Video: Who's Looking Fast For The Final World Cup DH Race Of The Season? - Up To Speed with Ben Cathro

Sep 17, 2021
by Pinkbike Originals  


There's one more World Cup DH round in Snowshoe before the season comes to a close and it's anyone's race. Ben Cathro breaks down who is looking fast for the final race.

Watch the 2021 Mercedes-Benz UCI Mountain Bike World Cup free of charge, live and on-demand, here, and get the latest on everything bike-related at the Red Bull Bike Channel.








42 Comments

  • 128 0
 Ben Cathro. That's who's lookin fast
  • 7 0
 And he isn't an option for fantasy,,,sheesh! Go get em Ben!
  • 22 0
 The best bike content on the internet
  • 10 0
 Well done Ben and good luck!
  • 7 3
 Just went back and checked lenzerheide qualifications/ results as I thought Ben had it wrong about emily, he hadn’t.

But this raised a question. How do they decide the number of riders who qualify in a group?

For example elite men always out number everyone else, yet even with puncture emily came in 16th in elite woman’s quali but only 15 elite woman were racing.
Doesn’t quite seem right when there were 61 elite men racing.in the finals.

Is it a % of total riders attempting qualification or do you have to be within a certain time of the fastest qualifier?
  • 2 0
 Top 60 men qualify in terms of the quali times + protected rider (top 10 in points)
Top 15 women qualify in terms of quali times + protected riders (top 5 in points)
  • 3 1
 @jackheat: but why did they decide on 60 and 15 as being the limits.
  • 8 0
 @cypher74: it’s decided by the UCI based on the number of active, competitive racers in each category. They want qualifying to have consequences so there finals are primarily full of folks who travel to most of the rounds rather than having any fast local with enough UCI points show up and know they can cruise qualifying and end up in the final just for laughs/experience.

They are trying to create a spectacle for the fans which will attract series sponsors while also providing a competitive venue for the teams (and privateers) who dedicate themselves to the whole season.

Given those considerations, the UCI decided they need to let 60 men qualify to serve those purposes, and only 15 women. Mostly because there are many more professional male racers than female.
  • 10 8
 Very nice of Ben to say that Thibaut Drapela' crash was caused by too low PSI, but I think we all know the real reason. I don't recall the Commencal team having many wheel failures when Spank was their sponsor. This one from the worlds in VDS sums it up for me:
www.pinkbike.com/photo/21217737
  • 5 4
 I’m curious how you would describe the real reason.
  • 4 2
 @BiNARYBiKE: Other riders must run similar PSI's, but their rims are holding up. Just connecting some dots.
  • 7 0
 @BiNARYBiKE: he’s saying that Enve rim failed in a way that an aluminum DH rim would not have under the same conditions.
  • 1 2
 @melanthius: True, but for me that's not really the question. All else being equal, would an alloy rim have allowed him to finish the race? That's what I wonder. Curious how these guys decide between the performance gains of carbon vs. the reliability of alloy in a catastrophic situation like this. Do they choose based on performance and risk assessment, or is it all just a business decision?
  • 3 2
 @Exbow: Right, I doubt he left the start hut with the "wrong" PSI. Seems unlikely. But I also doubt his wheel exploded without a burp or a fold or something that compromised the tire pressure and exposed the rim to a hard strike. In the video, the rim takes at least one big hit before the hit that broke it. Of course I could be wrong. Super curious about this.
  • 3 0
 Anyone think he would've broken a DT Swiss EX471 or 511?
  • 2 1
 @BiNARYBiKE: I think we'll never know the whole story, something about "biting the hand that feeds". Super gutted for Thibaut now that he's out of contention for the overall. Dude was in command the whole season, a stupid mechanical and a crash stopped him from getting the overall in the penultimate round. What a bummer...
  • 2 2
 @NinetySixBikes: You can’t blame the wheel or the crash. He was piloting the bike. He chose the equipment, he chose the pressures, he chose the lines, and most importantly, he chose the pace. He could have ridden more conservatively and would probably still be out front for the overall. It’s an unfortunate end no doubt, but that’s racing.
  • 4 0
 Damn need more money for the fantasy team. So many awesome riders!! Have a good one Ben!!
  • 3 0
 I've been mountain biking since I was 5 but I've learned more from watching Ben's videos than I did in the intervening 30 years - LOL!
  • 3 0
 Man, I hope that big rowdy Snowshoe crowd shows Sick Mick some love on his finals run Saturday!
  • 3 0
 Good luck Ben, great job all round
  • 3 0
 Bravo Cathro, racer and analyst!
  • 36 1
 The world's first analracer!
  • 6 0
 @aaronjb: he’s got to put that on the back of his jersey next year. Let’s start a petition and a GoFundMe.
  • 2 0
 @aaronjb: haha man you had me laughing a lot! Good one!
  • 1 0
 @t1000: All credit to Arrested Development, but thanks.
  • 2 0
 I like to watch his recaps on Monday morning with a coffee. #mondaymorninganal
  • 2 0
 gotta keep Ben in the game here, as a tech, stats, and racer profile commentator, he is thorough and has the cred.
  • 3 0
 great work Ben!
  • 2 0
 You're a HERO Ben! (Well, that's what my kids say )
  • 2 0
 Thank you, Ben. No need to apologize.
  • 2 0
 Are there any riders that still use flats in racing still?
  • 4 0
 Brendan Fairclough is still on flats and he may be the only regular DH finals rider to do so
  • 1 0
 @NeilMackie: Ah yes, forgot about him. Mad really, I know clips were always more popular, but it seems flats are all but gone then from world cup races so it seems.
  • 9 0
 Connor Fearon!
  • 2 0
 @DoubleCrownAddict: Gee when he last won Worlds. Not current but a brilliant story.
  • 1 0
 @BenPea: With borrowed shoes as well.
  • 1 0
 @mykel: exactly
  • 1 0
 Ben da' man. nuf said.
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