Pinkbike Primer: Everything you Need to Know Ahead of the Val di Sole XC World Cup

Aug 1, 2019
by James Smurthwaite  
Mario Costa being cut off by a rider taking a shortcut.

Four down, three to go. We're now over halfway through the 2019 XCO World Cup series and things are hotting up nicely. Nino Schurter and Kate Courtney both have sizable leads in their respective overall series but anything can still happen between now and the end of the season in Snowshoe.

Val di Sole plays host to the fifth round of the series and while it used to be a grass straight snore-fest, changes in recent years have brought it up to par with the more progressive tracks on the circuit. Here's everything you need to know before racing gets underway in the Dolomites:

The track


The course in Val di Sole has had its fair share of criticism in the past few years (including from us) but the builders made some sweeping last year to bring in more natural sections and shorter, punchier climbs. Hopefully, we'll be seeing more of the same this year for a course that's on par with the progressive tracks we've seen around the world in recent years.



Previous winners


While the downhill World Cup has been coming here since the 2008 World Champs, XC took a little bit longer to catch on and only started being raced here in 2010. In the men's races, Nino Schurter has never been beaten while it's a bit more open for the women with only Maja Wloszczowska ever taking more than one win.


2010:

Elite Men: Nino Schurter
Elite Women: Maja Wloszczowska


2013:

Elite Men: Nino Schurter
Elite Women: Tanja Zakelj


2015:

Elite Men: Nino Schurter
Elite Women: Annika Langvad


2017:

Elite Men: Nino Schurter
Elite Women: Jolanda Neff



2018:

Elite Men: Nino Schurter
Elite Women: Maja Wloszczowska



Last round recap


Overall Standings

MEN
1. Nino Schurter - 1160
2. Henrique Avancini - 915
3. Mathieu Van Der Poel - 899
4. Mathias Flueckiger - 883
5. Jordan Sarrou - 698
6. Gerhard Kerschbaumer - 673
7. Maxime Marotte - 650
8. Ondrej Cink - 555
9. Titouan Carod - 485
10. Peter Disera - 471
WOMEN
1. Kate Courtney - 1265
2. Jolanda Neff - 1090
3. Anne Terpstra - 815
4. Elisabeth Brandau - 625
5. Sina Frei - 615
6. Anne Tauber - 610
7. Pauline Ferrand Prevot - 610
8. Rebecca McConnell - 602
9. Yana Belomoina - 594
10. Haley Smith - 553

Weather forecast

The forecast for this weekend is mixed and it's looking quite likely that we might see some wet conditions on the track.

Van der Poel putting the hammer down. Not enough today.
Friday, Aug 2 - Short Track
Periods of rain and a thunderstorm // 25°C // 66% precipitation // wind 6km/h

Saturday, Aug 3 - Practice
Mostly sunny, a shower or thunderstorm around // 28°C // 43% precipitation // wind 6km/h

Sunday, Aug 4 - Under 23 Men, Under 23 Women, Elite Men, Elite Women
Periods of clouds and sunshine, a shower or thunderstorm around // 28°C // 57% precipitation // wind 6km/h

Weather forecast as of Wednesday, July 31. Live updates from Accuweather.



Schedule


All times CEST

Thursday, Aug 1
• 12:00-14:00 // Official XCO Training - Women Under 23 and Elite
• 14:00-16:00 // Official XCO Training - Men Under 23 and Elite

Friday, Aug 2
• 09:30-11:00 // Official XCO Training - Women Under 23 and Elite
• 11:00-12:30 // Official XCO Training - Men Under 23 and Elite
• 12:30-14:30 // Official XCO Training - All riders
• 15:45-16:30 // Official XCC Training - Women
• 16:30-17:15 // Official XCC Training - Men
• 17:30 // World Cup Cross-country Short Track - Women
• 18:15 // World Cup Cross-country Short Track - Men

Saturday, Aug 3
• 09:30-11:30 // Official XCO Training - Women
• 11:00-13:30 // Official XCO Training - Men
• 13:30-14:30 // Official XCO Training - All riders

Sunday, Aug 4
• 08:30 // World Cup Cross-country Olympic - Women Under 23
• 10:15 // World Cup Cross-country Olympic - Men Under 23
• 12:20 // World Cup Cross-country Olympic - Women Elite - Followed by Awards
• 15:05 // World Cup Cross-country Olympic - Men Elite - Followed by Awards

Note: All times are local and subject to change by the UCI/event organiser.



How to watch

Nino was in the lead quite early

Pinkbike will be providing you with the best daily coverage from our team of photographers in Val di Sole this week. Tune in to Pinkbike to catch photo epics, results, news and tech.

All the elite races can be streamed live on redbull.tv.

Schedule:
(All times in CEST, replay available immediately following the races)

- Val Di Sole XCC Women and Men: Friday, Aug 2 - 5:20pm (7:20am PDT, 10:20am EDT, 4:20pm GMT, 02:20am NZST)

- Val Di Sole XCO Women: Sunday, Aug 4 - 11:00am (2:00am PDT, 5:00am EDT, 10:00am GMT, 9:00pm NZST)
- Val Di Sole XCO Men: Sunday, Aug 4 - 1:30pm (4:30am PDT, 7:30am EDT, 12:30pm GMT, 11:30pm NZST)

Note: These times are subject to change. Please check with your local provider.



Pinkbike Predictions

“It will be hard to bet against Nino Schurter here as he's been unbeaten in the Dolomites for the past decade. He also comes into the race on the back of two World Cup wins and is looking like he could be about to run away with the overall series. Mathieu Van Der Poel seems to have recovered from being strangely off the back in Les Gets and has been crowned European Champion in the three weeks break since the French round. Mathias Flückiger made a big mistake in Les Gets that marred his otherwise great start to the season but he will no doubt be battling in the top three again in Val di Sole.

With three wins in four races, Kate Courtney is proving to be the class of the women's field this year. She missed the US Nationals to stay in Europe and concentrate on racing World Cups and will want to make sure she didn't miss out for no reason. As the new European champion, Jolanda Neff is clearly on great form and will no doubt give Courtney a run for her money but on a course that doesn't really challenge on the descents, she won't be able to make full advantage of her bike handling prowess. Yana Belomoina has been super consistent this year and has podiumed in Val di Sole before."

ELITE MEN
1 // Nino SCHURTER
2 // Mathieu VAN DER POEL
3 // Mathias FLUECKIGER
ELITE WOMEN
1 // Kate COURTNEY
2 // Jolanda NEFF
3 // Yana BELOMOINA




Fantasy League

Don't forget to complete your XC Fantasy team before racing kicks off. If you don't know who to pick, our mid-season analysis for some idea as to who's going fast.


The Fantasy XC League is Presented by Trek and SRAM.



MENTIONS: @trek / @SramMedia




12 Comments

  • + 8
 When are Trek going to take that condom off?
  • + 2
 5 september
  • + 4
 My genitals hurt just thinking about this race.
  • + 3
 Let's go rainnnn put MVDP's crossboss skills to use!
  • + 2
 Kate Jolanda Jenny would be a nice podium.
  • + 1
 I think Nino is half a chance here.
  • + 9
 I'm not going to put him in my fantasy team, so that should improve his odds of winning.
  • + 2
 Should be fun to watch.
  • + 1
 Is Jenny starting short track? Where is the start list?
  • + 1
 Avancini Win !!!!!!!!!
  • + 1
 ????????????????????
  • + 1
 Here is hoping

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