Val di Sole World Cup - DH in Pictures

Aug 22, 2011
by Ian Hylands  
Photos by Colin Meagher and Fraser Britton

The amazing thing about this rear shock that SRAM blackbox specialist Jon Cancellier is delivering to the Syndicate boys is that it s exactly 12.552 seconds faster than the one used for qualifying. However it needed to be another 6.974 seconds faster to beat out the unbelievable Aaron Gwin.
  The amazing thing about this rear shock that SRAM blackbox specialist Jon Cancellier is delivering to the Syndicate boys is that it's exactly 12.552 seconds faster than the one used for qualifying. However, it needed to be another 6.974 seconds faster to beat out the unbelievable Aaron Gwin.


Reflecting on a hard decision. Dan Atherton was simply not feeling on his top game here at Val di Sole and this is a track that is completely unforgiving to doubt. Rather than feed that rat Affy wisely tuned into that inner voice and opted to sit this one out.
  Reflecting on a hard decision. Dan Atherton was simply not feeling on his top game here at Val di Sole, and this is a track that is completely unforgiving to doubt. Rather than feed that rat, Affy wisely tuned into that inner voice and opted to sit this one out.


Mark Fitzsimmons of Fox Racing Shox giving Gee Atherton s rear suspension a thorough work up feeling for hang-ups in the suspension or the linkages. The bikes were getttng so hammered here at Val di Sole that rear shocks were damn near smoking as riders came off the track. More than one rider was getting completely pumped out fighting brake fade too. Yes it was that rough and that steep.
  Mark Fitzsimmons of Fox Racing Shox giving Gee Atherton's rear suspension a thorough work up, feeling for hang-ups in the suspension or the linkages. The bikes were getttng so hammered here at Val di Sole that rear shocks were damn near smoking as riders came off the track. More than one rider was getting completely pumped out fighting brake fade too. Yes, it was that rough and that steep.


Danny Hart wanted to work on his tan this morning as he warmed up for racing but the glaring sun reflecting off his pasty British skin was simply too much for the Syndicate boys across the pit row... I was nearly blinded a couple of times as I was setting up Peaty s brand new carbon swing arm until Danny covered up. It was rough there for a few moments. -Ricky Bobby Santa Cruz Syndicate.
  Danny Hart wanted to work on his tan this morning as he warmed up for racing, but the glaring sun reflecting off his pasty British skin was simply too much for the Syndicate boys across the pit row... "I was nearly blinded a couple of times as I was setting up Peaty's brand new carbon swing arm until Danny covered up. It was rough there for a few moments."-Ricky Bobby, Santa Cruz Syndicate.


Sam Blenkinsop may be good to go after tweaking his knee in La Bresse but that doesn t mean Martin the Masseur is going to let one of his clients go to battle without proper support for that tender ligament.
  Sam Blenkinsop may be good to go after tweaking his knee in La Bresse, but that doesn't mean Martin the Masseur is going to let one of his clients go to battle without proper support for that tender ligament.


Hand built. It may be old school but it ensures that riders have exactly the gears they want Andy Ward piecing together the gear spread ordered up by fifth place finisher Cameron Cole of Lapierre Racing.
  Hand built. It may be old school, but it ensures that riders have exactly the gears they want; Andy Ward piecing together the gear spread ordered up by fifth place finisher Cameron Cole of Lapierre Racing.


What might have been. Steve Smith as well as teammate George Brannigan both fell to injury in the morning s training. Steve s ankle has ballooned to the size of a grapefruit he may be out for Worlds in two weeks. George tweaked his knee badly enough he was out for finals no word as of yet on the damage.
  What might have been. Steve Smith as well as teammate George Brannigan both fell to injury in the morning's training. Steve's ankle has ballooned to the size of a grapefruit; he may be out for Worlds in two weeks. George tweaked his knee badly enough he was out for finals; no word as of yet on the damage.


Kiwis en route to smashing down a final training run before the DH Final Blenki and Bulldog.
  Kiwis en route to smashing down a final training run before the DH Final: Blenki and Bulldog.


No beer garden along the track No problem the creative Italian fans will find a way to take in their suds as they cheer on their favorites from only a few meters away.
  No beer garden along the track? No problem, the creative Italian fans will find a way to take in their suds as they cheer on their favorites from only a few meters away.


Absolute focus.
  Absolute focus.


With the pressure on Florian Pugin did her best to deliver but a few mistakes in the top section cost her. They were pretty minor really and given her blistering pace after split two had there been another 200 meters or so of track. she may have taken it from Pom-Pom.
  With the pressure on, Florian Pugin did her best to deliver; but a few mistakes in the top section cost her. They were pretty minor, really, and given her blistering pace after split two, had there been another 200 meters or so of track. she may have taken it from Pom-Pom.


Pom-Pom FINALLY took the win. She s been almost there all season long. Congratulations
  Pom-Pom FINALLY took the win. She's been almost there all season long. Congratulations!


The woods were full of carnage this morning. Boosting rocks in mega silt at 50kmh. Sketchy at best.
  The woods were full of carnage this morning. Jack Reading boosting rocks in mega silt at 50kmh. Sketchy at best.


Marcus Klausmann of Ghost took a smooth line here but the difference between 36th and 21st is aggression...
  Marcus Klausmann of Ghost took a smooth line here, but the difference between 36th and 21st is aggression...



....as demonstrated by Mitch Ropelato. Ropelato was absolutely pinned coming over this drop. A few riders pulled up and launched but Ropelato just flat out sent this.
  ....as demonstrated by Mitch Ropelato. Ropelato was absolutely pinned coming over this drop. A few riders pulled up and launched, but Ropelato just flat out sent this.


More than one rider binned it during training qualies and finals. Getting bikes from fallen riders back to the pits was complicated by the insanely steep and technical track. Thomas Jeandin--I m assuming this is his bike as he was the only DNF for the final--got a ride out on a back board while his bike got the shuttle down in the rescue wagon. Heal up man. Next year is another season.
  More than one rider binned it during training, qualies, and finals. Getting bikes from fallen riders back to the pits was complicated by the insanely steep and technical track. Thomas Jeandin--I'm assuming this is his bike as he was the only DNF for the final--got a ride out on a back board while his bike got the shuttle down in the rescue wagon. Heal up, man. Next year is another season.


Ahh what might have been. Markus Pekol of MS-Evil had a smoking qualifying race. And his Final run started with a bang too he was number 4 at the first split. A few mistakes in the middle section dropped him to 15th--less than a half second back behind 7th place finisher and fellow MS-Evil rider Brook MacDonald. But then came the rear wheel flat and a 42nd place finish. Next time...
  Ahh, what might have been. Markus Pekol of MS-Evil had a smoking qualifying race. And his Final run started with a bang, too; he was number 4 at the first split. A few mistakes in the middle section dropped him to 15th--less than a half second back behind 7th place finisher and fellow MS-Evil rider Brook MacDonald. But then came the rear wheel flat and a 42nd place finish. Next time...


Mick Hannah just couldn t get on the podium today. He was looking fast and aggressive. The toung guns seem to have made their move.
  Mick Hannah just couldn't get on the podium today. He was looking fast and aggressive. The young guns seem to have made their move.


Bryceland is coming into fine form for Champery. I have no idea how he can ride like he does after separating his shoulder at Windham but he s somehow able to get past the pain of that nagging injury and rise above. 11th on the day.
  Bryceland is coming into fine form for Champery. I have no idea how he can ride like he does after separating his shoulder at Windham, but he's somehow able to get past the pain of that nagging injury and rise above. 11th on the day.


Troy Brosnan. 4th Place. First World Cup podium of his young career. Get some next week Rivers
  Troy Brosnan. 4th Place. First World Cup podium of his young career. Get some next week, Rivers!


Full throttle for Gee-Man. Good enough for third on the day and third on the season.
  Full throttle for Gee-Man. Good enough for third on the day and third on the season.


Danny Hart ended up second today. He was flying all week. Could it be the grampa socks The changinog the guard seems to be complete here in Val Di Sole.
  Danny Hart ended up second today. He was flying all week. Could it be the grampa socks? The changing of the guard seems to be complete here in Val Di Sole.


UNBELIEVABLE
  Aaron Gwin didn't need to win to take the overall, but he needed to win to beat the record for most wins in one season. Mission accomplished.


Just like little league... parents and mechanics trying to figure out the world cup overall in the pits...
  Just like little league... parents and mechanics trying to figure out the world cup overall in the pits...


Hope you don t have stage fright. time to pee for the man.
  Hope you don't have stage fright. time to pee for the man.


Champagne shower indeed.
  Champagne shower indeed. Myriam Nicole finally getting the top spot and not minding a bit....


Aaron Gwin taking the historic fifth win for a 7 race World Cup season. Brosnan 4 Danny Hart 2 Gee Atherton 3 Cam Cole 5 and Aaron Gwin 1 .
  Aaron Gwin taking the historic fifth win for a 7 race World Cup season. Brosnan (4), Danny Hart (2), Gee Atherton (3), Cam Cole (5), and Aaron Gwin (1).


Overall WC Elite Women s Podium Myriam Nicole 4 Floriane Pugin 2 Tracy Moseley 1 Rachel Atherton 3 m Sabrina Jonnier 5
  Overall WC Elite Women's Podium: Myriam Nicole (4), Floriane Pugin (2), Tracy Moseley (1), Rachel Atherton (3)m Sabrina Jonnier (5)


Third place pay out may not be fat but it pays out well enough--especially when combined with Rachel s winnings too. Dinner and drinks on Gee-Man for the Atherton Racing team tonight.
  Third place pay out may not be fat, but it pays out well enough--especially when combined with Rachel's winnings, too. Dinner and drinks on Gee-Man for the Atherton Racing team tonight.


Steve Smith ended up 5th place int he overall despite not being able to race topday due to a knee and ankle injury sufferred in practice. He made his way to the podium no matter what. Heal up Sender Canada needs you.
  Steve Smith ended up 5th place in the overall, despite not being able to race today due to a knee and ankle injury sufferred in practice. He made his way to the podium no matter what. Heal up Sender, Canada needs you.


Men s Elite WC DH Overall Danny Hart 4 Greg Minnaar 2 Aaron Gwin 1 Gee Atherton 3 Steve Smith 5 .
  Men's Elite WC DH Overall: Danny Hart (4), Greg Minnaar (2), Aaron Gwin (1), Gee Atherton (3), Steve Smith (5).



72 Comments

  • 133 0
 Where's a pic of Danny Hart's rowdy berm explosion? Killing me, pinkbike!
  • 7 0
 I was literally going to ask that! Razz
  • 3 0
 Hahaha look at Bryceland's shoe ! Rat Boy is FAST !
  • 6 0
 It's gonna be wrong if pinkbike won't post it... I want to see it in HD ! ! !
  • 4 0
 yeah thats gotta be the photo of the weekend, Danny is nuts !
  • 1 0
 he's killing it with the awesome photo opportunities those year! Big Grin
  • 8 0
 I'd say either he didn't get a shot of it, or it will be in a magazine or other publication soon.

Heres a pic off the Giant team's facebook:

http://a8.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/309493_237673799602988_169174973119538_578279_7331273_n.jpg
  • 1 0
 I'm not happeh! I want to see one from the front of him so there's no dust! I know, i'm a demanding bugger! Razz But it will be a spectacular pod Big Grin
  • 1 0
 Vitalmtb.com has the rooooooost.
  • 1 0
 there's a great pic of it on triride's slideshow on their site. shot from the back as he's just blown up that corner.
  • 5 1
 He almost took out another camerman about 5 seconds earlier right before the drop into that turn. That was two HUGE "holy shit" moments. Easily one of the most entertaining runs I've seen in a while.
  • 2 0
 Was i the only one to skip through trying to find that photo of Danny, only to be disappointed to not find it?
  • 1 0
 nope! Razz
  • 1 0
 EVERYONE WATCH THE VIDEO THAT TRIXIE POSTED. VIDEO = EPCOT CENTER
  • 2 1
 If you want the picture go onto VITALMTB.COM I always felt they do way better race coverage, although I'm happy with this site's work as well.
  • 12 0
 5th for Steve Smith, watch out next year top 3.
  • 3 0
 for sure...and he missed a race too, kid is fast!
  • 2 0
 gutted for Smith. was my pick for the win. no worlds probably. enjoy your well deserved off-season beers!
  • 1 0
 Congratulation to our american rider Aaron Gwin what a amazing season, giver.
  • 3 0
 Only four photos dedicated to the ladies?

What is this, proportionate representation or what?
  • 1 0
 It's unfortunate but that's all we were sent by our photographers, there are others on Pink Bike but they weren't large enough to use in this format...
  • 3 0
 Correction: "Dinner, drinks and FIREWORKS on Gee-Man for the Atherton Racing team tonight."
  • 1 0
 my top 4 most exciting riders to watch: danny hart; jack reading; adam brayton and does anyone know the name of the rider who did the sick manual? he deserves a prize just for that, SICK LAST ROUND
  • 1 0
 that was jack reading wasn't it....????
  • 1 0
 naw it weren't jack who did the lovely manual, jack was just as loose as fuck haha
  • 2 0
 gnarly way to finish the world cups, been a sick series to watch. Role on Champery!!!!!!!!!!
  • 1 0
 ok now i'm interested too
  • 1 0
 one reason, Weight Savings
  • 1 0
 lots of POD worthy pics here. the thick canopy in val di sole working well for photographers. i wish there were more pics from the women's ripping some of the techy sections.
  • 1 0
 Val de Sole spectators & visitors just simply ignored the 2 layer track barricade , rules from UCI ... at this level of sporting, everybody just overwhelmed ,, nice one!!
  • 1 0
 Ropelato's pic for the win. Nice work, Colin. That really captures his speed for me. Damn, I wish I could ride like that. My POD no question.
  • 2 0
 Well it seems Britain has dominated the largest percentage of the podium.. ha.
  • 1 0
 True just too bad they couldn't get on the ME top spot this year...Good Job Gwin. Not my favorite racer, not my favorite bike company but well done this year!
  • 2 0
 danny has amazed everyone this year no doubt
  • 1 0
 He is number 1 giant rider next year riffle is off the team I wonder who will fill that gap to help needles and Danny
  • 1 0
 yeh dannys photos wasnt the most exciting, so pleased for him, great talent! Gwin is a weapon though!
  • 2 0
 Anyone else notice that Bryceland has like three bashguards in that photo?
  • 3 0
 And rat teeth?
  • 1 0
 Yeah his mechanic retro-fitted several on there because last year he destroyed a bunch of them here
  • 1 0
 loads of riders were doing similar, cause the course was that rough that parts were just dying out there!!!!
  • 1 0
 Duncan riffle is off giant time to start thinking who will step in and step up
  • 2 0
 I cannot find anything regarding this statement. Where was this announced?
  • 1 0
 he must be an inside man...
  • 1 0
 Just wait and see I say no more
  • 1 0
 Scott Mears.
  • 2 0
 Stevie smith looks a bit like wolverine......
  • 1 0
 When did Steve Smith turn into Seth Rogan? Check out that last podium pic!
  • 1 0
 hmmm...no troy lee kit on the podium...guess not for the fastest racers in the end...
  • 1 0
 Amazingly welldone job gwin!! congrats to all those guys!! THE guys! Big Grin
  • 1 0
 Did I see an Ellsworth in there? WTF? On the WC scene?
  • 3 0
 Yeah jack reading the man is wild
  • 1 0
 It wasn't just me! I had no idea anyone was racing those in the WC races recently.
  • 1 0
 I didn't know anybody rode those and we are a dealer for them!! Bwahahahaha
  • 1 0
 whats with gwins tire pressures!!??
  • 1 0
 brosnan just killed in val di sole!
  • 1 0
 Lol....dobbiamo sempre farci riconoscere noi italiani eh Big Grin ?!
  • 1 0
 Great shots guys, absolutely awesome pics.
  • 1 0
 Not bad, two brits on the podium.
  • 1 0
 dude he's australian, they're all racist pricks, I live there!
  • 1 0
 Holy swankle, Batman!
  • 1 0
 Nice work guys!
  • 1 0
 ...
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