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4/5/2019 8:55 AM

This hit the inbox this morning - to summarize, there is a huge pissing contest brewing as both the UCI (bikes) and the FIM (motos) are announcing ebike racing events, with the UCI now threatening to sanction any of "their" athletes if they take part in the FIM events. It certainly feels a bit like throwing Tonka toys in the sandbox, and the whole situation also fuels the rampant discussion around whether or not ebikes should be classified as motorized [insert popcorn-eating emoji here].

Dear Media Friends,

We are delighted to share the official statement distributed today, Friday 5 April 2019, by the UCI, addressing their stance on the e-mountain bike discipline. This includes a quote by WES founder and CEO, Francesco Di Biase.

Please find the official UCI press release below.

Best regards,

James McKnight
WES Press Officer

Source: UCI Press Office
Date of distribution: 5 April 2019


UCI Declaration concerning E-mountain bike
The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) wishes to make it clear that E-mountain bike (electrically-assisted mountain bike) is one of the disciplines under its auspices.

E-mountain bike is firmly entrenched in the cycling family: numerous well-known bicycle brands produce bikes used by enthusiasts of this speciality, and several National Federations affiliated to the UCI have already organised National Championships for the discipline, won by specialists of mountain bike cross-country Olympic (XCO), such as France’s double Olympic Champion and five-time UCI World Champion Julien Absalon.

To encourage the development of this popular activity among cyclists of all levels, the UCI integrated E-mountain bike into its Regulations (Part IV: Mountain bike events) on 1 January 2019 and awarded the 2019 edition of the UCI E-Mountain Bike World Championships to Mont Sainte-Anne (Canada) which will organise the first edition of this competition in August as part of the UCI Mountain Bike World Championships presented by Mercedes-Benz. Events, several of them grouped under the WES E-Bike Series, have been registered on the 2019 UCI Mountain Bike International Calendar, and a UCI World Cup and Continental Championships will be organised from 2020.

In the light of the strong development of the discipline, the UCI was very surprised and disappointed by the announcement made by the International Motorcycling Federation (Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme – FIM) concerning the organisation of an FIM E-Bike Enduro World Cup in France on 1-2 June, with no regulatory basis.

The UCI had already notified the FIM in September 2017 that it considered E-mountain bike events to come exclusively under its jurisdiction and that the respective roles of the two International Federations (UCI and FIM) were clear and would not be called into question.

The UCI Regulation, approved by its Management Committee in September 2018, stipulates that an E-mountain bike’s electric motor must not exceed 250 watts and that pedalling assistance is permitted up to a maximum speed of 25km/h. This definition corresponds with the applicable European regulations (EN-15194), which gives an unequivocal definition of a “pedal cycle with pedal assistance” (cycle equipped with an auxiliary electric motor having a maximum continuous rated power of less than or equal to 250 W, where the output of the motor is cut off when the cyclist stops pedalling and is otherwise progressively reduced and finally cut off before the vehicle speed reaches 25 km/h).

The UCI wishes to announce that events in domains under its exclusive jurisdiction that are registered on the FIM calendar or those of its member Federations will be considered “banned events” in line with its Regulation. Consequently, any UCI-licensed rider participating in one of these events would risk disciplinary measures.

Commenting on this subject, the UCI President David Lappartient declared: “I am delighted by the boom currently enjoyed by E-mountain bike, a specialty that enables a new public to take up mountain biking – a demanding discipline – and which is also appreciated by high-level riders. The UCI means to develop this activity which, as with other forms of cycling, comes under its exclusive jurisdiction.”

Meanwhile, double Olympic Champion and five-time UCI World Champion Julien Absalon declared: “Electrically-assisted mountain bike is a new challenge for me. I won the first French Championships and I cannot wait for the UCI World Championships in Mont-Saint-Anne in September. In 10 years’ time I will be able to say, “I was there!” Electrically-assisted mountain bike is an extension of cross-country Olympic. It’s good that bodies such as the UCI take new practices seriously. The manufacturers, athletes, and public are there. The electric bike is a social phenomenon that contributes to the development of our sport. It is great that it is also recognised at the highest level.”

Francesco Di Biase, organiser of the WES E-Bike Series said: “We join the UCI Mountain Bike International Calendar for the first time this season with several rounds. We are expecting a very high-level field of international athletes. We are very proud of this recognition from international bodies and intend to continue working hand in hand with the UCI for the development of electrically-assisted mountain bike.”

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4/5/2019 9:11 AM

"To encourage the development of this popular activity..."

Not that I remotely care about anything UCI related, but are there seriously that many people that want to race e-bikes competitively? To the point where different two-wheeled governing bodies are fighting over rights to these events? What a joke.

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4/5/2019 9:18 AM

Typical UCI. Acting like they own anyone who would suffer to race in one of their blessed...errr..sanctioned events. They can go whistle.

Don't they have enough work to do ruining road cycling?

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4/5/2019 9:19 AM

There are a lot of good reasons for e-bikes to exist but crowning an ebike world champion isn't one of them

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4/5/2019 9:31 AM

Also is that the UCI's graphic or yours??

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4/5/2019 9:32 AM

Hopefully this sparks up more local ebike races. I really wish the TLD series was happening this year.

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4/5/2019 9:41 AM
HARv wrote:

Hopefully this sparks up ...more

You should see a race at the Go Pro Mountain Games and a Northern California stop.

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4/5/2019 10:21 AM
Ahab wrote:

Also is that the UCI's ...more

iceman created that gem for ebike world champs. #copyright

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4/5/2019 10:29 AM

The LOLZ ROLFCOPTER has landed. French v. Swiss - "It's a bold strategy Cotton. Let's see if it pays off for him."

Good stuff. I propose a duel. No matter the result, no one loses, as the FIM and UCI are equally hated by those who have to endure their insufferable goverance (according to the forums and many, many interviews of athletes). Maybe the winner is which ever side gets to start fresh?

On a more serious note, this is what happens with there is an ungodly amount of money in a new segment of a sport. Yes, many diedhard riders don't "get it" and think it's silly/dumb/etc. But what those people aren't seeing are the sales figures and projections:

"E-bike inventory was up 29.2 percent in units, to 26,094 bikes on hand."

Browse around and search out some of the e-bike articles. It paints a clearer picture.

This is another very very very important one:

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4/5/2019 10:57 AM

kids ebikes are here too, so there's that

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4/5/2019 10:58 AM


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4/5/2019 11:36 AM
sideshow wrote:

The LOLZ ROLFCOPTER has ...more

It would be nice if that BRAIN article displayed units for the non-electric categories as it had for the e-bikes, as well as broke out the e-categories in the same way as the non-electric. For example, how many units or what percentile increase of e-bike sales are in the mountain category vs. the commuter category? How many units of traditional mountain bikes were sold? So on and so forth... My point being, 26,094 units is, in my understanding, actually really small when compared to total units of bicycles sold in shops.

Stay prepared for fun with Vital Gear Club

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4/5/2019 1:23 PM

Who sanctions quad racing? Maybe they should get rights? Just a thought

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4/5/2019 2:41 PM

Motor by it’s purest definition is a electric motor not a internal combustion device or engine it’s that enginecycle just doesn’t roll off the tongue the motorcycle does

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4/5/2019 2:43 PM

If it’s got a motor on it whether it’s a pedal assist motor or a actual motor driving the bike forward it’s a motorcycle & it’s a FIM eBIKE now

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4/5/2019 2:46 PM

The UCI needs to step away from all forms of non-human propelled or assisted bikes period.

It’s a very slippery slope

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4/5/2019 2:59 PM
Pedal4life wrote:

The UCI needs to step away ...more

I hear they're quite experienced in the pharmaceutical space. Maybe there's an opportunity for them to "pivot".

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4/5/2019 3:50 PM
sspomer wrote:

kids ebikes are here too, ...more

My kid loves rolling down the trail in the woods with me. She despises climbing up the trail in the woods with me. If an E bike pedal assist got my kid out on her bike with me, more often, I'd be all for it. This is it. ^^^

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4/5/2019 4:54 PM

I initially thought that the competition between the two governing bodies could produce some great courses/products . I'm interested to see the higher speed or greater technical lines on the flats and uphills.
Then I saw a comment from someone saying that they're seeing positive trail advocacy participation from emtbers and that saddling up(pardon the pun) with moto events may hurt their inclusion. That makes a lot of sense. Their added numbers could be a win win for advocacy and brick and mortar lbs's.
I can think of a lot of friends that are busy with life and dont have the time , fitness, or health to put into training to get a good day out on the trails like they used to. Or others that with the prompting of an assist would call the sport something that they're into. Those same people are community oriented and active in other parts of making their community work.

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4/5/2019 5:32 PM

This feels very Atlas Shrugged... nothing like someone getting butthurt that good ol capitalism came to their domain

But yeah, absolutely pass this off to FIM. The uci can’t even regulate roadies hiding motors in their actual bikes, how the hell are they gonna figure out everyone’s secret cheat code on their ebike to unlock ludicrous speed? Right brake right brake up shift left brake square square triangle r2 circle circle

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4/5/2019 9:27 PM
b0bg wrote:

Typical UCI. Acting like ...more

Two divorced parents taking their anger out on the kids. Why the fuck are riders being punished for this?

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4/5/2019 9:29 PM
Pedal4life wrote:

The UCI needs to step away ...more

Cigarettes only?

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4/6/2019 1:20 AM

I don’t know nothing about FIM, but let them both put on races. If FIM do it better, maybe they can start running the DH scene as well!? nothing wrong with alternative to the UCI DHWC.

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4/7/2019 3:55 PM
sspomer wrote:

kids ebikes are here too, ...more

JimEG wrote:

My kid loves rolling down ...more

It's wild anyone would thumbs down this. Not all humans like pedaling a bicycle up a hill-most of us tuned into this site, DO like pedaling up. My daughter also enjoys the bike park (see, taking chairlift up) but despises climbing up any trail-anywhere. I swallowed my personal pride and had her ride with me on a Levo yesterday, I rode my acoustic bike---we rode further than ever yesterday, mom even bailed out along the way, but we had a friggin blast!
So, yeah, whatever it takes to get some people to ride.

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4/8/2019 3:01 PM

rather than make a unique thread, i'm putting the USAC / Sea Otter e-bike press release here
USA Cycling brings upcoming Sea Otter Classic Electric Mountain Bike Race under its wing

Class 1 pedal-assist electric mountain bikes to be raced in both professional and amateur classes.

Monterey, CA – USA Cycling has long partnered with Sea Otter Classic to sanction the many professional and amateur races held at the country’s hottest bicycle festival. Next week, the Bulls eMTB race epowered by Bosch will join the growing list of sanctioned races like Downhill, Cross-country, Enduro, Dual-Slalom and Road. The race will take place at 4:30 p.m. on Friday, April 12th at the Sea Otter Classic.

“With the growing popularity of e-bikes and the UCI including the discipline in the World Championships we are working with events, industry partners and athletes to assist with providing guidelines for e-bike events in the U.S.” said Chuck Hodge, USA Cycling’s Chief of Racing and Events.

"The Sea Otter Classic is thrilled to host this USA Cycling-sanctioned eMTB race," said Frank Yohannan, president and CEO of the Sea Otter Classic. "There has been a lot of interest in eBikes from the cycling community and we are happy to offer both amateur and pro races at this year's event."

The eMTB race is open to both men and women who will compete in six amateur age categories and a pro category. First place prize for pros (both men and women) is $750; second place prize is $500; and third place is $250 for a total purse of $3000. Winners in all categories will receive power tools. New in 2019, Sea Otter will be adding chipped timing to the race.

eMTBs that use certified Class 1 eBike systems from Bosch, Brose, Yamaha, or Shimano will be welcome to compete in the race. Racers who don’t own their own e-bike equipped with those systems are welcome to borrow one from Bulls, Bosch, or the many other brands at Sea Otter demo’ing eMTBs, on a first come first serve basis.

To register for the race, please click here.

Claus Fleischer, CEO of Bosch eBike Systems, in hot pursuit of a podium position at last year’s race. (Credit: Douglas Schwartz ELV Motors)

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4/8/2019 6:05 PM

I'm glad that powertools are the prize. That's a good tongue-in-cheek move. I am more interested in the yet-to-be-annouced-but-someone-has-to-talking-about-it Unlimited Class a.k.a. Group B MTB. That's where things will get exciting..

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4/8/2019 9:49 PM
sspomer wrote:

rather than make a unique ...more

Why troll with a pic of an eBike that obviously isn't a Class 1 pedal assist? The hate is deep enough without conjuring up images of guys twisting throttle and roosting out favorite trails. For the sake of clarity and perspective, I own and ride an eBike AND a Jeffsy 29.

That aside, I really don't get the eMTB racing. I think they're fun and great for putting in longer days or training, but racing? No thanks.

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4/9/2019 6:26 AM
sspomer wrote:

rather than make a unique ...more

krisrayner wrote:

Why troll with a pic of an ...more

it can be more like moto dual sport in a way. endurocross. could be interesting and different.

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4/26/2019 10:59 AM

Question: When was the first e-bike race inevitable?
Answer: As soon as they made the 2nd one.

Someone should create an e-bike outlaw series with a bigger purse so all athletes concerned can tell UCI to go pound sand. Problem solved. (Easier said than done, I know.)

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