World Championships 2011 - DH Finals in Photos

Sep 5, 2011
by Colin Meagher  


Steve Peat having a word with Nico Vouilloz during the closing moments of the last practice before the finals.
  Steve Peat having a word with Nico Vouilloz during the closing moments of the last practice before the finals.

Always the optimist Doug Hatfield stashed a bottle of celebratory bubbly in the local glacier fed creek in front of the Syndicate pits. Just in case of a win. And just in case they needed to drown their sorrows a bit for a loss.
  Always the optimist, Doug Hatfield stashed a bottle of celebratory bubbly in the local, glacier fed creek in front of the Syndicate pits. Just in case of a win. And just in case they needed to drown their sorrows a bit for a loss.


It looked like the rain was going to hold off but at exactly 11 18 am the downpour started and lasted the whole day through. For most teams there was only one tire choice available full spikes.
  It looked like the rain was going to hold off, but at exactly 11:18 am the downpour started and lasted the whole day through. For most teams, there was only one tire choice available: full spikes.

With the rain coming in hard racers planned on it being one of those kind of days...
  With the rain coming in hard, racers planned on it being one of those kind of days...

Any questions as to how steep this track is
  Any questions as to how steep this track is? Faustin Figaret of France had the fastest time in qualifying for juniors, it was a different story in the finals though, 11th place in the mud.

This bird saw way too much action over the course of the juniors race I think I counted 9 flights
  This bird saw way too much action over the course of the juniors race; I think I counted 9 flights?

Fionn Griffiths did not have as smooth a ride as her teammate--winner and new World Champion Emmeline Ragot. Fionn like almost everyone else had a hell of a time in the slick conditions.
  Fionn Griffiths did not have as smooth a ride as her teammate--winner and new World Champion, Emmeline Ragot. Fionn, like almost everyone else, had a hell of a time in the slick conditions.

Ragot was simply on FIRE a full 15.279 seconds up on the competition
  Ragot was simply on FIRE, a full 15.279 seconds up on the competition!

Myriam Nicole was greased lightning last year here in Champery--until she was beat by Ragot. After she crossed the line here in Champery Ragot considered Pom-Pom to be her biggest threat. For sure there were a lot of dangerous riders left to come. But after Pom-Pom came down I started to breathe easier.
  Myriam Nicole was greased lightning last year here in Champery - until she was beat by Ragot. After her run here in Champery, Ragot considered Pom-Pom to be her biggest threat.

bigquotesFor sure there were a lot of dangerous riders left to come. But after Pom-Pom came down, I started to breathe easier. - Emmeline Ragot

Sam Blenkinsop rolling to catch the chair up for his start. Evidently having his lucky number 256 painted on his downtube provided enough good luck to offset his plate number 13. Which is likely now his new lucky number.
  Sam Blenkinsop rolling to catch the chair up for his start. Evidently having his lucky number 256 painted on his downtube provided enough good luck to offset his plate number 13. Which is likely now his new lucky number.

Logan Binggeli had a rough day at the office--37 and a half seconds out. This track is insane in the wet.
  Logan Binggeli had a rough day at the office - 37 and a half seconds out.

bigquotesThis track is insane in the wet. - Logan Binggeli

Well off the hot seat with his time of 4 26.831 Duncan Riffle was gracious to the hot seat holders shaking hands as congratulations for rides well done.
  Well off the hot seat with his time of 4:26.831, Duncan Riffle was gracious to the hot seat holders, shaking hands as congratulations for rides well done.


Mazzi strong man Bernat Guardia cracked the top 20 aboard his new Mazzi DH sled--one of his best rides all season long.
  Mazzi strong man Bernat Guardia cracked the top 20 aboard his new Mazzi DH sled--one of his best rides all season long.

With a knee held together by bits of duct tape and string Bren-dawg Fairclough threw down as hard as ever coming home fourth. Considering the blown ACL and complete lack of lateral stability his ride was every bit as amazing as Danny Hart s.
  With a knee held together by "bits of duct tape and string", Bren-dawg Fairclough threw down as hard as ever, coming home fourth. Considering the blown ACL and complete lack of lateral stability, his ride was every bit as amazing as Danny Hart's.


Blenki one of the best wet riders around went with gloves for once vs his typical gloveless style. I feel the bars better without gloves but to be honest in this wet I needed grip more than I needed feel.
  Blenki, one of the best wet riders around, went with gloves for once vs his typical gloveless style.

bigquotesI feel the bars better without gloves; but to be honest, in this wet, I needed grip more than I needed feel. - Sam Blenkinsop

Unreal. The kid s been knocking on the door all season long and on the one day he needed to shine he blazed 11.699 seconds faster than anyone else
  Unreal. The kid's been knocking on the door all season long and on the one day he needed to shine, he blazed! 11.699 seconds faster than anyone else!

It would have been unreal had Gwin taken the win here but not unexpected. As it was Gwin laid down a hell of a ride--he was second at the first split but too much time was lost in the slick conditions for him to come through with the double.
  It would have been unreal had Gwin taken the win here, but not unexpected. As it was, Gwin laid down a hell of a ride - he was second at the first split by only a second; but he crashed and got tangled up in the course netting, and there was no way to make up enough time in the slick conditions to come through with the double.

Richly deserved after a somewhat forgettable and injury plagued season.
  Emmeline Ragot takes the win, richly deserved after a somewhat forgettable and injury plagued season.

Danny Hart--the new World Champion
  Danny Hart - the new World Champion!

A few bonus shots...

Too mental to wrap my brain around...one last time with the trials boys on the creek station there were a number of other stations but the creek one looked to be the most challenging by far.
  Too mental to wrap my brain around... one last time with the trials boys on the creek station; there were a number of other stations, but the creek one looked to be the most challenging by far, especially in the rain...

Fabien Canal with his own personal fan club during the XC Men s U23 race. An unimpressed Fabien finished the day in 23rd position...
  Fabien Canal with his own personal fan club during the XC Men's U23 race. An unimpressed Fabien finished the day in 23rd position...


Photos by Colin Meagher




53 Comments

  • 58 2
 totaly agree with caption under brendons pic in my opinion every bit the winner as hart
  • 3 0
 With that result the decision to ride the season out has been worth it and will hopefully boost his confidence ready for next year!
  • 3 0
 He's a beast, infact they both are!
  • 3 0
 Lol I though the guys wrote *ag on their asses when I saw the first two letters Big Grin
  • 3 0
 brendawg im stoked that u are stoked to ride. Man i was rooting for you but man, you are the 4th best in the world. THATS GOTTA FEEL AMAZING!!!!!!!!
  • 34 6
 this is a canadian website is it not?
man i gotta say i am quite bummed at the lack of excitement and coverage of canadian girl dh medalists, claire and lauren.
2 bronze medals for the ladies and they get no mention? even in the girls elite podium shot?
no interview with claire? was this not a first ever canadian ladies elite dh medal in the modern era?
no interview with lauren? she has won 2 jr ladies medals in 2 years, one gold, one bronze has she not?
this is pinkbike right? this is canada right?
ladies always get the short end of the stick. not cool.
congrats lauren, congrats claire.
instead we get an xc shot with some euros mooning the camera?
  • 4 5
 I agree with your sentiments stacykohut, however bagging on xc coverage? I know that it's not "extreme" or "hardcore" as say DH or FR, but honestly I'm glad to even see it mentioned because it is extremely difficult. I would like to see more coverage of both female results and xc races.
  • 5 1
 au contraire mon frere, would have loved to see some xc shots of our canadian girl bringing home the gold in elite womens xc. just thought maybe a shot of pendrel ripping was a cooler image than the men with butts showing shot.
  • 1 0
 To me it seems PB trys to stay unbiased with their coverage of this international sport. Cool, but they are the main outlet for info on Canadian riders competing globally so it would be great to see more coverage of these few athletes that make it there and do really well. And that could lead to more support for the rides who defiantly need it. Thank you stacyohut for pointing out that Claire was the first Woman's elite dh medal podium that's super cool way to go Claire. And Lauren is bad ass she'll be there soon.
  • 3 0
 Yes PB is based in Canada...but this article was written by an American.
  • 2 0
 claire is the first canadian woman since 1992 to bring home hardware for the women's elite dh. there are no excuses for leaving her or lauren out of the press.
  • 2 0
 well done to her! i would have though canada would have more in the way of downhillers... i mean you have the perfect location
and woow to rachel 2nd place Big Grin
  • 1 0
 if the canadian girls got more press in/from their own country, then maybe younger girls would check out the killer sport of dh.
canada has crazy amounts of training areas, what is needed is more exposure to young girls with the canadian female pros being the roll models in the many levels of press.just sayin'.
  • 1 0
 Ive always wondered how much the bike plays a role in a success of a rider, yes its the indian not the arrow but these guys are the best of the best the peak of proffesional mountain biking if they all rode the same bike would the standings be any differant? Let the opinions fly.
  • 1 0
 well there would be a difference as everyone will take different lines and everyone has different speeds, also track conditions will varey as more riders go down. so there would still be a difference
  • 1 0
 Stacy, you didn't check www.pinkbike.com/news/World-Championships-2011-Final-DH-Practice.html did you? Catharine's a good friend, and has been since I met her in Champery in 2007. For me not to show her taking a well earned set of rainbow stripes would be criminal.

As to lack of female coverage and podium mention, my bad; in that kind of a work atmosphere a few things get missed. For a point of reference, I had 1200 images from the day to edit down to 20 for PB, digitally "clean up", caption, and upload, and 30 minutes to do so. But I will try for more balanced coverage next time.

Cheers!
  • 7 0
 Anyone else noticed that Fabien Barel built Spagnolo out of clay and lightning in the image of himself?
  • 1 0
 hahahaha!!!
  • 4 0
 so mental..the sport has still so much to go, it's not about .0065 seconds as it is in DH skiing but it is still an exciting way of how you get down that mountain...personally i like dh skiing very much but it is a f*ckn time everytime the same! i'm not gonna say that skiing should be out of TV or someting but i just think if MTB would be presented like it is skiing right now, i think we would all have a greeeat time. freecaster did a great job and i enjoyed the worldcup so much this year.
you know, the people havnt been always on some planks which made them go fast but it took some time since all the hype about skiing developed i think. and now, after skiing and all that classic sport gets boring i think it is time for a new and exciting way of sport that attracts the people..best example skicross or boardercross what is even olympic now! BUT WHAt I WANT TO SAY WITH THAT F*CKN NOVEL IS THAT I WILL ALWAYS FOLLOW THAT SPORT
  • 5 0
 that has been the best world champs race i have seen for a while huge props to all the riders YEAH ANOTHER BRIT WORLD CHAMP WAY TO GO DANNY
  • 4 0
 Rob Warner - you can borrow this one!!! Danny just threw down a GIANT HART ATTACK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! He's killin' them!
  • 1 0
 Many thanks to all the race fans for your support of both my and Fraser's shots throughout the season. We GREATLY appreciate your support. We are passionate about what we do, and hearing so much positive feedback on our imagery is one of the things that keeps us motivated when we're having a shit day out there shooting. Take care and see you all next season!
  • 4 0
 Did none of the photographers get Dannys huge whip?
  • 1 0
 its not quite the one from the race, but todays POD is basically the same
  • 28 0
 If they did get a good shot of the whip, it's probably one of those shots they'd shop around to the magazines before posting it up for free.
  • 3 0
 Benat Guardia runs for Massi Mountain Bikes (Spanish brand), not Mazzi or Muzzy, hahaha!
  • 1 0
 Yeah, my bad on that typo. I'll work on getting that corrected.
  • 1 1
 Brendans knee was actually held together this season by a Troy Lee Designs knee brace www.troyleedesigns.com/product.php?cat=101&id=17392 not string and duct tape. In Brendans words "I would not have been able to ride this year if not for the TLD brace"
  • 1 0
 string, duct tape, and a TLD brace. Duly noted, Stik.
  • 4 0
 Pure mudness.
  • 1 0
 The picture of Graves running flat in the first corner at the qualifications of the 4X: www.pinkbike.com/photo/7102974
  • 2 0
 Awesome race, I guess Schwalbe are happy cleaning up in the Dh.
  • 3 0
 WE NEED VIDEOS!
  • 2 1
 A titanium GT hardtail!! and whats with that old lady in the Victorian funeral dress in the third to last photo?
  • 1 0
 That's actually a carbon frame! Looks sick IRL.
  • 1 0
 It is carbon panzer, and the lady is one of the podium "girls", and she's wearing a traditional cultural dress from the region. What can I say? It's World Champs pageantry at it's Swiss best.
  • 1 0
 Nice to see Blenki deliver a great result too, after what had to be a slightly disappointing season.
  • 1 0
 hottest podium babes ever! Get a load of the one with the hearts on her dress showing those white stockings WOO HOO!!!!
  • 2 1
 is that a bike tube connected to the champagne? hahahaha
  • 2 0
 you need a leash on those bottles man! can't be havin them float away! haha
  • 1 0
 duncans eyes are scary hahaha
  • 1 0
 i love great biking pictures, especially with tons of mud!!!
  • 1 0
 zebra mi skacze po klawiaturze
  • 1 0
 Sick pictures!!!!
  • 3 0
 so many PODs. i cant choose one to be my iphone background
  • 4 1
 Is there any chance of a video being available for the trials?
  • 1 0
 Shite! I neged u by accident. I want to see the trials too!!
  • 2 0
 yeh why does elite trials see zero coverage, its one of the most a amazing things to watch in person!
  • 1 0
 hahah
  • 4 0
 Listen I'ma let you finish, but Danny Hart had one of the best runs of all time!
  • 1 0
 anyone know if theres any pictures of brendan whipping that hip like he does every year?
  • 1 0
 Elite trials go down when the DH and XC races are going down. The trials were pretty amazing, but the time constraints laid down by scheduling make it virtually impossible to do more than grab a few shots here and there vs being able to follow the action. In fact, I was only able to snipe the water section because it was right in front of the MS-Evil pits, which is where I was based.
  • 1 0
 just awesome

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