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Pinkbike Primer - The 2022 DH World Cup Wraps up at Val di Sole

Aug 29, 2022 at 7:04
by Ed Spratt  

World Champs has just wrapped up and as the dust settles from an amazing weekend of racing we are already off to the final World Cup round in Italy. The overall title fights in the Elite Men, Elite Women and Junior Women's racing are still on the line so riders will be hunting for every last point. Check out all the information you need to know before racing kicks off later this week.

The Track

We haven't heard of any course changes just yet but as we have said at previous rounds it seems every track is being shaken up from previous years so we wouldn't be surprised to see the course designers throw in some fresh sections for riders.

Previous Winners

(World Champs) 2021 // Greg MINNAAR // RSA
2019 // Laurie GREENLAND // GBR
2018 // Amaury PIERRON // FRA
2017 // Aaron GWIN // USA
(World Champs) 2016 // Danny HART // GBR
2015 // Aaron GWIN // USA
2013 // Gee ATHERTON //GBR
2012 // Aaron GWIN // USA
2011 // Aaron GWIN// USA
2010 // Marc BEAUMONT // GBR
(World Champs) 2008 // Gee ATHERTON // GBR
(World Champs) 2021 // Myriam NICOLE // FRA
2019 // Marine CABIROU // FRA
2018 // Tahnee SEAGRAVE // GBR
2017 // Tahnee SEAGRAVE // GBR
(World Champs) 2016 // Rachel ATHERTON // GBR
2015 // Rachel ATHERTON // GBR
2013 // Rachel ATHERTON // GBR
2012 // Rachel ATHERTON // GBR
2011 // Myriam NICOLE // FRA
2010 // Emmeline RAGOT // FRA
(World Champs) 2008 // Rachel ATHERTON // GBR

What Happened in 2021?

Elite Women

1st. Myriam Nicole: 4:06.243
2nd. Marine Cabirou: +4.827
3rd. Camille Balanche: +6.099
4th. Monika Hrastnik: +9.085
5th. Tahnee Seagrave: +9.781

Elite Men

1st. Greg Minnaar: 3:28.963
2nd. Benoit Coulanges: +0.227
3rd. Troy Brosnan: +0.441
4th. Loris Vergier: +1.166
5th. Danny Hart: +1.850

Junior Women

1st. Izabela Yankova: 4:30.865
2nd. Kine Haugom: +10.844
3rd. Gracey Hemstreet: +13.245
4th. Simonka Kuchynkova: +15.153
5th. Delia De Mocogno: +15.512

Junior Men

1st. Jackson Goldstone: 3:37.097
2nd. Jordan Williams: +1.812
3rd. Lachlan Stevens-McNab: +3.560
4th. Ethan Craik: +4.848
5th. Oisin O Callaghan: +6.218

What Happened at the Last Round?

In the Junior Men's racing, Jackson Goldstone secured the win on home soil and took the 2022 overall title. Jordan Williams crossed the line just under four seconds back with Bodhi Kuhn completing the top three. Phoebe Gale took the win in the Junior Women's race with a dominant run and a gap of almost seven seconds to Izabela Yankova. Gracey Hemstreet ended the weekend in third and will still be chasing the overall at the final round.

Vali Höll had another win this year as she pulled over three seconds ahead of a hard-charging Nina Hoffmann. Eleonora Farina was the only other rider to beat the fastest qualifying run and crossed the line in third. Myriam Nicole was leading even against Vali by over two seconds after split two but a flat tire took away her chance of a win.

Finn Iles pushed past unbelievable pressure to take his first World Cup win in Canada. Finn became the first Canadian to win at home since Stevie Smith in 2013 and he didn't have a chain at the end of his run. Laurie Greenland put down a wild run that seemed unbeatable right until the very end.

Elite Women

1st. Vali Höll: 4:56.012
2nd. Nina Hoffmann: 4:59.159
3rd. Eleonora Farina: 5:00.522
4th. Jess Blewitt: 5:11.908
5th. Monika Hrastnik: 5:12.210

Elite Men

1st. Finn Iles: 4:11.717
2nd. Laurie Greenland: 4:11.955
3rd. Troy Brosnan: 4:15.221
4th. Aaron Gwin: 4:17.531
5th. Bernard Kerr: 4:18.100

Junior Women

1st. Phoebe Gale: 5:09.223
2nd. Izabela Yankova: 5:16.084
3rd. Gracey Hemstreet: 5:16.805
4th. Valentina Roa Sanchez: 5:27.466
5th. Aimi Kenyon: 5:28.439

Junior Men

1st. Jackson Goldstone: 4:13.766
2nd. Jordan Williams: 4:17.566
3rd. Bodhi Kuhn: 4:20.302
4th. Lachlan Stevens-McNab: 4:26.463
5th. Ryan Pinkerton: 4:26.966

Overall Standings After Round 7

Elite Women


Elite Men


Junior Women


Junior Men


Weather Forecast

It looks like there will be no shortage of drama for the final round with thunderstorms predicted on Thursday and for finals on Saturday. It is only a 55% chance of thunder for race day so we may get lucky and see the overall wrapped up without changing conditions.

Thursday, September 1 - Training
Variable cloudiness with a couple of showers and a thunderstorm // 21° // 92% Chance of Precipitation // 9 km/h Wind

Friday, September 2 - Qualifying
Pleasant with clouds and sunny spells // 21° // 6% Chance of Precipitation // 9 km/h Wind

Saturday, September 3 - Finals
Mostly cloudy with a thunderstorm // 24° // 55% Chance of Precipitation // 9 km/h Wind

Weather forecast as of Monday, August 29 from Accuweather.

The Schedule

Marine Cabirou through the first rough bit of woods

Thursday, September 1
• 08:45-11:15 // Official Downhill Training - Group B
• 11:15-12:30 // Official Downhill Training - Group A and B (mixed training)
• 12:45-15:15 // Official Downhill Training - Group A
• 15:30-17:00 // Downhill Timed Training Session
• 17:00-17:45 // On Foot Downhill Course Inspection - Riders and Teams

Friday, September 2
• 08:45-10:15 // Official Downhill Training - Group B
• 10:15-11:45 // Official Downhill Training - Group A
• 12:15 // Seeding Run - Junior Women
• 12:30 // Qualifying Round - Junior Men
• 13:30 // Qualifying Round - Elite Women
• 14:00 // Qualifying Round - Elite Men
• Followed by // 30 minutes On Foot Downhill Course Inspection - Riders and Teams

Saturday, September 3
• 08:15-09:15 // Official Downhill Training - Junior Women, Junior Men, Elite Women
• 09:45 // Final - Junior Men
• 10:30 // Final - Junior Women
• 10:50-11:05 // Official Downhill Training - Women Elite qualified for the final
• 11:05-12:05 // Official Downhill Training - Men Elite qualified for the final
• 12:30 // Final - Elite Women
• 13:30 // Final - Elite Men
• Awards to follow

Note: All times are local and subject to change by the event organizer.

How to Watch

The new rock sections are holding up well and adding a new element to this classic track

Pinkbike will be providing you with the best daily coverage from Val di Sole this week. Tune in to Pinkbike to catch photo epics, videos, and results from Timed Training, Practice, Qualifying, and Finals, as well as tech bits and news.

You can also watch the Mercedes-Benz UCI Mountain Bike World Cup on redbull.tv. The live DH broadcast starts on Saturday, September 3 at 12:25pm CEST.

Schedule: Mercedes-Benz UCI Mountain Bike World Cup Val di Sole LIVE on Red Bull TV:

Val di Sole DHI Women: September 3 Live on Red Bull TV 12:25 CEST
Val di Sole DHI Men: September 3 Live on Red Bull TV 13:45 CEST

(All times CEST, replay available immediately following the races. Times subject to change at organizers' and Red Bull's discretion.)


2022 Fantasy League

Don't forget to complete your DH Fantasy team for the final round this weekend, because the fantasy league is a whole lot more fun if you participate in each race.

The Fantasy Downhill League is Presented by Specialized

Author Info:
edspratt avatar

Member since Mar 16, 2017
3,245 articles

  • 365 1
 This is sadly the last race being broadcasted on Red Bull Tv, thanks Rob Warner 8 crew for those epic races you gave us to see
  • 49 0
 he needs a proper farewell
  • 113 0
 Rob is the voice of downhill! This marks an end of an era and I am very sad to know this is the last one but in reality it had to end at some point. Thank you Rob! Thanks for making each run that even more entertaining. You didn’t just leave a mark on the scene you helped create the scene we know and love, what a mascot, what a fan and what a funny man. You will be sorely missed and replays of this era will forever bring a nostalgic smile to my face.
  • 21 0
 oh no Frown this has happened way too fast! Hopefully Redbull let him go a bit wild with the commentary as it's the last one haha
  • 5 10
flag nullzwo (Aug 30, 2022 at 3:26) (Below Threshold)
 @rad-but-also-sad: well what should they do, fire him?
  • 3 0
 That is so sad indeed
  • 12 1
 Look at the time.... to say goodbye Frown
  • 43 0
 Rob, on behalf of all us PBer's, arm chair DH loving wannabe's, I truly thank you for all your broadcasts, from you unfiltered raw hilarious wild freecaster days to your refined, polished, toned down Red Bull broadcasts. Through it all you kept the passion and excitement alive without clogging the airwaves with mindless chatter. You'll be truly be missed. So, now it's time for all of us here to truly "look at the time" and realize the Warner show is over. Farewell our good friend. We've got one more for the road.
  • 16 0
 “That, ladies and gentlemen, is as close as you’ll get to public execution this side of Saudi Arabia.”

Day in and day out, the greatest commentator of all time.
  • 15 0
 He should take a lap at the end of the race so we can give him a proper send off!!
  • 23 0
 "Danny has to wear his hoody upside down" you will be missed
  • 9 0
 @waxed: I lost it when he said that last weekend and Elliot said "it took me a minute to get that one"
  • 1 0
 @nullzwo: could do, he’s under contract next year
  • 2 0
 @jimmythehat: well in that case he'd be free for discovery...?
  • 4 0
 I hope he sees this and knows how appreciated he is. Thank you Rob!
  • 3 0
 Thank you Rob Warner for all the action, drama and excitement. What a ride you took us on. You will be sorely missed.
  • 1 0
 @nullzwo: he does much more than just pedal bikes so sure redbull work for him $$$
  • 3 0
 We need a huge, black-bearded train down the course for Rob, as a greatest hits mix of his commentary plays on the audio feed and the in-person loudspeakers!
  • 36 0
 The dh season is way too short
  • 2 0
 Could you imagine how much those riders would suffer if the season ran as long as more traditional sports? I don't think any of them would last more than a few seasons.
  • 2 0
 @SprSonik: yeah look at all these motocross riders retiring after 2 seasons...
  • 34 8
 I have a stupid question - why were last week's races billed as "World Championships" when we still have racing this week?
  • 9 6
 I don't get the question. Where's the contradiction?
World cup is a league with trade teams. World championships is a one-off race where riders compete for their country. This happens in most sports. AFAIK only a few sports with a mostly North-American player and fan base dub their league final a 'World Series' or something like that. Some other sports, like tennis, don't have world championships at all.
  • 13 0
 @ak-77: There's the answer right there! "World cup is a league with trade teams. World championships is a one-off race where riders compete for their country."
  • 23 0
 It's a fair question for someone getting to know downhill racing. World Champs is not a culmination of all the other races in the series. It's not a like a tournament that ends with a championship game even though it sounds like it. It's a one time, separate thing. So a rider can win a World Cup series race and earn points towards winning the "overall." They could also win world champs and earn the title of world champ. That would be independent of the overall and the points involved from all the other races. The race coming up in Val De Sol this weekend is the culmination of all the races in the series, where the overall winners will be determined based on points earned during qualifications and finals races from the various races throughout the season. (although sometimes the point situation makes it so the winner has already been decided before the last race. World Champs performance does not factor into the points situation or the overall.)
  • 29 1
 Can't believe 4 people (as I type this) downvoted an honest question. DBs.
  • 2 0
 best analogy for me if the DH world cup is the english premier league then the the World championships is the Champions league ? Or the FA Cup , depending on how you rate the World champs

someone help me out here

As an aside, would it be correct to say the DH world champs has higher status than the road riding equivalent? I m thinking how noone cares about rainbow stripes in road racing but the Grand tours are much higher status
  • 1 0
 @BiNARYBiKE: Perfect and thank you!
  • 2 0
 @DBone95: Yeah, I was a little surprised by that too!
  • 2 0
 @DBone95: Mountain bikers are mostly really cool on the trails. Not so much online...
  • 1 0
 @BiNARYBiKE: and we can't forget the World Champion gets the rainbow!
  • 7 0
 @fredohyeah: Douche Bags?
  • 3 0
 @fredohyeah: dumb bricks
  • 1 0
 @fingerbangextreme: It's certainly not true that nobody cares about WC in road racing. TdF GC is the ultimate prize in terms of exposure but WC is valued at least as much as any of the one day races including the monuments, and certainly more than a GT stage. A former world champion will have rainbow stripes on the cuffs of their jersey for the remainder of their career, it's not quickly forgotten. The main factor that makes WC less popular in road racing is specialization. Each one day race, and Grand Tours, require certain characteristics and this is predictable, riders recognize their talents and train for specific goals. The WC might suit sprinters in one year, pure climbers another year and classics specialist yet another time. So each year, only a limited subset of riders is in a position to try and win the rainbow stripes. This doesn't happen in Downhill because the courses are never so dissimilar that they favor a completely different set of riders.
The analogy to the World Championships in football would be ... the World Championships. At least the common difference is national vs trade teams. But it is a bit different of course because DH racing is a truly individual sport, unlike football (complete team sport) or road bike racing (part team sport), and on top of this the Premier League and FA cup are national affairs, while World Cup Downhill is not. Champions League vs World Champs is a decent analogy given that most top players from outside Europe compete in teams that are eligible for Champions League.
  • 1 0
 @fingerbangextreme: DH WC is the English premier league (or other league depending on country) but World Champs is the World Cup.
  • 17 0
 Does anyone have a list of Rob's top comments and one-liners? Would be great for PB to have a poll to rate them if such a list existed
  • 6 0
 This is what the people want and deserve.
  • 17 0
 My vote would go for "he hit the deck harder than an old lady on a cruise ship"

here are a few:
  • 6 0
 he made a nice quip on Hart's run at Les Gets, something about how he 'needs to wear a hoody upside down' nice call back to Champery 2011
  • 1 0
 there was an appdoing the rounds a few years ago, it was great lol
  • 2 0
 Scroll down to the comments section in the link, it's a reply to the top comment I think. I don't know how to link single comments.

  • 8 0
 pisgahgnar's list
Look at the time!!
How Danny Hart can sit with balls that big.
He's is on a rampage like a dog with two dicks
He's as loose as a clown running through a minefield
He looks like he's shit a lego deathstar
He's angrier than a man with a fork in a world of sup.
Look at that whip!
Come on Peaty! Get on those f*cking pedals!!!
Steve Peat has done more for downhill mountain biking than Osama Bin Laden has done for terrorism
He hit the deck harder than an old lady on a cruise ship
That's as popular as a ginger-haired step-child
He's all over the place like a monkey dry-humping a football
He's off like a Jewish foreskin
He's off like a Russian boder
This man's got less brain than a service station pasty
That would have opened up his arsehole like a vintage golf bag
He's gone down harder then the US economy
He's going to wake up feeling like his neck took a Viagra
Thats uglier than ET with skin cancer
Although the king of pop might be dead, we still have a thriller for you. So don't sit at home and beat it.
He's letting it all hang out like a fat bird in a bikini
Im sweating like a whore in church
His ass has opened up wider than a hippos yawn!
He wants this more than an out of work rapist
He has gone down faster than one of those french breast implants!!
This is more packed than a Chinese cemetery
Sam Hill: The Winged Assassin/Thunder from Down Under
Gee Atherton: The Vulcan Bomber
Ben Cathro: The World's Tallest Man
  • 14 0
 On a podcast ages ago Henry said that the secret big battle is for 10th overall as that gives you guaranteed TV time next season, and therefore makes you more valuable to sponsors. 10th is Matt Walker (not riding?) and the next 5 riders down are within 120 points, including Bruni.
Of course next years protected rider scheme may be entirely different.
  • 14 0
 Anyone know Finn's status for this stop?
  • 18 0
 On WynTV he said that he is positive to have a good chance to recover until the race.
  • 3 1
 @Ed-Cutlip: Looks like he's gonna be overall worldcup winner of 2022. That's his status.
  • 10 0
 I´ll be at Val di Sole to watch the race live but i´ll rewatch it at Red Bull afterwards just for Robs commentary. Watched every worldcup for i don´t know how many years now and Robs voice kept the spirit high.
  • 13 0
 The End of an Era....Frown
  • 9 0
 Everytime i hear the name "Val di Sole" it just comes to my mind the man, SAM HILL at the World Champs 2008... what an Epic run from the Legend

  • 5 2
 Best 2:30 ever spent on a bike. “LOOK AT HOW FAST HES GOING” “HES GONE MAD!!” I watch it often. No one has ever ridden like that in comparison to the field. The crash was by the gods to keep his lap top of mind.
  • 4 0
 The visual contrast between Hill's cyclocross skinsuit and Peaty's candy-colored juggalo pajamas is pretty stark.
  • 10 0
 And then only 9 months until the 2023 season starts.
  • 3 0
 yeah, that's painful. must be weird as a pro to have such a huge offseason; what does that training calendar look like? not to mention the perspective of a sponsor to have riders out of the media spotlight for the majority of a year. hopefully the 2024 calendar looks different.
  • 9 0
 Hoping Red Bull starts their own dh series. Thank you Rob and Red Bull crew for an amazing run.
  • 6 0
 Man that would be an amazing announcement. Right after the race is over announce a big F U to the UCI and a new series with more races, more destinations, and southern hemisphere series for their summer season. I would faint.
  • 4 0
 I feel like they could use the existing platform of Crankworx and expand to have some downhill only stops and try to create something that way. I think the biggest kicker is the UCI has the rights to the World Championships so Red Bull would have to offer enough for the riders to not care about that or get sanctioned by the UCI. Whether RB tries win the riders over financially, with more of a voice in rules and how it’s run, etc. who knows, but I think it’s possible and the time is right if they want to try.
  • 3 0
 @Jdricks: Very similar to the PGA/LIV clown show going on currently as far as another big player working to win(pay) over the pros. I am 100% Redbull if this happens
  • 6 0
 So if Vali wins, what minimum place does Cami need to place to secure the overall? Quali doesn't give points in the last round, correct? So does the race winner get 200 or 250 points? Cami is 119 points ahead.
  • 3 0
 last race is 250 pts, no pts for quali
  • 2 0
 If Vali wins then Cami needs 132 points minimum. Not sure what position that correlates to
  • 1 0
 6th or worse
  • 2 0
 Nevermind, don't listen to me I'm way off.
  • 2 0
 The race winner gets 250 points. If Vali wins, Camille would need 5th place or better for the overall.
  • 3 0
 Oops, I mean 4th!
  • 2 0
 @andrewbmxmtb: dang this is gonna be a close one
  • 9 2
 "He's off like a jewish foreskin"

That is golden commentary content. Marked me forever and I still laugh when I remember.

Rob will be greatly missed
  • 7 0
 Rob should take a lap at the end of the race so we can give him a proper send off!!
  • 2 1
 But going uphill on his ebike.
  • 6 0
 I know it's not finished yet, but what a season!!!!!
  • 6 0
 To Red Bull & Rob Warner, thank you.
  • 6 1
 This may be the last DH race I watch. Lets hope Discovery doesn't price it such that I can't justify the cost next year.
  • 5 0
 Here currently their cheapest streaming package that (as far as I understand, the description are not very clear on this) includes all cycling stuff is 10 euros a month. Which in itself wouldn't be too bad if you're into other sports as well, but for just to watch DH is a bit steep especially when there's only one race per month in July and August next year thanks to that freaky race calendar.
  • 1 0
 My prediction is that the broadcast that Redbull normally does (partial runs, then full runs for top 10 women, top 30 men) will still be free and then you can pay extra to see juniors, quali, etc. I was just in Vegas and seeing stuff like Moto GP on random TVs around has me optimistic that one day that could be World Cup DH.
  • 1 0
 @gravitybass: I'm slightly worried, since currently here they offer no free sports content whatsoever, even though Discovery is nowadays the main sports "channel". We have a few Discovery owned TV channels (focusing on the reality side of things and other important stuff like series reruns), but all of their sports offering is only available either through Discovery+ or Eurosport directly - both of which you need to buy a subscription for to see anything, even the reality stuff. I'm really hoping for them to come up with some new global MTB hub or the like to make it possible to watch the races for free, since with their current (local) platforms this just wouldn't work.
  • 4 0
 Rob Warner is the best in the game. XCC, XCO and DH won’t be the same without him.
  • 4 0
 I was there in June and the idea of riding that in the wet is insanity. It's a brute of a track.
  • 2 2
 Not sure about Europe, but in the US a 55% chance of rain means it is going to rain but just not sure of at what time. 30% send to be the mark of when rain is assured.

It would never be 55% here, either 50 or 60 lol
  • 3 1
 Meteorologically, a "55% chance of rain means" some combination of these two things:
1) during past meteorologically equivalent days, rain was observed 55% of the time
2) over the course of a suite of reasonably probable forecast simulations, the 55% of the models predicted rain
  • 2 0
 @pmhobson: Meteorologically, 55% chance of rain means there is a 55% chance that rain will fall somewhere in the forecasted area
  • 2 0
 @stretchza: yes -- and that number is determined by the two methods I described
  • 1 3
 @pmhobson: as they say in the stock market; past performance is not a guarantee of future profits. Given the massive variability between models using a average of them is ridiculous.
  • 4 0
 @somebody-else: you misunderstand. There's no "average". Same models, different scenarios (initial/boundary conditions), that encapsulate the uncertainties in the models themselves and our ability to observe the currant conditions.

It's a Bayesian/MCMC approach. That's why we say "55% chance" (probability). The uncertainty is front-and-center in the forecast. It's inherently humble despite the overwhelming common misinterpretation to the contrary.
  • 3 0
 @pmhobson: preach

@somebody-else I don't get the point of this comment... the weather forecast is inherently NOT guaranteeing rain/lack of rain, it states a probability, which is itself a result of an uncertainty quantification. There's no "averaging". Not to mention that weather behaves according to physical systems that are at least reasonably well understood, in contrast to stock price which is a wacky combination of fundamentals (which are gamed by companies all the time) and game theory / betting on what everyone else thinks about the company given history, macro indicators, sentiment, blah blah.
  • 1 3
 @bkm303: it’s stating an expected value if we want to get overly pedantic. If weather was reasonably well understood there wouldn’t be a need for so many models, we aren’t even close to that level yet.
  • 3 0
 @somebody-else: I don't follow you. The models encode all of our knowledge about the (physics of) weather. What "level" aren't we close to?
  • 1 1
 @pmhobson: Have you not noticed we are no better at guessing the weather than we were a couple of decades ago? The last time the GFS was updated I seem to recall a period where a lot of scientists weren’t using it…
  • 3 1
 Better stay up late and watch this live stream I think.
  • 5 0
 Sick day Mondee..
  • 3 0
 @Number29: Race is saturday so you must be really hitting the cans hard mate.
  • 2 0
 This one's going to be emotional
  • 2 1
 I don't know if he's quite back to pace yet, but this would a fitting track for Gwin to regain the top step!
  • 1 0
 It's quite possible, but the World Champs track suited him well (honestly, he can rip any track) and he didn't take it. Hope Finn will win, but I would not be upset if Gwin took it... heck, anyone can win and I'd be stoked for them, but it'd be cool to see Gwin up there again.
  • 3 0
 Will Finn be racing?
  • 2 0
 Still haven't watched les gets...
  • 1 0
 #5-#9 plate is very tight. Will be watching how it shakes out. Gonna be fun.
  • 2 0
 Go Gwin gooo!
  • 1 0
 how can he sit and comment with balls like that 'big' ;-)
  • 1 0
 Anybody here going to the race Saturday?
  • 1 0
 What an up and down season
  • 1 0
 Is this race Geo restricted?
  • 1 0
 POV makes my neck hurt.

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