Big Heat, Dust and Wins in Les Gets

French riders Marine Cabirou (Scott Downhill Factory) and Benoit Coulanges (Dorval AM Commencal) tamed the super-dry, loose course, carrying speed on the very edge of grip to win the sixth round of the UCI Mountain Bike Downhill World Cup.

It was a hugely-popular home-nation victory for Cabirou who put together a faultless final run in the steep and testing conditions to take the victory in the race which is part of the 10-day UCI Mountain Bike World Series Festival in Haute Savoie.

The 26-year-old went into the hot seat with just World Champion Valentina Höll (Rockshox Trek Race Team) to go and watched as the Austrian series leader went down in the third corner of the track and ended up 10th.


Slovenia’s Monika Hrastnik (Dorval AM Commencal) finished second just under four seconds back with a precise and aggressive run. Santa Cruz Syndicate’s Nina Hoffman was third around half a second further back.

Höll continues to lead the series with the two North-American rounds to come.

In the men’s elite race, it went right down to the wire with the last rider down the hill, Coulanges, taking the win by just 0.16s. Having won both the qualifying and semi-finals in Les Gets, it was the 28-year-old’s first elite World Cup win and prompted home fans to storm the finish bowl.

Andreas Kolb (Continental Atherton) looked like he might take his second win of the season with an epic display but Coulanges proved too fast relegating the Austrian to second place. Frenchman Loris Vergier (Trek Factory Gravity Racing) was third.

France’s Loic Bruni (Specialized Gravity) ended up fifth but continues to lead the overall standings.

The juniors raced on Friday and it was a debut World Cup win for Colombia’s Valentina Roa Sanchez (Transition Factory Racing) who was 3.4s up on Australia’s Sacha Mills. France’s Lais Bonnaure was third. Junior World Champion Erice Van Leuven (Commencal Les Orres) was sidelined by a practice crash on Thursday. Roa Sanchez leads the overall standings.


In the men’s junior race, the USA’s Ryan Pinkerton (GT Continental Factory Racing) made it two weekends in a row on the top of the box by following up his Loudenvielle victory with another decisive win. In second, some 3.7s back, was 14th-placed qualifier Jon Mozell (Forbidden Synthesis Team). Pinkerton’s compatriot Evan Medcalf (Evolve Racing) was third. Pinkerton leads the standings from Bodhi Kuhn (Trek Factory Racing Gravity) who sat the race out after a suspected concussion in Loudenvielle.

Racing continues on Sunday with the Elite cross-country Olympic. Next weekend the action transfers to Morzine-Avoriaz for the third round of the UCI Cross-country Marathon World Cup and Chatel for the final round of the UCI Enduro World Cup. 

Full race results are available here

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