‘Talent spotted’ at a young age by US legend Mark Weir, Ben Cruz is now forging ahead in the world of mountain bikes, travelling the world and living the racing dream…
From Dirt Issue 124 – June 2012
Words by Matt Wragg. Photos by Tai Power Seeff and Sven Martin.
Think of an enduro racer. The chances are that Ben Cruz is none of the things you were thinking of…except fast. Aside from being young, laidback and incapable of taking anything seriously, he’s American. Barely 21 and coming out of Northern California, he’s the youngest member of the biggest team on the enduro circuit, WTB–Cannondale. Having fast, experienced teammates like Jerome Clementz and Mark Weir to learn from is a start to his career that plenty of young racers would kill for. Despite admitting that he is still figuring things out, he managed to catch people’s attention last year with his first few trips to Europe. He more than held his own against the world’s best at the Enduro of Nations and came back later in the summer to take part in the epic enduro stage–race, the Trans–Provence.
We caught up with him at his pre–season team camp in Finale Ligure, Northern Italy, to find out how an American ended up racing enduro for a living, what it’s like for him coming over here to Europe and how he turned his ankle into barbeque chicken. >>