I’ve never raced an Enduro. I figured there’s a reason why they’ve become so popular. Timed segments that test your downhill descending skills (of which mine are mediocre) mixed with some un-timed climbing segments (of which I’m decent at). The Kamikaze Bike Games were in town, and racing was in the air. I rode the Fall Century on Saturday with a Wounded Warrior for Disabled Sports, so I wasn’t able to race the XC Mountain Bike Race (unfortunately, the schedules conflicted).
The Enduro was on Sunday, and I was jonsin’ to get dirty – so what the heck? I decided to do the Enduro on the fatty bike.
I inflated the tires to a whopping 12psi (I pinch flatted a couple weeks ago riding hard on Richter at 5psi – so I wanted to play it safe). I kept my 32:21 gearing, which in hindsight was a mistake because I kept spinning out through the whole race, and the climbs are un-timed so I should’ve geared for the descents… rookie mistake!
No mechanicals, no flats. The bike handled some of most relentless trails Mammoth has to offer (Skid marks, Follow Me, Bullet, etc). Sure, I was beat up, using all the forearm travel I could muster. By the end of the last lap, which is a top to bottom run of Skid Marks to Follow Me, my hands were practically numb and I could barely find enough strength in my digits to pressure the brake levers… that was a first.
Most importantly – I had a blast!! I finished around 20th place, but I didn’t crash once, and I rode pretty smoothly… my times were solid, especially considering I couldn’t pedal hard because of my stupid gearing… so overall, I was stoked. I’d love to give it a shot on a 5-6″ travel bike with some gears :). Or not… I don’t know if I remember how to shift gears… too complicated…
Anyhoo, here’s a good article in MTBR about the Kamikaze Enduro (and they mention me and my fatbike on page 2, so give it a read)
Here’s another article from Fat-Bike.com that my friend Hunter wrote – He raced his fat bike in the XC, Dual Slalom, and Kamikaze – and grabbed podiums in all categories!!