Make it a double
Two for Hart, two for Britain
If only this were the Olympics. Britain once again proved itself to be the dominant force in downhill mountain biking as it grabbed the two biggest wins of the weekend courtesy of Hart and Atherton.
The forecast rain held off and we were treated to one of the fastest World Cups in recent memory, with 70kmh through the speed trap being the benchmark. After qualifying it seemed that we were in for a predictable weekend with all three series leaders topping the timing sheets,thankfully we were wrong.
We've crowned one champion as we head to the series finale but with the juniors and men still wide open Vallnord will provide a fitting finale to the series.
On a track described as "one for the men", the boys more than held their own. Canada proved it has a lot of quick young riders looking to break through as a quarter of the top 20 were local. Magnus Mason especially held the hot seat for the longest time and ended up with his first World Cup podium.
Gaetan Vige set the early pace with a 4:14.691. Elliott Heap was next down the hill, he ended the run with stigmatic palms and third place. Last out of the gate, Finn Iles looked like he may have done enough to win on home soil as he was up at the third split, but he slipped back to finish three hundredths back.
With 12 wins in a row and the title sewn up, you could be forgiven for thinking Atherton will take it easy in Vallnord, but that's not Rachel. She is a true champion who lay down an astonishing run. If putting 11 seconds into the rest of the field doesn't prove her dominance, then being faster than all but six men through the speed trap surely should.
The women head to Vallnord with a broiling three way battle for second place, Hannah has the momentum but the techy track should suit the Brits better, only time will tell.
If winning your first World Cup is hard, then winning your second is surely harder. In the current field riders such as MacDonald, Thirion and Brosnan are testament to that. With the added pressure of expectation on your shoulders the doubts can slip in and re-finding that form may never happen.
Bruni suffered a puncture in qualifying so went down early and set the benchmark time. Only Minnaar, Brosnan and Shaw came close to his time, it looked like Vergier may challenge it but an early puncture scuppered his run before it had really begun.
Hart was the first to beat Bruni's time. He unclipped in the gate so missed the vital first few pedal strokes but ended the run a second up on the French World Champion and below that all-important four minute mark.
Gwin was the last man down the hill and swapped sectors with Hart the whole way down. it was in vain though, he ended up 0.7 seconds back in second - one step closer to securing the overall.