Walkinstown’s Callaghan is on top of the Enduro world

by Gazette Reporter
0 comment

WALKINSTOWN’S Killian Callaghan was crowned world champion in the Under-21 Enduro World Series last weekend following a sensational few months.
The Dublin man raced consistently in each of the rounds on the series with a first place in Aspen and second in Whistler, Canada, securing the overall series lead, leaving him unbeatable going into the final round in Italy last weekend.
Enduro is one of the fastest growing strands of cycling in Ireland, consisting of timed downhill sections and untimed uphills. The winner of an enduro race is the person with the fastest combined times at the end of the day.
Although Callaghan is still only 20 years old, he started Enduro Racing four years ago, after spending years on all kinds of bikes – from motorbikes to BMX racing.
“I was doing motorcycle trials as a kid and then a year or so of BMX racing and I broke my leg, I was out for about six months,” he said of his beginnings in the sport.
“While I was out, my mates started doing Enduros. I was looking at it on Facebook the whole time while I was injured. The minute I got better I just wanted to try it. I bought a cheap hardtail bike from my uncle and went out, did a race and loved it. I’m pretty much hooked since then.”
Although not a UCI discipline, Enduro recently was recognised by Cycling Ireland as an official strand of cycling, and last month a demo National Championship event saw 350 people enter.
The world champion describes the social nature of the sport: “It’s a day out with all your friends – you’re out all day, riding. There’s not much standing around – you do a stage and wait for your mates. You go back up casually with your mates – that’s probably the best thing about it.”
The Enduro World Series has eight rounds across the world, with one of the highlights being the Emerald Enduro in Wicklow, hosted by biking.ie.
For the past three years, Sandyford man Niall Davis and his crew has held what is widely considered one of the best rounds in the Enduro World Series.
Last month in Whistler, Canada, Callaghan came second in a defining moment of the series – his lead over the second placed overall rider, ironically called Nathan Secondi from France, was enough to mean he is unbeatable going into the final round in Italy.
He described the moment that he found out over the phone that the title would be his: “I knew my mam and dad would be up – they’re usually worried sick.
“I usually text them after each race was done, but I just rang them, cos I didn’t know what the points would be like. I thought maybe my dad would be still be up. He was, and he told me I was world champion, and got enough points ahead of your man in second! Obviously I was delighted, but it was a bit of a shock.
“I burnt the candle from both ends this year – and got away with it. I work most days from 8am – 4pm, and some Saturdays too. It’s unreal getting to go to all these places, but you are doing it on a shoestring budget!”

Related Articles