After having participated in the Etape du Tour and Everts and Friends Charity Race Cyril Despres’ summer schedule continues with a flight to Colombia to compete in the Red Bull Los Andes Internatonal Enduro.
“My summer programme continues unabated – even if we haven’t had much summer weather so far this year! That was certainly the case for the Etape du Tour on 17 July. For those who haven’t heard of this event, the idea is that 4000 amateur cyclists line up on the Tour du France rest day to tackle one of the Tour’s harder stages – in this case 208 kms between Issoire and Saint Flour. To say the weather was atrocious would be something of an understatement! At the top of the first col it was just 2 degrees centigrade and it took me almost 9 hours to finish the route. My respect for the professionals is greater than ever!
Shortly after that it was off to Belgium for the Everts and Friends Charity Race. It is not often that I find myself behind the starting gate alongside the world’s best moto-x riders – especially aboard my 450 rally bike! And though neither myself nor my bike were in our natural element, I at least proved it is possible to jump a ‘table’ on a bike with a fully fairing. An excellent event, a good laugh and a worthy cause.
Which brings me pretty much up to date. Right now I am sitting in the departure lounge at Lisbon airport waiting to fly to Colombia for the Second Red Bull Los Andes International Enduro. I won the first one in Chile back in 2009, after a memorable battle with Chaleco Lopez, but I think the format of this edition is not going to suit me as well – less extreme, more classic enduro. Still, I’m not going all that way without giving it my best shot! I’ll be sure to let you know how I get on.