The penultimate round of the UCI Marathon World Cup will take place amongst the famous mountains of Morzine-Avoriaz, whilst the final round of the UCI Enduro World Cup will conclude on Châtel’s iconic slopes.
First out the start gate will be the marathon racers, who will take on an epic 100km loop that will take in a gruelling 4400m of ascent. In the men’s competition Italy’s Fabien Rabensteiner (Wilier-Pirelli Factory Team MX) is the clear favourite into Saturday’s race, with a series lead of 134 points ahead of Czechia’s Martin Stošek (Canyon Northwave MTB Team).
It’s a similar story in the women’s race, with Lejla Njemčević of Bosnia and Herzegovina way out front in the points with just two races left, leaving Switzerland’s Janina Wüst (Buff Megamo Team) and Germany’s Adelheid Morath with work to do in Morzine-Avoriaz this weekend if they want to stay in contention for the overall.
On Sunday it’s the turn of the enduro racers, who will take on seven big stages that will determine the sport’s first ever UCI Enduro World Cup overall winners. A packed field faces one last challenge this season - and it will indeed be a challenge. The course is nearly 60km long and features an incredible 3600m of descent over a single day of racing.
Isabeau Courdurier (Lapierre Zipp Collective) is almost certain to lift the trophy in the women’s competition. The Frenchwoman has a near unassailable lead in the points - and short of failing to finish the race, is all but guaranteed to lift the trophy on home soil. Second placed Morgane Charre (Pivot Factory Racing) is in good shape to retain her position in the overall, but behind the French athlete the fight for third place will be fierce.
Harriet Harnden (Trek Factory Racing Gravity) will go into Sunday’s race third in the points, but with both fellow British rider Bex Baraona (Yeti/Fox Factory Racing) and Italian Gloria Scarsi (Canyon CLLCTV Dainese) within touching distance, her place on the podium is in no way guaranteed.
In the men’s category it’s Richie Rude (Yeti/Fox Factory Racing) who is most likely to be crowned the series winner. His nearest rival Alex Rudeau (Commencal Enduro Project), of France, would have to win the race, along with every stage in it, to be in with a chance of beating the USA rider. And even then, a sixth place finish or higher would still hand the victory to Rude.
Again it’s the battle for the remaining two spots on the podium where the racing is likely to be the most intense. Just 84 points separate Rudeau and Canadians Jesse Melamed (Canyon CLLCTV Factory Enduro Team) and Rhys Verner (Forbidden Synthesis Team). All three riders are in contention for second place, and with just seven stages standing between them and the final podium of the year, they’ll be leaving it all out on Châtel’s iconic trails.
Where to Watch: Haute-Savoie
The UCI Mountain Bike World Series Festival Haute-Savoie heads into week two for the final round of the UCI Enduro World Cup taking place in Châtel, plus the UCI Cross-country Marathon in Morzine-Avoriaz.
This weekend's racing will determine the sport’s first ever UCI Enduro World Cup overall winners.
Find out more about where you can watch the racing action below.
Saturday 16 September - UCI Enduro World Cup
Catch all of the highlights from the UCI Enduro World Cup on the UCI Mountain Bike World Series YouTube channel.
Sunday 17 September - UCI Cross-country Marathon World Cup
Catch all of the highlights from the UCI Cross-country Marathon World Cup on the UCI Mountain Bike World Series YouTube channel.
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