With racing all tied up in Andorra, here's MBR's recipe for a winning run at the World Championships
High above sea level, the course in Andorra was gnarly, rooted and steeper than anything the riders had seen so far this year in the World Cup series.
Frenchman Loic Bruni would become the eventual winner, taking his first win of the year after a multitude of close shaves and second places. Rachel Atherton’s win came as no surprise to anyone having been completely dominant over the season. With racing tied up, here’s MBR’s recipe to winning at the world champs.
If you want to know what it feels like to go at warp speed, watch Rachel Atherton’s POV:
A spot of wildness
The trick to success at the World Champs is to get absolutely wild. It’s the last race before the off season and it’s jam packed full of riders from all over the globe representing their nations. Passions are running high and riders throw all they have into their race runs.
The trick is being able to piece it all together. Plenty of riders, including big names who you never usually see crash, went down hard into the dirt. Sam Hill, Gee Atherton, Troy Brosnan and Aaron Gwin all came off at some point in the race. Here’s Gee Atherton’s surprise crash:
Sprinkling of suspension setup
For one race run alone the bike has to be operating perfectly, no graunchy bearings or slightly stretched chains: everything is dialled. This means making some major choices.
Riders must decide whether to run a coil shock or an air shock, whether to run mud spikes or faster rolling tyres, even whether to adjust the geometry that little bit to eek out slightly more control.
Bike failures ended up ruining more than one riders day including both Brendan Fairclough’s and Loris Vergier who couldn’t quite master the Chainless run.
A handful of adaptability
Check the mega mud in this Syndicate POV:
It goes without saying that you have to be able to ride rain or shine at professional level but Andorra took it to the next level. The weather throughout practice had everyone stumped, the steep section became a river with ever changing lines.
Eventually it dried to a thick gloop, sticking to tyres and covering brakes meaning that the eventual winner had to be capable of riding all types of trail in whatever weather.