Sunday February 22nd: It’s race day for the Oppidum Enduro race organised by the local MTB club from Taradeau: L’Oppidum Bike.
Day before was an awful day for the weather. Rain and shower, sometimes heavy, all day long. So for the sunday race we will have a very wet terrain for sure. Luckily the Maure area has a sandy terrain which doesn’t generate mud, instead the water is flowing a lot on the ground. So we won’t really be muddy but we will be wet for sure.
On sunday, the weather is just perfect with a beautiful sunshine, nice temperatures and a clear view on the mountains. Just a perfect day for a race.
The race organization is just pefect, the timing system uses chip so we were able to start whenever we want. The stages are very flowy, the club did a nice job to re shape them. They were not too physical except the first one with a very hard climb on the first third of the stage and a long pedalling section at the bottom.
Of course with all the rain, the creek at the bottom of stage 2 and 3 which is usually almost dry was full of water. At the end of stage 2 it was possible to cross the creek on the bike except if you takes the wrong line like me, and block your front wheel in a water hole. As a result, two feet and a glove soaking wet. At the end of stage 3 the creek was a lot deeper but the organization had the good idea to re route the exit to avoid the creek. Good point.
At the end, only stage 4 was wet and sometimes muddy on some short sections. The hardest part on this stage was the pedaling section with a soft sandy ground which burn all your energy.
Overall it was a excellent day with a nice local race but with a lot of top elite riders from EWS like the Ravanels, Thomas Lapeyrie, kilian Bron, Alexant Cure etc etc.
I’m pretty happy with my results at the end. I finish 16th in Master 1 (age between 30 to 39) and I was a lot better managing my physicals strenght this year. I did a very good race (for me) avoiding major riding mistakes.
Thanks again to the Oppidum Bike MTB club for organizing such a good event so close to home.