This weekend it wasn’t just the start of the Road World Championships, it was also the end of the MTB season, with the 2013 Four Cross World Championships and the final round in the 2013 Downhill World Cup, at the Leogang bikepark. Both were completely spectacular to watch, and as you might imagine, being the extreme end of MTB, they have a LOT of brilliant media.
4X World Championships
If you’ve never watched 4X before, it’s dead simple to follow. 4 riders start each race, around a short course that’s halfway between MTB and BMX – so big jumps, but lots of mud and rock garden sections, with some killer corners. The top 2 riders from each heat go through to the next round, until it’s the final. It has some huge high jumps, and riders can get a bit physical with each other. This year it was a three-way competition between Dutch 2011 & 2012 World Champ, Anneke Beerten, who’s giving up 4X after this to focus on Enduro, British Katy Curd, the winner of the 4X Pro Tour, and Caroline Buchanan, the Aussie who describes herself as “a bit of a mongrel”, and who wanted to add the 4X rainbows to her BMX World Title and 5th place in the downhill World Champs this year….
Caroline Buchanan was dominant from the word go – and I can’t believe that Beerten got up after that mega-crash, let alone ran her bike to the line for 4th…. and Joost Wichman in the men’s…. just WOW!!! I think I have new favourite thing!
UPDATE! Here’s a video following Beerten through the World Champs – before and after that accident, including talking about what happened and how it felt:
Downhill World Cup
The final DH World Cup! I’ll miss these weeks where there are a couple of posts full of beautiful photos and great video every day, and then the race stuff…. Rachel Atherton had the lead, but Emmeline Ragot was nipping at her heels…. this course was the first wintery one of the year. Here’s what I loved!
Trackwalk etc in my earlier post
THE RACE DAY!!! Highlights videos from Dirt and Red Bull, and the full coverage from Red Bull (I love Ragot’s accent, and every Rachel interview ever!) Lovely photos from Dirt, with audio interviews in their gallery, including Manon Carpenter, Tahnée Seagrave on winning the Junior World Cup series, Emmeline Ragot on winning Leogang, and Rachel Atherton on winning the overall World Cup series. Photos from Pinkbike – Results and photos on Cyclingnews
Video, with winner Emmeline Ragot, from Lapierre Gravity Republic
MORE! Madison Saracen photo essay on Pinkbike, with lots of photos of Manon
EVEN MORE!! Video clip from Dirt Norco, including the usually barefoot and smiley Canadian Casey Brown talking about why she didn’t ride the final race
Plus this isn’t Leogang, but it’s Rachel Atherton! BBC clip of her talking about her racing life (there are 2 more videos in the article, scroll down)
There will be more photos and videos, so check back in a few weeks and see what else I’ve found!