Katy Winton managed to fend off rival and friend Rae Morrison to take the women’s title in Dunedin, New Zealand.
Katy gives her report of the Emerson’s 3 Peaks Enduro below:
The 3 Peaks Enduro in Dunedin – what an event! The fact the main sponsor is a Brewery sets the tone, but don’t be fooled! There were two full-on days of bike riding that meant you really earned that delicious cold beer at the finish.
Day one treated us to some natural, super tight, and awkward trails and one really long stage that is usually shut to bikes apart from at this race. That long stage was one of THEE most mental things I have ever raced blind. Starting with the most awkward corner I have ever attempted to get around, followed by the steps of death that have you braced for ejection at any moment. FEAR in the eyes!!
It then goes on to a long set of random flat corners of varying degrees of tightness. As I rode down, there were gaps in the foliage where people had gone straight instead of around the corner. It was an intense experience just trying to stay on the track never mind trying to “race” it!!
At the end of day one, I managed to win every stage and have a 35s lead to my surprise – I thought I had been riding like a pansy all day, but the awkward nature of the trails had everyone feeling a bit off I think. Post-race, Emerson’s Brewery put on a dinner and beers for the racers that was included in the race entry, which was a lovely social evening – I love it when races do stuff like this, it just makes it a proper social weekend.
Day two: The tracks were more DH style with heaps more flow, senders, rocks, and a fair amount of pedaling for good measure, which made for a great all-around test of fitness and skills. After a messy stage one, that had me riding with one foot off down a rock garden nearly ending myself, I brought it back to have a solid run and win the next stage.
The final stage I clipped a tree so hard I twisted my handlebars so badly that even after stopping to twist them back I had to stop again to get them ridable. CARNAGE! The riding was amazing though, and I had so much fun blasting down trying to keep the win.
All the stages were soooo fun and the atmosphere was chilled and everyone was having a great time enjoying the sunshine, bikes, and beers! I managed to take the win despite the nonsense on day two, sent some big hucks, survived the death stairs, met some lovely new people, and got a tan. What more could ya want!? Thanks to the volunteers and the whole crew behind the 3 Peaks Enduro for a great weekend!