Catch Claudio's latest track ride with Marcelo Gutierrez, find out where to watch the World Cup live and discover why it’s essential Saturday viewing.
1. Claudio Caluori
Team manager for Gstaad-Scott, Claudio Caluori is a regular feature of the world cup weekend due to his enthralling track rides, chasing mtb celebrities down mountains.
Check out his latest edit, following (and overtaking!) Marcelo Guiterrez on the Lenzerheide downhill track, a course he helped to design and build. This is Claudio’s home track so he was keen to put on even more of a show than usual, he sounds pretty scared off some of the bigger jumps though.
2. You can watch it live, for free
Yes, you read right — you can watch the entire thing live, for free, through the Red Bull Bike site. No need to pay for a subscription, no call to head to the pub and crowd round a beer-flecked screen, just turn on your laptop. Load the site early though, as demand is usually pretty high.
For Lenzerheide the live feed starts at 12:30 GMT on Saturday
Then there’s the host of videos and pictures that come after the race is done. An army of top class photographers, videographers and media producers troop around after the action, for your pleasure, and from whom there is no escape. Just check out some of the action so far this year:
3. It’s a totally new track
The World Cup has never been to Lenzerheide before, the dirt is totally fresh. The course has been designed with help from Steve Peat and Claudio Caluori, definitely two guys who know a thing or two about what goes into making a good course.
The track is wide open with a mix of natural and bike park sections. Having such an unfamiliar and unique track makes this race really hard to call. One thing is for certain, it’s going to be a cracker.
4. The British are really, really good at it
We are rubbish at football, we’re not great at cricket and we are alright at rugby but we are really, really good at mountain biking.
If you total the top five of both the men’s and women’s category from the 2014 world cup half of them are made up by Brits, with both overall winners being British as well. Not to blow our own trumpet too much, but we are also the world champions of the sport.
5. Bikes, bikes and nothing but bikes
For four months the world cup is omnipresent. It will take over your weekends, the conversations on your rides and the mountain biking internet.
Forget what is reality and submerge yourself into a world of 200mm travel and fast riding. Gorge on bike related information and product details and feast on a world of trail edits.
The world cup riders also produce some amazing videos when they’re away from the racing. If it wasn’t for the World Cup you wouldn’t have videos of Brendan Fairclough riding trail bikes in our latest skills series, or movies from Scott bikes like this…
6. Rob Warner’s eclectic commentary
Rob Warner is as much a feature of the World Cup as mountain bikes are. From the days when he was racing through to his commentary on race day, expect hollering, hilarious (read inappropriate) and off topic commentary. Here are some interviews to give you a taster….
7. It’s not all about the bike
Contrary to the first point on this list, the world cup is not always about the bikes, sometimes its about the really funny people who ride them. Whether it is Josh Bryceland or Eddie Masters, there are a whole host of people who never let winning get the better of them.
There is a reason why throughout the season the videos with these guys in them are the most watched. Always cracking jokes, even when on the podium, they are fan favourites and solid characters on the scene.
8. It’s putting the sport on the map
Mountain biking is a growing industry and more people are picking up bikes, turning cranks and enjoying singletrack. We don’t all ride downhill but not enough people are actually understanding our sport; either equating it to Red Bull Rampage or 1980s lycra clad, rigid bikes.
The world cup acts as a platform for mountain biking and the riders as ambassadors for the sport, something which is even more significant now that British female racers are being involved in and winning awards. That said, how good is the Red Bull Rampage?!…
9. The drama of the final race
Alongside the fiercely high standard of riding on display the nature of the sport makes downhill mountain biking competitively close; with riders struggling with anything from mechanicals through to crashes.
With points being award for wins and qualifying, leaders can come and go throughout the season and as a result the overall title is often won at the last race; making it tight through to the finish.
10. The standard of riding
The world cup marks the pinnacle of our sport; the best riders, on the best tracks. The speed and style of every rider is a joy to watch and is guaranteed to have you thinking you are Sam Hill out on your local trails.
It’s pretty much impossible not to be motivated to ride when every weekend you watch the best riders throwing down. Whilst not strictly at the World Cup, this video of Danny Hart is the perfect case in point.