Loic Bruni, Loris Vergier, Richie Rude, Luca Shaw, Jack Moir, Connor Fearon – the cohort of junior racers Mike Jones faced week in, week out was probably one of the strongest in years. Jones could easily have been left behind and forgotten about in the face of such stiff competition but instead he excelled and became one of the hottest downhill talents Britain has produced in recent years
Jones’ World Cup career took a rough start when he failed to qualify at Val D’Isere (before there was a junior category) but it was the World Champs where he really shone though. He finished 13th as a first year junior in only his second top level race.
Next year, Jones went at it with his teeth gritted in the newly formed Junior category. He was challenging for the win from his first race and finally got to the top step in Hafjell at the end of the season.
Stepping into Elite, it was a no brainer for Mike to sign with CRC Nukeproof – after all, who wouldn’t kill to ride alongside Sam Hill? In his first elite season he was delivering top 20s and then in 2015 he really took off. A third place at the first race of the year in Lourdes backed up with a fourth place at the World Champs in Andorra – Mike Jones had finally arrived on the World Cup scene.
Tune in next week for more on Jones’ World Cup preparation and his plans to come back stronger than ever after his recent injury.