Impressive finale for the mountain bike worlds
All cycling enthusiasts will tell you: each discipline is impressive to watch in competition. The one that turns heads the most is certainly the downhill mountain bike, where athletes rush up the steep slopes, accumulating jumps and avoiding rocks and roots.
P mong the crowd gathered at Mont-Sainte-Anne on Sunday for the finals of the World Championships downhill (DH), they were more to hold their breath. The best downhill cyclists were gathered to determine who would be the fastest on the 2.9 km course.
The cars were lined up for nearly a mile from the entrance of the MSA, a fair amount of curious did not want to miss the show. After the busy weekend, we can easily say that the mountain has welcomed a record crowd this year.
A few days after his father’s victory at the masters, the Frenchman Loic Bruni got his hands on the elite world title for the fourth time. His victory was also celebrated on a grand scale when he arrived at the bottom of the slopes.
“This year was a little lucky year, I was always a bit ahead [of Australian Troy Brosnan, Silver]. Today was just a bonus, “commented the champion.
His teammate Amaury Pierron even won bronze.
The best Canadian, Finn Iles, placed 7th. Quebecker Hugo Langevin takes 25th place, with 12 seconds behind the winner.
“I’m really happy with my descent, there were so many people shouting, the atmosphere was sick. This is the first time I see so many people on the course. On the circuit, it’s really one of the toughest descents [at the MSA]. Holding the bike down the mountain is difficult, but it was good, I liked my experience, “said Langevin.
A question of shining the spotlight more on France, Myriam Nicole and Marine Cabirou also won gold and bronze among women elites, they were 23 athletes to fight for the title while the men were 76.
If Switzerland dominates the cross-country discipline, it is fair to say that France dominates downhill.
In junior men, just over a second pushes Canadian Lucas Cruz off the podium, he is only 4th out of 50 riders. Second place goes to the French Antoine Vidal, unsurprisingly. France thus accumulates 5 medals in total.
In the junior women, the winner is Valentina Hollc from Austria. Canadian Amy Ertel finished 11th.
Easily dismissed from the race
It’s no surprise that DH falls can easily keep riders out of the competition, and even get them away from their bike for a while. When they fall, they go fast, so the shock becomes strong. And then in a mountain course, it is difficult to avoid rock or tree.
A former cross-country cyclist, Quebecker Rachel Pageau wanted to prove herself downhill at the world championships at home. A fractured wrist prevented her from starting Sunday, she unfortunately dropped out of training on Friday.
The athlete from Alma will have to come back next year to show what she can do.
One of the elite favorites was even more unlucky on Saturday as he crashed into practice. Brook Macdonald was a candidate to watch, he had the 3rd best time in qualifying.
During his fall, several people from first aid were present, so the New Zealand athlete was never alone. A doctor was quickly asked at the scene.
When transporting him on a stretcher down the mountain, Macdonald spoke of severe back pain. The doctor therefore chose to request an evacuation by helicopter, to avoid aggravating the injuries. His life has never been in danger, he would have some vertebrae of broken.
The organizing team carries out 2 to 20 ambulance transports every day during the World Championships, mountain biking being an extreme sport. However, it was the first time in 29 years that she had started her helicopter evacuation protocol. The intervention went very well.
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