The international downhill season is done and dusted, and boy, what a belter: storms, surprises, injuries, snapped frames, exploding wheels, and disqualifications. A few weeks after the World Champs in Cairns, I have finally detangled myself from the tenterhooks where I spent most of the season and cleaned off the smell of anxious sweat that stained me as I watched in suspense. It was a wild season of highs and lows, and winners were crowned and loser's frowned.
The riders that garnered my attention most during the season were Tahnée Seagrave and Greg Minnaar. Neither of these riders took the overall or champs, but Tahnée had a breakout year winning three WC's and showing what she is capable of at a young age. On the other side of the spectrum, Greg has been racing on the world's stage for twenty years and had one of his best seasons ever, despite all the chips seeming to stack against him – even when the unthinkable happened, he still showed steely determination and good sportsmanship.
Val di Sole always delivers, the brutal track is littered with rocks and roots hidden deep in dust and loam. This Italian mountainside always pushes riders above their limits and showcases downhill racing at its best.
Which was your favorite World Cup downhill race and riders of the year?