It’s that time of year again, when the pro’s put the finishing touches to their off-season training, and the rest of us chisel the mud off our downtubes in anticipation of the illusive spring sun.

The first round of the Maxxis Cup is upon us, and we’re going to see the cream of the downhill crop pinning the hills of Portugal at round one in Gouveia, this weekend. 3Focus filmmakers and DirtTV’s new signing, the Parkin brothers are heading out to film it, so keep your beady eyes on this very website for the latest.

The following downhill dignitaries will all be present: Justin Leov, Andrew Neethling, Tracy Moseley, Nicolas Vouilloz, Danny Hart, David Vasquez, Ophelie David, Mickael Pascal, Fabien Barel, Cederic Gracia, Bernat Guardia, Ivan Oulego, Pascual Canals, Tony Ferreiro, Emeline Ragot

There are over 30 British entrants to date, and there will no doubt be a few more pro’s rocking up to hammer the hills. Last year the Atherton’s gave us a glimpse of what was to come by cleaning up. Will this year prove equally as insightful?

Check out Maxxis Cup