Rocky Mountain / Race Face had an excellent weekend way up in the Italian alpine for Round #5 of the Enduro World Series. Both Jesse Melamed and Andréane Lanthier Nadeau moved up in the top-10 at the two-day La Thuile event.
Rocky Mountain / Race Face enduro team has had a bit of a roller coaster of a year so far on the Enduro World Series. All three of the newly formed team’s members have been on the injured list at some point this season. They’ve all also been inside the top 10 at at least one EWS round.
Round #5 in La Thuile, Italy, might be the team’s best round yet, with Jesse Melamed and Andréane Lanthier Nadeau moving up from their top-10 results at the fourth round in Petzen-Jamnica two weekends earlier to finish fourth and sixth, respectively.
La Thuile Enduro World Series – Men
Fourth a big result for Melamed, who just barely made it back from injury on time for the last race, which was split between Slovenia and Austria. The Whistler, B.C. racer started off the year strong, with a fifth in Lo Barnachea, Chile.
Ahead of Melamed, Sam Hill (Chain Reaction Cycles Mavic) continued his dominance of this years EWS season. With his win in Italy, Hill has now won every round but the the third event, which was held in France.
Martin Maes (GT Factory Racing) was the closest the Hill in Italy, with Pivot Cycles Eddie Masters in third ahead of Melamed.
La Thuile Enduro World Series – Women
Andréane Lanthier Nadeau moved up from ninth in Petzen-Jamnica all the way to 6th in La Thuile. It’s an impressive result for Lanthier Nadeau, who has sat out much of the last year with complications to a broken wrist. The Italian EWS round was just her third race back, after MEC Canadian National Enduro Championships and Petzen-Jamnica.
Lanthier Nadeau moved up the rankings steadily all weekend, finishing fourth and fifth on the final two stages of racing to move within 5.7 seconds Trek Factory Racing’s Katy Winton in 5th. The Italian venue is historically a good one for the Canadian. She finished third there when the EWS visited in 2016.
Cecile Ravanel (Commencal Vallnord) remains undefeated in the 2018 EWS season after winning the La Thuile round. Isabeau Courdurier (Intense Mavic Collective) was again second to her fellow French rider, with Ines Thoma (Canyon Factory Enduro Team) in third.
Rachel Pageau (Devinci Unior) continues to impress, with the young downhill and enduro racer placing 13th in La Thuile.
La Thuile Enduro World Series – Canadians
Long time Sea-to-Sky-based enduro rider Yoann Barelli (Commencal Vallnord) was the next best in La Thuile, jumping all the way up to eighth by the end of two days of racing. The popular French rider, who has called Canada home for several years now, has a more limited EWS calendar this season, but didn’t seem affected by the time away from the race circuit.
Melamed and Lantheir Nadeau’s teammate Remi Gauvin was the next Canadian across the line, finishing 17th, with Giant Factory Off Road Team’s Mckay Vezina following in 44th. Privateers Brendon Edgar (81st) and Trevor Thew (94th), who both make their own way to racing the EWS events, pushied inside the top-100.
From Italy, the Enduro World Series heads to North America for the Candian Open Enduro – better known as Crankzilla – during Crankworx Whistler. The notoriously challenging Whistler venue is where Jesse Melamed claimed his first EWS victory in front of a supportive home crowd. With both of the Rocky Mountain / Race Face teams title sponsors located nearby in B.C., the whole team will be looking to perform their best.