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Elite Qualifying Results from the Bielsko-Biala DH World Cup 2024

May 18, 2024
by Ed Spratt  
After the Timed Training session, the Elite racers are now against the clock to decide who progresses to the semi-finals.

Despite a crash during practice, Camille Balanche has come out with incredible speed in qualifying as she leads the elite women by over seven and a half seconds. Balanche looks to be back on top form for round two in Poland with a dominant run controlling the race lead throughout every sector. The fastest qualifier from Fort William, Tahnee Seagrave, slots into second place after losing three and a half seconds to Balanche in just split two. Marine Cabirou completes the top three, 8.365 back. Vali Höll had a drivetrain issue during her run dropping back by 38 seconds in the first split, impressively she still set the fastest split time in sector three.

Loris Vergier sets the fastest time of the week so far after finding time in the final sector to lead by 0.857 seconds. Vergier overtook Loic Bruni in sector four as he powered through the last split to secure the top qualifying position ahead of the semi-finals. Dakotah Norton continues his strong form in 2024 as he ends the session in 2nd with Mondraker teammate Ronan Dunne close behind in third.

Check out the results and some quick stats from qualifying at the second round of the 2024 World Cup series below.



Results:


Elite Women


1st. Camille Balanche: 3:27.778
2nd. Tahnee Seagrave: 3:35.331 / +7.553
3rd. Marine Cabirou: 3:36.143 / +8.365
4th. Louise Ferguson: 3:37.031 / +9.253
5th. Eleonora Farina: 3:37.180 / +9.402




Elite Men


1st. Loris Vergier: 3:01.296
2nd. Dakotah Norton: 3:02.153 / +0.857
3rd. Ronan Dunne: 3:02.676 / +1.380
4th. Loic Bruni: 3:02.998 / +1.702
5th. Troy Brosnan: 3:03.787 / +2.491




Quick Stats:
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Full Results:


Elite Women


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Elite Men


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Semi-Finals Start List:


Elite Women


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Elite Men


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Author Info:
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90 Comments
  • 61 1
 So where is the semi-final live stream?

And if it seems more and more liithere is none, then seriously, what is the point of having them at all?

I thought the whole point of the semis was that at least the top 60 (male) riders would at least still get some exposure whilst the top 30 would benefit from more of their runs being shown.

Now there is literally NO free elite coverage. How on earth does this help the sport? It needs more free coverage, not nothing FFS...

And what kind of future is there for now the those trying to break in? At least back in RB days just about all riders, privateers to super stars got themselves, their teams and their sponsors a few precious minutes of coverage..

Now it's top 30 or bust? Way to kill a sport...
  • 11 38
flag sharpiemtb FL (May 18, 2024 at 4:57) (Below Threshold)
 Stop acting like we have enough fans and advertisers to make these huge productions happen for free
  • 24 1
 @sharpiemtb: I understand your sentiment... But there's one rather huge flaw in the logic of your argument. An elephant in the room. Or a bull, if you will.
  • 13 1
 Yeah, they really somehow managed to make it worse for all, the riders, the sponsors, and the viewers.
  • 4 6
 @sharpiemtb: you’re not wrong, everyone wants all this coverage to be both awesome and both free and are quick to comment how they’ll never pay for coverage but they are supposedly die hard fans. Can’t have both.
  • 3 6
 I watched the last race on Max and it was by far the best coverage I've ever seen.
  • 1 0
 I get having two races after all the trouble of setting up the course. But please cut less of the field in semis... or just have two big races
  • 5 0
 @tbubier: far better than last year but a far cry from best coverage ever, unless you just started watching last year.
  • 3 0
 @lifeofloon: i swear to god some of the comments here are being paid off by WB lmao
  • 5 0
 As of right now the UCI's own website still says "watch all the action live", despite only finals being broadcast.
  • 1 1
 @lifeofloon: been watching since Freecaster days.
  • 12 0
 This is ridiculously tight. the top 70 men are separated by just over 10sec. the difference between not qualifying and podium are just 7 sec.
  • 13 0
 Oooh the Goats shoulder must be giving him problems......not qualified :o(
  • 9 0
 That's a pretty dominant win from Camille there. Happy to see her do so well again!
  • 3 0
 Vali got stuck behind a slower rider and she seemed faster than Cami.
  • 2 0
 @lkubica: Interesting to see. The article states she dropped her chain in the first sector. Was overtaken there by a slower rider which she then got stuck behind? I wonder what the rules say about that. I suppose slower riders should make way for the quicker ones but if you've just overtaken a rider who started before you (for whichever reason) then I'm not sure whether this applies. Either way, we've still got semis and finals to see who's fastest in the end Smile .
  • 4 0
 @vinay: I only seen her in the second wood section, I was waiting for her but another slower rider appeared instead and then Valentina with a very good pace but she had to slow down, haven't seen what happened but for sure she was visibly faster ... Strange situation Smile
  • 6 0
 C'mon Phil Atwill. Completely smoking the majority of the field where it matters (timed training) to then completely forget that there is more fun to be had after a good qualification.
  • 1 0
 Really surprised here by his ranking
  • 8 0
 UCI CAN SUCK IT. Bring on a break away series
  • 6 0
 They have a large fanatical fan base for road that was established in the last century. UCI have been able to get away with restrictive media policies because of this. They have no idea how to grow a sport in this century, for which an abundance of free flowing media seems to be successful. There were similar video restrictions the pre-Red Bull days, we're just back to the same-old, same-old uci policies now.
  • 1 0
 @rad8: very good point.
  • 6 0
 Why blur the results?? There’s no way to watch semis…
  • 1 0
 Did something happen with the junior men? It’s showing them mid-qualifying the same as the elite men, but it’s clearly just the elite men on track at the moment. Does anyone know if something happened or if it’s just a technical issue?
  • 1 0
 It was just a timing issue, Junior qualifying takes place after the Elites.
  • 1 0
 @edspratt: Thanks!
  • 2 0
 How do finals start times work?—are there rules or what? Protected riders go according to something other than semi finish, obviously…
Uncle G hit me with the breakdown please!
  • 3 0
 I was wondering same thing, Höll and Hoffman are starting mid table above some riders who beat them.
  • 1 0
 Huuh, Dakotah Norton's quali run is on Youtube now, and at 1:43 he's really really close to leaving the track when clipping that pole, maybe he was even outside of it.
Does someone know how exactly being inside/outside is defined, e.g. do you just have to hit the the pole at some point, or is the base of the pole, where it's anchored to the ground, the decisive factor?
If it's the latter, I'm not sure he was still inside the track. :o
  • 1 0
 Shhhh!
  • 1 0
 I think the tires need to stay inside the markers. So if even one tire goes around the pole marker (where it's stuck on the ground) on the outer side, it's leaving the track. Touching the pole is not an issue, or if the pedal clips it and folds it out of the way/ the pedal in a way going outside the track. From this clip alone - the speed and the angle - everything still looks good to me, or at least I'm unable to see the fault at this pace.
  • 1 0
 I've uploaded the screenshots here: https://www.pinkbike.com/u/sp00n82/album/Inside-or-Outside/

I also looked at the UCI regulations, but couldn't find anything in there(?).
  • 1 0
 @sp00n82: Okay it does look a bit so-so. Then again, a) if no officials spot it I think you pretty much get away with it and b) as Norton was protected anyway, the only thing it would've affected was his starting position.
  • 4 0
 Pole has a race team? That made it to Poland?
  • 7 0
 The team manager(?) took the reigns and managed to fund the two first races himself. So it's not officially a Pole team anymore or affiliated with them, but they race their bikes. From now on it's uncertain if they can keep going further, they have set up a GoFundMe to help them make it through the season. www.gofundme.com/f/seton-tuning-dh-team
  • 1 0
 @donimo: Wow. Dan Slack just missed out, too.
  • 2 0
 @HappyBiker19: Na. Top 60 go through. So he is in the semis.
  • 1 0
 @mitochris: Yes, just realized, that's great.
  • 2 0
 Yeah it's a shame if they have to bin the team and throw the rest of the season out the window for the riders. Dan had a mechanical problem in Fort William, but Onni had a good day being 39th in the semis. Now Onni apparently had a major crash this morning which screwed up his practice and then quali run, but it's great to see Dan now clearly making it in the semis. Hopefully further too, it's a bit sad now that the semis are not being broadcast young riders and teams like this trying to gather up sponsors are not getting any visibility even if they're just outside the top 30.
  • 4 0
  that feeling when all your fantasy riders made it through to semis.
  • 2 0
 Thanks to the salary cap I can't remember who is on my male team, my women's team is doing great!
  • 1 0
 vital’s fantasizing gives you that feeling every round—finals only!
  • 1 1
 @owl-X: they gotta make it to semis to get to the finals.
  • 1 0
 @corygharris: finals only—you can pick after semis. But yeah, I’d suggest choosing finalists.
  • 3 0
 I don't see Bruni in the start list ?
  • 2 0
 I think he is just not listed. there is a 1 minute gap between BROSNAN and PALAZZARI even though they go each 30 sec.
  • 1 0
 @phuq: yes he's on now Wink
  • 2 0
 Remind me again how many will be filtered to semi-finals for elite women? Will Vali make it?
  • 4 0
 UCI rulebook 4.11.014

Protected riders to the semi-final are:
1. riders with season long race numbers (i.e. ranked in the top 5 women elite and the top 10 men elite of the final UCI World Cup standings of the previous season)
...

Protected riders to the final are:
1. riders ranked in the top 3 women elite and top 3 men elite of the final UCI World
Cup standings of the previous season
...
  • 2 0
 @gysberts: Thanks! I forgot about the advantages afforded to protected riders!
  • 3 0
 Charlie Hatton and Dylan Levesque on EXACTLY the same time, nuts.
  • 5 1
 Dak Stak Attack!
  • 2 0
 Gutted Super Marra didn't make finals! How close the times are is nuts
  • 3 1
 Theo Theo he's our man, if Greg can't do it, Theo can!
  • 4 0
 He seems way dumber than Greg, bru...
  • 2 0
 8.6 seconds separating the top 60 qualifiers is madness!
  • 3 1
 Where can you stream?
  • 5 0
 You can't. Qualis have never been streamed.
  • 1 0
 @commental: And semi ? I d'ont think so but i hope
  • 1 0
 @lerouge: Your guess is as good as mine.
  • 1 0
 @lerouge: Nope. Apparently semis aren't broadcast this year. All the official communication only talks about how "you can watch the finals live".
  • 2 0
 @edspratt Did you guys ever get any reply to the questions about not showing the semis this year from UCI/ WBD?
  • 3 0
 @donimo: We have no update to share yet, going off the official press releases from WBD it's just junior and elite finals that will be shown live at the moment.
  • 31 1
 @edspratt: how have you, nor any of the other mainstream mountain bike media, not done a proper story/interview on this lack of semi final coverage yet? This is a pretty major change to say the least, and one that certainly was not clearly announced...if anything it was only relatively recently that it was announced that they would be broadcast for free the same as last year...I mean at Fort William it was even filmed, played on the big screens there, and the commentators were even sat in the booth watching the footage...yet none of it was broadcast outside of the event...very odd indeed! I'm like many other are not happy as a fan, but sponsors and riders can't be happy either, the exposure has suddenly decreased massively.
Come on you're meant to be journalists, and this is a massive story!
  • 5 0
 Yeah kilometers of the cables, and all that stuff just to show only final runs... Today since morning camera guys were on their positions, but just scratching their heads...
  • 3 0
 @ciosu: Yeah, it just feels more wasteful in every way to haul up the whole production and people to the race site before the weekend and then only broadcasting the finals.
  • 12 0
 @edhayetc: I agree, pinkbike, vital etc. should be doing a huge write up on the non communication from the production company that instituted semi finals and then no longer feels the need to broadcast it!
  • 7 0
 @donimo: Reminder to the UCI that the justification for semis was to provide more exposure to the up-and-coming riders. Now they’re not exposed at all…
  • 3 0
 Yeah the field is getting bigger/better but the coverage getting smaller. Not sure what the logic is in that!?
  • 2 0
 @donimo: Except for the website that implies "all the action" is live: ucimtbworldseries.com/watch...
  • 3 0
 @boozed: Not to defend the UCI, but I don’t think that’s a legally binding document.
  • 1 0
 @sfarnum: You're absolutely right and it's contradicted by almost everything else they've said on the issue. I think it's a ridiculous situation...
  • 1 0
 @boozed: Maybe they just don't think there's any action outside the finals. (If we're being that specific about wording, that also only applies to the fans in Australia.) On the event specific pages with the schedule they specifically mention how "you can watch the finals live".
  • 1 0
 Things aren’t going great for atwell
  • 1 0
 What happened to amoury pierron ?
  • 1 0
 Qualified 13th
  • 1 0
 Where is Intense and Norco ???
  • 2 1
 I HATE EUROSPORT APP SO FUCKING MUCH!
  • 1 0
 Good to see our willy skin coming in 14th
  • 1 0
 Did Asa not start?!
  • 3 0
 Junior qualifying is after elites.
  • 2 1
 @edspratt: Any info on whether semis will be broadcast this round? Or is it the usual answer that "we've reached out to WB/D but they haven't replied"?
  • 5 0
 @commental: Still nothing from WBD to us, going off the press releases this week only junior and elite finals will be broadcast. Just live timing for the semi-finals again.
  • 7 0
 @edspratt: Awesome. Live timing is such an exciting way to "watch" racing. I can't think of a better way to bring new fans to the sport.
  • 1 0
 @commental: if it results in less interest, and semis getting cut next year, I’m fine with it.
  • 8 0
 @pisgahgnar: I would be if it got cut and we went back to 60 qualifiers, but I think it'll get cut to 30. Personally I'm not fine with that.
  • 1 0
 @edspratt: disco is trying to save about USD$5 billion. I guess it will be a big no to any good news about coverage for quite a while.
  • 5 0
 @commental: last race Ric said some stupid comment about how the aerial view of the track looks like an F1 track. Before Red Bull lost the rights the head of Warner Brothers went to a race and commented how he didn’t realize there are factory teams like F1. Ric’s comment didn’t come out of nowhere. You know these jerks are talking in the background about turning this thing into a pro series with just a couple high profile riders. So yeah, you are probably right
  • 1 0
 @commental: Heres my live streaming view: ibb.co/MNzhQtg - so damn exciting to sit there watching that on a Saturday night... lol
  • 1 0
 Where can we see finals?







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