FREY’s electric mountain bikes powered by the industry-leading Bafang Ultra mid-drive motor have expanded their reputation in the sport of electric mountain biking considerably over the past year.
And now they are putting their powerful motors and high-end suspension to the test by taking on the world of enduro racing.
Enduro mountain bike racing consists of rigorous mountain bike trails with both fast downhill sections and slower uphill slogs.
In enduro racing, only the downhill sections of the courses are timed for competition. Riders have a time limit within which they must complete the uphill sections, but their time is not scored or competitive.
In an interesting experiment, FREY recently participated in the HIBP Enduro Series at HIBP Bike Park in Shuangdai Village, Muchen She Nationality Township, Zhejiang Province of China. Shuangdai Village is located in an area known as the “Bamboo Sea of Western Zhejiang,” an ecological tourism locale.
The rich bamboo resources provide a livelihood for the villagers and support a local tourism industry. The extremely hilly topography also makes it a perfect location for a bike park.
FREY’s participation helped create a new class for the competition.
To keep races fair, instead of competing against standard pedal mountain bikes, a new division was created where riders all used the powerful FREY electric mountain bikes.
Not only were the bikes useful for climbing the uphill sections of the track between downhill timed runs, but riders found that the quick acceleration during flat and slightly uphill portions of the timed downhill runs increased the racing tension and excitement.
See an example of some of the riding in the video clip below.
While many old school enduro racers still consider electric bikes to be “cheating,” the creation of a special class for powerful electric mountain bikes leveled the playing field and added an interesting element to the races.
I’ve personally tested several of FREY’s electric mountain bikes and even rode trails at a similar bike park in China known as the Brave Peak Bike Park.
You can see some of my own riding there last year in the video below.
Despite FREY’s headquarters being based in China, the company serves an almost exclusively Western audience. Their e-bikes have become quite popular in Europe and North America, but have yet to catch on in China due to the tiny size of the Chinese mountain biking market.
While commuter e-bikes sell in the tens of millions, very few Chinese riders have found their way into the sport of mountain biking. But FREY has been trying to change that and promote the sport locally as well.
In addition to partnering with the few major racing events in the country, the team has volunteered to help build new bike parks in local mountains to help more riders discover the sport.
Could electric mountain bikes help create a new element in the sport of enduro mountain bike racing?
Let’s hear your thoughts in the comment section below!
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