Final Results: French Cup DH - Les Orres

Sep 13, 2020
by Ed Spratt  

With many of the world's fastest riders in attendance, the French Cup in Les Orres more closely resembles a World Cup than a national race. In both races, it was the current World Champions Myriam Nicole and Loic Bruni who took the win today. In the Women's racing, Myriam secured a large margin of over four seconds to Marine Cabirou who is just back to racing after she has been recovering from COVID 19. Third place went to Tracey Hannah who has now arrived in Europe ready for what is left of the racing season.

In the Men's racing Loic's teammate Finn Iles wouldn't be far behind in second place, 1.47 seconds back. Third place would go to first-year Elite rider Thibaut Daprela who has had some amazing results so far this year and should be on everyone's radar when World Cup racing returns. Check out the full results from the French Cup below.



1st. Loic Bruni: 3:24.19
2nd. Finn Iles: +1.47
3rd. Thibaut Daprela: +2.43
4th. Loris Vergier: +2.91
5th. Benoit Coulanges: +5.04


1st. Myriam Nicole: 3:55.86
2nd. Marine Cabirou: +4.29
3rd. Tracey Hannah: +4.75
4th. Camille Balanche: +9.01
5th. Monika Hrastnik: +9.25


Top 30 Men:

Find the full results here.


  • 52 1
 These French Cups have been really cool to follow this year. Great to see so much relatively unknown French talent mixing with the WC guys in the top 20. From the outside looking in it seems like the French high school cycling program has produced an incredible pool of talent, I’d love to read an article by @mattwragg (or someone else knowledgeable about the scene) exploring how that program works!
  • 69 0
 That is a good idea. I may steal it. Wink
  • 5 0
 @mattwragg: Please do!
  • 2 1
 Good point, my understanding is that a lot of kids end up in sports focused schools, and the cool thing about France is that they generally support a lot of smaller sports, not just soccer and a few bigger sports.

Also a ton of the top frenchies come from a region where the youth competitions have a round of Xc, a round of trials and a round of DH over the same weekend (Not sure if this is a regional thing or national level)
  • 3 0
 @Mugen: yes régional thing all season rounded by a selection that goes to the "national champs of young mtber". If it's still the same rules you have to ride the same frame for the three disciplines. Cool events !
  • 1 0
 can someone fill me in on the French high school programs?
  • 1 0
 @Fektor: let’s hope @mattwrag writes an article because I also would love to know. I would love to trickle down the structure into a youth program In my home town.
  • 8 0
 @Fektor: Pretty straight forward. It’s wine, cheese and cycling. You can also study pastry as an elective!!
  • 1 0
 This week I learned that BC has a High School Mountain Bike Championship:

Students have to participate in both XC and Enduro in order to earn points. Rules:

School that participate are mostly in Squamish, Whistler, North Vancouver, Revelstoke, etc. The obvious cities.
  • 1 0
 @Clem-mk: holly cow! Same frame!? I mean, at least it allows kids who can’t afford 3 bikes to compete fairly.
  • 4 0
 @eblackwell : yeah... there is not really such a thing as « high school Program » here.

Remember : free schools. We have good education but not much budget for sports or stuff like that. High school here is nothing like you know is north america; high school sports competition is basically non-existing (or it’s juste « for fun »)
  • 2 0
 @Mugen: there are school championships, but French youth biking is very much dominated by club competitions. Colleges (junior high) will often have a sports specific class in each year, usually concentrating on outdoor sports and athletics. In cities they may lead towards team sports, but not here! My youngest is in our local public college doing mountain biking and rock climbing, she loves sport class!
The TR and TFJV are the club based trophies run by the national federation that combine XC, DH and trials on the same bike (150mm max rear suspension, single crown fork)
The top kids almost unanimously ride carbon XC hardtails, with a few exceptions.
Participation was down last year in our region as more kids Enduro and DH competitions are being organised.
  • 41 0
 Thinking Finn Iles might be standing on a World Cup podium this year.
  • 15 0
 I think he's due for one soon. We all know he has the talent, just a matter of time.
  • 6 0
 I’d love to see a WC battle between Bruni and Iles while they are still on the same team
  • 5 0
 @twhart20: It would definitely make for a good season of Fast Life!
  • 2 0
 He was standing on a world cup podium last year, fort bill round 2 he came in 4th. That said, I also think he might be standing on a world Cup podium this year, but given the number of races we are likely to see( could be zero), I would not bet on it.
  • 18 0
 Remember when the BDS races were as stacked as a World Cup? I miss those days. This French series 2020 has been outstanding in the strength and depth of talent. Chapeau tup
  • 6 0
 Those were the years the brits were dominating the world cups. Now it's time for the french to show their talents. This just shows how important competitive regional and national scenes are for the growth of top athletes. even without all of these wc riders, the french cup is a high level series.
BTW, any ideas why the bds isn't what it was a handful of years back?
  • 9 0
 @ORTOGONAL555: I used to have a theory the brits talent came from the terrain and infrastructure limitations which made the style to session features and short sections over and over. Maybe too much uplift and not enough pushing 50lb rigs up through rough woody hillsides has made them soft.
  • 1 0
 @ORTOGONAL555: @si-paton may be able to fill you in on that. It was a special time though. You are absolutely right about the importance of a strong home series. Beer
  • 3 0
 @ORTOGONAL555: "Those were the years the brits were dominating the world cups." My memory is terrible, when was that?
  • 1 0
 @Bob-Agg: We also used to have a really well attended competitive national and regional level race series which I think honed a lot of young talent up to elite level.

The races still exist but from the outside they don't seem to be what they were.
  • 2 0
 @Dropthedebt: think enduro has been a big part of that. Downhill has become more niche now I guess. Still nothing like hearing the beeps though!
  • 2 0
 @AlanMck: it has definitely played a part in recent years. How is the DH race scene (pre covid) in your area? tup
  • 1 0
 @Dropthedebt: Much the same. I live on the mainland now, but back home the scene has dwindled. Harder to get good venues too. It feels like downhill, and mtb in general, was much more of a cult sport until about 10 years ago, and that it was run locally by people properly committed to the riding scene.
  • 13 0
 Benoit Coulanges rider of the year!
  • 4 0
 For sure the most improved rider during the pandemic.
  • 5 0
 Fantasy wildcard? he is super consistent as of now
  • 3 0
 Don't forget Antoine Pierron, the younger brother who also had really interesting results this year
  • 9 0
 Fabien Barel 33rd. Not bad
  • 6 0
 Daprela is defo one to watch this year
  • 5 1
 And Greg was in France (Valnord) but not there. It is not a real World Cup without him !.
  • 7 1
 Vallnord is in Andorra ????
  • 1 0
 @adrienjnt: Oups, sorry. "Close to France"
  • 3 0
 Thibaut Daprela showing elite pace consistently here lately. He’s coming
  • 4 0
 Fuck yah Finn!!!
  • 1 0
 I will always have a sweet spot for Coulanges as he rode a Nicolai with a gearbox up to WC level few Yeats ago ! Go Benoît !
  • 2 1
 There should be a hard tail focused category for DH racing. Or even a retro category. It would be so cool to see people tackle these tracks on some retro bikes or hard tails
  • 3 0
 Goddam Pom-pom!!
  • 4 1
 Pompon. Not Pom-pom. Not Pon Pon.
  • 2 0
  • 7 0
 Those where supposed to be fire not question marks
  • 1 1
 Thats more likely WC podiums!
  • 1 1
 Any idea why Brendog went jumping not racing?
  • 10 0
 Sponsors probably see more worth with him in the Audi Nines!
  • 4 0
 Those jumps sure looked cool
  • 3 15
flag chriss78 (Sep 13, 2020 at 11:06) (Below Threshold)
 @gaffney92: Sadly you are probably right. Shame £ is more important than racing.
  • 28 1
 @gaffney92: i mean... it surely can’t have anything to do with his love of big jumps and frequent attendance at events like rampage and fest series.

I’m sure he is really suffering being over there at a two week chilled out world level media sesh with friends instead of at a weekend National race pressured for results.....

Sounds like he has it pretty rough. Darn those sponsors.
  • 2 0
 @chriss78: That’s why I don’t race-
or else my family and I would starve...
  • 2 0
 @chriss78: it is his livelihood. So would make sense to go where the money is. Especially in a season as bare as this year
  • 3 1
 Savage down voting. Lesson learned, don't drink and type. I miss watching Brendon racing.
  • 1 0
 @Staktup: bold of you to assume you'd still be alive
  • 3 4
 A lot of Commencals in the top ten and top 30, yes their french and its in France but go Commencal!!
  • 1 0
 Are these televised?
  • 2 0
 No not this year but last year yes

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