6 Things We Learned from the Snowshoe DH World Cup

Aug 1, 2022
by Ed Spratt  
Canada s Gracey Hemstreet coming in hot for another win this season.

Junior Racing Domination
Two names that are continuing to stand out in junior racing are the Canadians Jackson Goldstone and Gracey Hemstreet. Both riders have been dominating the junior field with Snowshoe granting both of them four wins in 2022.

For Jackson, this was his third win in a row. With his string of victories, he is now just over sixty points clear of Jordan Williams in the overall meaning we could see the overall title wrapped up at Mont-Sainte-Anne, a very special achievement if Jackson can do it.

Gracey Hemstreet could also wrap up the overall in Canada as she is currently 40 points in the clear. Gracey will have to fight a bit harder to take the series title at her home race, but with four wins, a 2nd, and a 3rd place, she has the skills to do it.
Another win for Jackson Goldstone after an incredible run.

Camille Balanche is Unstoppable in the Mud
Just like her previous performances in the muddy steeps of Leogang Camille Balanche proved once again that she is in a league of her own in the mud. Not only did she make the tricky track look easy she also apparently didn't crash the whole weekend. With a track taking out or at least stalling most riders in their final runs, Camille was able to put together an almost completely clean feet-up run to win by a sizeable four seconds against Myriam Nicole.

Camille's win in Snowshoe backs up an amazing five in a row qualifying victories with three wins in 2022. These incredible results put Camille 230 points in the lead for the overall; if she can win another qualifying and Myriam Nicole qualifies in third then the overall for 2022 will be all tied up before finals even begin.
Camille Balanche emphatically backs up her fastest qualifying time.

A Great Weekend for Continental Tires
Snowshoe didn't just deliver great racing it also brought what is probably the best weekend ever for Continental tires with three Elite men on the podium and a second-place finish in the Junior women's race for Aimi Kenyon.

While we normally see podiums dominated by the likes of Schwalbe and Maxxis, it was interesting to see the new tires from the German brand doing so well in the mud. With the great weekend for Continental we saw career-best finishes for Bernard Kerr, Andreas Kolb and Ronan Dunne.
Your Men s Elite podium - 1st Amaury Pierron 2nd Bernard Kerr 3rd Andreas Kolb 4th Ronan Dunne and 5th Greg Minnaar

Amaury Pierron is a Race Winning Machine
The Elite Men's race was one of the wildest of the year, with a fine line between a potential race-winning run and disaster. As we have come to learn this season Amaury Pierron is the master of riding on this edge and he bested the drying track to take his fourth win this season. With this feat Amaury also becomes the fourth Elite man to ever win four World Cups in a single year, with Mont-Sainte-Anne and Val di Sole still to come we would say he could be bettering this record.

Looking at the times for Amaury's race run he only took the lead in the final splits with a second split result of 12th and the third split coming in 5th. Both of these splits were sections with some of the worst conditions with Amaury setting blistering times in the safer upper and lower splits. Looking at all of the top four riders, their final positions were all reached at the fourth split with no changes down to the line.
Amaury Pierron rips over the line to take yet another win. He s the man to beat this season.

Snowshoe is Wild in the Wet
So far we have only seen dry and dusty World Cup races in Snowshoe with many people saying it was lucky the track wasn't wet. Finally, after three previous races at this venue we got to see just how tricky the course can be. You know a World Cup course is hard when even the top qualifiers are being bucked all over the track and even putting a foot down is not the end of a potential race-winning run.

The tough conditions did bring out some interesting line choices with Dakotah Norton riding a wild line through the double drop that looked incredibly fast, and we don't think anyone else even attempted the line all week.
A very soggy sprint tuck to the line.

Where Were All the Riders?
While it is great to have World Cup races not just in Europe it is difficult to get over the clear lack of riders attending last weekend's World Cup race. Across all of the categories, we saw decent to significant-sized drops in numbers. The junior women dropped two riders from the previous lowest numbers and the junior men were missing seven. In the elite women's racing, the numbers dropped below 30 for the first time this year with only 20 riders actually on the start list. The elite men also dipped below 100 for the first time in 2022 with 93 riders, this is 54 riders off the previous lowest number.

With the news that next year we may see only 30 riders in finals and an even more international race calendar, it's hard to see how this will be worth it for the riders with a clear gap in the number of riders being able to race in North America.
Bernard Kerr completing the run of a lifetime.

Riders on the start list at each round so far in 2022:
Elite Women - Rd1: 33 // Rd2: 31 // Rd3: 31 // Rd4: 39 // Rd5: 35 // Rd6: 20
Elite Men - Rd1: 153 // Rd2: 147 // Rd3: 180 // Rd4: 164 // Rd5: 149 // Rd6: 93
Junior Men - Rd1: 61 // Rd2: 54// Rd3: 71 // Rd4: 80 // Rd5: 64 // Rd6: 47
Junior Women - Rd1: 14 // Rd2: 15 // Rd3: 18 // Rd4: 22 // Rd5: 19 // Rd6: 12


  • 238 23
 It's almost as if travelling out of Europe to North America is cost prohibitive for riders that don't have their full expences paid by their teams.
  • 353 3
 Good thing that isn't true the other way around; North Americans love travelling overseas at great personal expense for a chance to qualify!
  • 317 6
 It's almost like Americans and Canadians have to deal with that for EVERY race.
  • 82 1
 I live in the USA (flag emoji as proof residence) and it cost a fortune to get to Snowshoe without a bicycle.
  • 28 1
 @hellanorcal: Right? It's a given that some of the lower ranked riders just won't be able to make it across the pond. But, there are a lot of racers in the US who would love to make it to races if they are not cost prohibitive. The US is huge, and snowshoe is 5 hours on a good day from their nearest major city.
  • 54 79
flag Matvl (Aug 1, 2022 at 11:27) (Below Threshold)
 @onemanarmy: ah yes, the only two existing countries in america...
  • 50 3
 @pisgahgnar: With the whole of the US the Snowshoe choice is odd since its so isolated. A venue with more accessibility and surrounding amenities I think would be more appealing.
  • 23 0
 @polarflux: for sure, but now those facilities bid and/or care to bid. Most of the Rocky mountains ski resorts are well established and don't need any publicity nor to have to pay the UCI bribery fees
  • 20 1
 @bman33: alotta the time some of bigger resorts are not interested in hosting a World Cup or even a bike race at all . There’s many costs involved and they are only concerned about the ROI . Take whistler . It would loose money shutting down to host a event .
So the fact the snowshoe is in the middle of nowhere makes it appealing to them , draw in a crowd in down season
  • 19 4
 @Matvl: woke up this morning and chose pedantic
  • 17 1
 @mxmtb: There is so many mountains western half of north america and it's beautiful. We have so much terrain and vertical, you could host an entire world cup circuit in north america no problem. The Rockies must occupy 20 or more times the square land mass than the Alps.

But seriously, it makes sense that North Americans have had less representation on the WC circuit. How can a young racer possibly be able to afford climbing that ladder without mega sponsorship or a trust fund?
  • 9 15
flag vertex66 (Aug 1, 2022 at 12:18) (Below Threshold)
 @Matvl: I am assuming you mean North America and there are more than two countries. Might want to look at a map.
  • 11 8
 @polarflux: I still think Killington or Mountain Creek are better options if you're gonna do East Coast.
  • 3 0
 @mxmtb: it's a good point, but then look at this year's World Champs in Les Gets, it's a really popular summer alpine destination and will go berserk for a weekend in August along with most of the other towns in the Port du Soleil.
  • 20 5
 MTB racing in the USA is on life support for many years now. Gone are the hundreds-deep fields of the NORBA days. If you had a world cup race today in Brazil,Chile,Thailand,Indonesia I bet many more people would turn up and try to qualify.
  • 10 1
 @MT36: it's about will to hold races. Most ski resorts in N. America (US & Canada) don't need any publicity nor feel the need to 'break even' or even lose money on a WC race. That in addition to many occasionally holding Enduro races and not DH is the issue. Windrock is basically the heart of American DH at this point. My guess Whistler is for Canada. Whistler (Vail) could care less about holding a WC. Their lines are packed without it and they have Crankworx. Who needs UCI gestapo tactics?
  • 2 1
 @nozes: don't you have to have so many points to even try? Would they have enough points?
  • 7 0
 @nozes: The gravity race series scene in the Pacific NW I can attest is very strong. There are literally hundreds of competitors at any given event, most of which are kids 18 and under. The US is so large and spread out, but regions in the PNW, West Coast and Northern/Central Rockies have robust race scenes. Very few competitors want to get to WCs and EWSs though because they literally can't afford to travel halfway around the world for months at a time and make a career out of it.
  • 3 0
 @bman33: Yeah, good point. Those resorts don't need the UCI.
  • 24 0
 @bman33: Vail just doesn't want to go head to head with the UCI, that's the problem with so much of North America now, Vail operates too much. The hope is that 1199 will become the racetrack that Whistler needs but hosting a race up there right now would be dicey to say the least (not enough staff, horrid wages for some of the staff who are there, recruitment issues not just for vail, increased gang presence, the list goes on). Add to that how expensive it is to fly in North America (particularly Canada, the cheapest way for me to get to Vegas is to drive to Seattle and save hundreds of dollars compared to Vancouver, same goes for Torontonians flying to Florida).

The long and short of it (I believe) is that North America needs a Series or collection of series. In Canada, the Dunbar series is great but heck no if you live east of the prairies. The Ontario series died years ago, the Quebec cup is being swallowed by the National cups, and everything else just too small to have major impact. It is my belief that by establishing a national or bi-national (or tri-national with Mexico) series that does its best to race EVERYWHERE in North America with nationwide sponsors one would be able to see a resurgence in North American DH. The UCI may be putting this on a tee for all of us as promoters, racers, venues, employers, and employees. IF the field at world cups is reduced does that not present an opportunity to capitalize in North America? Why go to a Worldcup half a world away to try and get 59th when you could just "stay home" and try to win? Right now that answer is easy because winning means nothing. So, let's make it mean something. For everyone.
  • 13 1
 crazy how the bike industry has been posting record profits but the riders cant get to america and non factory team budgets are as tight as ever
  • 12 0
 imagine being a privateer from AUS or NZ...its cost and time prohibitive to even make it to europe let alone stay for long enough to get the confidence and experience needed now days to qualify
  • 34 1
Try coning from Australia or NZ....
  • 6 0
 @mxmtb: Why would Whistler have to shut down to host a World Cup? It doesn't shut down for Crankworx. The Gondi for racers and the chairs for riders. But there are other BC resorts that would be very good choices.
  • 14 0
 @dhrracer: The fact that there are no World Cup races in BC in a travesty.
  • 5 0
 @samnation: It really is crazy how expensive it is to fly across the border. To get to Whistler it's substantially cheaper for me to fly to Seattle and drive up than it is to fly to Vancouver. Like, hundreds of dollars cheaper.
  • 1 0
 @mxmtb: Whistler runs lots of big events, but manages on their own…
  • 3 0
 @MT36: I’m kinda old now , but I raced the Norba series back when it was a thing . Colorado ,Utah ,Idaho , New Mexico ..

Your 100 percent correct that there’s many awesome mountains to race on ,
  • 1 0
 @dhrracer: the UCI has some rules about the mountain operating while a event is on the go .
  • 1 0
 @jjamms: you are correct on that . I was just using whistler as a example of place that doesn’t need a race to boost off season sales as they make more money by not participating.
  • 5 0
 @MT36: and the southeast US has the downhill southeast series that’s going strong!
  • 3 0
 @manglermixer: It's more like an Appalachian Cup lol. DHSE is quite admirable though, especially being in Colorado where the DH racing scene is on life support after everyone caught the endurbro fever. It's coming back though, Downhill Rockies is picking up some traction, I'm excited for them to bring back the Purgatory WC track. It took some folks from down in Texas to make that happen interestingly enough.
  • 9 0
 @onemanarmy: imagine been Australian or New Zealander, blow your life savings for a summer of probably not qualifying. Even more so if it's down to 30 riders.
  • 3 0
 @hellanorcal: Not to mention that snowshoe is in BFE and the closest international airport is likely going to be Richmond, Dulles or BWI. Richmond isn't exactly "international"....
  • 1 0
 @manglermixer: true true
  • 2 0
 @withdignityifnotalacrity: This!! There are so many good riders in BC and that’s where the interest/ mountains are: It really makes no sense .
  • 1 0
 @zstover: some YouTubers said they flew into Greenbriar valley which is a pretty small one runway airport. Car rental typically closes at 6p so not sure how they got to lodgings
  • 1 0
 @10DollarHelmet10DollarHead: Never tried that one. I fly into Dulles in 2019 and drove over as a spectator from Denver. Back when I raced there in 2001 or so, I lived in Atlanta and drove up.
  • 1 0
 @ryanandrewrogers: The Durango WC track is not nearly as good as it was in the past, don't get your hopes too high. It's very single lined and the woods are incredibly tight and slow plus they'll be running a very easy to over jump road gap at the top and have poorly designed wooden bridges/rolls/pyramids that have zero traction in the damp.
  • 1 0
 @adamdigby: why is it so hard to get a wide-cut real race track these days Facepalm
  • 1 0
 @withdignityifnotalacrity: Killington yes - Creek no. Killy has the amenities and the vert. Creek small and not much around.
  • 1 0
 @samnation: Increased gang presence? Wasn't that just 1 isolated event?
  • 2 0
 @carbonrimjob: Nah, all the Canadian long weekends are well known for the issues caused in Whistler now.
  • 154 0
 The following news has just been confirmed. The field is being cut to 20 protected riders to provide consistency and continuity for new viewers. To win a wildcard entry you must complete a challenge such as driving an 18 wheeler over a frozen lake, catching a net full of crabs, building a diesel powered rat-rod to a tight deadline, or surviving a night in a haunted house. Riders with foreign sounding names will be given Gladiator style nicknames to avoid alienation among American viewers. e.g. Thibault Diprela becomes Dirt Burner Loris Vergier becomes Professor Brap, etc.
  • 27 0
 Wait. Are you talking about the World Cup or Pinkbike Academy?
  • 7 0
 hey why can't I be Professor Brap?
  • 18 0
 Not going to lie, you almost had me until the 18 wheeler part. Genius comment.
  • 6 0
 Did you just binge watch the History Channel?
  • 5 0
 Professor Brap is a truly excellent nickname. Don't forget getting in via winning competitive cake decorating, particularly in pushing the performance envelope with fondant.
  • 7 0
 Loris Vergier to be hence forth known as Dr TAK TAK TAK.
  • 3 1
 @TommyNunchunk make a joke on foreign name, write diprela. : )
  • 76 1
 LOL, Canadians & Americans complaining about getting to Europe to race... (kiwis... hold my sheep)
  • 8 0
 Haha. Spoken like a true kiwi.
  • 1 0
 Haha, hold my sheep Big Grin
  • 64 5
 "Why couldn't people travel to World Cups!?" (Gestures vaguely at everything around us.)

Why ignore the elephant in the room. The cost of everything has obliterated the chance of privateers and lower ranked riders, and as is tradition will make this sport even more of a trust fund baby hobby. Governments need to give their balls a tug and hold corporations accountable for price gouging everything left and right. If things continue this way we won't be able to get any Stevie Smiths in the future. And Discovery doesn't care. They're already gonna slice the rider list in half so only the established riders with the most money earning potential are involved.

This issue is gonna get worse before it gets better. Simple as that. I'm just waiting for a new downhill tour created by Red Bull and not involving UCI. Like a Hardline tour.
  • 25 12
 So hold the evil corporations responsible for."price gouging", yet have a evil corporation, promote another race series?
  • 22 51
flag salespunk (Aug 1, 2022 at 11:59) (Below Threshold)
 So basically you want a communist style centrally planned economy/pricing? OK, got it.

I mean it is really exciting to see all the Chinese and North Korean racers having such an impact in WC.
  • 31 3
 @bman33: Yes. Because Red Bull isn't even a drop in the bucket compared to oil corporations, the Walmart empire, the corporate interests buying property/houses all over the world, Amazon, etc etc

If you wanna lump Red Bull in, who is basically solely responsible for all the great MTBing events from Hardline to Rampage to the World Cups, then... You're experiencing a severe case of 'bad faith argument'.

And believe me, I'd LOVE to have someone that isn't Red Bull do it. But the problem is the minutre someone who isn't Red Bull steps in, it's someone like Discovery and everything gets f*cked very quickly.

As far as local events go, they are great. What the east coast US downhill series has done for coverage has been great and really given validity to those events and the results and who shows up etc. That said, you can't take the people who run that and say, here's a shoe string budget do a program similar to Red Bull and do it all over Europe and North America.

If you have a better solution... I'll read it.
  • 6 18
flag bman33 (Aug 1, 2022 at 12:13) (Below Threshold)
 @lepigpen: well I don't agree with the evil corporation mantra in all cases. I used to hate Walmart and then I'm matured a bit and witnessed what things like. Walmart money can do in places like Bentonville (and they're also working in old mines in Colorado to turn them into bike parks). You mentioned governments in your initial post, governments and their central banks by the primary reason for all the inflation, not "price gouging".
  • 40 0
 @salespunk: because the only two choices are corporatocracy and communist autocracy
  • 39 0
 @salespunk: yes, because the only two things that can exist are unregulated capitalism and centrally planned communism.
  • 5 8
 @lepigpen: Should we force oil companies to stop selling oil? Seems like that would be bad.
  • 10 0
 @mitochris:It is either Oligarchy or Anarchy and not possible in between! And these people get to vote with their big ass brains.
  • 23 2
 @bman33: The Bentonville area is great thanks to Walmart but all that money had to come from somewhere. The town I grew up in used to have at least 5 large grocery stores, 3 of which were locally owned. Now its just Walmart and Target. The result is fewer choices for the consumer and less money reinvested into the local community.
No doubt the government bears some responsibility for inflation, but corporate profits are also at record highs
  • 3 0
 “Give their balls a tug” I lol’d at this. Sticks are unreal.
  • 3 0
 @lepigpen right on, well said.
And talking of top 30, how many of those people who have been in favour would be cheering on Ronan Dunne's result this weekend!!
  • 5 0
 @RiZZleRaZZ: @RiZZleRaZZ: (american PB commenters calling my idea North Korea because I think corporations are greedy) my reaction: FER WUT!? huh??
  • 9 7
 @jwdenver: that's a great sentiment if you want to keep pumping ~5 dollar per gallon gas.

I want competition AND regulation to be high and I want our systems we have in place like our oil reserves to be utilized to stop corporations from lining their pockets during a European war that has little to do with us. Yes, it affects supply and trade. No, it didn't mean we need to pay over 5 dollars per gallon. We have systems in place to avoid that. We used those systems and corporations still kept the prices high. Because they're f*cking greedy a*sholes. Is that surprising to anyone?

I want regulated oil so I can gas up my truck and ride my dirt bike out in the desert. Can't f*ckin afford to do fun shit with gas prices like this (along with the rest of the economy from housing to basic groceries).

You think all these supplies got magically 25% more valuable in the past 2 years? lol
  • 3 0
 Nothing says Discovery have the future of the sport at heart like stifling all opportunity for new riders to get into the roster when the top 20 get injured or sick of the bureaucracy and want out.
  • 1 0
 **Conspiracy Alert** @bman33: a little untold story...Chinese factories have been extorting all brands in order to release the orders (in the tune of 500k+) All while pitting manufacturers against each other for who gets there's first or even on time. This was happening in the middle of an economic downturn and most major brands agreed to keep prices down as long as possible to try and get through it. Unfortunately there margins were disappearing and had to start raising prices. This comes from a high level exec from the big S about 5yrs ago, to think China's practice has changed would be stupid.
  • 6 0
 This already happens in US national team sports - examples include competitive youth soccer, competitive youth fencing, and swimming. It becomes ‘pay to play.’ I ve talked to parents who take out loans to fund their teenagers sports aspirations. The car and air travel, fees, lodging, camps, clinics, equipment, it all adds up. Carlos Martinez, who ran for US Soccer president, complained that it is the sole reason why the US mens soccer can’t field a decent team year after year is a result of the candidate pool being the only ones who have the money.
  • 2 1
 This! ^
  • 37 0
 The 30 riders thing is utter bull. I don't want to only see the top 30 fastest guys, the exciting thing about DH is a privateer can grab some points at a local race, enter a world cup and possibly pull off a great result and as a bonus maybe even make the live feed. There will be a lot of Pro riders pissed as well, some of those guys struggle to even qualify these days never mind finish in the top 30. I don't see why letting 60 riders qualify is even an issue
  • 4 30
flag pinkknip (Aug 1, 2022 at 12:45) (Below Threshold)
 Understand your point. What I don’t understand is that topriders like Bruni, with one mistake are immediately out of contention. So I would like to see that riders ride twice, fastest time counts. And with this, it’s probably best to race with 30-40 riders.
  • 15 0
 @pinkknip: have to disagree. It is more likely that an underdog gets one good run in than the top guys messing up both of theirs. It’s racing. Fastest rider down. No judges and no second try. It makes it more interesting, in my view.
And we all root for the underdog.
  • 7 0
 @pinkknip: so you want a mulligan rule...in racing? That's a no from me, dog.
  • 24 2
 "Domination" is now being just under one race's worth of point in the lead? I mean, yes, Jackson and Gracie are crushing it, but so are Jordan and Phoebe, and the rest of the podium regulars. If Jackson clinched the series two races ago? Yeah, that's dominating. Perfect season? Definitely dominating. Clinching the series win by a handful of points in the second to last race? Awesome, but I dunno about "dominating".
  • 10 0
 Vali Holl crushed it in juniors those guys are doing well end of story.
  • 7 1
 @SintraFreeride: Jackson has the same results as Vali in her second year so far- 4 wins, 2-second place.
Gracey isn't far behind, 4 wins one second , one third.

Both of them have better results than Amaury, who is dominating.
  • 4 0
 its going to be a great last couple of races
  • 2 0
 It’s not really possible to cinch the series before the 6 th round, there isn’t enough of a points spread between first and second place.
  • 1 0
 @peytodog: who says second place in the series always gets second place at the race? Unlikely to clinch that early, but certainly possible if first overall is having a perfect or almost perfect season and second overall had a few higher finishes, or a DNS or DNF.
  • 3 1
 @justinfoil: Just because there's someone who always gets second, doesn't mean the guy who always gets 1st isn't dominating. In fact, I'd say the lack of variable finishes from the field shows just how far ahead Jackson (& Jordan when he stays on his bike) are ahead of the rest of the juniors. If 4 W's and 2 2nd's out of 6 isn't domination, what is?
  • 22 0
 Dakotah's line through the double drop was crazy. I'd love to see some POV footage of it. Did he have to really compromise his speed/line from the previous section to pull it off? Super creative line choice there.
  • 2 2
 I thought i saw him coming in slower, maybe i was wrong, but in the livefeed i thought it was a chickenline only possible if you slow down way too much. I put my money on him but he did not look at home at all.
  • 1 0
 Per spectators at that spot taking multiple pics, a Continental rider #97 (Jim Monro on the start list) did it in practice twice,

Dak did it once in practice and was the only one to do it in his race run.

One mentioned that it looked like Amaury did the huck looking to be faster, but that was all they said.
  • 22 0
 It's over. UCI world Cup will be about as relevant as the X Games is now. More weekends to ride your bike is the only positive.
  • 5 0
 What ever happened to X Games? Their feed showed up in my youtube and after watching a few replays, it seems the production and the value is extremely low.
  • 19 3
 This is why I think Chris Ball and the powers that be should run a 10 race series World Cup ( to start and climb to 12 races within a few years ). 6 race European Cup, 4 race North American Cup. All 10 races still crown the overall World Cup champion but introduce 2 continental championships to help grow riders into elites , while being less cost prohibitive and/or more earth friendly. Could establish better local scene, sponsorship and pipeline as well. Not to mention if a rider gets hurt ( let’s say concussion) they could choose to focus efforts on a continental series/championship and worlds.
  • 3 3
 Good plan, now find enough resorts that will pay the $ to host these races.
Easy to plan out things, very difficult to make it happen.
  • 10 2
 It’s really not the fault of companies, resorts, or the UCI, mtb just isn’t a popular sport. Without big tv contracts, huge corporate sponsors, and the spectators to back it up this is about the best we’re going to get.
  • 2 0
 Maybe do what they do with supercross for the juniors, have an East and West division for Euro and North American riders respectively, with the last race of the year where they all race together.
  • 12 0
 the "dry dusty Snowshoe" was just waiting for the world to think that's how it really is...but the doo doo butter mire is the reality of DH in WVA.
  • 8 0
 For a privateer, I assume it gets expensive real fast...
  • 4 0
 If the WC is going to do more international races, they should be clustered together in a way that makes racing at least somewhat cost effective for the racers and teams.

Then again, race venues are chosen due to money that the bigger fish like the UCI receive. Hence a WC race in the sticks in West Virginia, or a race without adequate lift served support in France. Or (not strictly MTB) cross worlds in Arkansas. This fosters elitism and prevents more privateers from being able to compete at the top level.

I’d say split the season into 3 parts. One part in Europe, a couple of week break, then one part in North America, with races near Denver, SLC, Calgary and/or Seattle/Vancouver. Third part could be South America, or Australia/New Zealand, or an Asian or African series of venues.

But I wouldn’t hold my breath…..
  • 9 0
 Sup fellas?
  • 3 0
 The rumored 30 rider main event cap is a BAD MOVE (also rumored to be only 6 races total next year)......at snowshoe we saw all 60 riders go by very quick, and it gave spectators a chance to watch from more than one spot on the track. I can only think Discover wants to limit it to 30 so they can show the World Cup on TV within a 1/2 hour time span. Not good for the fans, or the sport. Hope they don't do this
  • 5 0
 If they'd have more WC races over here, there would be more of a reason for people to come over. But what do I know
  • 2 0
 Let's just call it what it is. The Northern Hemisphere cup. I'm fine if it's only raced in Europe and North America, but then in those years the winner should only get to call themselves the Northern Hemisphere cup winner, not world cup. World implies to me some sort of geographical spread, which should cover at least both hemispheres, otherwise it's just a regional race series.
It's like when the World Rally Championship a few years ago was basically all in Europe, to me that was just the better cars and drivers competing in the European Rally Championship.

World Champs are a bit different, as they only happen once a year, and those tend to get spread around the world at least a little bit.

Even Formula 1 travels to all the main regions of the world (bar Africa - but that's about to change).

So if WC mountain biking is going to become more elite with less riders, then the costs for UCI and Discovery of putting it on should also go up by mandating the world cup must visit both hemispheres and at least 3 geographic regions of the.
  • 1 0
 Are there lush ski resorts to host such things in the southern hemisphere that are bidding on the World Cup?
  • 2 0
 Let me just say if USAC wasn't so MONEY HUNGRY and only had TWO racers allowed to qually we may have had a lot more. Imagine if there was actually an opportunity for all the fast Americans who weren't on worldcup teams to try and qualify.
  • 2 0
 The saddest thing about all the potential changes to the races next year is how incredible and exciting the races have been this year. The races have never been this exciting/down to the wire. Yes Pierron is on an incredible run of wins, but somehow it still seems so competitive unlike the dominant years of the Gwinner. Not to take anything away from Pierron. Just my opionion.
  • 4 0
 September for Snowshoe next time!
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 If we're talking about venues for a North American WC race, my vote is for Windrock. Ride the Rock!
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 who are the four guys to have won 4 rounds in a year? pierron, gwin and who else?
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 I'm thinking Sam Hill and Nico V- but i'm not sure.
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 Francois Gachet, Nico Vouilloz, Aaron Gwin, and now Pierron (according to Rob in the post-show)
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 nico vouilloz and francois gachet
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 Gwin is the only one to have won 5 races in a season, right?
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 @kcy4130: Only person to win 5 in a row, not sure about 5 in total
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 @src248: *Only man to win 5 in a row. Rachel has streaks of 6 and 7 wins within a season (and a preposterous 14 straight if you count consecutive years). ACC also has streaks of 5 and 6 in a single season.
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 @hab19: Fair point!
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 I'm also a wining machine, when they put cream in my coffee when I specifically told them not to.
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 If you watch Adam Brayton's Gas to V-log on Youtube, he had quite a time getting to Snowshoe. It's not that easy to fly right now.
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 I'm not sure about the Conti tire buzz. How much is the individual knob profile worth if teams cut them to their liking? Is it all about the rubber compound then?
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 Notice the perfect podium steez from the men.
Nobody is doing the dreaded 2 hands up superman; each with 1 arm on closest competitor. Respect.
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 The last time I went to snowshoe it rained so much the water was about half way to my knee my last run they stopped running the lift due to lightning and the road washed out haven’t been back in about 20 years
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 they also didn't use earth moving equipment back then. I think that was before Brad Stone, Kalen Bunch, Trevyn Newphr, etc started using actual machinery on the bike trails.
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 There was only one energy drink hat on the podium. When was the last time that happened?
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 Just do it for fun and don't compete. Competition takes the soul of the sport away. Who remembers or even cares about who was champs last year? The reason MTB racing is dwindling is because it's boring to watch, unattainable for most and ultimately, not a profit driver for companies. Period.
  • 2 0
 But which Continental tires did they run? Mud tires? Dry tires?
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 Ah yes, because the nationals track is totally not controversial at all.
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 Any pictures about Dakota's wild line?
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 You can join the DH group here. Pics of him doing it and a Conti rider #97 doing it in practice. But that's all that tried it

  • 1 0
 Wild line is at 50:13 in the RB replay. Unfortunately, by that time he was already 15 seconds down so something happened earlier on.
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