Greg Minnaar encourages riders to "freeride not preride" at the Finale Ligure EWS
Can enduro ever be a fair playing field?
Greg Minnaar will be racing at the final round of the Enduro World Series this weekend and has set out his stall with some fairly provocative comments.
Taking to Instagram he seems to condemn those who take to the course outside the official practice times to gain an advantage over their fellow racers. He also seems to imply it's professionals, not privateers, that do this but he doesn't name any names. We wonder who he has in mind?
It's worth mentioning that although the courses are closed to riding until Thursday morning, walking is permitted and top riders have posted photos of themselves doing so on social media.
Minnaar said: "Excited to race the EWS in Finale Ligure this weekend! Going to give it a crack, but refuse to be there early to pre-ride or walk the stages before practice opens. As a racer, it can be tough thinking you're at a disadvantage before you've even rolled out the gate. But I'm not alone. Racing blind is what many privateers have to do every weekend and it's what the "spirit of enduro" is all about! So I'm with you guys this weekend. Zero practice. Full commitment. Totally blind. Who's joining in? #freeridenotpreride."
The comments are similar to some by Steve Peat last year. Peat told a French website: "For me, enduro is a weird one, I don’t think it’s a good, professional sport. There’s a lot of cheating that goes on, the guys live at the venues and stay there for weeks at a time
“Enduro is fun, if I want to have a weekend on my bike and riding with my friends then enduro is perfect for that, but as a professional sport it’s not my kind of thing."
Minnaar and Peat are both registered to race this weekend and, as they've both scored top five finishes in the Enduro World Series before, we're interested to see how their weekends turn out.
So, what do you think? Is Minnaar right to condemn those who seek to gain an advantage by not racing blind or is he just getting his excuses in early?