Laurence Crossman-Emms captures what turned out to be a classic race on the equally classic MSA track...
The Canadian flag flying high and true this race day morning. With the home crowd brewing to welcome the country man Stevie Smith down the hill. Jump in and follow the action because this is going to get hot!
Scorching this morning here in Mont Sainte Anne, the shorts and sombreros were once again donned and it was seeming like it was in for the long run. Juniors dropping in first today, with an unexpected final result which saw Lapierre rider, Loris Vergier take the win.
Not really where you want your front tyre to be slung. Having trouble all weekend, Brendan Fairclough took a huge high speed front blow out in morning practice, can only be hugely unsettling to have this happen at such high speeds. Good race run put him into 7th today, one of his better results this year!
Last fine tinkers on the bikes before race runs. The spanners are not too short for time considering the 5hr gap between practice and race runs…a bit much in all honesty.
Crowds are gathered and the sun is beaming down on the track whilst the women and juniors came down. No one could have ever seen rain on the horizon.
With the women up next, Morgane Charre does her final mental prepartion before dropping in on 4 minutes of gnarly flat out track. A respectable run but a little off top pace, she fell into 6th place.
Tahnee wanted to walk away with a podium this weekend, a solid run, fast performance and even hitting the big jump into the finishing line, she could only manage 7th, but still taking the Junior win and holding on to her leader jersey, she will looking strong coming into Worlds. [audio url="http://cdn.coresites.factorymedia.com/dirt_new/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/7_audio.mp3"]
Manon Carpenter looking to finally seal that World Cup win this year, coming down the hill and right into the hot seat 4seconds up, it was going to tight. But Ragot pipped her to it, another 4seconds up on Manon, she steals the win from her and put the British young gun back to 2nd. [audio url="http://cdn.coresites.factorymedia.com/dirt_new/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/8_audio1.mp3"]
Down 10 seconds on the first split we all knew something was not quite right for Rachel, another 10 down on the next split, it wasn't looking good. Two crashes on track, Rachel just couldn't hold on. Seemingly in pain as she crossed the line, she still managed 12th place, despite the crashes. [audio url="http://cdn.coresites.factorymedia.com/dirt_new/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/9_audio2.mp3"]
One half of the men behind the lenses at Dirt.TV, John Parkin stalks his pray in the bushes, getting the nugget shots!
Qualifying 4th yesterday, Aaron Gwin is sure looking back up to speed. But with the clouds looking daunting over the hillside, the fear of rain is in everyones minds.
The British rider Joe Connell looking pinned into the finishing line. 36th place for Joe, must be pleased with his run, bagging himself some points and bringing his rank up.
The crowds really starting to gather to see the big boys come down the hillside. Bryn Atkinson snaps up 18th place here.
Last rounds champion, Remi Thirion didn't quite have the same luck as he did in Andorra, a bit of a fast track for him, he could only hold on for a 19th place. Still high up in the ranking, he could still be up there come the end of the season.
Enjoying the track and really getting into it towards the end of the week, Marc Beaumont scores himself that top 10 spot he has been craving for. 10th place for Marc, almost 5 seconds off the win.
Gwin on course and the rain had started to ease, still wet under foot the track was greasy and the difficulty level went up several clicks. Off pace in the top section, he made up a ton of time towards the lower of the track. Finishing up in 5th place. [audio url="http://cdn.coresites.factorymedia.com/dirt_new/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/16_audio.mp3"]
Joe Smith ended up with a 34th, not too stoked with it he really felt he could have done better. He said he could ride this line all day everyday, no worries, but when it comes to race run he just cant lay down a solid time. Missing out on Worlds, he will be going back to UK to chill out before the last National and hope for a good result.
Gee Atherton sure likes to make for some exciting racing, after his off pace qualy run he came down on a bone dry track, and went right into the hot seat with several seconds to spare, all he had to do was sit tight and hold on. [audio url="http://cdn.coresites.factorymedia.com/dirt_new/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/18_audio1.mp3"]
Gurning across the line, there wasn't anything else he could do, not pleased with his run he was unsure if he would be able to keep the hot seat for long.
And then it rained, it started to spit and the clouds looked like they may pass over. Crowd taking shelter in 'innovative' ways, because no one thought this wetness was coming.
Another man who's time suffered due to the rain, Sam Blenkinsop pinned towards the finish line and only could score 12th
A bit of rain isn't going to upset the fans that much. Still screaming, they were patiently waiting for the Canadian to drop in.
Mulally was the first to face the fate of the heavy rain, not the best to be the first man down after such a pouring, managing to hold it together, he slips, going down hard in the very last rocky section before the finish straight. He wasn't the only one to have such bad fate.
And then it poured, soaking the track and the times suffered massively. Brook MacDonald right back in 41st!
And the Canadian moustaches drops in, despite the rain, despite the slippery conditions he looses no time and starts to chase down Gee's time at each split. All he needed to do was hold on to the end.
The crowds roars this man into the finishing arena. The Canadian on home soil, despite all odds, everything was against him, he put together the run of his life and stole the win from Gee Atherton and setting history here in MSA
Pleased with his run, but he was after the win here. Sam Hill looks on at the newly crowned champion, but still on the podium he will be going into Worlds confidently and strong. [audio url="http://cdn.coresites.factorymedia.com/dirt_new/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/27_audio.mp3"]
The Canadian's going crazy for the Canadian. Chanting of 'Steve Smith…Steve Smith' filled the air, claimed to be a true hero.
A few unexpected results in the women's, the podium saw two Gstaad Scott riders and a new face on the top for once.
Need to be a bit quicker off the mark than that Ragot, taking the full brunt of all the champagne. [audio url="http://cdn.coresites.factorymedia.com/dirt_new/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/30_audio.mp3"]
Team of the day, Gstaad Scott, no firsts, but consistent results across the board put them up here.
Standing proud on the top of the podium, Stevie Smith final gets what he has been working for all season. Still not series leader, he will be nipping at Gee ankles!
Red Bull on top of the podium once again, but not this helmet, Gee's off fate once again, missing out on two firsts now in two rounds. Could this be a declining trend? Lets hope not.
And what better way to tick off a World Cup…fireworks! Josh and Brook put on their finest display ever…skateboard duo rocket launching. Join us next time at World Championships in South Africa, thats if these guys don't set half of MSA a light.