Pinkbike Predictions for the Les Gets DH World Cup 2021

Jul 1, 2021 at 4:36
by James Smurthwaite  
The craziest fans out there live in this part of the world.

Les Gets has been hosting World Cup races since 1998 but a brand new track awaits racers in Les Gets for 2021. Rather than the wide-open, ski-piste turns we're used to in this part of the world, instead we've got a fresh-cut loamer that will only become more deadly as the weekend progresses. The track is similar to one cut-in for the P2V Invitational race here last September so we're relying on that and the World Cup here in 2019 as a form guide for the weekend ahead.

Of course, a new track that's as techy as this could really throw the cat among the pigeons and there are dozens of riders who could feasibly get top results here on Saturday. With that in mind, here are our top picks for the top spots in Les Gets.

Loris Vergier

Loris Vergier took 5th to make it three Frenchman on the podium at home win Les Gets

Yes, it's boring to pick a French racer on a French track in front of a French home crowd but Vergier has been unable to show his true power level at World Cups so far and he's a strong contender for the win in Les Gets. The weather and a puncture left him unable to really make any inroads in Leogang but at the smaller races he's been a level above his competition this year.

In our Leogang predictions, we mentioned his scintillating pre-season form and he backed that up at Crankworx Innsbruck with a win of more than a second on a 2:40 course. To put that result into context, 2nd place to 40th place were within 8 seconds of each other but Vergier put clear distance between himself and the rest of the pack. With the home crowd behind him, on a track that's similar to the P2V Invitational he won last year, Vergier is a strong contender this weekend.

Troy Brosnan

Troy Brosnan continuing his 2nd 3rd streak by just one more race to make it 5 for 5.

Brosnan produced one of the most popular wins in recent times at Leogang when he bossed both qualifying and finals to take home the glory in Leogang. He heads to Les Gets with the leader's jersey and the number one plate that he'll be battling tooth and nail to keep hold of by the end of the weekend. Brosnan has always been Mr Consistent but he has been talking about a newly optimized bike set up alongside a more brutal fitness regime that has pushed him up to the next level. He's hungry for wins after what he considers to be a middling year last year and will be right up there again in Les Gets.

Benoit Coulanges

Beno t Coulanges has had an impressive season so far racing the French cups. He ll surely be caring the same momentum into this weekend.

OK, yes, another Frenchie, but if Benoit Coulanges has proved one thing in the past two years it's that he goes very well on home soil. Coulanges was injured last time the World Cup took place in Les Gets but he did race the P2V Invitational, where he came second only to Vergier. That result was part of a domestic race series run last year that saw him also claim the French National Championships plus a podium at every French Cup round, including a win at Les Duex Alpes.

That momentum hasn't slowed down in 2021 as he took his first-ever World Cup podium in Leogang and the win at the French Cup in Les Arcs last weekend.

Other Contenders

Greg Minnaar - The one racer in the field who has raced here more than any other is Greg Minnaar. The old-school grass turns may be few and far between this year but Minnaar proved his speed on this course by coming third at the P2V invitational.

Thibaut Daprela - Daprela was flying in Leogang and one mistake in the woods cost him a probable win. He's beaten and battered from a crash at the French Cup but if he's recovered enough to race at full tilt on Saturday, he will be a contender for sure.

Loic Bruni - We haven't had a full update on Bruni's heel injury for a while but he posted that, "Superbruni is coming back" following his fourth-place finish in Innsbruck. If Bruni is fully fit he'll be champing at the bit to be back at the business end of proceedings at a World Cup.

Vali Holl

Vali Holl continued her pure dominance today with a comfortable gap over the rest of the field and let s not forget the fastest time of the day for both women s categories.

How could you bet against Vali Holl at this point? Last time we were here in Les Gets, Vali was still racing as a junior but still put in a time good enough to win in the elite field by more than a second. Yes, she binned it on the final turn in Leogang but she was two seconds up on Balanche's time at that point and still rolled over the line 2nd. Since that race, she has picked herself up and won at Innsbruck and will be looking for redemption in Les Gets. Vali Holl is our pick for the win next weekend but we expect her to be taking the last turn a bit more carefully this time.

Marine Cabirou

Marine Cabirou has been riding with aggression this year and it s great to watch.

Both times Cabirou has raced here, Tracey Hannah has been her closest competition. At the World Cup Hannah pipped by 0.6 seconds however in the P2V Invitational last year it was roles reversed and Cabirou beat Hannah by more than 2 seconds. With Hannah now taking up commentary duties, the path is clear for Cabirou to put in another strong performance in Les Gets.

Camille Balanche

Balanche takes an eager look back as she begins realizing she may have pulled off the win again on the same track and similar conditions as Worlds in the fall.

Camille Blanche did the stripes proud in Leogang and probably silenced a lot of critics too as she took the win for the second consecutive race at the venue. There's no doubt that Balanche won the race both times by being the best rider through the bottom woods so we expect this updated Les Gets track to suit her far better than the grass turns of 2019.

Balanche was seventh last time there was a World Cup in Les Gets but bear in mind that was only her fourth race at this level ever and she has improved significantly since then. Expect her to show just how much on Saturday.

Author Info:
jamessmurthwaite avatar

Member since Nov 14, 2018
1,770 articles

  • 57 0
 A track mostly in the steep rooty woods, with a chance it'll be wet, I have a good feeling about Reece Wilson doing well again.
  • 8 0
 I guess any rider from the UK might be doing well on that track, especially when its get wet.
  • 14 0
 Reece is also carrying some swagger into this year. He just seams to radiate confidence both in interviews and on the track.
  • 19 9
 Don't you mean Reece Wallace?
  • 2 4
 @gossman: No, I mean Reece Wilson, current DH World Campion.
  • 1 0
 @gossman: DH world champion Reece Wallace is gonna crush it!
  • 28 0
 Huge bummer that Amaury won’t be racing. I hope his recovery process is going well.
  • 1 0
 I havent found an update, hope its not overly serious.
  • 1 0
 @lastminutetech: On the Wyn TV track walk his brother said he's still in hospital, but on the mend.
  • 1 0
 @commental: thx, get well AP
  • 14 0
 Those predictions seem pretty safe - but I'll put Remy in there for his wild line choice through the muck.
  • 3 0
 Thats a good shout
  • 7 0
 Greenland...end of story.
  • 5 0
 I hope Marine's okay, the video of her getting the road gap wrong on Vital cut off on landing, but it didn't look like it was going to end well for her.
  • 1 0
 From the videos I've seen a few people have gone done pretty hard already. Hoping everyone makes it to and through in one piece. Especially if it continues to get more moist.
  • 1 0
 Hopefully a frenchy will take the win... let's be patriot on our home soil! If not I hope Danny Hart is going to deliver one of those insane runs!
1st: Bruni
2nd : Danny Hart
3rd : Remy Thirion
4th : Greg Minaar
5th : Daprela
  • 3 0
 Live timing is already interesting (well obviously as it's the most important day of the weekend)
  • 5 0
  • 2 2
 Look it up.
  • 1 0
 @BenPea: I tried, I could only find chomping.
  • 2 1
 Sorry, I've made a mess.
  • 2 0
 @BenPea: Haha, to be fair it looks like one of those bits of language that's partially evolved. I dislike the increasingly common Haitch as I was always taught it was Aitch (probably a sign of me getting old if anything). I guess language changes all the time.
  • 3 1
 @commental: "but it's haitch, cos it starts with a haitch innit!" English R.I.P.
  • 3 0
 @BenPea: It is what it is, whether it's the demise of the language or not is a mute point. You can't use the people driving the changes as escape goats.
  • 1 0
 @commental: I was halfway writing a response to correct you. Well played, Sir.
  • 2 0
 "champing at the bit" used as in 'the race horse was champing at its bit for the win'
  • 1 0
 Chomping at the bit. Anyone that has been on an amped up horse thats ready to run knows the horse literally chomps on its bit till you loosen its reins and let it go...
  • 2 0
 Daprela has a broken nose. I am not sure he’ll have "recovered enough ". Would be great for him.
  • 3 0
 Reece Wilson snub if ever there was one!!!!!
  • 1 0
 Daprela could throw down too, his upper section in Leogang was insane. He attacked so hard, it looked like a different track.
  • 2 0
 What is this "newly optimized bike set up" Troy is running?
  • 22 0
 Three bottles
  • 2 0
 He is now running a 27.5" rear wheel as opposed to 29" wheel last season. He's not tall enough to handle a 29" rear wheel and has said that he never felt comfortable on them, but stayed on them because they're faster.
  • 2 0
 @c-radicallis: Also mentioned in the post-race interview that they've reconfigured the shim stack in the shock and that it's been an improvement
  • 1 0
 @c-radicallis: but on bike checks they say he's 6'4" and 230lbs/189kg
  • 2 0
 Heart will be in the top five.
  • 3 0
 GO VALLI gooooo Wink
  • 1 0
 Minnar for the win with his new nanotechnology carbon rims, French guys fill out the podium.
  • 1 0
 "the pinkbike ouija board"

so that's how to win the fantasy games..
  • 1 0
 Dakota gonna snatch the W
  • 1 0
 Denim destroyer for the podium. Calling it.
  • 1 0
 Redcar Rocket all the way.
  • 1 1
 Also horrible, but hey, I'm a language person not an IT person.
  • 2 1
 @commental: as you can see
  • 1 0
  • 1 0
 Brendog got robbed!
  • 1 0
 Laurie Greenland

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