How to begin describing this race? That's a tough one. Tougher still when you're not allowed to use profanities; just try telling someone about it without swearing. Still, we'd better try... You could say it was a race where the impossible suddenly became possible. A race where expectations were shattered and the rules rewritten; it's brilliance difficult to overstate. This was the best downhill mountain bike race of all time and there'll be few to deny it.
In a disastrous turn of events, all too reminiscent of round one in Lourdes, just before the top 20 dropped in the heavens opened for a deluge that would last the rest of the day. In 15 minutes the track was in ruin, a river for the most part and visibility became the biggest concern for riders on course. Most were off the pace by a massive 10 or 20 seconds and all seemed lost until a certain Aussie refused to lie down and went ballistic almost ousting teammate, Dean Lucas, who rode in the near-dry, from the hot seat.
This was surely the turning point of the race as team managers radioed up to the start hut with the news Jack Moir had almost turned things around; all was not lost and for the cream of the crop there was a title at stake. Although many tried, it was the likes of Brosnan, Bruni and not least, Hart, who pulled something truly special out of the bag, surfing the puddles and skimming the ruts, while somehow finding grip again on a course more fit for white water rafting than any two wheeled machine. They were truly miracle runs. In the end, though, it was all just build up to a positively superhuman performance by one man. Well, we think he's a man, but he's been called a wizard before and after today we need answers. Just how does Aaron Gwin do it?