It was another dry and dusty day in the French Alps as a few hundred racers pointed their bikes down the slopes of Les Gets and turned what was once a whole lot of grass into a slippery dirt speedway. Traditionally it has been Mont Sainte Anne that has consistently held the title as the fastest track on the circuit, but with the speed we've been seeing here in Les Gets, that claim to fame may now be debatable. Right out of the gate riders are fully pinned and that pace rarely lets up until they reach the bottom. Throw in a few loose and dusty corners, some off-camber grass, big g-outs, and a few massive jumps and you have the recipe for something special.
The usual suspects were looking fast and the timed training results certainly prove that, but we really won't know who has the pace on this old-school classic until the qualifying rounds tomorrow afternoon. Sadly, one racer who will not be on track is the defending World Champion Rachel Atherton - she suffered a ruptured Achilles tendon from landing heavy off the final jump on the track. With Rachel out, as well as Tahnee Seagrave and Myriam Nicole, we'll surely see some fresh faces on the women's podium this weekend. But for now, it looks like Tracey Hannah is in the driver's seat when it comes to the overall points chase.
The Men's race will surely be too close to call once again, and with a high-speed track and nothing overly technical to separate anyone by big margins, the time gaps between riders will most definitely be measured in the fractions of seconds.