Danny Hart Wins Senior Men's Race at the 2016 Vallnord World Cup, making it three wins from three.

Photos: Seb Schieck

Can you believe it... Danny Hart has just won the last round of the 2016 Downhill World Cup to make it three straight wins out of three... and in doing so almost won the overall title! Aaron Gwin's grip on the series was never really in doubt, but with Danny on the hot seat and Gwin 69th at Split 2 my heart began to race a a little and thoughts did start to creep into my head of "what if?" Gwin needed just one single point, which meant 80th place of better.

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WC_Andorra_2016_14_7432

The reality of it was that the heavens had opened for the last 15 or so riders and that Gwin knew that all he had to do was to get down the hill safely and in one piece... "riding smart". Finishing in 55th might not have been the show we were all after, and it was a bit of an anti climax, but riding smart was the thing to do.

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WC_Andorra_2016_14_7558
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WC_Andorra_2016_14_7581

What had happened in the 60 minutes (or so) before Gwin crossed the line was nothing short of remarkable. The relative unknown Alexandre Fayolle had come down in the dry and sat in the hot seat for some time (he would end up a very credible fourth).

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WC_Andorra_2016_14_8038

He was eventually ousted by none other than Greg Minnaar. Never ever forget about this man, he is a demon on a bike and did enough for second place on the day and fourth overall in the series.

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WC_Andorra_2016_82A7437
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WC_Andorra_2016_82A7390
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WC_Andorra_2016_14_7623
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WC_Andorra_2016_14_8159
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WC_Andorra_2016_14_8146
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WC_Andorra_2016_14_8122

But then Danny Hart. Just what is it that makes it all click for a racer? Danny has been around on the race scene for ever. Of course he has won the World Championships, but we have never quite seen the consistency and amazing bike handling skill that he has all come together on such a regular basis. Amazing. Lenzerheide, Mont Sainte Anne and now here in Andorra. He has been dreaming for so long about winning a World Cup, and suddenly it is almost everyday! He came down in the wet, but that didn't bother him. When he crossed the line 2.798 faster than Minnaar everyone knew that was it. What a day.

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WC_Andorra_2016_14_8308

Mens Final Vallnor 2016 Results by Dirt Magazine on Scribd

Mens Final Standings 2016 by Dirt Magazine on Scribd

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WC_Andorra_2016_82A7454