Interview: Rachel Atherton - The Records Don't Matter

Nov 23, 2018 at 6:06
by James Smurthwaite  
Rachel Atherton came out swinging with a 2 44 run but in a shock turn of events it wasn t to be enough.

It was another record-breaking season for Rachel Atherton. Her sixth World Cup overall and fifth World Championships were both historic in their own rights and now, 12 years on from her first World Cup win, she’s closing in on the all-time tally of the formidable Anne-Caroline Chausson.

Rach isn’t in this for the records though and her relentlessly competitive nature has persisted from her explosion onto the World Cup circuit as a teenager. Week in, week out, each race means as much as her first.

The Queen of Downhill looks back on 2018.

Coming into 2018 was pretty different to coming into 2017. Last year you were still on your win streak and pretty much unchallenged. Do you feel like you had something to prove this year?

You always come into every season the same, you train all winter, you're really fired up and you believe you've done as much as you can. I was injured at the end of 2017 so I was a bit nervous to come back to racing full speed; it had been a good few World Cups since I'd felt like I could push the limits.

I knew it was going to be a long process so I was happy to be in Croatia and didn't really feel like I had to win, which is unusual for me.

Were you happy with second?

Yeah I was. Croatia was a beautiful place and it felt like we were just on a massive holiday with our mates with a World Cup in between. New tracks are good, they freshen it up and I think most people are a bit fed up with going to the same places, even though they are some iconic venues.

Pompon put a really good run together. I felt like I could have worked a bit more on my bike set up the first half of the season, I really struggled to get it right and I felt like that showed in the results at the time.

Onto Fort William, is it still special for you?

Over the years I used to hate it, it's a big track, you have to be strong and fit but I learned to love it and trained into it - you develop yourself as a rider to love Fort William.

Coming into that World Cup, I trained like f*ck. I pushed it hard and I felt amazing on the bike, everything was really, really good. At the National beforehand, I beat Tahnee by a big margin so I felt like it was going to be game changing and then I snapped my chain.

bigquotesFor girls it's hard to keep the emotion out of it and after Val di Sole I was so angry.Rachel Atherton

So 3 or 4 pedal strokes in, your chain goes. In your head are you thinking, “that's the run over” or are you thinking of Gwin and Mulally?

It was so bizarre, you just are not prepared for that. I looked down, I could see it just flapping there and I couldn't believe it. For a few seconds my head was black. Then I thought, 'Well of course I’ve got to carry on, I'm in a World Cup run. I'll just go as hard as I can until I crash.'

It felt like I had two different mindsets - the one that was riding the bike and racing and then this other space in my head that was going through all different scenarios, thinking about things Gwinny’s chainless run, thinking: 'you don't know what the other girls have done, they might have all crashed and had a great big pile up. You've just got to keep going.'

Rachel Atherton about to head into the storm at the top of the track during the mornings training session.

And then I did crash because I had no chain, I slipped and I couldn't push against the chain to hop over the rock. I jumped up and I thought it was done so I just carried on a bit devastated.

I couldn't comprehend what had happened. I was furious that my chain had snapped and I didn't know what to do or where to go in the finish area. I just stood there like a complete lemon absolutely devastated.

If you took your chain off before you raced, it wouldn't be the same so to actually feel that “f*ck it, I don't care, I'm going for it”, was amazing. To ride like that where you're full tilt, trying not to brake and really carry your speed in a different way to how you normally ride was amazing to experience, so I can tick that off the list. You've got to see a silver lining, I guess. From the competitor’s side you're just pissed off but from every other side it was an amazing experience.

Leogang seemed like a fairly routine win but then we went to Val di Sole and you seemed to lose it on the final turn.

For me that was the turning point in the season. In Val di Sole all the splits were green for me until the field which is thirty seconds. I lost two seconds there and I was f*cking livid.

I don't know if the boys are the same but for girls it's hard to keep the emotion out of it and after Val di Sole I was so angry. It was pretty hard to deal with that but in hindsight again that gave me the courage to keep looking for that change or that thing that was going to get me back on top.

Rachel Atherton had the big W in the bag all the way up to the finishing field where 0.1s would slip through her fingers.

I felt like I was riding well, I was committed and I felt like I was getting my confidence back but, like I said before, I was still struggling with my bike set up. I started to realise what the problem was with it but it took me all the way to Mont Sainte Anne to get right.

bigquotesI was like: 'f*ck it, I don't care if I get hurt,' I actually thought that to myself at the top of the hill, 'I don't care if I break my collarbone again, if I break my leg, whatever.' I wanted it that much.Rachel Atherton

In what terms?

On the Trek Session, the standard link has 19 per cent progression but we ended up going to a 30 per cent link. I couldn't put my finger on it really, I just felt when I was going full speed in a race run I couldn't handle it. Then obviously in Andorra I went off the track, which was just a strange thing to happen. After that I was 100 per cent sure that it was my bike, not me.

Against everyone's recommendation, I went back to the standard 19 per cent link and I actually loved it, I felt so comfortable on the bike.

In Mont Sainte Anne, everyone noticed there was a difference and now we know it was the bike so, what differences were you feeling?

I went to Mont Sainte Anne and I wanted the overall title, I wanted to be number one again. I felt like I could ride a bike like I used to and be really committed and I felt like I could push it and it wouldn't just throw me off.

When you’re racing World Cups and you're at that level, tiny little things make a big difference so I was disappointed that we hadn't got to that point earlier in the season. That's the way it goes, you know, that's racing and when you're trying to be at the top, you're trying a lot of things and some of them work, some of them don't.

Rachel Atherton rose to Seagrave s qualie challenge taking the win by a convincing 5 seconds.

Were there thoughts of playing it easy in La Bresse?

It was a strange one. I couldn't decide whether to go safe or go for the win but when you're in that start gate, your mind just changes to race mode. As soon as I left the gate I just thought - go for the win.

After I crossed the finish line it actually took me a little while to realise that I'd won the overall too, I'd just forgotten about it in the heat of the moment.

It took a massive effort from Rachel Atherton to take the win today and she needed a few moments to catch her breath before celebrating her overall WC title.

How much do the records mean to you because you're closing in on ACC's wins?

It's hard because people love it but as a rider you don't really care, you just love racing and winning. I had no idea that six titles would be historic so personally I don't set out to do that. I've basically just got no idea what's going on, I just race. You don't need any more random facts to put pressure on yourself but everyone else loves it.

bigquotesI think it's ridiculous that big companies don't have a female rider and I think that's really shameful on their part.Rachel Atherton

Do you still get nervous?

I really still do and it has really got a lot worse in the last few years. I used to be able to deal with it quite well but now I'm too nervous, I'm physically sick. At World Champs it was horrendous, I was a complete mess until I was on track. That pressure comes with the territory really. When you're at the top, people expect you to be there, you expect it of yourself, you know?

The more injuries you get the more scared you are too so it just ends up being a pretty nerve-wracking weekend. At the end of the day, you're risking your life and limb racing. "Vouilloz once said: 'nerves are there for a purpose and if you can harness them and use them in the right way then you'll be an amazing athlete.' I've always tried to do that in the right way.

On to Lenzerheide and your biggest winning margin of the year.

I felt like all year I'd been coming to terms with risking it again and World Champs felt like the first time I was like: 'f*ck it, I don't care if I get hurt,' I actually thought that to myself at the top of the hill, 'I don't care if I break my collarbone again, if I break my leg, whatever.' I wanted it that much.

Atherton tackling the biggest heachache for most riders this week Today she rode all guns blazing today and the clock showed it.

When you ride with that much commitment that shows in the results but I had no idea that was going to happen. That determination to win, when the World Cups are finished, you don't have to think about the next race. All or nothing, it's pretty cool.

Do you think the current women's racing scene is a strong one?

Yeah I do, I really do. The field is a lot better than it was three to five years ago. That fifth spot on the podium is always up for grabs and it's filled by a different person almost every week. They're really good technically and I often learn a lot from them on race weekends.

Your top 3 elite women from left to right. Tahnee Seagrave Rachel Atherton and Myriam Nicole.

Outside of the top five, they're not really supported and they're working and struggling to make it to the World Cups, let alone fund full training programmes but regardless of that, they're still up there and that's amazing.

I think the sponsorship definitely needs to improve, I think it's ridiculous that big companies don't have a female rider and I think that's really shameful on their part.

How does Tahnee compare to your rivals of the past?

There's always that battle going on between whoever's at the top and whoever's second. I've had some pretty intense battles with Jonnier, Moseley, Ragot, Manon and now it's Tahnee.

I remember me and Sabrina having some pretty harsh words to each other but at the end of the day everyone offers their own unique battle. Tahnee is really strong and she's a great bike rider. It's been amazing to watch her come up through the ranks - I can step back and look at it from that point of view. I've known her since she was a little girl and it's been amazing to see her turn into this world class athlete.

Then from the rival’s side it is quite intense. We're quite similar, we both ride for the same country and we're not really the best of friends. I've never really been close friends with people I compete with, that's just me and that's just how it is.

The contrasting emotions that sport brings. Tahnee Seagrave will look to bounce back at World Champs it was Rachel Atherton s day as she racked up her 37th win and took her 6th overall title in the process.

We don't dislike each other at all, we get on really well when we spend time with each other but we definitely have a real strong rivalry going on and it really makes each of us dig that much deeper and we respect each other hugely.

People love to see it don't they? From my point of view I'd love to come in and walk away with a win every time but I can see by what people say it's really exciting to watch a battle happen and watch people fight it out for the win. When I was injured last year and I watched some of the World Cups it was interesting to see who would win and how they'd do it so I can appreciate the excitement of not knowing.

MENTIONS: @rossbellphoto / @davetrumpore / @natedh9


  • 86 8
 What Rachel says about sponsorship of female riders is incredibly important. However, I've always been very encouraged by the strength of interest in womens' MTB racing. Demographically, this sport (and this website's comment sections) are dominated by men, and yet despite inequalities in sponsorship and many other areas, it seems like there's just as much genuine excitement and engagement for the womens' field as for the men's. Better still, it (almost always) revolves around the actual competition, and not the gender or appearance of the competitors - many other sports treat women's competition as token at best, or a beauty pageant at worst. Comments trivializing the athletes based on their looks are generally and responsibly downvoted below the threshold.

This equality wouldn't be possible without the dedication of inspiring athletes like Rachel and all her contemporaries. Thanks to them, women's MTB is a spectacle deserving the same sponsorship and advertising commitment as men's MTB - since it already receives so much recognition from fans, I sincerely hope it receives that financial recognition soon too. I suspect that, in many cases, companies' reluctance to invest in womens' sports is due to a fear (sometimes misplaced and sometimes not) that the womens' competition is insufficiently competitive or compelling, and that advertising budget spent there to yield equal return to budget spent on men's racing. But lower viewership is also a result of lower investment, and as evidenced by slow but inexorable growth across the board, I think the world of sport is beginning to recognize that.
  • 8 58
flag AntN (Dec 5, 2018 at 2:27) (Below Threshold)
 Alot the potential female MTB talent is off riding horses.....
  • 22 3
 @AntN: nah mate, they're off riding bikes and working a day job. ???? I've raced the last six years and have received nothing more than a bro deal on a bike and luckily my partner works at a shop and gets deals on parts.
  • 18 9
 I think they need rework the team championship, it’s crap teams aren’t forced into having a youth or a female *cough* Santa Cruz

It should be 2/3 riders named at the start of the season (can be changed if not entered) and they are spread across different classes, if you go the 3 riders at least make it 2 classes so if teams care about the overall the at least need a junior or a women
  • 20 8
 "Demographically, this sport (and this website's comment sections) are dominated by men" conflicts with "women's MTB is a spectacle deserving the same sponsorship and advertising commitment as men's MTB". You can't have both, unless you pit the women against the men. Otherwise, I agree with the jist of what you're saying, although we could debate just how competitive and compelling women's racing tends to be- the numbers competing, and the margins at the top of each category would indicate otherwise. Not that that's the fault of those who compete, they stepped up to the challenge. But the relative dearth of talent outside the top 3 or 4 is striking and companies should not be forced to spend money on a token also-ran who will likely come in a minute or more behind the winner. Especially when that money could be put to better use sponsoring events to get more women involved in mtb.
Rachel also deserves a lot of credit for her work at the grass-roots level to support, develop and encourage female riders in the UK, which I don't see mentioned here.
  • 6 2
 @Deuce-DeuceAndAHalf: I was about to make the same point about companies not wanting to sponsor riders who will get little to no coverage. As it says in the interview the only competition is for firth place.

As much as Holl looks like an amazing talent coming through, swapping Atherton for her on the first place in the podium isn't going to make the women's races more exciting.
  • 2 0
 True Dat. Couldn’t have said it better.
  • 5 0
 @toad321: it's on your hand buying (or not) bikes from companies doing what you said but sure you can't force them
  • 5 0
 Great point @bluefire. Let's not forget, however, there are teams built entirely around a female rider, like Transition is, where little is spent on their male riders. So some companies realized this. Commencal appeared this way (both in DH and EWS), until this season changed that.
  • 12 3
 @Deuce-DeuceAndAHalf: I don't think manufacturers mind "also-rans" if they lead to sales. There are plenty of men, like Ratboy, who generate sales for sponsors- so they get sponsored. They don't have to win races... or even race. Sponsorship isn't charity, it's marketing. It's not Rachel's fault that dramatically more men buy new bikes than ladies, but it's not wrong that businesses spend ad dollars where they see a return on their investment. Women do not spend money on 'toys' the way men do. Soprts industries have been trying for decades to 'tap into' the 'women's market'... it just seems like there isn't much of a market there. Not for the newest, shiniest, coolest bike. Not like men. Change that and you'll change who gets supported by sponsors.
  • 7 5
 @toad321: What? Why?? Do you understand how unfair your “fairness” proposition is and how it would diminish the level of competition immediately?

You want to do that, YOU start a team and you pay for it.

Btw, I want you to buy me a new carbon dh rig because all my mates have them and I have to race a 5 year old alloy 26er. So unfair. I ride a size L. Thanks.
  • 9 0
 "Comments trivializing the athletes based on their looks are generally and responsibly downvoted below the threshold."
Half of the comments on the 'XC has more views than DH' article were going on about how hot the XC women were. At least Abi's Yoga comments have cleaned up somewhat, in the 2 years I've been on this site regularly
  • 6 1
 @MikeThomas: I'm not sure why you chose to phrase your point as a counter-argument to my own post. It's not. If anything, it just re-iterates what I harp on about time and time again- The population of female riders represents a small minority of a minority sport. There are few, if any good reasons to pay significant salaries outside the top performers/ athletes. The base currently does not warrant the investment. The money is better spent (IMO) in increasing participation, to build the market, which will in turn lead to a progression on the financial side. Demanding "equality" at the top of the food chain does not make sense, since there are likely to be very different outcomes for each dollar spent, depending on where the money is invested; There are probably several alternatives with a better ROI than signing an arbitrary, token also-ran. There's a saying doing the rounds and companies need to be wary of, because it's not without merit: "Get woke, go broke". In short, do your homework, and don't spend money purely based on unsupported ideological assertions.
  • 6 0
 @Rubberelli: I'm thinking that Transition is onto something there. The bro-market is saturated. There are only so many guys who are going to get into mountain biking - and most of them already are. If the industry wants sustained growth, they have to (a) keep people in the sport who might otherwise drop out, and (b) attract new demographics who are not yet fully tapped. Sponsoring women riders is a great way of doing that - it attracts new women into the sport, and if done right helps with making it more of a family thing (which is great for retention, as both men and women are more likely to stick with the sport if it's a family affair, as well as growth, as those groms become riders spending their own money on bikes eventually).

Example - Transition had Tahnee here in Bellingham leading a group ride for young girls. It was a wet soggy nasty day - but those girls were stoked, as were their moms and dads. That, to me, is how you grow the sport. I think Gwin and Bruni are amazing - but nothing about sponsoring Gwin or Bruni will move the needle long term, it'll just maintain the status quo.
  • 2 4
 Rachel is a bad ass. She used to annoy me but she has really grown on me. I likey!
  • 1 0
 @toad321: *do you have a cold?* Cierra Smith was a female youth Santa Cruz syndicate sponsored rider.
  • 1 1
 @korev: Aren't we forgetting that Tahnee won as many World Cup's as Rachel this year??
  • 3 0
 @teamtoreup: She was not on the Syndicate.
  • 1 0
 @MikeThomas: someone who understand how all this work, can't up vote you enough.
  • 15 1
 What an amazing role model Rachel is. I don't know about other countries but women's MTB participation in New Zealand has exploded in the last few years. Women like her, Pompom, Tahnee, Tracy, Katy Winton and many others are fantastic ambassadors and are inspiring generations of young girls and older women like myself to take up mountain biking and, gulp, maybe even race. The more women get involved in the sport, the more chances of finding that unique talent that will go on to the big stage. So if you want to see more exciting DH racing on RedBull the best thing you can do is to support your local women getting into the sport!
  • 14 0
 So why did Hope drop the Atherton's?
  • 6 3
 Rachel and Gee have lost all Hope!
  • 14 1
 According to vitalmtb rumors thread it was due to unprofessionalism, story goes they were obliged to attend Hopes demo days, called in sick but then went riding latter that day... Sounds really weird because they always had status of being very professional team but who knows...
  • 7 0
 @winko: it wasnt both Gee and Rachel it was just Rachel that was to attend. It was the Hope Womens Enduro that she bailed on.
  • 15 2
 When my bike is 11% too progressive, I sometimes crash too.
  • 5 1
 If it’s supposed to be 18% and it was at 30 then technically it’s 60% more progressive - that’s the sort of thing you’d notice.
  • 2 2
 When changing a linkage to make the bike suspension more progressive is not a linear through out the travel. It ramps non-linearly, small linkage changes will cause the suspension to behave differently towards the end of travel. Also going from Coil to Airshock will give different suspension characteristics too.
  • 11 3
 I have always wondered how many decades it will be before the Santa Cruz Syndicate will sponsor a female racer.
  • 4 2
 Every manufacturer with money will be trying to steal Holl. She is the next Rachel. She'll be battling for podiums within her first year as an elite and she'll be pushing Tahnee when Rachel retires. It will be very difficult for Tahnee to do what Rachel has been doing as far as wins and titles because she'll have Holl all over her within 3 years.
  • 3 0
 You mean Juliana
  • 6 3
 @santacruz-ing: No. Juliana doesn't have a DH team nor a Juliana branded DH bike. Per her comments - the big teams need to step up and the Syndicate is just one of those teams.
  • 2 2
 @nkrohan: Yup. Teams and OE's. Lots of these ladies are not getting all that much support.
  • 5 0
 @nkrohan: In fairness, Juliana do support a number of EWS competitors.
  • 2 3
No they don't. Wherever I go, I see tons of people riding Santa Cruz bikes (men and women). So apparently nobody cares about the gender of their pro downhill racers.
  • 6 3
 @cvoc: You are missing the point. The team -- Santa Cruz Syndicate -- should bring on a female racer at some point as should some of the other big DH teams. I am fully aware that SC/Juliana sponsors plenty of women and men and other disciplines. This has nothing to do with that. Teams are not necessarily just the bike company. Examples of other Factory teams that should someday have a female racer on it: MS Mondraker, Madison Saracen, Giant Factory Off-Rd Team, Intense Factory Race Team, Norco Factory Racing, Scott Velosolutions. The list goes on. I wasn't singling out the Syndicate for any reason other than I look forward to the day they have a female downhill racer.
  • 8 1
 @nkrohan: As pointed out above, SC seem to be doing just fine without a female rider. But if they were to consider it, I can see a few things that may factor in whether they pull the trigger...
1) Competing with several other big teams to sign a female rider from a severely reduced pool of top talent (when compared with the men's side) would probably require paying way over the odds and represent bad value.
2) SC is an aspirational brand. The riders on the Syndicate have top results, but the Syndicate series is big component of the marketing strategy and positioning of the brand. No doubt the personality counts for a lot when evaluating talent, and (this is just my opinion) there doesn't seem to be a good female "fit" on the WC circuit currently, except mabye Pom-Pon.
Which brings me to...
3) You don't seem to have factored Kathy Sessler in at all. SC have all the female talent they're ever going to need right there. I think many of us would offer up our kidney if she needed one.
Your gripe that so many teams have yet to sign a female rider might be valid, were it not for the abysmal number of elite female riders who actually deserve to be designated as such. The problem is not the teams; You can't sign meagre talent and then they magically become World Cup-ready. Developing a base at grassroots, so there are more individuals rising through the ranks (and the necessary critical mass of participants to support them) is the only sustainable way to achieve what you're aiming for.
  • 4 0
 @Deuce-DeuceAndAHalf: I mostly agree. And I have nothing but respect for Kathy Sessler. Bottom line is that I have high aspirations that someday we have a bigger pool and each large team has a female racer. I wasn't griping either - I very clearly stated "someday" and not next season. Its okay to want more for women in racing. How we get there is the complicated part.
  • 1 0
 @onemanarmy: Tahnee is the future...
  • 3 1
 @nkrohan: Aspirations imply you'll do something meaningful about it. "Griping" implies you're not; Your true bottom line is you're toeing the line between fantasy and miracle, mixed with an unhealthy dose of lazy, unsubstantiated speculation and unearned moral superiority. Sure, it feels good for you to say "SC should do this, and Intense should do that". But if you're not willing to put your own time and effort into achieving your dream (getting more females on factory rides) then it's a hollow, entirely self-serving exercise devoid of any real thought or insight and not worthy of consideration beyond it's superficial origins.
  • 1 0
 @nkrohan: calling out Madison Saracen out is a bit out of order, they had Manon for a while.
  • 2 0
 @BertRoot: I didn't call anyone out. I am just stating I look forward to the day where there is a female racer on all the big factory teams every season. Unfortunately we need more than 5 competitive women for that to happen.
  • 3 2
 @Deuce-DeuceAndAHalf: We can agree to disagree. But I like your use of big words. It is 100% not fantasy to think progressively. How we achieve the goal of each team having a female racer on it is a work in progress. There are plenty of women who are working to increase participation or open a dialogue to discuss how to achieve this. It could be that women start racing a different course than the men, or maybe a pandemic will wipe out the male species.
  • 3 2
 @nkrohan: Actually, by it's definition thinking progressively is primarily pure fantasy, as the entire ideology is built upon the notion of doing things in new ways that have never been attempted before. How anyone misses the glaring problems with that approach is beyond me, but hey- as long as people appear happy who cares about the negative consequences of their decisions and actions (which could have been mitigated had sense and reason, and not misguided compassion and downright false logic prevailed).
I've long thought that some women's sports would benefit from a different format than men; It allows events to be tailored to their collective interests/ strengths and helps to avoid direct comparisons (as much as I love crunching those numbers). And the irony that my suggestion is progressive is not lost one me, but while it may be, it is also certainly anti-PC for it's historic connotations, and there's no separating progressive ideology and PC culture.
So how about this: men and women; Different but equal.
  • 9 1
 yeah Rach f*ck it!
  • 7 0
 I wish I could say my bike was the problem so confidently haha
  • 1 0
 I know it, imagine not only being able to try out different bikes, but different configurations on different bikes. It must be amazing to be able to have a bike set up any way you want it!
  • 10 4
 Hands up, who watches top 5 women's runs and all the men's runs?

Just saying.
  • 4 2
 Women are very deserving of sponsorship. Isn't it a wise investment to keep growing the women's demographic? Our family is always just as excited for the women's and men's dh races for Rachel, beyond inspiring.
  • 8 5
 Comanies MUST give a sponsorship for women? No. You can do it? Do.
They will give it whomever they want ant it's only their business.
  • 3 0
 I've really enjoyed watching the women's world cup battles the past few years. Some insane riding! Still remember Rachel's save in Mount Saint Anne '17.
  • 1 0
 I find Rachel to be very inspiring and love to watch her race. I always love a story about a dedicated athlete pushing themselves to be the best. And this is coming from a mid-40s male, not some young female looking up to the pros that I can “relate to.” I hope the sponsors of this world recognize that the stories from women’s racing is just as compelling as the men and honestly keep me watching. While, I haven’t owned a Trek in years, my interest in their bikes has definitely been increased by their sponsorship of strong athletes like Rachel or Mosely.
As far as the whole thing about women’s looks getting mentioned: I think strong, successful female athletes are sexy as hell, even when they don’t have traditional “model” looks. Women aren’t the only ones attracted to successful people. Trek, take a full page advertisement with Rachel in a full DH suit with a smile, I’ll be more likely to take interest in what you have to sell. Same goes for other brands with their athletes. Showcase the beauty of the success of your athletes in the magazines and web with class and know that you will inspire women as well as create the crushes of kids like my 9 year old boy, who will always brand associate with his favorite athletes, male or female. Hell, I still associate Chapstick with those Picabo Street ads when I was a kid.
  • 4 0
 Hope dropped the Athertons??
  • 1 0
 I think with their profile they could have companies compete to sponsor them
  • 5 1
 Rumor is they failed to meet their contractual obligations for events with Hope, for example not showing up for the Women's enduro event as promised. Maybe they'll work it out, but it sounded like Hope was pretty over it.
  • 3 0
 Crazy that Trek let her go, and picked up 2 mediocre male DH riders. She is DH royalty.
  • 1 0
 Which riders did they pick up?
  • 1 0
 I once saw this video where a Cow licked Rache,s foot.
True story.
If there is a DH race that Rach is in ,my question will always be. Can someone beat her. Never who will win. ?
She is that good.
  • 4 2
 Well, we actually came here to find out if she will race next season or not. Error 404, information not found.
  • 5 1
 She will race for sure, not so sure what she will race ON tho'...
  • 16 1
 @winko: A bike probably...
  • 1 0
 Interesting that it wasn't mentioned yet. I think we'll get a bunch of announcements in the next few weeks. I know some other big names are moving around as well.
  • 6 4
 “That fifth spot on the podium is always up for grabs...”

Woohoo! Now that’s entertainment.
  • 2 2
 Bike Co. Have got to wise up an start sponsoring Women racers. Locally the female MTB scene is exploding and Trek sell alot off the back of Rachel, they'd be insane to drop her/women racers.
  • 3 1
 All those ladies are the best. Rach, TS, Pom Pom, Tracy...all of them.....
  • 2 0
 Respect Fairplay to all Keep going Rach
  • 5 6
 I always open up the hidden negative comments to see what the bro-mountain bikers have to say. lol I hate that every hobby has its share of insecure embarrassing little dick heads.
  • 2 1
 I would love to see her race some EWS next year.
  • 1 0
 The WNBA gets the same attentiom as the NBA right?
  • 1 0
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