Here are the results. Full story below. Hill takes over the overall standings by 4 points from Steve Peat.
The first fast run of the afternoon was produced by Marcel Beer at 4:59.94. Beer held the Hot Seat for 17 racers, with Cameron Cole (Team Maxxis-Rocky Mountain Bicycles) the next to spend an extended time on top. Pierre Charles Georges (Solid Aclass) finally bumped him, but the final 20 riders saw frequent changes and, with ten riders to go, the leader was US National Champion Aaron Gwin (Yeti/Fox).
Many were hoping to see a good run from World Cup leader Greg Minnaar (Santa Cruz Syndicate) who started in 21st place due to a flat tire during qualifying yesterday. Unfortunately Minnaar had a crash, which cost him time. He could only manage a 22nd place finish.
Fabien Barel (Subaru) came close to Gwin, leaving the American to anxiously wait for the final four riders. Samuel Blenkinsop (Yeti/Fox) had a slow run (16th place) and quickly left the finish area, visibly unhappy. World champion Gee Atherton (Animal Commencal) came close. That left only Steve Peat (Santa Cruz Syndicate), a perennial favourite here, and Hill to come down.
To thunderous applause, Peat didn’t disappoint, with a time of 4:41.48 to Gwin’s 4:42.91. He took the Hot Seat, but didn’t really settle in. All eyes were glued to the big screen TV and the scoreboard, which was showing the splits on the course. Hill was the fastest through every split, showing incredible control skills through the rock gardens. To huge applause he finished in 4:38.44, 3.04 seconds better than Peat.
Hill was pleased with his win, the first of the season for him after an uncharacteristically long drought. “This is one of the most high speed, and the longest courses, on the World Cup circuit. It was a lot slicker this morning. It dried out a lot. I was conservative in the first few corners just to check it out. It was good so I went hard from there.”
Peat, had another stellar day with his second place. This is his 50th World Cup podium appearance, which is unprecedented. He also holds the record for the most World Cup career wins. “I think this course suits me. You’ve got to be an all a rounder to do well here. I’ve got another podium which I’m pleased about.”
With his win Hill moves from 3rd to 1st in the World Cup Points race with 1039, a mere 4 points in front of Peat. Minnaar drops from 1st to 3rd. Smith retains his 9th place standing.
sam hill wins the men’s world cup downhill mont sainte anne canada