Fort William World Cup 2015 – that’s a wrap!

And last but not least, the main event.
The 2015 Fort William downhill mountain bike World Cup

Photos by Ian Lean / Captions by Jamie Edwards

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Fort William is AMAZING. Year in year out the crowds fill the venue and roar their love of mountain biking at Aonach Mor. Even with brutally bad weather and a cancelled qualification day they still turned up in their thousands. On race day Fort Bill really is the center of the mountain biking universe. Don’t miss it!

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Tracey Hannah charging in to the Hazard’s Hoofer. “Straight over the handle bars at the beginning of the woods meant my momentum was lost and it was a struggle out the end”. 7th place.

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Germany’s Christian Textor is one of many fast, hungry racers that are chasing the dream of just qualifying for a World Cup. Just getting to a World Cup is a hard, expensive, grueling thing full of sacrifice and struggling … getting to the main event is the icing on the cake. Not making it through certainly nothing to be sniffed at.

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The UK’s Will Hart – representing the GB squad and racing in the junior event. This section was brutal and sent rider after rider over the bars. If you wanted to be going fast you just had to hit it and hope. Will took a tumble here but still scored himself a 26th place in his first ever World Cup.

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Looks like Will’s crash went on for a while!

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Benoit Coulanges trucking through the rocks. Benoit scored 76th at Fort Bill in 2014 … this weekend’s 15th place is definitely proof he’s got what it takes!

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Brook Macdonald whipping it out through the Scotland arch. This photo can only have been taken in race runs … that was literally the only brief, fleeting piece of sunshine all weekend. You’d be fooled into thinking the weather was good for Fort Bill. It wasn’t! Not a great result for Brook with a 45th place. Brook said he was”Glad to be out of here”.

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Danny Boy. Danny Hart is always the people’s champion. The fans love him and always roar for him to repeat that Champery run again for them. Sadly though, a beaten up hip meant he had to settle for 8th. Not bad but …

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The fans are the Fort are fruit loops! We had Christmas trees, Tetris blocks, super heroes, fruit … you name it, the fans were dressed as it!

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Jacob Dickson, 8th place in junior.

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Katy Curd. It’s easy to forget Katy when Manon and Rachel are so dominant … but she really is an incredibly talented, fast and very cool bike racer. She’s tied second in the British Downhill Series at the moment and qualified fastest at the Fort. 5th for Katy with a crash and an injury. Good job!

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Loic Bruni with the #1 plate! He qualified fastest … but had to settle for 7th in the main event.

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Boris the mad dog!

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How about Marc Beaumont’s result?! After moving on from the GT team and setting up a TV career with GMBN you’d think Marc was over racing. 21st in qualies and 36th in finals says otherwise! He was stoked!

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The master – Martin Maes! Martin devastated the junior field once again. First place by over 2 seconds for the big, powerful rider and 26th overall.

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Remi Thirion. 22nd place.

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Ruaridh Cunningham. 21st place, bloody good job Rhubarb!

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Blenki! 5th place. Still no gloves despite the freezing cold weather!

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Loose Dog Scott Mears! 60th place for Scotty Derg.

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Stevie Smith is back! “I don’t care what the conditions are, I’m just happy to be back racing!”. 25th for Smith at his first race since August 2014. Great to have you back, Chainsaw!

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Laurie Greenland. 2nd at Lourdes, 2nd at the Fort, 1st overall in the junior rankings. We couldn’t be happier to see our one-time team mate dominate the world.

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Not bad for a kid that was too small to ride a DH bike a couple of years ago!

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A lot of people are saying Gwin is back … We’d love to see that happen and a win at Lourdes and a 2nd place at Fort William is a convincing argument. According to his Facebook Gwin only managed 6 runs all weekend and got just 6 hours sleep the night before race day. Leogang will the judge of whether Gwin is back to stay.

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Manon Carpenter had shit luck this weekend. A huge crash in her final run put her down to 4th place and wrote off that brand new Monster Energy helmet. I’ve never heard a crowd sound so shocked and disappointed when they saw her go down in sight of the finish. Good luck for Leogang, girl!

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Tahnee decked out in her pink #Copparide cancer charity Fox gear. Read more at http://coppafeel.org/copparide-with-tahnee-seagrave. The new kit must have helped as she scored 2nd place behind Rach. Awesome work!

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Rachel Atherton had a tough weekend. “I had an injection last week in my neck because my disk is trapping my nerve to my right arm. The muscle isn’t getting the right signal. It’s pretty shit really … I struggled here! I didn’t expect to win … I’m pretty over the moon really!”.

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Tears and trophies. Rachel took the top spot after a hard weekend of racing.

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Gee Atherton looking strange with a 48 plate. Gee’s coach Alan told us “He had a real bad crash on Friday and hurt his hand again. You could see it was bothering him. He’s happy to take 4th place with an injury”. 4th place for Gee.

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And the man of the moment, Greg Minnaar! Greg crossed the line to a thunderous crowd and took the title of joint most-successful male World Cup rider of all time, shared with Peaty.

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See you again soon Fort Bill!

Thanks again Fort William for an incredible weekend of bike racing… though not incredible weather!

And thanks to Ian Lean for once again bringing home the photographic bacon!

Next stop … Leogang!

 

Want more Fort Bill?

Listen to an exclusive interview with Rachel Atherton 

Check out Pete’s bits from the pits

… and our trackwalk with Charlie Hatton

… and our video from Friday with some actual riding footage!

… and our video from Sunday.


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