Graves and Ravanel Go Double Eagle™ in Aspen
For the fourth time this year, Cécile Ravanel dominated an Enduro World Series event, going five for five in stage wins, taking the event by more than a minute ahead of the 2nd place finisher, and strengthening her series lead. When racing stopped at Aspen Snowmass this past Sunday afternoon, the Commencal Vallnord Enduro Team rider had racked up 20 individual stage wins this year out of a possible 30 so far. Ravanel’s choice for the Colorado event was a SRAM X01 Eagle™ drivetrain, Guide Ultimate Brakes, RockShox BlackBox Super Deluxe shock and Lyrik fork.
Jared Graves’ hadn’t seen the top step of the EWS podium yet this year, but he did so in commanding style in Aspen. Similar to Ravanel, Graves recorded the fastest time on every stage but for one en route to the overall. The 2014 EWS champ’s Specialized was set up with RockShox BlackBox Super Deluxe shock, Lyrik fork and SRAM Guide Ultimate brakes. In the drivetrain department, Graves chose a SRAM X01 Eagle™ for the fast, physical, high-altitude event, and stifled any notion that the 50-tooth cog is a crutch for lesser mortals.
"Having the 50-tooth cog on the Eagle cassette was perfect. It allowed me to go up an extra two teeth on the chainring to get a bit more top end speed on the fast sections of the stages,” said Graves. “But still having a nice gear to spin up the liaison climbs without burning out the legs—at 11,000 feet—is huge!"
Isabeau Courdurier rounded out the women’s podium in 3rd place, solidifying her hold on 2nd in the series, and Jerome Clementz fought his way back to the podium, finishing 3rd and moving ever closer to 2nd in the Enduro World Series overall rankings.
The riders now move from the rarefied air of Colorado, to the lush green and brutal stages of Round 6 at Crankworx in Whistler, B.C. The SRAM Canadian Open Enduro Presented by Specialized pulls out all the stops on August 14.