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Jesse Melamed wins Enduro World Cup finale, locks up second overall

Elly Hoskin also finishes second in U21 women's season rankings
Jesse Melamed looks small indeed compared to the mountains and rocks around him at the 2023 Canadian Open Enduro.

It's not every year that one gets to battle for a UCI Enduro World Cup (EDR) overall title. Jesse Melamed already owns one such accolade from 2022, back when the circuit was known as the Enduro World Series (EWS). 

The crown returned this time to Richie Rude, but Melamed still came through with a victory in Haute-Savoie, France and a runner-up placement in EDR season standings behind his American rival.

"Anyone I talked to leading into this race knew my intentions were nothing less than attacking for the win," said Melamed on his Instagram account. "It felt good to be riding with that confidence again and seeing the times back it up. I have to give it up to my bike, parts, and mechanic for letting me get buck without destruction." 

Needless to say, Melamed has delivered big-time in his inaugural season with Canyon CLLCTV. He triumphed again at Crankworx this July shortly before his season-ending EDR breakthrough. Whistler's favourite enduro champ threw down a masterclass in consistency, prevailing in four of Sunday's seven stages for a total time of 23 minutes, 57.730 seconds. Alex Rudeau of France was roughly 11-and-a-half seconds back to claim silver, while Rude rebounded for bronze after a tough opening stage. 

Rudeau also wound up third in the overall. Meanwhile, Rude’s win would secure Yeti/Fox Factory Race Team top spot in the team competition. 

Rhys Verner had a more difficult day on the bike, ending up 21st after a crash and a mechanical issue in Stage 1. Nonetheless, the Squamolian wrapped up fourth overall in EDR rankings and has plenty of motivation headed into winter. 

Results roundup

Elly Hoskin did not start in the U21 women's race on September 17, but a robust campaign delivered her to second in the overall. Season champ Emmy Lan was fourth behind winner Simona Kuchynkova, runner-up Emily Carrick-Anderson and third-place Delia Da Mocogno. 

Among elite women, the series title was Isabeau Courdurier’s to lose. The Lapierre Zipp Collective racer only needed a conservative effort to lift the new trophy, with fellow Frenchwoman Morgane Charre the lone rider who was theoretically capable of spoiling her party. Charre's heroic effort netted her gold in the season's last event, but it wasn't enough to deny Courdurier's coronation as EDR queen. 

Charre did take the race by six seconds ahead of Courdurier, while Harriet Harnden grabbed bronze. The same three would find themselves on the overall series podium, but with Courdurier on the top step and Charre and Harnden in second and third respectively. 

In the U21 men's contest, it was Raphael Giambi emerging victorious with Lisandru Bertini in second and Lief Rodgers of Port Moody, B.C. in third. Bertini’s impressive record this year secured him the overall title for France, with Giambi in second and Australia’s Sascha Kim in third place.

The UCI Enduro World Cup returns next spring, while the UCI Mountain Bike World Series resumes in two weeks time in Snowshoe, West Virginia in the USA for the penultimate rounds of the Cross-country and Downhill World Cups.  

Full results are available here.