Yep, you read that right, E-BIKES will be on track at all four European EWS rounds this year but you can put down those pitchforks as it’s not quite as bad as it seems.
The racers will still be pedalling under their own steam, however, journalists and photographers will be given access to a fleet of Cube e-bikes to help lug their heavy cameras (and bodies!) up the liaison stages to cover the action. There will be a fleet of 20 Cube Stereo Hybrid 160 bikes buzzing around the hills of the EWS venues, starting at the Emerald Enduro this weekend.
Ok, so really it’s a storm in a teacup but seeing as you have to have an opinion on e-bikes, we think this is a good thing because: 1) we don’t like pedalling, and 2) EWS events are notoriously hard to cover properly so any help that can be given to a journalist the better it is for a sport as a whole.
The media shuttles will still be running but this fleet of e-bikes will give more freedom to those journalists who don’t want to plough the same furrow as everyone else. We are worried about those journalists with ‘special relationships’ with certain bike brands though – will they ditch their sponsors to use the new Cube bikes or struggle along on their free gear?
Chris Ball, managing director of the Enduro World Series, said: “We believe the addition of these e-bikes will really enhance the coverage coming out of our European races – media will be able to get closer to the race than ever before. People still treat them with a degree of suspicion, but they’re a lot of fun and definitely the most efficient way to get around the hill.”
So, what do you think? Will this help the sport or does it spoil the purity of the enduro experience?