After two days and eight stages of race, Miranda Miller was third at the fifth round of Enduro World Series racing.

The Canadian, and 2017 downhill world champion, built momentum all weekend. Miller moved into third on the second day of racing to claim her first ever EWS podium. In the under-21 women’s race, Lucy Schick scored her second straight EWS win.

In the men’s race, fan favourite Eddie Masters’ gamble to skip the World Cup Downhill in Andorra to race enduro in France paid off. The New Zealand rider earned his first EWS win by the narrowest of margins.

EWS Les Orres, France Women’s race – Courdurier controls, Miller rallies

Isabeau Courdurier (Intense Mavic Collective) hasn’t lost an EWS round yet this year. Racing on home turf, the French rider was not about to end that streak at Les Orres. Courdurier won six of the weekend’s eight stages to take her fifth EWS win in five races. The win puts Courdurier solidly in command of the women’s overall standings.

The surprise of the weekend was Raphaela Richter. The young German was the only rider to challenge Courdurier, stealing two stage wins from the dominant French rider. All this in Richter’s first EWS race in the last two years.

Miranda Miller has been riding consistently at EWS events all season, her first since switching from downhill to racing enduro full time. Sitting fifth at the end of Saturday’s racing, Miller finished no worse than fourth on Sunday to pull off her first EWS podium. It was close though. With one stage remaining, Ines Thoma (Canyon Factory Racing) and Noga Korem (GT Factory Racing) were both breathing down her neck, within one and two seconds, respectively of a podium finish.

Miller was third again on the eight stage, securing her overall podium finish. Thoma held on to fourth, and Korem fifth at the end of two days of racing.

Not far behind, Andréane Lanthier Nadeau (Rocky Mountain Race Face) added to the Canadian results with a 13th place. A big fall on Saturday’s stage three left Lanthier Nadeau working to regain lost ground on Sunday. Two third place stage finishes helped her move up 10 spots by the end of Sunday to place 13th.

Georgia Astle was the next Canadian across the line, finishing 20th. Whistler resident Christina Chappetta was not close behind in 26th.

Schick doubles up in Les Orres under-21.

After landing her first Enduro World Series win a week ago in Val di Fassa, Lucy Schick doubled down to win the under-21 race in Les Orres, France. The Canadian was 19 seconds ahead of Ireland’s Leah Maunsell after eight stages of racing. G.B.’s Harriet Harnden was third, another 32 seconds back.

Carter Krasny was ranked seventh in the under-21 men’s race after Saturday’s racing, but did not start on Sunday.

EWS Les Orres, France Men’s race – Masters gamble pays off

EWS Les Orres race winner Eddie Masters (GT Factory Racing) wasn’t supposed to be in France this weekend. Instead, the New Zealand rider who splits his calendar between enduro and downhill, was supposed to be racing a World Cup in Andorra. But, after placing third at EWS Val di Fassa last weekend, Masters and his team made a last minute call to head to Les Orres instead.

The decision paid off, but barely.

At the end of Saturday’s four race stages, Adrien Dailly (Team Lapierre) was leading. Masters trailed by two seconds and last week’s winner, Richie Rude (Yeti Fox Racing) was just one second behind.

With one stage remaining on Sunday, the win was still up in the air. Masters now led Rude by a razor thin 0.41 second margin, after 41 minutes of timed racing. Dailly had slipped to third, but was still within 10 seconds of the leaders. Whoever won between Rude and Masters on Stage 8 would win the entire weekend.

It was close, but in the end, Masters edged out to the win. His Stage 8 win extended Masters’ lead to all of 0.94 seconds, likely the closest EWS winning margin to date. The winning time was a cumulative 43:31.79, after two days of racing in Les Orres, France.

Rude’s return to racing continues full steam, with his second in Les Orres adding to last weekend’s win in Val di Fassa. Adrien Dailly held on for third racing at home in France.

Master’s win puts him in second overall in the Enduro World Series standings. The GT Factory racer has 1960 points to Florian Nicolai’s (Canyon Factory Racing) 2140.

Remi Gauvin (Rocky Mountain Race Face) was the top Canadian man in Les Orres, in 23rd. Rhys Verner (Kona Factory Racing) finished 44th, and Max Leyen 65th. Trevor Thew was 84th.

After two intense back-to-back weekends of racing, the EWS now takes a short break. The series returns to Canada for the next round. The infamous Canadian Open Enduro lands in Whistler on August 11, 2019.

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