UCI MTB World Cup (All forms!)

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What a crazy first journey of the World Cup!

4 new winners, 3 first year Elites on their first elite race, 1 second year Elite.

Simon Andreassen finally confirming all the potential he showed when he was double junior World Champion, in a great race, and Loana Lecomte with a dominating performance in front of Pauline Ferrand Prevot.

More to come tomorrow and sunday with the 2nd XCC and XCO races from Nové Mesto na Moravé.
 
WC is finally back!
Shame it has to be without the spectators ( they were always amazing in Nove Mesto) but at least the season is more or less going on - packed into 3(?) weeks: 2xWC, WCH and ECH. Love the young riders are showing the old guard what's what :)
Great to see Jolanda back after the horrific injuries - I wonder if she can reach the previous levels.
N1NO is kinda off pace, crashed hard during the race, could be spectacular fight with the youngsters for the WCH jersey next week.
Too bad MVDP isn't riding this battered season - but switch just for the 3 weeks wouldn't make a sense for him I guess...
So... on we go! Another short-track today.
 
Its just good to see dirt racing again! I'm not sure what to think...is is shocking that we have four new winners, some young guns showing their stuff...I don't think so. Its a little early to put the vets to rest though because they were in the race.
 
Incredible race - I kept expecting Nino to drop them at some point and ride away - but he couldn't. And then that last lap. Madness, completely nuts. An XCO win at last for Avancini, from the impressive Vader.
I still think Nino is the man to beat in Leogang, but it might not be a total surprise if he's beaten.
As for the women, PFP rode away, and kept it to about 10-20 secs, despite a late charge from Terpstra. They both look the most consistent for next week.

The 30 minute period of this race finishing and the finish of L-B-L was fabulous.
 
Reactions: jmdirt
Some bits of the worlds XCO track. Maybe it's the video angle or lens used but it does look like it's incredibly steep at parts. Both up and downhill

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=44hmbgefAr4


Anyone knows if we only have live TV for the elite races or, like in Lenzerheide two years ago, the relay and the U23 races will be shown live?

The Under23 Women race should be one of the more exciting races of the week, with Stigger and Lecomte going back to their age group and facing Batten, Kata Blanka Vas, Harnden and Marchet. A shame that Alvarado goes to CycloCross next weekend.

For my country, I hope the portuguese girls can do something. Both Raquel Queirós (U23) and Ana Santos (Junior). Queirós was in great form before lockdown when she was 4th in a portuguese race where the rest of the top-5 was composed by Alessandra Keller, Maja Wloszczowska, Rocio Garcia and Kathrin Stirnemann. A top-10 would be great for both.
 
Reactions: jmdirt
Some bits of the worlds XCO track. Maybe it's the video angle or lens used but it does look like it's incredibly steep at parts. Both up and downhill

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=44hmbgefAr4


Anyone knows if we only have live TV for the elite races or, like in Lenzerheide two years ago, the relay and the U23 races will be shown live?

The Under23 Women race should be one of the more exciting races of the week, with Stigger and Lecomte going back to their age group and facing Batten, Kata Blanka Vas, Harnden and Marchet. A shame that Alvarado goes to CycloCross next weekend.

For my country, I hope the portuguese girls can do something. Both Raquel Queirós (U23) and Ana Santos (Junior). Queirós was in great form before lockdown when she was 4th in a portuguese race where the rest of the top-5 was composed by Alessandra Keller, Maja Wloszczowska, Rocio Garcia and Kathrin Stirnemann. A top-10 would be great for both.
check RedBullTV
 
Some bits of the worlds XCO track. Maybe it's the video angle or lens used but it does look like it's incredibly steep at parts. Both up and downhill
Courses have been getting tougher for a good while now, the old dirt crits are gone (unless it's the Olympics...) and it produces some decent racing. It's also driven those enormous dinner-plate cassettes people in my road clubs keep trying to fit to their bikes!
 
Agree; the days of 3 hour dirt road races is well and truly over. You need to be excellent in all facets of the discipline.
Technical climbs, descents, rocks, roots, etc If you have a weakness, you'll be exposed - and the sport is all the better for it.
 
Reactions: jmdirt
check RedBullTV
Sadly they are only showing live the Elite races.

I'm still hoping for the rest of the races to be shown on UCI YouTube channel (like in Lenzerheide'2018), but probably won't be. Simon Burney told me on Twitter last year that they shown it in 2018 because the Swiss TV broadcasters made the effort to produce it, but since ORF (the Austria broadcaster) don't have those races on their schedule, it probably won't be the case in 2020.
 
Reactions: jmdirt
Agree; the days of 3 hour dirt road races is well and truly over. You need to be excellent in all facets of the discipline.
Technical climbs, descents, rocks, roots, etc If you have a weakness, you'll be exposed - and the sport is all the better for it.
The thing is, two to three hour dirt races were pretty hard in the '90s too, at least in my part of the world. They were just as technical (natural obstacles vs the man made features that are becoming more prevalent) and longer, with 30 minutes climbs, they don't even have 30 minute laps now. That being said, I prefer watching and racing the shorter, multi loop events.
 
The thing is, two to three hour dirt races were pretty hard in the '90s too, at least in my part of the world. They were just as technical (natural obstacles vs the man made features that are becoming more prevalent) and longer, with 30 minutes climbs, they don't even have 30 minute laps now. That being said, I prefer watching and racing the shorter, multi loop events.
I reckon it was very location dependent. The differences in races in the UK was pretty big and also the mad innovation in bikes back then meant some people had a much easier time than others. Now everyone has a bike that you could probably throw down a full downhill course and be fine on. The old courses produced some excellent climbers on the road, will be interesting to see if those who cross over now can still climb like that or if they're all going to be more in the MVdP mould.
 
Reactions: jmdirt
Agree; the days of 3 hour dirt road races is well and truly over. You need to be excellent in all facets of the discipline.
Technical climbs, descents, rocks, roots, etc If you have a weakness, you'll be exposed - and the sport is all the better for it.
I know someone who raced against Froome. He said it was funny becuase every climb you'd see this fella flying past everyone and then on the descent you'd see him off the side of the track while you went down. Repeat ad lib. until the end. That was around the time races started to get more technical I think.
 
Reactions: jmdirt
The old courses produced some excellent climbers on the road, will be interesting to see if those who cross over now can still climb like that or if they're all going to be more in the MVdP mould.
That's a good point; Hejsdal, Rasmussen, Evans, Fuglsang, etc

The current courses don't really have any long climbs; I think Valnord in Andorra possibly has the longest climb. So the 'pure climber' isn't the ideal type for modern courses; were they tend to be more punchy climbs.

I'm not aware that any of the current riders have expressed a wish to switch.
 
Reactions: jmdirt
Not gonna argue with that. :p

Holy f***, the circuit looks difficult. And if it rains, even worse. So far meteo shows rain for saturday afternoon and, for the night, snow, which could make downhill very difficult to go ahead.

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lbKNuvVvx08
Wow. That is awesome! Reminds me a wee bit of like Mont-Sainte-Anne. Some folks are gonna crash out badly.

The weather looks like it could be epic/miserable - Saturday is 2-13 degrees C and raining (yick) and Sunday is 1-4 degrees and rain/snow (holy crap). Definitely night and day compared to Novo Mesto. We know some riders just do not do as well in the rain ... I think Schurter tends to do much worse in the wet.
 
It looks a really tough track, and with all the rain, it's going to be a real test. A total mudfest.

Will be interesting to see tyre choice; fast, XC tyres aren't going to work; so a proper mud tyre looks the way to go.
As said, Nino tends to dislike the wet & mud but a World Championship is on the line; it wouldn't be a shock to see a new winner - pick a name...you'll get a good run for your money.

For the women, PFP is an obvious favourite; but with the conditions, who knows? With the mud, you'll probably need serious power, and the lighter weight riders might struggle?

As for the e-MTB races, I don't have a problem - the best riders will still win, it just adds a tactical part to the race; when and where do you use it? How much have you used/ got left? I've got the impression people think some fat, overweight guy will turn up and win. E-bikes are here to stay, so the sport has to reflect that. It will eventually become a serious championship.
 

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