Fort William 2015... a portrait. These dark sodden woods were where this race was won and lost.
Fort William 2015... a portrait. These dark sodden woods were where this race was won and lost.

Rachel Atherton charged hard top to bottom. She was the only female not to come off her bike today. She also took the points jersey.
It was a weekend most certainly not for the faint-hearted. Only the toughest in the game will make sense of a 6am practice in the Scottish wind and rain.

Welcome indeed...
Welcome to...
And we thought bullets were banned...
... the Highlands.

Emmeline was a big threat once again here at the Bill. Sadly the unpredictable conditions were her undoing this time around.
Emmeline was a big threat once again here at the 'Bill. Sadly the unpredictable conditions were her undoing this time around.

Last year s winner and previous series leader Emmeline Ragot went down in one of the huge holes that had blown open in the forest after what had been a long day of abuse for the sodden course.
More than a mouthful for poor Emmeline, going down in one of the huge holes that had blown open on the muddy woods and giving up the leaders jersey to Rachel.

Manon Carpenter took fourth today at Fort Bill. Carpenter will be looking to climb higher in the rankings in Leogang.
Manon Carpenter took 4th today after terrifying everyone with an almighty crash on the archway jump.
The dirt on the back of the jersey tells the tale of the day for Manon Carpenter who took a scary slam off the final jump just meters from the finish arena.
The dirt on the back of the jersey tells the tale of the day for Manon.

Tahnee Seagrave did a couple great things this weekend. She finished second today and raised ten thousand pounds for breast cancer research.
Tahnee Seagrave did a couple great things this weekend... She finished second today, and raised ten thousand pounds for breast cancer research auctioning off her pink #coppafeel Devinici Wilson.

Tahnee was ecstatic after her best ever World Cup finish in 2nd place.
Tahnee ecstatic after her best ever World Cup finish on home soil.

Katy Curd stunned a lot of people to make her first ever podium appearance.
Katy Curd stunned a lot of people to make her first ever podium appearance.
British rider and current 4X World Champion Katy Curd hit the podium today. She barely cared as you can tell...
The current 4X World Champion, turned downhiller, barely cared as you can tell...

What else can we say about Rachel Atherton. Against more than a few odds she raised her game today and gave the crowd exactly what they came to see.
What else can we say about Rachel Atherton. Against more than a few odds she raised her game today and gave the crowd exactly what they came to see.

No one gets louder cheers in Fort William than Rachel Atherton.
No one gets louder cheers in Fort William than Rachel Atherton.

It might not have been raining but temps were still below freezing to start the day.
It might not have been raining so hard today but temps were certainly verging on the freezing first thing.
Troy Brosnan skipped out on practice today but came up to check lines in the woods during the juniors.
Troy Brosnan skipped out on some practice this morning to check the ever-changing lines in the woods during the juniors.

Junior points leader Andrew Crimmins was on a good time until getting off line here in the bottom woods.
Junior points leader, Andrew Crimmins was on a good time until getting off line here in the bottom woods.


Loris Revelli of team AB Devinci Italy looked great on track all morning and managed to blast his way to 4th in the junior contest.
Loris Revelli of team AB Devinci Italy looked great on track all morning and managed to blast his way to 4th in the junior contest.

Alex Marin Trillo had a great weekend in the juniors alongside senior team mate Marcello. With a strong result at Round 1 to match he s well in contention for the junior title chase.
Alex Marin Trillo had a great weekend in the juniors alongside senior team mate Marcello. With a strong result at Round 1 to match he's well in contention for the junior title chase.
Laurie Greenland took second place today at Fort William and took the points Jersey while he was at it.
Laurie Greenland took second place today at Fort William and took the points Jersey while he was at it.


Martin Maes was unstoppable in the Junior race and pulled back huge time on the lower part of the track to win Fort William for the second straight year.
Martin Maes was unstoppable in the Junior race and pulled back huge time on the lower part of the track to win Fort William for the second straight year.

The Muscles from Brussels raises his glass to Martin Maes and his win here at Fort William.
The "Muscles from Brussels" raises his glass to Martin Maes, and his win here at Fort William.

These two were stumbling down the track yelling to the pub The more beer you drink at Fort William the easier it is to navigate down the hill - which was slicker than snot on a door knob today.
These two were stumbling down the track yelling "to the pub!" The more beer you drink at Fort William, the easier it is to navigate down the hill - which was slicker than snot on a door knob today.
Dave Trumpore slogs through the bog thanks to a cheap pair of Wellies. The best investment of the week for sure.
Dave Trumpore slogs through the bog thanks to a cheap pair of Wellies. The best investment of the week, for sure.

The only guy who seemed to be happy about the deluge the last couple of days.
Definitely the only guy who seemed to be happy about the deluges in the last couple of days.

Yes that is what it looks like. After 4 straight days of rain the sun finally made an appearance just in time for finals.
Yes that is what it looks like. After 4 straight days of rain, the sun finally made an appearance just in time for finals.

Last years winner Troy Brosnan was just slightly off pace today and ended up in the loneliest placing of them all. 6th place and just one spot back from the podium.
Last years winner, Troy Brosnan, was just slightly off pace today and ended up in the loneliest placing of them all. 6th place and just one spot back from the podium.

Fire in the hole... Stevie smith back in the gate. Qualifying 7th and looking good on track today we think it won t be long before he s back to his old self.
Fire in the hole... Stevie Smith back in the gate. Qualifying 7th and looking good on track today, we think it won't be long before he's back to his old self.

Marcelo Gutierrez was looking fast in practice Friday. He kept up the pace on Sunday to finish third. Marcelo is also the first Colombian on a World Cup DH podium.
Marcelo Gutierrez was looking fast in practice Friday. He kept up the pace on Sunday to finish third and become the first Colombian on a World Cup DH podium.

There were plenty of Frenchman fighting for top 20 spots this weekend... Of the challengers was youngster Benoit Coulanges of Roc VTT Oz-en-Oisans who charged into an incredible 15th place just behind far more experienced countryman Florent Payet.
There were plenty of Frenchman fighting for top 20 spots this weekend... Of the challengers was youngster, Benoit Coulanges, of Roc VTT Oz-en-Oisans who charged into an incredible 15th place, just behind far more experienced countryman, Florent Payet.

After stealing the spotlight in Lourdes finishing 10th Rudy Cabirou continues to impress. while he could only hold 24th he took the 5th fastest top split. Look out for this guy and his little sister winner of today s junior women s race.
After stealing the spotlight in Lourdes, finishing 10th, Rudy Cabirou continues to impress. while he could only hold 24th he took the 5th fastest top split. Look out for this guy and his little sister, winner of today's junior women's race.

One of those days... And it was one of those days for a lot of people.
One of those days... And it was one of those days for a lot of people.

After a rough start to the season Sam Blenkinsop finally landed himself a spot of the podium and with it a much lower number plate for Leogang next weekend.
After a rough start to the season Sam Blenkinsop finally landed himself a spot of the podium, and with it a much lower number plate for Leogang next weekend.

Sam Dale pushed hard to back up his 5th place from round one but would leave Fort William way down the finish order and covered in dirt.
Sam Dale pushed hard to back up his 5th place from round one, but would leave Fort William way down the finish order and covered in dirt.

Mondraker s Innes Graham couldn t race at Lourdes because he didn t have any points... So he got a GB jersey for Fort William and nailed 17th.
Mondraker's Innes Graham couldn't race at Lourdes because he didn't have any points... So he got a GB jersey for Fort William and nailed 17th.

Josh Bryceland is hard as. With big crashes leaving him in quite a bit of pain it was a mission just for him to get down the track without stopping today.
Josh Bryceland is hard as. With big crashes leaving him in quite a bit of pain it was a mission just for him to get down the track without stopping today.

The Ratboy dug deep and sent his race run with style despite his argument with a Scottish oak in Friday s practice.
The Ratboy dug deep and sent his race run with style, despite his argument with a Scottish oak in Friday's practice.

Mike Jones was pinned all weekend and started the day off by qualifying in second spot. Sadly the track caught him out later in the day and he was not able to back it up when all was on the line.
Mike Jones was pinned all weekend and started the day off by qualifying in second spot. Sadly the track caught him out later in the day and he was not able to back it up when all was on the line.

Luca Shaw is transitioning to the senior ranks very well this season. With a top 15 in round one and a top 10 today it might not e too long until we see him on the podium.
Luca Shaw is transitioning to the senior ranks very well this season. With a top 15 in round one and a top 10 today it might not be too long until we see him on the podium.

Fort William 2015
Brendan sending it into the most magnificent finishing arena of our sport.

Brosnan tightest tucker in the game...
Brosnan, tightest tucker in the game...

After winning qualifying a random rock hidden in a rut ended Loic Bruni s hopes at taking his first World Cup win today. He took in in stride but we know he is burning to win one of these things and will be out for revenge in Leogang next weekend.
After winning qualifying, a random rock hidden in a rut ended Loic Bruni's hopes at taking his first World Cup win today. He took it in stride, but we know he is burning to win one of these things and will be out for revenge in Leogang next weekend.

Loic Bruni had an off today that cost him what very well could have been a win here in Fort William. Bruni finished seventh.
Loic destroying the boulders of the upper section.


One of these days Loic s going put wrongs to right. Somehow he was still able to come in 7th and only drop to 2nd in the overall despite his spill in the woods. Look out Leogang...
One of these days Loic's going put wrongs to right. Somehow he was still able to come in 7th and only drop to 2nd in the overall despite his spill in the woods. Look out Leogang...

Aaron Gwin came through will a smashing time. Nearly seven seconds up on George Brannigan who was in the hot seat when Gwin came across the line.
Aaron Gwin came through with a smashing time. Nearly seven seconds up on George Brannigan, who was in the hot seat when Gwin came across the line.

Fort William 2015
Despite his many big knocks of late, Gee Atherton, powered into fourth.

After Rachel s win earlier in the day the crowd went mental as Gee came across the line just seconds away from the win.
After Rachel's win earlier in the day the crowd went mental as Gee came across the line just seconds away from the win.

Minnaar denies flying under the radar this weekend but he surely did less laps than most. After 22nd with a thumb fresh from surgery in Lourdes a clean bill of health was all he needed to take his 5th Fort William victory.
Minnaar denies flying under the radar this weekend, but he surely did fewer laps than most. After 22nd with a thumb fresh from surgery in Lourdes, a clean bill of health was all he needed to take his 5th Fort William victory.

Greg Minnaar speeding to glory and seventeen World Cup wins.
The man, the myth, speeding to glory and seventeen World Cup wins.

Greg Minnaar standing out in the crowd.
Greg Minnaar standing out in the crowd.

No matter what you can never count the champ out. Minnaar takes his first win of the season tying Peaty for total world cup wins.
No matter what, you can never count the champ out.
Uh -oh you didn t count him out did you
Minnaar takes his first win of the season, tying Peaty for total world cup wins.

Greg makes his way through the media blitz in the finish corral.
Greg makes his way through the media blitz in the finish corral.

Welcome to the podium Marcelo.
Welcome to the podium Marcelo.

The first ever downhill World Cup podium for Colombia and the first ever for a Norco rider.
The first ever downhill World Cup podium for Colombia and the first ever for a Norco rider.
Four British women out of five on the Fort William podium for 2015.
Four British women out of five on the Fort William podium for 2015.

Fort William 2015
Stoke is high. See you all in Austria.


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79 Comments

  • + 183
 so, let's see:
- Carpenter's absolutely ballsy attempt on that final jump (shit-in-my-pants worthy crash following)
- Gutierrez on the podium
- Minaar in the hot seat and then winning
- Bruni's show of "respect, You the boss" to Minaar

Another absolutely fantastic stage of WC. Thank You Pinkbike, RedBull and Scotland.
  • + 12
 True story. I was so cheering Minaar to the Win. Stocked! What an event...
  • + 6
 so good, you summed it up well! That was a war!
  • + 12
 When Bruni crossed the finish line he was pointing at the hot seat holy shit Minnaar!
  • + 41
 you forgot another procore tyre exploding its way down the track Wink
  • - 7
flag TLDandSPECIALIZED (Jun 8, 2015 at 1:24) (Below Threshold)
 When I saw Loic cross the line and point at Minaar with that smile on his face, I also noticed that he took his left had off the bars (rear brake) which would have made it difficult to stop the bike before running into the approaching fence. I thought we were going to see another "Brendan Faircloth at Lourdes type of crash".
  • + 10
 loic runs his front on the left
  • + 10
 French riders have their rear on the right I believe, hence how he could skid and point at the same time?
  • - 8
flag HutchJR (Jun 8, 2015 at 2:18) (Below Threshold)
 haha @Bruccio he had a slow puncture and then landed on a massive rick that smashed his rim... Nothing to do with Procore
  • - 10
flag Chuvak (Jun 8, 2015 at 2:51) (Below Threshold)
 Rago with her finish jump has proven that even whomen can have balls too. Unsuccessful, unfortunately, but she was the only one brave enougth to try. Hope she will be 1st again in next race
  • + 11
 don't you mean manon? ragot had her crash halfway down
  • + 19
 HutchJR - If you actually watch the replay, the tyre/procore blows first, then he smashes the rim after when he lands off the drop on a rock. Watch it again and you will see.
  • - 9
flag HutchJR (Jun 8, 2015 at 4:12) (Below Threshold)
 well considering that i was right there when it happened i think i might have caught something that wasn't on camera
  • + 6
 two rounds and two different winners..a different winner in Austria will make the competition more exciting! rooting for Brosnan or Hart to win there! also Ragot or Carpenter!
  • + 3
 @jnt1989

Isn't this a norm to run rear on the right? Of course it is about personal preference, but EVERYONE I know and every bike I have ever seen in a bike-park: either someones personal bike or rental - throughout Scandinavia, Germany and Austria - have their rear on the right. So maybe it is that English-speaking world prefers the rear on the left for some reason, but I would imagine that is not something that can be described as "norm". I have never given it a longer thought. Am I wrong?
  • + 10
 Right front/ moto style is how we do things in the UK and a fair number of other countries but the majority of the world including north america uses the opposite setup.
  • + 2
 oh, couldnt come up with the moto analogy. But at least it makes some sense this way. Thanks, Patrick
  • + 11
 Oh, that's my bad. Sorry. Carpenter of course. Everything is messed up in my head) was so much cheering for Ragot, but Manon's jump was really impressing
  • + 5
 ⬆ What he said.
  • + 4
 One of the best Cups to date! So much skill and emotion being pushed into this race both from the riders and the spectators. It was awesome watching Gwin stomp the mountain so smoothly but Minaar coming down and scraping by with the win was momentous to watch. My kids asleep didn't stop me from screaming like crazy for Minaar to take the win! Also can anyone believe Loic Brunis as he came down the final chute after the spectator jump and launched the whole chute down!?!? Loic's on fire even on a bumpy run!
  • + 4
 So what I saw: tire clearly has air in it as it moves out of frame. as it hits the beginning of the bridge(or maybe a rock just in front of it,) procore explodes(you can actually see & hear it: much louder bang than a normal tire exploding, & you see the mist from high pressure air, which you don't see from a normal tire.) He then rides off the drop onto a big rock & destroys his wheel.
  • + 2
 @groghunter my thoughts exactly, I went through it several times. Flat first (you can see the sealant explode), rolls off bridge, hits rock with the instanta flat and folds the rim. Doesn't change my opinion of Procore, pro riders will find a way to kill anything.
  • + 1
 It makes me wonder about procore, given that supposedly you can ride procore with a flat tire, but it blew off the rim for him & I don't think he even had a flat at the time. I wouldn't expect even a tube to snakebite on that tiny little drop to the wood.
  • + 63
 Absolute mountain bike porn, thanks pinkbike!
  • + 4
 Giggdy.... errr, I mean DHiggdy.
  • - 2
 Hardcore category
  • + 42
 Pinkbike is turning out some badass coverage this year and all the athletes are killing it!
  • + 2
 Would love to see Sam Hill in the mix, now that Smith is back on the bike the WC is anyone to grab!
  • + 36
 Wish they had a pic of Bruni giving props to Minnaar the instant he crossed the finish. That was real classy of him. But really, hard to ask for anything specific with this glorious batch of photos!
  • + 29
 Once again, I am astonished by the outstanding level of photography to which we are all treated for free on this website.

Also, I’m absolutely ecstatic for so many people: Minnaar, Gutierrez, Blenki, Wyn Masters, Florent Payet, the list goes on and on…shame about Smith, Ragot and Carpenter (but it’s all relative - all three came back from big crashes in their own way).

Most of all, though, it was great to see not only CG and Peaty but also Loïc Bruni congratulating Minnaar as soon as he’d finished his own (presumably disappointing for him) run.

You’d struggle to find sportsmanship like that in any 'mainstream' sport.
  • + 24
 FEST, FMB, EWS are all pretty cool. But nothing captures my heart and mind quite like World Cup DH. Except for maybe Rampage. Cheers to brave athletes riding big bikes down gnarly mountains.
  • - 12
flag luis101 (Jun 7, 2015 at 23:21) (Below Threshold)
 FEST in the same phrase as fmb and enduro world series??? how dare you
  • + 5
 nothing like putting it all on the line, right there in front of everyone. One run and thats it. So simple and pure. Epic.
  • + 4
 I like the professionalism, while still having fun, over how bro-tasitc the rampage coverage has been. (But that could be 99% the announcer.)
  • + 20
 Stoked we don't have to wait a month for the next race!
  • + 11
 man how unlucky is loic bruni, i really hope he gonna get one of these very soon Smile and would motivate him even more. i like this kid he looks very positive and the amount of respect he showed to minnar was really great from him.
  • + 12
 No picture of Rachel licking Tahnee's face on the podium?!
  • + 13
 What?!?
  • + 2
 Yeah
  • + 0
 Where?
  • + 9
 For the life of me I can't see why dh hasn't translated to mainstream TV. Even a half hour highlights show would be incredible
  • + 7
 so good to see stevie back on a bike, even though his run ended up being a load of waffles. best of luck to him for the rest of the season and future seasons. and ratboy, god all I want is to see ratboy get his stripes someday. glad he's still riding after bar fighting and body slamming trees.
  • + 5
 @Worm-Burner Rachel sprayed champagne in Tahnee's face then licked her cheek!
  • + 2
 Watching Loic destroy qualifying was awesome...

But then to bump into him straight after that pedalling his pit bike (skinny turbo trainer tire and all) back up the fire road beyond the wallride, I assume to keep his legs spinning or to scope out the course...what a pro. His time will come!
  • + 5
 those are some POD's right there. awesome coverage pinkbike, megaprops!
  • + 5
 Norco's first podium courtesy of Blenki. Good job Sam!
  • + 5
 Where can I get that "chain" shirt?
  • + 3
 i thought he had some nunchuks for a second. just a selfie stick. haha. selfie
  • + 3
 check out unit clothing
  • + 1
 I checked Unit clothing, and did not find it....but thanks bro!
  • + 4
 These photos are outstanding!

If I were Ratboy, I'd want that black & white one framed above my mantlepiece....badass!
  • + 1
 Another great race in Fort Bill. Props to the photogs and Redbull for great coverage.

Congrats to Minnar on the win. I was really impressed with Luca Shaw. First year elite and he was on fire all weekend. Had a nice clean run and it looks like hes got the speed to hang with the big boys.

Leogang will be a different animal. And will Schwable ever get procore sorted out?
  • + 3
 Blenki might be first men's podium for Norco, but Jill Kintner has been there before.
  • + 3
 Anyone else think Cedric's got an evil twin with a twirly moustache hidden in the Andrew Crimmins crash photo.....
  • + 4
 Hopefully that's Katy Curd's first of many podiums.
  • + 5
 Go Wyn smashed it bro!
  • + 4
 Fort Bill never disappoints :O
  • + 4
 Real happy to see Manon finish 4th even after that horrendous crash.
  • + 1
 do you have a link for that?
i didn't caught it
  • + 1
 same here, I cant believe she could even ride down!
  • + 1
 Props to the photographers. Beautiful work! Dave, love love love your shutter drag photos. Now go clean your sensor or stop shooting above f/2.8!
  • + 2
 Dirty sensors and lenses happen when you shoot two EWS rounds and a WC all in a row, and in some of the worst weather imaginable ;-) and you only see sensor dust or crap on the lens when shooting around f11 and higher.
  • + 1
 Glad your bodies survived the chaos! Keep up the great work Dave.
  • + 1
 Big up to all riders! Weekend looked rough. Totally stoked for Minnaar's top podium run!!! Guess my podium prediction for this race was a tad off... Smile
  • + 2
 Mine was shit as well... There goes the double crown fork from fantasy contest...
  • + 1
 After Mannon's crash something flew off of her body. Rob Warner said it was her shie but I recall her finishing with two shoes on. Maybe it was her visor.
  • + 1
 Anyone know what kind of GoPro pole the dude is holding in the last picture?
  • + 1
 So where can we get those Santa Cruz trade team stickers, like Minnaar was wearing in the finish???
  • + 0
 Brilliant photo essay, captures the emotion, intensity and spirit of the UCI DH finals that video alone cannot. Well done !
  • + 1
 Well that was one heck of a helmet debut for Manon, and now time for a new one!
  • + 2
 Let's petition santa cruz to make/wear a
FU
CI
jersey
  • + 1
 thanx PB for showing more of the ladies in the begginning!!! epic stuff this weekend...
  • + 1
 Looks like a suicide mission going down that track!
  • + 1
 Fair play Manon getting back on and finishing her run, that was a SLAM!
  • + 1
 plug laptop into tv, then hit f11
  • + 2
 Who won Tahnee's bike?
  • + 1
 I like it!!
  • + 1
 Nice shots

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