Things seem to be gathering speed with the inaugural DH1 race series.
We first heard about the DH1 race series back in October and we’ve just been informed that the series will visit France twice in July. It is going to be a pretty hectic schedule for any pro rider racing both the UCI Wolrd Cup and the DH1 series. There are back to back races…Mt St Anne, then Windham, then Oz-en-Oisans, then Les 2 Alpes, a one week break and then Val d’Isere.
Here’s the full Press Release:
DH1 will visit France twice in July
Selecting DH1 venues is a challenging task and many aspects need to be taken into consideration. Here are the main ones:
Dates: DH1 wanted to be complementary to the UCI MTB World Cup and not have any DH1 European race at the same date as an iXS European Cup. This didn’t leave many week-ends open.
Organisers: DH1 sought professional organisers who have the human and financial resources to set-up races that will challenge all riders and offer great video opportunities for the LIVE webcasts done by Freecaster.tv.
Courses: DH1 looked for race courses that inspire pro riders. Maribor, the first location announced was one of the most popular world cup race and all other venues must match that reputation.
Locations: DH1 looked for locations that make it easy for Pro Teams to travel to in order to fit in their 2012 budget. Unfortunately the limited team travel budgets disqualified – for 2012 – proposals DH1 received from organisers in Chile, Brazil, Costa Rica, Australia, New Zealand, Poland, Bulgaria, Romania, Norway.
Number of races: DH1 agreed with UCI to limit the number of DH1 races to 6 as Pro Riders have already a busy calendar ahead of them. With 7 UCI World Cups, National and World Championships and 6 DH1 race, that’s already 15 races not counting the iXS events Pros will attend.
6 races in 4 countries
With 6 events, DH1 could have visited 6 countries. Unfortunately, DH1 didn’t receive a firm application from the UK and couldn’t agree with an organiser on the west coast of the USA as DH1 was looking for a location close to their final event on the west coast on 18-19th August. DH1 looked at locations in Germany but they are staging iXS races. Italy, Spain and Portugal all offered to stage events in 2013.
Three locations were real close to staging a 2012 DH1 race and unfortunately couldn’t be integrated in 2012:
• USA east coast: Platekill Bike Park or Snowshoe Mountain
• Canada west coast: Golden BC organisers of the Western Open
2 races in France
France offers a unique opportunity for DH1. Located 31 km apart, a short 40 minute drive, DH1 will stage a bundled event on two courses. Both venues are new on the racing circuit and offering two races within 4 days so closely located to one another makes them more attractive for the Pro teams after gruelling 8 consecutive week-ends of racing in May and June – DH1, iXS (Leogang) and UCI World Cup.
Who can compete in DH1?
DH1 races are open to men and women, to pros and amateurs. DH1 races are open to all licensed riders but doesn’t require any UCI points. All non seeded riders will compete on the Saturday for one of the 30 spots in the Sunday morning small final. The best of two runs counts. The 10 best riders riders from the small final will join 20 seeded Pro riders for the DH1 race on Sunday pm. Race registrations will open in 2012 at a cost of 50 EUR per rider.
July 07-08: Oz-en-Oisans, France
What does it mean for Oz-en-Oisans to be on the DH1 calendar
We’re delighted. DH1 is a very attractive concept for pro and amateur riders and follows suit with what we have been doing for the last two years with our Nissan European Downhill Cup. DH1 has all the key elements of modern racing as expected by MTB DH fans: professional organisations on dates complementary with the UCI MTB world cup, races open to pro riders but also to amateurs without UCI points and last but not least the best video coverage and LIVE webcast provided by Freecaster.tv
What makes the race in Oz-en-Oisans special
Rider will find all ingredients of a world class race: a professional event organisation, HD video production, LIVE webcast, a giant screen and above all a stunning race track.
The course is an extension of the well known Poutran course but is a totally new and specific track that will offer a very intense race with lots of rhythm. All riders who discovered the track in 2011 were adamant, it’s a great track with a short and intense format.
Florent Payer (SC Intense) said “I personally like this format with a top level track modified to offer more dynamic racing. The organisers have transformed a rather short course into an intense one which allows to ride full on from top to bottom, no need to manage our energy on the run. This is a format that suits me very well!”
Fabien Pedemanaud (Scott 11) said “The changes made to the Poutran course are great. We now have more line options and with a lot of banked turns, you can forget the brakes and everyone will be able to give it a 100%.”
Why should riders come and compete in Oz-en-Oisans?
The scenery alone is worth coming. From the start gate looking down the valley you feel on top of the world. Oz-en-Oisans is a is a dynamic ski resort that has invested in DH racing for many years: french cup, french championships, Nissan European DH cup and now DH1.
July 10-11 Les 2 Alpes, France
What does it mean for Oz-en-Oisans to be on the DH1 calendar
For us Ayton Concept and les 2 Alpes co-organisers of the K-MIKAZ Games, DH1 is the most anticipated DH race series in 2012. DH1 is the next level in the DH racing with iconic race tracks, an exceptional rider line-up, serious Prize-Money and the best LIVE coverage. DH1 is the perfect complement to the UCI DH World Cup. That’s why the Giant DH will be part of the DH1 series from year 1. The event will take place in the middle of an event packed week as the K-MIKAZ games will take place from 09-15 July 2012. The world’s best riders have already confirmed their participation. Amongst them 2011 DH world champion Danny Hart and the Giant team. But also Gee and Rachel Atherton, Steve Peat, Greg Minnaar, Josh Bryceland, Cedric Gracia and the Scott 11 team.
What is special about the race in Les 2 Alpes
The Giant DH will take place on a brand new course designed by Marc Beaumont and Mick Hannah in partnership with Ayton Concept and with the support of Deux Alpes Loisirs (DAL) who manage the chair lifts on the resort.
The goal is to offer a modern track, fast and with big take offs to offer breath taking video pictures. The track is 2800m long and drops 700m. There are 3 main sections: a fast start with big jumps and a focus on speed. A middle section with some tress, very steep and technical. And a final section, again fast and with big jumps to arrive in the heart of the resort.
Why should riders come and compete in Les 2 Alpes
The DH1 races offers a unique opportunity for anyone to compete next to the world’s best riders on the same track. Furthermore with the DH1 bundled race concept, riders have two races within 4 days, 30km apart from each other. As no UCI points are required, we expect 500 riders to compete on a world class track next to the pro riders. Beyond pure racing, Les 2 Alpes offer numerous DH track for all skill levels.
The Giant DH race will take place during the K-MIKAZ Games. Its starts on Tuesday 10, on a course designed by Pierre-Edouard Ferry, with a Dual Style. The Giant DH is on Wednesday 11 followed on Friday 12 by a Dual Climb on 29 and 26″ bikes. An FMX show, a Best Trick contest and a Slopestyle designed by Sam Pilgrim and Yannick Granieri will ttake place on Saturday 14 July with a big surprise announced for the evening of the French national day. This week dedicated to mountain bike will end on Sunday 15th July with the Mountain of Hell, one of Europe’s most renowned DH marathon races.
2012 DH1 Calendar
Considering all applications and all requirements to fit the team’s schedule and budget, the 2012 DH1 calendar is:
• May 12-13: Maribor, Slovenia
• May 19-20: tbc, Austria
• June 16-17: tbc, Canada east coast
• July 07-08: Oz-en Oisans, France
• July 10-11: Les 2 Alpes, France
• August 18-19: tbc, Canada west coast