Rider fatally crashes at Enduro World Series, Arizona riders respectful of race cancelation

Enduro World Series organizers canceled round five Saturday in Crested Butte, Colo. after a rider fatality.

William Dean Olson, 40, of Edwards, Colo. died after crashing his mountain bike in the Gunnison National Forest at Trail 400 near the Block and Tackle trail, according to police.

Details of the crash have not been released, but organizers believe he died as a result of blunt-force trauma to the chest.

Police said two interval riders following the victim immediately began CPR for approximately 30 minutes until race personnel arrived and continued CPR for another 30 minutes.

Helicopter medics arrived and pronounced Olson dead at the scene, police said.

“With respect for the rider and their family, this round of the Enduro World Series competition has been canceled,” read a statement from the Enduro World Series organizers. “Our deepest thoughts and sympathies go out to the rider’s family.”

Alex Pavon (Juliana Bicycles/Flag Bike Rev), an Enduro World Series competitior from Flagstaff, had planned on doing the same round as Olson and was staging waiting to go off, but never was able to compete.

“When the pro women arrived at the top of Star Pass (Trail 400) we were surprised to see all of the pro men still waiting to drop,” Pavon said. “We were told that there was a course hold because there was a rider down and that the medics were taking care of it.”

But after a long time waiting, Pavon, 20, said radio calls to staging asked if any riders knew CPR and could assist.

“Ironically, the weather had been lovely for the race until the accident,” Pavon said. “It was after the accident that the storm clouds rolled in and it started to rain. It rained during the night, and it’s gloomy here today; fitting weather for the somber attitude that is resting upon the riders, the organizers, and the whole town of Crested Butte.”

Pavon said Big Mountain Enduro and the Enduro World Series organized a memorial ride Sunday.

“It’s always a bummer to have a race, particularly a world event, canceled, but under the circumstances I don’t think that anyone was upset about the decision,” Pavon said. “Many of us didn’t know Will, but our hearts still ache immensely for our fellow rider and his family. All of us know that what we do is dangerous, but it doesn’t really hit home until something like this happens. It’s the nature of the sport, and we have to commend the [Big Mountain Enduro and Enduro World Series] for all of their efforts to save Will.”

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Sarah Muench