UCI MTB World Cup (All forms!)

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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.
There are many forms of motorcycle racing already and fat guys tend not to win any of them.
 
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.
Pidcock has signed with Ineos, so will be interesting to see how he turns out, although he already looks like he could win anything he wants to.
 
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PFP just rode away from the rest of them. In fact, it was a far hillier track than I had thought - a bit different from the usual short punchy climbs. Epic battle for 2nd between Lechner & McConnell.

And the men's was a possible surprise; I would never have picked Sarrou for a win; maybe a medal, but he's obviously suited by the long climbs. Another good ride from Fluckinger to claim another silver medal, and another French rider in bronze.

End of an era? I wouldn't write Nino off yet, but it will be strange to see him not in the rainbow jersey. Will make next year interesting.
 
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Pidcock with the fastest lap of the week on the circuit. 12'26'' on his first lap, 9 seconds faster than Sarrou's first lap today. He reached his first lap with more km's under his belt too, given the two start loops.

Fastest average too, but without 2 laps, although the U23 did one extra start loop.
 
European Champs in Switzerland on what looks like a nice, but testing course.

No surprise in the women's with PFP claiming another win in dominant fashion, with Terpsra in 2nd, and Belomoina in 3rd.
And in the men's, well, who else, but Nino after a nice battle with Carod, with Fluckinger in 3rd.
 
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European Champs in Switzerland on what looks like a nice, but testing course.

No surprise in the women's with PFP claiming another win in dominant fashion, with Terpsra in 2nd, and Belomoina in 3rd.
And in the men's, well, who else, but Nino after a nice battle with Carod, with Fluckinger in 3rd.
Looked like a cool race. Would love to see if there is a full replay.
 
A lot of team changes on the MTB circuit:

  • Pauline Ferrand Prevot leaves Canyon and is supposed to join Absalon on the Absolute Absalon team.
  • Jordan Sarrou leaves Absolute Absalon (from what I've read, some rumours point him to Specialized, but don't know about that with Specialized Factory disbanding almost completly).
  • Emily Batty leaves Trek (rumours say she's heading to Canyon)
  • Haley Batten and Chris Blevins goes from Specialized Factory to Trinity Racing
  • Simon Andreassen and Alan Hatherly leave Specialized Factory too. No word yet about their team but from what I've seen on Instagram both of them have started following recently pages related to Cannondale Factory, and affiliated to the team like Avancini Bikes and sponsor Prologó.
 
Some others:

Kerschbaumer is leaving Torpado - and the rumours are Specialized.
Sina Frei is leaving Ghost - and again no confirmation until 1st Jan.
Chloe Woodruff is leaving Stan's Pivot, who are disbanding.
Maxime Marotte - haven't seen much rumours apart from a possible Santa Cruz XC team???

It's quite a shake up - and will be strange to see so many on unusual colours/bikes. Batty not on a Trek, Nino not in the rainbow bands.
 
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So a lot of the rumours were confirmed:

Pauline Ferrand Prevot to Absolute Absalon
Jordan Sarrou, Gerhard Kerschbaumer, Sina Frei and Laura Stigger to Specialized Factory - Killer Team!
Simon Andreassen and Alan Hatherly join Avancini and Fumic at Cannondale Factory - Another very strong team
Maxime Marotte and Luca Braidot to Santa Cruz XC
Isla Short goes from her own independent program to Orbea Factory Team
David Valero from MMR Factory to BH Templo Cafés


The big brands all with very strong teams:
Specialized - Sarrou, Kerschbaumer, Frei and Stigger (plus Batten, Blevins and Rissveds on satellite teams)
Scott - Schurter, Courtney, Lars Forster and Andri Frischknecht
Trek - Jolanda Neff, Evie Richards, Anton Cooper and Stephane Tempier
Cannondale - Andreassen, Hatherly, Avancini and Fumic
 

Official list of entries for 2021.
Thanks for the list! Biggest upgrade award goes to: Santa Cruz. Absalon started from a higher point but they are really loaded now! I skipped through a lot of the smaller teams for now, but will check back later to see who I can pick out.
 
The World Cup will be expanded in 2022. So far 8 XCO races are set and that July 10th date should also be a double header.

With the World Championships, we are talking about 10 top level races in a season.

Petropolis, Avancini's birthplace, should be fun, the crowd (hopefully we will have that back) will go mental.

26-27 March - Lourdes DHI
8-10 April - Petropolis XCO / XCC
6-8 May - Albstadt XCO / XCC
13-15 May - Nove Mesto XCO / XCC
21-22 May - Fort William DHI
10-12 June - Leogang XCO/XCC/DHI
8-10 July - TBC
15-17 July - Vallnord XCO/XCC/DHI
29-31 July - Snowshoe XCO/XCC/DHI
5-7 Aug - Mont-Sainte-Anne XCO/XCC/DHI
2-4 Sep - Val di Sole XCO/XCC/DHI
 

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