Sram continues their look at the riders of Crankworx and looks at what they have to go through to win.
They smile for the camera — or not. Either way, the
chances are good thatthere are a thousand random thoughts bouncing off o
f every corner of their brains. They deal with it the best way they c
an — they smile, laugh, fiddle with something on their bike. If they’re lucky enough to be having the day of their life, confidence keeps those extra nerves in check, and they’ll actually breathe deeply and easily and actually enjoy the astonishing views on Whistler’s Top of the World. But for most riders, the outward appearance is simply a mask to cover up the
anticipation of what’s to come.
Top of the World marked the start of the second sta
ge in Enduro World Series round number six. All of the riders knew tha
t this would be the longest and most brutal stage of the day, with sect
ions of terrain that could turn some of the best mountain bikers in the
world into nothing but unwitting passengers.
The fastest time required 15 minutes and 15 seconds of perfect concentration and go-for-broke riding. And that means everyone else had to endure at least a little bit more torture. At the bottom, after more than a quarter-hour of flat-out charging, the masks hiding pre-race nervous energy are gone — they’ve been beaten into submission by the track and a will to win. Ben eath the full-face and goggles, there’s nothing left but the true signs ofthe effort just unfolded. And for a few seconds at least, the world’s best racers show us how hard their sport really is.