TechPowered By

More tech

June 03, Elite men downhill:

Gwin smokes the competition in Val di Sole

By:
Rob Jones
Published:
June 03, 2012, 18:27 BST,
Updated:
June 04, 2012, 16:51 BST

Minnaar, Atherton eight seconds slower

Aaron Gwin (Trek World Racing), men's winner in Val di Sole

Aaron Gwin (Trek World Racing), men's winner in Val di Sole

view thumbnail gallery

In the men's race at the second round of the UCI Downhill World Cup in Val di Sole, Italy, Aaron Gwin (Trek World Racing) threw down a tremendous challenge to the rest of the field by finishing over seven seconds ahead of second placed Greg Minnaar (Santa Cruz Syndicate) in qualifying. Minnaar, the winner of round one and World Cup leader, had won the warm-up event with most of the favorites in Leogang, Austria last weekend while Gwin was coming off victory at the US Pro GRT in Plattekill, New York last weekend.

Times were dropping steadily through the 82-rider strong field until junior-aged Loic Bruni (Lapierre International) threw down the first sub-3:25 time with 30 riders to go. Bruni held the lead for ten riders before Steve Smith (Devinci Global Racing) took half a second off despite racing with a dislocated finger, and Smith lasted for 13 riders until Sam Blenkinsop (Lapierre International) bumped him out by a second. The lead continued to drop by fractions of a second until Minnaar, the second fastest qualifier, held the hot seat.

However, despite going nearly six seconds faster than he had in qualifying, Minnaar was still almost two seconds slower than Gwin's qualifying time and, barring a crash, Gwin was the odds-on favourite as he began his run. The American champion did not disappoint; fastest at both intermediate splits by huge margins, he knocked more than six seconds off his qualifying time to win by 7.85 seconds, a staggering margin when Minnaar had beaten him by a mere 6.32 tenths of a second in the first round. Gee Atherton (GT Factory) finished third, followed by teammate Marc Beaumont, with Cameron Cole (Lapierre International) in fifth.

"I've been looking for a run like that for some time now," said Gwin. "I couldn't be happier. I was pretty sure my quali time would hold, and even though the course here is super rough and dusty, I managed an almost clean run. Greg rode amazingly well on this track and is going to be tough competition for the remainder of the season."

Gwin and Minnaar are tied at 450 points in the World Cup standings, each with a win and a second, however, Gwin took over the series' lead by virtue of the more recent victory. Atherton is third with 315 points, followed by Beaumont at 228 and Smith with 215.

On a more serious note: everyone was thinking positive thoughts for the very popular Frenchman Cedric Gracia, in hospital with a broken leg and fractured hip after crashing into a tree earlier in the week.

Full Results

# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Aaron Gwin (USA) Trek World Racing 0:03:10.577  
2 Greg Minnaar (RSA) Santa Cruz Syndicate 0:00:07.850  
3 Gee Atherton (GBr) GT Factory Racing 0:00:08.393  
4 Marc Beaumont (GBr) GT Factory Racing 0:00:08.937  
5 Cameron Cole (NZl) Lapierre International 0:00:09.743  
6 Danny Hart (GBr) Giant Factory Off-Road Team 0:00:10.318  
7 Samuel Hill (Aus) Monster Energy-Specialized 0:00:10.500  
8 Samuel Blenkinsop (NZl) Lapierre International 0:00:11.308  
9 Rémi Thirion (Fra) Labyrinth Shimano Racing Team 0:00:11.319  
10 Steve Smith (Can) Devinci Global Racing 0:00:11.392  
11 Loic Bruni* (Fra) Lapierre International 0:00:11.917  
12 Damien Spagnolo (Fra) Ms Mondraker Team 0:00:12.404  
13 Bernard Kerr (GBr) 0:00:12.638  
14 Steve Peat (GBr) Santa Cruz Syndicate 0:00:12.673  
15 Brook Macdonald (NZl) Ms Mondraker Team 0:00:12.720  
16 George Brannigan (NZl) Devinci Global Racing 0:00:13.947  
17 Justin Leov (NZl) Trek World Racing 0:00:14.539  
18 Nick Beer (Swi) Devinci Global Racing 0:00:15.740  
19 Matthew Simmonds (GBr) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 0:00:16.016  
20 Mickael Pascal (Fra) Ck Racing Santacruz 0:00:16.179  
21 Richard Rude Jr* (USA) Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 0:00:16.335  
22 Joshua Button (Aus) Sc-Intense 0:00:16.400  
23 Ruaridh Cunningham (GBr) 0:00:16.645  
24 Brendan Fairclough (GBr) Scott11 0:00:16.762  
25 Robin Wallner (Swe) Team Are Bikepark By W-Racing 0:00:17.253  
26 Florent Payet (Fra) Sc-Intense 0:00:17.584  
27 Matthew Beer (Can) 0:00:17.884  
28 Julien Camellini (Fra) 0:00:17.891  
29 Patrick Thome (Fra) Lapierre International 0:00:18.132  
30 Pierre Charles Georges (Fra) Team Lac Blanc / Solid / Batibois Alsace 0:00:18.396  
31 Markus Pekoll (Aut) Ms Mondraker Team 0:00:18.405  
32 Michael Hannah (Aus) Hutchinson United Ride 0:00:18.424  
33 Marco Milivinti (Ita) Torpado Surfing Shop 0:00:18.540  
34 Marcelo Gutierrez Villegas (Col) Cg Racing Brigade 0:00:19.435  
35 Joseph Smith (GBr) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 0:00:19.742  
36 Sam Dale (GBr) 0:00:19.983  
37 Josh Bryceland (GBr) Santa Cruz Syndicate 0:00:20.128  
38 Harry Molloy (GBr) Madison Saracen Downhill Team 0:00:20.787  
39 Yoann Barelli (Fra) 0:00:20.900  
40 Marcus Klausmann (Ger) Ghost Factory Racing Team 0:00:20.952  
41 Connor Fearon* (Aus) Kona 0:00:20.959  
42 Eliot Jackson (USA) Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 0:00:21.070  
43 Kyle Sangers (Can) 0:00:21.199  
44 Francisco Pardal (Por) 0:00:21.723  
45 Aurélien Giordanengo (Fra) Topcycle By Trek 0:00:21.729  
46 Luke Strobel (USA) 0:00:22.112  
47 Bernat Guardia Pascual (Spa) 0:00:22.178  
48 Thibaut Ruffin (Fra) Commencal / Riding Addiction 0:00:22.525  
49 Faustin Figaret (Fra) Sc-Intense 0:00:23.005  
50 Benny Strasser (Ger) 0:00:23.629  
51 Gianluca Vernassa* (Ita) Devinci Global Racing 0:00:23.786  
52 Oscar Harnstrom (Swe) Pila-Black Arrows-Mtb Herin School Asd 0:00:23.901  
53 Alexander Kangas (Swe) 0:00:24.354  
54 Fraser Mcglone* (GBr) 0:00:24.449  
55 Jared Graves (Aus) Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 0:00:24.751  
56 Johannes Fischbach (Ger) Ghost Factory Racing Team 0:00:24.782  
57 Miran Vauh (Slo) 0:00:24.878  
58 Matti Lehikoinen (Fin) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 0:00:25.011  
59 Mathieu Gallean (Fra) Dagg - Racing 0:00:25.936  
60 Richard Thomas (GBr) 0:00:26.185  
61 Lewis Buchanan (GBr) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 0:00:26.214  
62 Andrew Neethling (RSA) Giant Factory Off-Road Team 0:00:26.284  
63 Ziga Pandur (Slo) Unior Tools Team 0:00:26.336  
64 Carlo Caire* (Ita) Argentina Bike Gravity Team 0:00:26.377  
65 Jack Reading (GBr) 0:00:26.510  
65 Charly Di Pasquale (Fra) Xcytt Racing    
67 Arthur Parret (Fra) Passion Velo.Fr 0:00:26.513  
68 Manuel Gruber (Aut) Alpine Commencal Austria 0:00:28.354  
69 Emyr Davies (GBr) 0:00:28.933  
70 Dan Stanbridge (GBr) Dirt Norco Race Team 0:00:30.540  
71 Matthias Stonig (Aut) 0:00:31.270  
72 Lorenzo Suding (Ita) Pila-Black Arrows-Mtb Herin School Asd 0:00:32.317  
73 Bryn Atkinson (Aus) Team Norco International 0:00:33.562  
74 Mathias Haas (Aut) Alpine Commencal Austria 0:00:33.949  
75 Fabien Cousinie (Fra) Hutchinson United Ride 0:00:36.596  
76 Harry Heath (GBr) Unior Tools Team 0:00:38.409  
77 Emanuel Pombo (Por) 0:00:38.507  
78 Nejc Rutar (Slo) Unior Tools Team 0:00:43.407  
79 Mitchell Delfs (Aus) Kona 0:01:02.334  
80 Benjamin Torrano (Fra) 0:01:03.694  
DNF Renaud Smaniotto (Fra) Passion Velo.Fr    
DNS Oliwer Kangas (Swe)    
Teams
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 GT Factory Racing 102  pts
2 Lapierre International 71  
3 MS Mondraker Team 65  
4 Trek World Racing 54  
5 Scott11 53  
6 Santa Cruz Syndicate 52  
7 Devinci Global Racing 49  
8 Commencal / Riding Addiction 35  
9 Labyrinth Shimano Racing Team 34  
10 Giant Factory Off-Road Team 26  
11 Monster Energy-Specialized 24  
12 Passion Velo.Fr 22  
13 Alpine Commencal Austria 18  
14 SC-Intense 15  
15 Hutchinson United Ride 14  
16 Team Morzine - Avoriaz / Haute - Savoie 13  
17 Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 12  
18 CK Racing Santacruz 11  
19 Torpado Surfing Shop 10  
20 Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 10  
21 Team Norco International 8  
22 Team Are Bikepark By W-Racing 6  
23 Unior Tools Team 3  
24 Team Lac Blanc / Solid / Batibois Alsace 3  
World Cup individual standings after round 2
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Aaron Gwin (USA) Trek World Racing 450  pts
2 Greg Minnaar (RSA) Santa Cruz Syndicate 450  
3 Gee Atherton (GBr) GT Factory Racing 315  
4 Marc Beaumont (GBr) GT Factory Racing 228  
5 Steve Smith (Can) Devinci Global Racing 215  
6 Michael Hannah (Aus) Hutchinson United Ride 209  
7 Samuel Hill (Aus) Monster Energy-Specialized 191  
8 Danny Hart (GBr) Giant Factory Off-Road Team 165  
9 Rémi Thirion (Fra) Labyrinth Shimano Racing Team 161  
10 Steve Peat (GBr) Santa Cruz Syndicate 152  
11 Nick Beer (Swi) Devinci Global Racing 144  
12 Damien Spagnolo (Fra) Ms Mondraker Team 143  
13 Justin Leov (NZl) Trek World Racing 143  
14 Brook Macdonald (NZl) Ms Mondraker Team 139  
15 Jared Graves (Aus) Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 137  
16 Julien Camellini (Fra) 133  
17 Josh Bryceland (GBr) Santa Cruz Syndicate 130  
18 Cameron Cole (NZl) Lapierre International 126  
19 Loic Bruni (Fra) Lapierre International 125  
20 Andrew Neethling (RSA) Giant Factory Off-Road Team 124  
21 Richard Rude Jr* (USA) Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 124  
22 Samuel Blenkinsop (NZl) Lapierre International 123  
23 Aurélien Giordanengo (Fra) Topcycle By Trek 121  
24 Brendan Fairclough (GBr) Scott11 118  
25 Bernard Kerr (GBr) 115  
26 George Brannigan (NZl) Devinci Global Racing 115  
27 Robin Wallner (Swe) Team Are Bikepark By W-Racing 109  
28 Troy Brosnan (Aus) Monster Energy-Specialized 107  
29 Pierre Charles Georges (Fra) Team Lac Blanc / Solid / Batibois Alsace 100  
30 Matthew Simmonds (GBr) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 98  
31 Mickael Pascal (Fra) Ck Racing Santacruz 97  
32 Cédric Gracia (Fra) Cg Racing Brigade 93  
33 Thibaut Ruffin (Fra) Commencal / Riding Addiction 91  
34 Marcus Klausmann (Ger) Ghost Factory Racing Team 88  
35 Johannes Fischbach (Ger) Ghost Factory Racing Team 86  
36 Joseph Smith (GBr) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 85  
37 Patrick Thome (Fra) Lapierre International 78  
38 Luke Strobel (USA) 78  
39 Harry Molloy (GBr) Madison Saracen Downhill Team 74  
40 Bryn Atkinson (Aus) Team Norco International 72  
41 Fabien Cousinie (Fra) Hutchinson United Ride 71  
42 Eliot Jackson (USA) Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 69  
43 Neko Mulally (USA) Trek World Racing 67  
44 Joshua Button (Aus) Sc-Intense 67  
45 Connor Fearon* (Aus) Kona 59  
46 Ruaridh Cunningham (GBr) 58  
47 Richard Thomas (GBr) 56  
48 Florent Payet (Fra) Sc-Intense 55  
49 Lorenzo Suding (Ita) Pila-Black Arrows-Mtb Herin School Asd 55  
50 Matthew Beer (Can) 54  
51 Oliver Burton (GBr) 54  
52 Mitchell Delfs (Aus) Kona 53  
53 Markus Pekoll (Aut) Ms Mondraker Team 51  
54 Oscar Harnstrom (Swe) Pila-Black Arrows-Mtb Herin School Asd 50  
55 Marco Milivinti (Ita) Torpado Surfing Shop 48  
56 Johann Potgieter (RSA) 48  
57 Marcelo Gutierrez Villegas (Col) Cg Racing Brigade 47  
58 Sam Dale (GBr) 45  
59 Duncan Riffle (USA) Dirt Norco Race Team 45  
60 Isak Leivsson (Nor) 44  
61 Yoann Barelli (Fra) 42  
62 Greg Williamson (GBr) 42  
63 Kyle Sangers (Can) 38  
64 Curtis Keene (USA) Specialized Racing - Usa Gravity 38  
65 Ziga Pandur (Slo) Unior Tools Team 38  
66 Francisco Pardal (Por) 37  
67 Mitch Ropelato (USA) Specialized Racing - Usa Gravity 37  
68 Bernat Guardia Pascual (Spa) 34  
69 Timothy Bentley (RSA) Hutchinson United Ride 33  
70 Miran Vauh (Slo) 33  
71 Faustin Figaret (Fra) Sc-Intense 32  
72 Jonty Neethling (RSA) 32  
73 Benny Strasser (Ger) 31  
74 Gianluca Vernassa* (Ita) Devinci Global Racing 30  
75 Alexander Kangas (Swe) 28  
76 Alex Bond (GBr) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 28  
77 Emanuel Pombo (Por) 28  
78 Jack Reading (GBr) 28  
79 Fraser Mcglone* (GBr) 27  
80 Stefan Garlicki (RSA) 27  
81 Thomas Braithwaite (GBr) 25  
82 Matti Lehikoinen (Fin) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 23  
83 Mathieu Gallean (Fra) Dagg - Racing 22  
84 Lars Peyer (Swi) Sc-Intense 22  
85 Lewis Buchanan (GBr) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 20  
86 Harry Heath (GBr) Unior Tools Team 20  
87 Logan Binggeli (USA) 18  
88 Carlo Caire* (Ita) Argentina Bike Gravity Team 17  
89 Niklas Wallner (Swe) Team Are Bikepark By W-Racing 17  
90 Nejc Rutar (Slo) Unior Tools Team 17  
91 Charly Di Pasquale (Fra) Xcytt Racing 16  
92 Fergus Lamb (GBr) 16  
93 Arthur Parret (Fra) Passion Velo.Fr 14  
94 Manuel Gruber (Aut) Alpine Commencal Austria 13  
95 Ludovic May (Swi) 13  
96 Emyr Davies (GBr) 12  
97 Dan Stanbridge (GBr) Dirt Norco Race Team 11  
98 Tommy Herrmann (Ger) 11  
99 Matthias Stonig (Aut) 10  
100 Guillaume Cauvin* (Fra) Hutchinson United Ride 10  
101 Lutz Weber (Swi) 8  
102 Mathias Haas (Aut) Alpine Commencal Austria 7  
103 Tiaan Odendaal* (RSA) 7  
104 Benjamin Torrano (Fra) 7  
105 Jonathan Jones (GBr) 6  
106 Mark Scott (GBr) 5  
107 Kevin Aiello (USA) 4  
108 Dan Sheridan* (Irl) 3  
109 Kristoffer Haugland (Nor) 2  
World Cup team standings after round 2
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 GT Factory Racing 145  pts
2 Trek World Racing 120  
3 Santa Cruz Syndicate 118  
4 MS Mondraker Team 113  
5 Hutchinson United Ride 101  
6 Devinci Global Racing 96  
7 Scott11 84  
8 Lapierre International 76  
9 Monster Energy-Specialized 67  
10 Commencal / Riding Addiction 55  
11 Giant Factory Off-Road Team 50  
12 Labyrinth Shimano Racing Team 43  
13 Team Norco International 41  
14 SC-Intense 37  
15 Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 36  
16 Madison Saracen Downhill Team 35  
17 Alpine Commencal Austria 32  
18 CG Racing Brigade 26  
19 Passion Velo.Fr 22  
20 Topcycle By Trek 18  
21 Team Morzine - Avoriaz / Haute - Savoie 13  
22 Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 12  
23 CK Racing Santacruz 11  
24 Torpado Surfing Shop 10  
25 Team Lac Blanc / Solid / Batibois Alsace 9  
26 Team Are Bikepark By W-Racing 9  
27 Unior Tools Team 3  
28 Ghost Factory Racing Team 2  
29 Kona 1