Covid-19 and the preventive measures being mounted against it are playing havoc all around the world. For the professional racers of the Enduro World Series it has meant a delayed start to the year - the first three rounds of the 2020 season in Colombia, Chile and France respectively have been postponed.
With athletes competing from so many different nations, the tales of self-quarantine and lockdowns that are filtering back in to EWS HQ are wide, varied and often inspirational. Over the next few weeks, we’re reaching out to the stars of the EWS and asking them to report in from where they are. This would normally be the time of the year that we'd get our extended bike racing family back together again and even if we aren't riding our bikes together, it's important that we keep that community spirit alive.
First up, we contacted Canyon Collective’s Ines Thoma. Whether it’s a global pandemic, or a rainy Thursday practice session, if you want positivity, a beaming smile and to generally feel better then you go and talk to Ines! Here’s her story:
Ines Thoma in action at last years Italian round in Val di Fasa.
Ines Thoma: Wow. Today it’s three weeks since Coronavirus became a serious topic here in Germany, since then it has definitely changed everybody’s lives in different ways. It was also three weeks ago that I came back from training in Tuscany and we all had a cold afterwards...
We haven’t left home since. On Saturday Germany finally followed Italy, France and Spain with a lockdown, but it’s still not quite as strict though. We will see in a couple of days, how big the effect will be.
Ines is using some her time spent at home to work on her yoga qualifications. She has 200 hours to log in order to gain her new qualification so she has switched her regular classes to online. Pic: Max Schumann
It’s crazy to think that we would be racing in South America at the moment and to realise that our season doesn’t start as planned (as I am German, I really like sticking to plans!) it is a super strange feeling. But what is happening in the world right now is definitely bigger and more important than racing bikes. Even if we really love to do so.
"Rides are a good way to get out and enjoy the sun. We are allowed to start at the house, go easy and avoid other riders. Luckily I can bring my boyfriend Max, as we live together anyway." Pic: Max Schumann
My daily life in times of quarantine decelerated a lot in terms of mobility, traveling, meeting friends and has brought with it a lot of time at home. However, my job as a professional racer includes a kind of free and self-structured daily rhythm anyway.
"One of my summer projects is the renovation of my little caravan called 'Ferdinand'. If the lockdown will continue for a couple of weeks, I will probably be finished before the summer even starts!" Pic: Max Schumann
Things for sure didn’t change as much for me as they did for other people. We live in the countryside, I mostly buy my groceries in the local shop anyway and I have my home gym.
"This shot is from my first gym session after my cold. As I always do the gym at home there is no change for me here! I have my weights, ballance boards, rowing machine and I use my roadbike on the roller. Whenever the season starts, I will be ready!" Pic: Max Schumann
I am super lucky to have some land around our house to be outside and free on when we want to be and to be with my family all the time. Also, training still works pretty well for us. We can still ride our bikes from home (without company and in a safe way of course). I can be in my gym as always and we rebuilt our ramps in the garden to work on our trials skills. And depending on how long this shut down will last, it looks like we will get a lot of new home trails in the local woods too!
"We will for sure have some new hometrails after the crisis! To be alone it the woods is pretty, especially when the sun is out and the temperatures hit the 20 degree mark like on Thursday and Friday." Pic: Max Schumann
"The weekend got super cold again but we took the time to play around in the garden. I've always dreamt of learning backwheel hops and other trials moves. Maybe now is the time!" Pic: Max Schumann
All the best! Stay safe and keep a positive spirit!
Find out more about Covid-19 is effecting the EWS calendar here.