The hot, humid weather that played a significant role in the first two days of the 92nd International Six Days Enduro (ISDE) in Brive-la-Gaillarde, France, finally broke today for the third day of racing. In fact, some riders reported having a bit of rain on scattered sections of the 247-kilometer loop with its four special tests (one of those done twice).
Despite the relief that accompanied a 10- to 15-degree drop in temperature, though, dust remained a big factor at the ISDE, not only limiting vision but making life generally miserable whether you were on the bike or on the sidelines watching.
While France took it all in stride and continued to lead the FIM World Trophy category, the U.S. had a few issues. First off, yesterday’s overall fastest individual, Ryan Sipes, couldn’t find that same mojo today and took a big digger in the third test that dropped him from contending for fastest individual a second day in a row. He’d eventually finish the day 15th overall though cumulatively he sits eighth in the ISDE individual standings.
Teammate Taylor Robert’s day also didn’t go quite as well as hoped. Though he didn’t have any big offs, the top American hope also found the third test more than challenging and ended the day sixth overall. After three days, though, he remains second behind only Christophe Nambotin of the leading French World Trophy team in the ISDE individual standings; however, the gap between them nearly doubled to 13.61 seconds.
The U.S. Junior World Trophy team fared worse. After finding themselves thrust into first place yesterday following an unresolved bike issue for defending champion Sweden that forced Mikael Persson from the race, American morale enjoyed a bump. That lasted until Josh Toth miscalculated and went into one check a few seconds early. Bang! Instant one-minute penalty and now third place behind France and Italy.
“Even without that [penalty], we weren’t as fast as France or Italy,” U.S. Team Manager Antti Kallonen conceded, “so they got us today, but we’re trying to recover and go after it again tomorrow with new course and new special tests. We hope that kind of gives us a second wind and we can get the Juniors up there again. Realistically, we have chance for second.”
And second is looking more likely for the U.S. Women’s World Trophy team. While Spain’s lone remaining rider Laia Sanz hammered the tests, Australia kept the lead and its three riders going despite Jessica Gardiner riding with a broken hand after hitting a stake in the first test on Monday.
The U.S. women had no such issues, but three consecutive days of riding is giving them aches and pains they don’t normally experience. Brandy Richards led the way, ending the day third followed by Becca Sheets in fourth and Kacy Martinez-Coy in sixth.
In the Club team fight, italy remained atop the standings with SRT Off-road holding a steady fourth as riders Ben Kelley, Ty Tremaine and Cody Webb all putting in solid times.
2017 International Six Days Enduro
ResultS: August 30, 2017 (Day 3 of 6)
World Trophy: 1. France (7:20:27.82); 2. Australia (7:25:46.89); 3. Finland (7:27:54.74); 4. Portugal (7:37:17.89); 5. Great Britain (7:42:25.04)… 16. USA (14:31:53.27)
Junior World Trophy: 1. France (5:37:38.66); 2. Italy (5:38:18.39); 3. USA (5:39:38.16); 4. Great Britain (5:42:26.10); 5. Chile (5:43:21.73).
Women’s World Trophy: 1. Australia (4:07:05.58); 2. USA (4:12:55.15); 3. France (4:20:15.65); 4. Sweden (4:28:11.71); 5. Italy (4:36:12.20).