E-bike… Worlds?!

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Wait – there’s an e-bike World Championships now? Yes. Yes, there is.

2015 BionX E-Bike WM 02
We note the winner is not even attempting to lift the bike above his head.

First run by eBike Dolomiti in 2014, this year’s race was held in the Dolomites, Italy on June 13/14th. The race was split over two days on an 18km course with 1,500m of height gain – tough courses, at altitude, presumably to maximise the suffering.

Only riders of pedelec bikes with a maximum assist speed of 25km/h and 250W motors were eligible to enter, and the title went to Yves Ketterer (Team bikesportworld/klk-Raceteam), who also won the e-bike marathon at Tegernsee’s MTB Festival earlier in June. Of his new world title, he said:

It is just as hard to ride an e-bike contest as a pure MTB event. On the flat sections we ride these bikes exceeding the limit of 25 km/h where the motor is no longer allowed to assist. So we have to push the approx. 20kg e-bikes permanently with pure muscle power. The routes also provide steep climbs that you would barely accomplish with normal MTBs – that ís where we and the bikes are riding close to the limit.”

So – the World Champ agrees with our assessment that electric assist bikes are still just as hard to ride as regular bikes. Phew, that’s a relief. But should e-bikes really have their own World Champs, or indeed have any place in racing at all? We’re sure you have an opinion…

2015 BionX E-Bike WM 01
Contrary to popular belief, you do still need to pedal *and* steer the thing…
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