Pinkbike Predictions: World Cup DH Fort William 2019

May 31, 2019
by Sarah Moore  



It's almost race day! It seems like ages ago, but really it was just five weeks ago that the World Cup DH season kicked off in Maribor, Slovenia. Now, we're going to be back between the tapes to a classic venue, Fort William. The weather is looking typically Scottish, with rain forecast for the entire weekend and cool temperatures. You can check out the course, weather conditions and past race results in the Pinkbike Primer.

Will an older racer be able to use their experience to take the win or will the young guns continue to upset the old guard and take the top step? I've consulted the Pinkbike crystal ball once again to get us some predictions.


Men

1st. Danny Hart

Danny Hart has this track on lock like few others and has come so close to winning multiple times in years gone by. Slipping off the podium today by one place would have stung.

Danny Hart has this track on lock like few others and has come so close to winning multiple times in years gone by. Slipping off the podium last year by one place would have stung, but with a second place less than half a second behind Loic Bruni in Maribor, Hart is off to a strong start to the season so this could be his year in Fort William.

2nd. Greg Minnaar

Greg Minnaar is the undisputed master of Fort William.

Greg Minnaar has won Fort William seven times. That's more than anyone else in the history of the race. Tracy Moseley comes closest, with two fewer wins than Minnaar. Minnaar's first win was over a decade ago, but he's taken a win on the track as recently as 2017. With that kind of winning history, it's hard to count Minnaar out for a podium even if we haven't seen him quite pull together a winning run since his injury.

3rd. Amaury Pierron

Amaury Pierron goes from strength to strength. 10th today with 7th place splits on the way down.

It all came together for Amaury Pierron at Fort William last year, precipitating a series of wins that ended up earning him the World Cup overall title. Last year he only took the win by 0.27 seconds, but the confidence that he can win on the long and rough track will help him get back on the podium in 2019.



Women

1st. Tahnee Seagrave

Tahnee Seagrave sites third but will have to pull back over 9 seconds if she wants to challenge Rachel for the win.

Tahnee took the win at round one in Maribor and the win here in Fort William last year so she heads into the second round as the favourite for the win.

2nd. Rachel Atherton

Rachel Atherton makes her way down the never ending ribbon of granite en route to the fastest time of the day in qualifying.
Photo: Callum Philpott

Rachel Atherton has won here in 2013, 2015 and 2016 so if it's not her on the top of the podium this weekend, she'll definitely be in the medals. Even a snapped chain and a crash couldn't keep her from third place last year.

3rd. Marine Cabirou

Marine Cabirou is emerging as one of the lead women riders and matched her number board in 4th today.

Marine Cabirou came third in Andorra in 2017 and with a fourth at the season opener and a fourth at Fort William last year, it's about time she got some hardware around her neck again. We think Fort William is the place she'll be able to get it.





Fantasy League

Don't forget to complete your DH Fantasy team before the Elite Women's qualifying starts on Saturday. If you don't know who to pick, check out our 2018 season breakdown and our Form Guide that takes a look at who is looking good coming into the season. Here are all the highlights videos from previous years' races.


The Fantasy Downhill League is Presented by Trek and SRAM.



MENTIONS: @trek / @SramMedia




58 Comments

  • + 69
 The chap that stole Aaron's bike is going to come screaming down the hill on it and set the best time
  • - 12
flag Dropthedebt (May 31, 2019 at 8:24) (Below Threshold)
 Could have been a chap-ess who stole the bike Jail
  • + 21
 Fastest crankless run ever
  • + 14
 For his own safety, he'd better set the fastest time outta there, too.
  • + 5
 @noapathy: For his own safety, he'd better swap out those cranks.
  • + 2
 Claims first plus the cash reward. Smart.
  • + 49
 You couldn't afford that team pinkbike!
  • + 22
 Bah.... Troy is gonna shake, shake, shake those hands all the way to the top of the podium this year!
  • + 1
 *plays "Sandstorm" by Darude*
  • + 19
 Crazy not to have money on Rachel.
  • + 3
 Yes that might be the difference when you are no longer representing big fishes and trying to fish on their pool...
  • + 18
 Tinker and Missy.
  • + 6
 Tinker? My bet is on Tomac...
  • + 6
 @level4designs: Eh? Naw, Rockwell.
  • + 9
 Reports coming in that Tahnee crashed and injured her shoulder according to Singletrack. Had to be helped off the hill, may not race?
  • + 9
 Oh no! We're looking into it... World Cup Predictor curse!
  • + 8
 Since fantasy sucks I'm going back to the 1, 2, 3's:

1. Brosnan
2. Hart
3. Loic

1. Tahnee
2. Rachel
3. Kate Weatherly
  • - 1
 @hamncheez: Looked up the cost of adding Weatherly, thats some cheap fantasying. Picked for shits & giggles. Extra 75k to spend elsewhere now.
  • + 2
 @hamncheez:

The UCI follow the IOC regulations on transgender athletes, so yes these athletes are welcome to compete in their respective categories.

IOC policy can be found here if you are interested: www.transathlete.com/policies-by-organization
  • + 10
 @GrandMasterOrge: The 'respective category" for Kate Weatherly is the mens. Its hard enough for pro women to pick up sponsorships, let alone make a living off racing, and this trend will kill the sport for them completely.
  • - 3
 @hamncheez: USA! USA!
  • + 10
 @hamncheez: so you're saying that being born with a penis makes you a man? Hate speech. Your career must be destroyed and your family's safety threatened in the name of tolerance.
  • + 8
 @Session603: My original comment is already deleted. Its one thing to delete hateful comments, another thing to delete unpopular opinions, and yet another thing to delete comments mentioning scientific facts. To paraphrase Neil Degrasse Tyson, Science is true whether you believe in it or not. If science is so offensive to you that you have to delete comments, I can't imagine what hell the rest of life is for you as well.
  • + 1
 I honestly don't know much about Kate Weatherly. I haven't had the interest to read very much into thee situation. However after reading those IOC regulations I am interested to know whether in this case their testosterone levels have been continuously tested and have been sustained below the maximum level for long enough to offset any maturity brought about by age and physical development prior in life as per the regulations' stated 'case by case' clause.
  • + 1
 Is this the first UCI world cup DH kate is racing in? Will be interesting to see how she places.
  • + 8
 @juniorj: The short story about Kate Weatherly is that she is biologically a he, but has been very polite and non-confrontational about it, at least publicly. Kate has won several prominent womens DH races in New Zealand, and has had favorable times against Tracey Hannah. While Kate has been polite and good spirited in face of criticism, that criticism is very important. Kate won $5000 for a podium finish recently, and if I was the girl who finished just off the podium I would sue for fraud. $5000 goes a long way when you're training full time as a privateer, trying to perform well at international races and pick up sponsorships.
  • + 4
 @hamncheez: science is always wrong. Over time, we get closer and closer to the truth by being less wrong. It is more people needing dogmas. Call it religion or science
  • - 1
 @LuisCR: Your bro wisdom is not applicable in this instance. Water is wet. Gravity is real. Men and women are different. But please, continue pontificating. This ought to be entertaining.
  • + 2
 @Session603: nah, only copy-pasting from the net. I'm getting to old for this sh#t
  • + 7
 dakotah about to bring some terror
  • + 1
 Shock & Awe?
  • + 3
 All that riding in the mud, shooting off fireworks, and drinking alcoholic coffee should pay off at Fort Bill
  • + 1
 @chriskneeland: I suggest you look at the World Cup overall and/or World Champs winner each year and then go to your local bike park. I can almost guarantee the most popular frame set will be that of whoever won. The theory is if WC rider (insert name here) wins with it that means I'll be fast too right? Or maybe it's, 'well if so in so won on that bike I can finally blame my shite riding vs. what I'm riding.
  • + 1
 Yeah, there are a few dweebs who'll do that. Not many though.
  • + 5
 Danny Hart and Rachel Atherton.
  • + 14
 Rachel either wins of has a huge crash there is no way she is going to not be all out for this race. 2nd place in the opener + home soil + new bike company = flat out 110% insanity. Her race run is the one I am most looking forward to this weekend.
  • + 2
 @Rigidjunkie: Tahnee being injured may take the strain off of Rachel a little, I'd still like to see one of her full on runs though!
  • + 3
 Hard to bet against Danny in wet conditions for sure.
  • + 5
 Pooh bear in first is a good prediction
  • + 4
 my prediction: Iss Gonn Rain!
  • + 3
 Gwin will go balls out and win, Rachel too!
  • + 1
 Danny Hart and Matt Walker, either way round, a British one two, Ill go Tracey Hannah for the ladies
  • + 1
 Is Matt Walker racing after his injury last week?
  • + 3
 @GrandMasterOrge: Cathro seems to think not, per his track walk video
  • + 2
 Atherton Hart Schwarzeneggar
  • + 2
 Gee Atherton will be up there I reckon
  • + 2
 I predict Vali Holl will win...
  • + 0
 Tracy is a dude?

I’m just a dude playing a dude disguised as another dude!
  • + 1
 Greg all the way..the Danny ..Loic
  • - 3
 Gee will have to be up there if they want to sell bikes
  • - 2
 Noone's buying those bikes even if he wins. He'll be racing the P58 in 3 years.
  • + 3
 @chriskneeland:
They're doing their R&D in full view of the World and it's a race winning design. Chapeau to the Athertons & their engineers, it's never easy developing a product in public.
  • - 1
 You'd have to be seriously in love with the Athertons to buy one of these things over a Tues, V10, Sender, Session, etc.
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