Breaking news for Enduro. After months of “will they won’t they?” waiting for British Cycling to officially support enduro a statement has appeared online saying that they in fact … will not.
“British Cycling has undertaken a detailed review of MTB Enduro events over the past season, including consulting people within the discipline to better understand the structure, event format, process for delivery and the audience. Following this review, we have decided that we are not in a position to insure MTB Enduro events for the moment.
This is not a decision which has been taken lightly – those involved in MTB Enduro deserve a great deal of credit for the work they have put into an evolving area of the sport which attracts a variety of new and existing participants.
However, the discipline format does present challenges for event organisation and the officials. From a British Cycling perspective, any requirements or regulations that we would need to put in place may have a negative impact on the future sustainability of events and could also impact on resources we devote to other parts of the sport, particularly MTB Downhill as the two disciplines are closely linked.
MTB Downhill and its future development and sustainability is something that we are committed to. It is an area that requires continued and substantial support and through that support we aim to raise standards and in doing that improving the quality of the racing environment for all. We will continue to engage with those involved in MTB Enduro and support them as the discipline develops.
Please be aware that this policy concerns only those events termed “Enduro” in the currently accepted sense – a series of time sections joined by linking stages. Some organisers still use “Enduro” to denote a mass start endurance/marathon style event, and such races are unaffected.”
We asked British Cycling last month what they were planning for 2015 and Enduro and received a carefully worded answer:
“Like you, we recognise the growth and continued development of the Gravity Enduro format and through that understand the appeal that it brings to a more diverse group of riders. Towards the end of the season, across the cycle sport disciplines, we will review how we work with certain parts of the sport and over the next couple of months we will go through this process with Gravity Enduros. As part of this we will consider the challenges and opportunities, and linked to that, what support we may be able to provide in the future.”
… Looks like the decision has been made!
The news comes on the day that the UK Gravity Enduro team have announced their new series dates and National Champs. The Champs will be “unofficial” without BC’s backing. The questions is … Does it matter?