Another World Cup round that has been coupled with a XC round, which makes for a relatively quiet Saturday for the Downhill riders, and also gives them a chance to mentally prepare for tomorrows race.
A lot of questions are going to be answered tomorrow, has Gwin found his 'mojo' again? Can Stevie hold on to his fastest qualifying time? Is Gee going to come back fighting? We'll have to wait and see...
Here's our photo gallery from today. Keep an eye out for the audio clips too!
Racing flat out, only the view endless views in sight, carving off this lip, the ground drops away from beneath you, nothing but the rushing of wind through your helmet. Going to be some exciting racing here…guaranteed!
Down in the pits, teams doing the final strip down, rebuilds in prep for tomorrow. Even though most teams are working out the back of trucks and vans with easy ups, they sure are making the most out of it all. Quite a chilled, friendly place to be with everyone helping out with each other where ever they can!
Sam Hill leading down his team of three in practice today. All of the CRC boys qualifying through to racing, with both Sam and Matt in the top 20. A team that always manages strong consistent results, but they are lacking that top spot.
Even some dust making an appearance on track today. Such warm climates, it doesn't take long for the track to dry out!
Unprotected and in danger this round, Josh Bryceland took a smooth run to unsure he made it through, 15th with easily the ability be in the top 5, Josh chats about his run. [audio url="http://cdn.coresites.factorymedia.com/dirt_new/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/18_audio.mp3"]
Steve Smith taking the big W in qualy yesterday. Seemingly stoked, he is looking forward to dropping in last man down on home soil. A track that is very suited to his style, and with the home crowd cheering him on, he could be in very good contentions for the win. [audio url="http://cdn.coresites.factorymedia.com/dirt_new/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/21_audio.mp3"]
Great to see Sik Mik Hannah up on pace again, with a respectable 7th place qualy to match his board number. Still a member down, with his sister Tracy still out on injury, but with her return to be at Worlds, they could be a force hard to beat.
One last walk to inspect the damage on track, and with most riders hoping for it to stay dry, it should be some fast racing, especially through these open sections. Ragot not even a second off Rachel’s time, she should be one to watch out for.
With the track still quite wet, the dirt is still flying, big holes are appearing in berms where you really don't want them. The trials of adding new features into a track, they are more than likely not going to see the other side of the weekend.
Wind picking up on track today, making the jumps a little tricky. Most riders not seeming too phased but a few gusts catching a few of them out. Not the day you want to take a silly crash on track.
Wyn Masters sat above the media room…"borrowing" the wifi and enjoying all the photos and comments all the media folk are putting up…on fire this round bud!
Taking it easy this morning after his crash in qualy, Gee will be feeling the pressure dropping in tomorrow. As much as I wouldn't want to say it, but the unstoppable Atherton’s could have a few cracks appearing in its armor? Prove us wrong.
With his shoulder injury still causing issues, Brook MacDonald said he is going to ride as hard and as fast as it will let him. An issue that could cost him the series, he is doing a good job to push it to the back of his mind and get on with the task at hand. Plough through it and still looking pinned, hats off to him. I caught up with him after practice today. [audio url="http://cdn.coresites.factorymedia.com/dirt_new/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/17_audio1.mp3"]
Expo stalls going off in full swing, with the obligatory trials show, but along with free food tasters, skatepark set up, demo bikes and beers! Winner.
Junior British National Champion and fastest junior in Qualy, Innes Graham has been looking quick at all the rounds this year but after a few annoying problems he has been yet to podium. Perhaps this is his round? [audio url="http://cdn.coresites.factorymedia.com/dirt_new/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/9_audio1.mp3"]
After his win at Fort William, Noel Neiderberger hasn't been able to break the top 3 in any recent rounds. Qualifiying 3rd it should give him a good confidence boost coming into racing.
Missing out a little bit this season, Nick Beer makes 12th in qualy here at MSA. Looking strong in practice this morning.
Videotron going all out here at Mont Sainte Anne with “Velirium”. A televised wrap up of all the action going here this week. Full studio set up in the pits, right in amongst all the action.
Subway can come to more World Cup races…these two lovely ladies handing out free cookies all day!
One man that can upset the junior balance, Mike Jones! After his first win in Andorra he will be looking to continue on a streak and aim for the overall this year.
The track drying up well this morning after the rain last night, but with the rocks getting greasy and the holes getting bigger, that track could be a diffent story come racing.
Rachel smashing out the laps this morning, fitting in 3 in the short time space the ladies had to practice. Topped off with a yoga session and well deserved rest, she will be determined to carry on with her seemingly never ending streak of race wins.
Saturday has come along far too quickly, but with it being another double DH XC round, today has been taken up by all the action the XC has to bring. A short morning of practice for the DH to get the legs moving, and the last chance to check the track out.
Serious speed through this mid section, flying through the air, landing, full compression, rocks and dirt blowing into the air. Brendan Fairclough making pie of this, after all he does enjoy a good gas to flat. 17th in qualifying.
Marc Beaumont under hot pursuit by Josh Bryceland in todays practice. I managed to catch up with him and chat about his thoughts on the track and how his qualy run went. 28th yesterday but he is still waiting for his time to break the podium. A rider, like many on the circuit, with huge locked potential that needs breaking out! [audio url="http://cdn.coresites.factorymedia.com/dirt_new/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/12_audio1.mp3"]
Myriam Nicole seems focused here again, but being 12 seconds off the top qualy time she will have some making up to do. That being said, the women's racing has started to become tighter and tighter, great to see considering the length of this track.
All the ladies back out on track first today to get the those vital last minute runs in before race day. Morgane Charre getting in a few runs this morning she will be looking to better than her 6th place qualy run.