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Community takes ownership of new organization and mountain bike format
The Enduro World Series (EWS) launched with a ground-swell of support from the mountain bike community this spring. Within 48 hours of opening, the newly formed Enduro Mountain Biking Association (EMBA) had signed on its first 125 individual members - a wave of support that continued to grow over the first 30 days of registration to 19 teams, 10 official supporters and over 220 members.
In addition, all Phase 1 race spots for the inaugural seven-event global series sold out within a week of opening registration.
The rider list is a collection of slopestyle, four cross, downhill and cross country's global athletes, as well as the founding legends of enduro racing. The complete team list (see below) was released on Friday at the newly launched website enduroworldseries.com.
"We're overwhelmed by the level of commitment to the whole series. It has exceeded our expectations," said EWS Managing Director Chris Ball. "All events have record fields even months before they normally open for entry."
When the Enduro World Series was first announced November 22, 2012, the organising body EMBA was committed to featuring the biggest enduro races in the best locations on the best trails in the world, not through exclusive partnership agreements or sponsorship opportunities to finance the series, but instead, through individual, team and company membership packages.
While Ball is pleased by the strong uptake of event registration, he's even more satisfied with the response to EMBA's invitation to become a member. "We put ourselves in the hands of the industry by choosing this model. We knew that industry-wide support would be critical for EMBA and would give everyone a chance to be involved in the development of the discipline and to show their support for the sport. We believe that this is how to build the sport - from the ground up, through our members."
"So the extent of the buy-in is hugely gratifying and a sign that we are on the right track with our model and approach. The faith of all our new team and individual members inspires our entire board to run a series that is worthy of that community support."
Nineteen teams have confirmed their participation in the 2013 Enduro World Series, representing a broad cross-section of global industry brands and a comprehensive list of the world's top riders.
"We wanted to ensure that the core enduro athletes who have built the sport were there at the starting gate, so for this inaugural season we painstakingly looked at enduro results from around the world and tried to get as good a cross section of committed international racers as possible. We worked diligently to ensure there was as good as balance as possible between the pros who have built the sport up so far, top riders from other disciplines and the community of riders who are critical to keeping the momentum moving forward for enduro mountain bike racing. The essence of enduro, after all, is the chance for the public to race amongst the pros."
With the teams now finalised, organisers for each event are reviewing numbers for duplicate entries (some team riders also entered as individuals) and, after trying to cater for a select few wildcard riders who missed a place certain events, will open any remaining spots in late April to the wider public.
2013 Enduro World Series Teams
Cube Action Team
FRM Factory Racing
GIANT Factory Off-Road
GT Factory Racing
Santa Cruz Syndicate
Scott Enduro Team
Trek Factory Racing
A complete list of riders by team can be found at enduroworldseries.com.