One could not have dreamed of a better day for the start of the Bluegrass Enduro Tour 2014. Already on Sunday morning at eight o'clock the field of riders started in the best weather on the first transfer stage to the Col de la Schleiff above Dabo. The first stop of the tour in Dabo featured a 36-kilometre route and six special stages. With almost 1500 meters in altitude, there shouldn't be a lack of climbs. With Nicolas Lau, Rémy Absalon and François Bailly-Maitre, three of the currently fastest enduro riders started among the men, which should create a lot of excitement.
As the special stages progressed, the difficulty of the track increased, both from a technical and physical point of view. However, the playful element always played an important role. In short, it was an explosive mixture with a guaranteed fun factor and so, for example, the first stage included a trial-like area in a dried-up creek bed and ended between moss and rocks in a series of closely spaced hairpin bends. Stage two started on a tortuous path that descended into a two-tiered rocky gorge. A classic of Dabo racing, the third stage was a cluster of slaloms between trees and chicanes. Then the special stage led over a bowl-shaped path with treacherous roots and ended on a very rocky path.
The fourth stage started from a rock platform and gave the riders a great view of the area. The fifth stage led first along a rock face and then ended in a series of steep hairpin bends in close succession. Then we continued between trees, slabs of rock and loose soil to the bank of the Zorn stream. The last test of the day was supposed to be the longest and therefore the most strenuous for many participants. The tiredness made itself felt and every start hurt. A fast single track, on the edge of a cliff, a gorgeous section along pink sandstone rocks, a series of hairpin turns in the foliage, another section between trees and rocks, a second series of hairpin turns, embankments and finally a final sprint along a stream along, demanded everything from the driver.
Nico Lau didn't miss a beat. Only on the fifth stage did he hand over the best time to Remy Absalon and finished third, just behind. However, that should only set him back a little in the overall standings. With five stage wins and a lead of 35 seconds, he secured the day's win. Remy Absalon had a solid first race on his new Scott Genius LT. He placed in the top 3 on all stages and is second in the overall standings. François Bailly-Maitre completed the podium. Junior driver Elliot Trabac also achieved a remarkable result. With consistent top 10 results, he finished fourth and put a lot of pressure on the elite drivers. In the women's category, Claire Hassenfratz also won her re-entry without the slightest problem.
1. Nicolas Lau (Cube Action Team) 24:48.25
2. Re'my Absalon (Scott-SR Suntour) 25:23.10
3. Francois Bailly-Maitre (BMC) 25:34.65
4. Elliot Trabac (Scott-SR Suntour) 26:14.28
5. Guillaume Heinrich (hardtbike company) 26:16,30
1. Claire Hassenfratz (Fir Bike) 32:18.74
2. Manuela Christen 33:35.84
3. Fanny Aman 34:37.39
4. Hannah Roether 34:45.19
5. Cait Elliott 35:55.01
The complete results are there [Here]