab, Utah this coming weekend. With a sold-out crowd, the course promises to be jam packed with racers sending it on the slickrock drops of Porcupine Rim.
“For the second year in a row, we are pleased to hold the BME finals here in Moab, Utah where the trails are techy, the weather is unpredictable and where the trail network descends thousands of feet through various ecological zones,” said Brandon Ontiveros, race director of Big Mountain Enduro. “It’s a unique place and we’re thrilled to work with the local community and our great sponsors in making this the final stop of the overall BME series for 2014.”
Big Mountain Enduro has provided a breakdown of the key competitors that will be throwing down this weekend:
This season, it has been a consistent battle between the newcomers to the sport, and those who have logged years in different disciplines. In the Pro Men, Nate Hills (SRAM/Yeti/Maxxis/Smith Optics) is sitting in the lead with young-gun Marco Osborne (WTB/CANNONDALE Overmountain) right behind him in second. Macky Franklin (Santa Fe Brewing – Pivot Cycles), Jeremy Horgan-Kobelski (Trek Factory Racing) or Mike West (Yeti Cycles) could easily turn the tables and point standings with a strong race. Horgan-Kobelski and Hills have both won the event in years’ past, so can they hold up against the tight competition and their reigning titles? We shall see come August 23rd.
“Moab has become like racing in my backyard for me, but with every stage you don’t know what may happen,” Hills said. Hills came off of the Keystone Big Mountain Enduro with an overwhelming defeat on his true home turf in Keystone, Colo. “Since then, I have focused my efforts on the EWS stops in Winter Park and Whistler, riding loam, rock rolls and stunts in the woods. Hopefully this will translate well to being smooth down chunky rocks in Moab.”
Brittany Clawson (Ska Brewery/Zia Taqueria/Trek) is leading the Pro Women Series Overall, but after an unfortunate accident at the Enduro World Series in Winter Park that took her out for the rest of the season, we will sadly see the tide change. Heather Irmiger (Trek Factory Racing) is favored to win with victories in every series event she has entered this year, as well as the Moab Big Mountain Enduro in 2013. Cait Dmitriew (Oskar Blues), Joni Wirts (Go Ride) and Syd Schulz (Santa Fe Brewing — Pivot Cycles) have displayed a consistent performance that could put them on the box, or Beth Roberts (Rim Tours) a Moab local who knows this route better than anyone else, and displayed this knowledge last year with a fifth place in a stacked field.
Title and presenting sponsors Yeti Cycles and Shimano will be in attendance with Richie Rude (Yeti / Fox Shox Factory Race Team). This will be the first Big Mountain Enduro event that Rude will compete in, but after strong results in the Enduro World Series, Rude may be the wildcard of the weekend.
While I unfortunately won’t be able to attend, stay tuned to the Singletracks blog early next week for photo and video updates from the race!
For a sneak peak at what this race will look like, be sure to check out the Moab recap video from 2013: