Swiss Made. A slogan that is often synonymous with perfection and construction of the highest quality, one that so far seems quite fitting for the new venue and new track here in Lenzerheide. Built from scratch just for the World Cup, the downhill track looks to be very unique in comparison to what has been raced already this year, and those that will be raced in the months to come. As the mid-point marker on the season, it is fitting that riders are facing something very different for a change.
You have likely hard rumours and rumblings that it is a 'bike park' track, a common phrase used by racers to describe something man made or too easy. But upon closer inspection it really is as far from the truth as you can get. For one, it is steep, very, very steep, and littered with corner after corner. Some clever taping - tight in some spots and extra wide in others - has opened up multiple line choices, many of which will force riders from the hard-packed main line of the bike park's berms and into some slippery inside lines and high-speed off-cambers. What the track may lack in 'gnar' it makes up for in speed and the constant changes in direction. Add to the mix a trail surface that has not seen moisture in recent memory and you have dirt that yields minimal traction. At speed the track is extremely rough and this will only worsen as the week progresses, as with the loose surface that will have riders constantly trying to balance control while their tires are constantly sliding around beneath them. It is certainly going to be a challenge for every rider and we, just like you at home, can't wait to see the action unfold.
Introducing Pinkbike's newly appointed director of Instagram for this very special weekend unfolding. That's right, Brendan is partnering up with Neko to take hold of Pinkbike's instagram account
. I wonder what he is planning...
As an added bonus it isn't just DH this weekend, and with the addition of XC on Sunday the whole World Cup circus is all in one place for the first time of the season. Since we'll also be featuring top-notch coverage of the XC race, we thought it would be fitting to send Matt Delorme and Dave Trumpore out to take a look at what's in store. What did they find?
Another excellent track full of twisty woods, big roots and plenty of tech to keep any rider on their toes. Let's just say that anyone on a hardtail or running a rigid seatpost will be at a severe disadvantage. Cheers to Lenzerheide for putting the MOUNTAIN back in XC mountain bike racing - hucks and all.
Good Night and we will see you tomorrow as riders put their tires in the dirt for the very first time in Lenzerheide. Keep it locked to Pinkbike for all the practice action tomorrow!