WES e-Bike Series Round 2: Results
The WES e-Bike Series took to the trails around Ascona-Locarno on Saturday for hard-fought e-mountain bike battles in the Cross-Country (XC) and Enduro races.
Variable weather in the run-up to the event saw the sun break through for race day, with temperatures rising and Ascona-Locarno’s trails rapidly drying out.
The day started early for Enduro racers, with the first rider out of the Paddock at 8:00 am sharp. From the Paddock, riders made their way to a cable car to access high ground well above the stunning Lake Maggiore, the start place for the day’s five timed stages.
A mix of classic flowy singletrack, demanding technical sections and tough liaisons made for exciting racing, the variation playing to different riders’ strengths in every section. It was also very different to Round 1’s terrain, meaning a number of athletes were in the running for a podium result.
At the close of racing, it was Cube Action Team’s Gustav Wildhaber who took the Men’s Enduro win, with Bergstrom Werksmannschaft’s Alba Wunderlin winning the Women’s. It wasn’t an easy ride for either, particularly Wildhaber who suffered two punctures during the race.
Stage results in the Men’s and Women’s races varied throughout the five-plus hours out on the hill. Eventually, it was consistency and determination that paid off. Nicola Casadei rode to a well-deserved second place in the Men’s, with Round 1 winner Nico Quéré in third and proving again that he is a man to watch for the series title. Casadei’s teammate Jessica Bormolini took the second spot on the Women’s podium with Sofia Wiedenroth rounding out the top three.
1: Gustav Wildhaber (Cube Action Team)
2: Nicola Casadei (Scott MrWolf Ebike Store Racing Team)
3: Nicolas Quéré (Team Giant)
1: Alba Wunderlin (Bergstrom Werksmannschaft)
2: Jessica Bormolini (Scott MrWolf Ebike Store Racing Team)
3: Sofia Wiedenroth (Cube Action Team)
The WES XC course in Ascona-Locarno was described as the ‘best ever’ XC course that Olympians Marco Fontana and Nathalie Schneitter had ever seen. The WES e-Bike Series is pushing the boundaries not only of the machines but also the terrain they can be ridden on – e-MTB is progressing rapidly as WES continues to move forward.
Perfect trail conditions made for spectacular racing, the pace blistering from the very start. The race took in six laps of the circuit, totalling just under 1,000 metres of climbing, and saw positions swapped throughout as racers charged hard for results on what was home soil for over half the field.
The top spots were a repeat of Round 1 in Monaco, with Jérôme Gilloux winning the Men’s and Nathalie Schneitter the Women’s.
Gilloux pushed hard from the start, fending off attacks from Marco Fontana before opening up a convincing lead over the Italian. Fontana never gave up and crossed the finish line second, just two seconds ahead of Gustav Wildhaber, who backed up his Enduro win with another podium.
Schneitter enjoyed racing as much as she loved the circuit, even if she had needed to borrow her mother’s bike as hers was out of action after the Enduro race. Sofia Wiedenroth chased the leader hard, even nearly catching Schneitter at the midway point, but had to settle for second place ahead of Flurina Glaus in third.
1: Jérôme Gilloux (E-Team Mavic/La Roue Libre/Moustache)
2: Marco Aurelio Fontana (Focus Scuderia Fontana)
3: Gustav Wildhaber (Cube Action Team)
1: Nathalie Schneitter (e-MTB-News)
2: Sofia Wiedenroth (Cube Action Team)
3: Flurina Glaus (Bergstrom Werksmannschaft)
Sunday’s Ride WES invites members of the public to discover the fantastic riding around Ascona-Locarno as they join professional guides and racers on any of three ability-graded rides. This is a perfect opportunity to learn about e-mountain biking and to get some tips from the pros, as well as taking in some of the terrain raced during the WES Round.