Rachel Atherton Takes Her 12th Consecutive World Cup Win at Mont St Anne
Hot, dry, dusty, fast and very very tough. Over the 26 years that it’s featured on the World Cup circuit Mont St Anne’s track has weathered so that now it is almost as rocky as the other long serving World Cup track at Fort William
In the Women’s Elite race Tahnee Seagrave had qualified uncharacteristically far down the order, she took the early lead in 4.50.35 (still 8 seconds short of Rachel’s qualifying run) and stayed in the hotseat until the final 4 were on track.
Australian Tracey Hannah bettered Tahnee by almost two seconds to go into the lead – still over 5 seconds out from Rachel’s qualifying time – would it be enough? Local hero Miranda Miller was 0.4 down on Tahnee then only two women were left on track. Brit Manon Carpenter was a miniscule 0.14 seconds down on her good friend Tahnee Seagrave then only Rachel was left on course.
In a scorching run the British National champion and winner of her last 11 consecutive World Cups made it 12 in a row – over 11 seconds clear of the field.
Rachel said “ I’m so stoked I don’t believe that it ever gets any easier, Mont St Anne is a TOUGH one!”
Rachel also sewed up the overall title with one round remaining making her a five time World Cup Champion.
In the Men’s race Taylor put in a great run, crossing in 4.10.857 enough for an eventual 29th, his best of the season, and best of his career!
Taylor said “ I bloody love it here, it’s flat out! Stoked with that!”
French rider Loic Bruni was returning from injury and had also qualified lower down the ranks than expected – he put in a storming run to go into the hotseat in 4.00.792 4.779 seconds clear of George Brannigan! By the time the top seven riders were on track no-one had matched Loic – or Brannigan who still sat in 2nd . Luca Shaw started steadily ( 12th at split1) but made up time progressively down the track – crossing into 2nd in 4.03.421. With 6 riders left on track it looked like things were heating up when Loris Vergier went fastest at split 1! But a serious mistake put him down into 77th by split 2 and out of the running. Now Gee was on track. He couldn’t seem to get into contention, 11th at split 1 he’d slipped back to 15th by split 3 but powered back to 7th by split 4 to cross into 7th in 4.07.275 , enough for an eventual 11th place.
Troy Brosnan powered into 2nd but was soon knocked down by a blistering run from Danny Hart! Hart went into the hotseat with 3.59.754 and only fastest qualifier Aaron Gwin was on course. Gwin came nail-bitingly close, 0.669 behind Hart , but it wasn’t enough and the Brit was victorious for the second time. Massive congrats to Danny Hart!
With the great showing from the whole team Trek Factory Racing DH took the team of the day prize and also kept the lead in the overall team prize.
Women’s Elite Results
1 Rachel Atherton – Trek Factory Racing DH 4.37.448
2 Tracey Hannah – Polygon UR 4.48.604 +11.116
3 Tahnee Seagrave – Transition Factory Racing/FMD 4.50.530 +12.862
4 Manon Carpenter – Madison Saracen Factory Team 4.50.479 +12.991
5 Miranda Miller 4.50.979 +13.491
Elite Men’s Result
1 Danny Hart – MS Mondraker 3.59.754
2 Aaron Gwin – The YT Mob 4.00.423 +0.669
3 Loic Bruni Specialized Gravity powered by SRAM 4.00.792 + 1.038
4 Troy Brosnan – Specialized Racing 4.03.418 3.664
5 Luca Shaw SRAM/TLD Racing 4.03.421 +3.667
11 Gee Atherton – Trek Factory Racing DH 4.07.275 +7 + 7.521
29 Taylor Vernon – Trek Factory Racing DH 4.10.857 +11.103
Pictures: Sven Martin