The 4X ProTour world series was launched in 2012, following the discipline’s removal from the World Cup calendar at the end of the 2011 season. The brains behind the series were Chris Roberts and Scott Beaumont, who had previously put together the Schwalbe Euro 4X series in 2011. All 4X ProTour races are registered on the UCI calendar and follow UCI 4X rules, but the series has its own ranking and points structure.
Five races were staged in the inaugural series, at Houffalize, Belgium, the 4X Festina night race at Szczawno Zdroj, Poland, Val Di Sole, Italy, Fort WIlliam, Scotland, and Willingen, Germany. Czech star Tomas Slavik took the overall title with consistent performances over all five races, which gave him a big lead over fellow Czech Michal Prokop. For the women, Dutchwoman Anneke Beerten came out on top.
A further five races were scheduled for 2013, kicking off at Szczawno Zdroj in May, before moving on to Fort William, Val Di Sole, the Czech Republic’s JBC Bikepark, and finishing at Leogang, Austria in September. Slavik once again took the overall men’s title, ahead of his nearest challenger Felix Beckeman of Sweden. Brit Katy Curd won overall in the women’s section.
The series is planned to expand to seven races in 2014, with confirmed dates already inked in for Szczawno Zdroj, Fort William, Val Di Sole, JBC Bike Park, and, for the first time, Pamporovo in Bulgaria. Two further venues for races in June and September have yet to be confirmed.