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MTB World Cup Cross Country #7 & Downhill #6 - Val d'Isère 2012

Date range:
July 27-29, 2012

July 29, Elite men downhill:

MacDonald wins his first ever downhill World Cup in Val d'Isere

By:
Rob Jones
Published:
July 29, 2012, 15:15 BST,
Updated:
July 31, 2012, 16:00 BST

Gwin locks up 2012 World Cup overall with one round remaining

Brook Macdonald (MS Mondraker Team) on his way to winning his first World Cup

Brook Macdonald (MS Mondraker Team) on his way to winning his first World Cup

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Round six of the downhill at the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup in Val d'Isere, France turned out to be a much more difficult course than anyone anticipated, with many top riders crashing and performing below expectations. New Zealand's Brook MacDonald (MS Mondraker) took his first ever World Cup win in the men's race. Aaron Gwin (Trek World Racing), despite finishing fifth, locked up the men's overall World Cup title with one round remaining.

The rocky, open, alpine run was very different from most that the racers face on the World Cup circuit, and more than a few riders crashed in both training and qualifying.

The men's competition for the last two seasons has been completely dominated by World Cup leader Aaron Gwin and his usual rival, Greg Minnaar (Santa Cruz Syndicate). Between the two of them, they have won every single World Cup in last season and this season, until Val d'Isere. Every rider struggled on the fast, rough and rocky terrain, which was completely unforgiving of mistakes. Gwin crashed in qualifying, injuring his hand and finishing well back.

In the final, Thibaut Ruffin (Commencal / Riding Addiction) set the early best time, which stood for 16 riders until Matt Simmonds (Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof) bumped him by an infinitesimal six-thousandths of a second. Simmonds in turn was displaced by Andrew Neethling (Giant Factory), who barely finished before Mick Hannah (Hutchinson United Ride) took the lead. Gwin took the lead next by half a second, but Minnaar surpassed his rival by that same amount. Gee Atherton (GT Factory) then recorded the first sub-2:20 time, but it wasn't quite enough, as MacDonald knocked a final half second off the lead to record his first victory.

"I can't even explain how I feel," said MacDonald. "I had a solid run, no mistakes , it was one of those runs I was just pumped for. I am over the moon about this one. My early season has been a big struggle. I was at a point where I was hating riding. So I changed a few things on my bike, and it has all paid off.

"This track was hard. With the altitude, and being only two and a half minutes, you are just pushing the whole way. If you make a mistake you lose time and you can't really lose time on this kind of track. I put together a good run and I'm happy. I think I'm going party for a week."

Despite having his consecutive World Cup win streak stopped at four, Gwin wasn't too upset. "I have no excuses, I had a pretty good run. For how I felt I am happy. To win the overall again, it is so amazing, especially after this weekend. I came in feeling good, and kinda had a bonehead moment in qualifying, hurt myself a little bit. It [his hand] was better than I thought it was going to be in the finals; it didn't hurt too bad. I just got a little tired at the bottom. So I had to back it down at the bottom to make sure I stayed on and I kinda backed it down too much, but it worked out. Everyone loses some and wins some. I have lost many more in my career. I am just stoked to be up here."

Gwin raced with fresh stitches in his had following a crash earlier in the weekend.

Gwin now has 1260 points with one World Cup race remaining, an insurmountable 260-point lead over Minnaar. The fight for second overall is far from over, with Atherton only 19 points out of second.

Full Results

Elite men
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Brook Macdonald (NZl) MS Mondraker Team 0:02:19.48  
2 Gee Atherton (GBr) GT Factory Racing 0:00:00.50  
3 Josh Bryceland (GBr) Santa Cruz Syndicate 0:00:00.68  
4 Greg Minnaar (RSA) Santa Cruz Syndicate 0:00:00.87  
5 Aaron Gwin (USA) Trek World Racing 0:00:01.37  
6 Michael Hannah (Aus) Hutchinson United Ride 0:00:01.89  
7 Marc Beaumont (GBr) GT Factory Racing 0:00:02.11  
8 Cameron Cole (NZl) Lapierre International 0:00:02.30  
9 Rémi Thirion (Fra) Labyrinth Shimano Racing Team 0:00:02.45  
10 Andrew Neethling (RSA) Giant Factory Off-Road Team 0:00:02.64  
11 Steve Smith (Can) Devinci Global Racing 0:00:02.74  
12 Steve Peat (GBr) Santa Cruz Syndicate 0:00:03.62  
13 Mitch Ropelato (USA) Monster Energy-Specialized 0:00:03.78  
14 Matthew Simmonds (GBr) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 0:00:04.09  
15 Thibaut Ruffin (Fra) Commencal / Riding Addiction 0:00:04.09  
16 Florent Payet (Fra) SC-Intense 0:00:04.13  
17 Lorenzo Suding (Ita) Pila-BlaCK Arrows-MTB Herin School Asd 0:00:04.14  
18 Samuel Blenkinsop (NZl) Lapierre International 0:00:04.57  
19 Markus Pekoll (Aut) MS Mondraker Team 0:00:05.09  
20 George Brannigan (NZl) Devinci Global Racing 0:00:05.15  
21 Ruaridh Cunningham (GBr) 0:00:05.29  
22 Connor Fearon° (Aus) Kona 0:00:05.48  
23 Filip Polc (Svk) 0:00:05.73  
24 Aurélien Giordanengo (Fra) Topcycle By Trek 0:00:05.90  
25 Mickael Pascal (Fra) CK Racing Santacruz 0:00:06.13  
26 Joseph Smith (GBr) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 0:00:06.35  
27 Samuel Hill (Aus) Monster Energy-Specialized 0:00:06.49  
28 Jared Graves (Aus) Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 0:00:06.68  
29 Bernat Guardia Pascual (Spa) 0:00:06.96  
30 Harry Heath (GBr) Unior Tools Team 0:00:07.07  
31 Cyrille Kurtz (Fra) CK Racing Santacruz 0:00:07.15  
32 Robin Wallner (Swe) Team Are Bikepark By W-Racing 0:00:07.23  
33 Johannes Fischbach (Ger) Ghost Factory Racing Team 0:00:07.39  
34 Phil Atwill° (GBr) Madison Saracen Downhill Team 0:00:07.41  
35 Pierre Charles Georges (Fra) Team Lac Blanc / Solid / Batibois Alsace 0:00:07.43  
36 Ivan Oulego Moreno (Spa) 0:00:07.58  
37 Luke Strobel (USA) 0:00:07.59  
38 Sam Dale (GBr) 0:00:07.65  
39 Matthew Beer (Can) 0:00:07.71  
40 Matej Charvat (Cze) 0:00:07.83  
41 Ben Reid (Irl) Dirt Norco Race Team 0:00:07.89  
42 Benny Strasser (Ger) 0:00:07.92  
43 Francisco Pardal (Por) 0:00:08.25  
44 Jono Jones° (GBr) 0:00:08.25  
45 Mitchell Delfs (Aus) Kona 0:00:08.41  
46 Justin Leov (NZl) Trek World Racing 0:00:08.53  
47 Oscar Harnstrom (Swe) Pila-BlaCK Arrows-MTB Herin School Asd 0:00:08.62  
48 Lewis Buchanan (GBr) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 0:00:08.85  
49 Patrick Thome (Fra) Lapierre International 0:00:08.97  
50 Richard Thomas (GBr) 0:00:09.03  
51 Johann Potgieter (RSA) 0:00:09.25  
52 Alexis Pujol (Fra) 0:00:10.09  
53 Florian Arthus (Fra) XCYTT Racing 0:00:10.26  
54 Joe Connell° (GBr) 0:00:10.36  
55 Fraser Mcglone° (GBr) 0:00:10.42  
56 Kyle Sangers (Can) 0:00:10.44  
57 Benjamin Verrier (Fra) 0:00:11.06  
58 Ludovic May (Swi) 0:00:11.19  
59 Oliver Burton (GBr) 0:00:11.24  
60 Rudy Cabirou° (Fra) 0:00:11.45  
61 Richard Rude Jr° (USA) Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 0:00:11.92  
62 Ziga Pandur (Slo) Unior Tools Team 0:00:12.06  
63 Duncan Riffle (USA) Dirt Norco Race Team 0:00:12.12  
64 Alex Bond (GBr) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 0:00:12.31  
65 Jérôme Crocombette (Fra) Passion Velo.Fr 0:00:12.36  
66 David Trummer° (Aut) 0:00:12.69  
68 Ville Ormo° (Fin) 0:00:14.11  
69 Alexandre Fayolle° (Fra) 0:00:14.23  
70 Damien Spagnolo (Fra) MS Mondraker Team 0:00:14.83  
71 Romain Payet° (Fra) 0:00:17.04  
72 Benoit Coulanges° (Fra) 0:00:18.29  
73 Joao Gois° (Por) 0:00:22.60  
74 Harry Molloy (GBr) Madison Saracen Downhill Team 0:00:25.60  
75 Bryn Atkinson (Aus) Team Norco International 0:00:28.46  
76 Marco Milivinti (Ita) Torpado Surfing Shop 0:00:28.93  
77 Nico Vink (Bel) Rose Vaujany Gravity MTB Team 0:00:40.58  
78 Nick Beer (Swi) Devinci Global Racing 0:00:47.15  
79 Marcelo Gutierrez Villegas (Col) CG Racing Brigade 0:01:35.58  
80 Miran Vauh (Slo) 0:02:32.27  
DNF Nejc Rutar (Slo) Unior Tools Team    
DNF Isak Leivsson (Nor)    
Teams
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 GT Factory Racing 99  pts
2 MS Mondraker Team 87  
3 Santa Cruz Syndicate 81  
4 Scott11 50  
5 Commencal / Riding Addiction 42  
6 Labyrinth Shimano Racing Team 38  
7 Lapierre International 36  
8 Devinci Global Racing 31  
9 Trek World Racing 28  
10 Hutchinson United Ride 26  
11 Monster Energy-Specialized 22  
12 Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 22  
13 Madison Saracen Downhill Team 22  
14 Giant Factory Off-Road Team 21  
15 Alpine Commencal Austria 18  
16 SC-Intense 15  
17 Pila-BlaCK Arrows-MTB Herin School Asd 14  
18 Passion Velo.Fr 12  
19 Dagg - Racing 9  
20 Kona 9  
21 Team Morzine - Avoriaz / Haute - Savoie 8  
22 Topcycle By Trek 7  
23 CK Racing Santacruz 6  
24 Team Lac Blanc / Solid / Batibois Alsace 4  
25 Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 3  
26 Unior Tools Team 1  
Elite men individual downhill World Cup standings after six rounds
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Aaron Gwin (USA) Trek World Racing 1260  pts
2 Greg Minnaar (RSA) Santa Cruz Syndicate 1000  
3 Gee Atherton (GBr) GT Factory Racing 981  
4 Steve Smith (Can) Devinci Global Racing 680  
5 Danny Hart (GBr) Giant Factory Off-Road Team 650  
6 Samuel Hill (Aus) Monster Energy-Specialized 627  
7 Josh Bryceland (GBr) Santa Cruz Syndicate 589  
8 Brook Macdonald (NZl) MS Mondraker Team 583  
9 Michael Hannah (Aus) Hutchinson United Ride 546  
10 Marc Beaumont (GBr) GT Factory Racing 501  
11 Andrew Neethling (RSA) Giant Factory Off-Road Team 480  
12 Cameron Cole (NZl) Lapierre International 477  
13 Samuel Blenkinsop (NZl) Lapierre International 442  
14 Rémi Thirion (Fra) Labyrinth Shimano Racing Team 420  
15 George Brannigan (NZl) Devinci Global Racing 414  
16 Matthew Simmonds (GBr) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 391  
17 Nick Beer (Swi) Devinci Global Racing 358  
18 Justin Leov (NZl) Trek World Racing 358  
19 Loic Bruni° (Fra) Lapierre International 355  
20 Joseph Smith (GBr) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 337  
21 Aurélien Giordanengo (Fra) Topcycle By Trek 333  
22 Richard Rude Jr° (USA) Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 324  
23 Damien Spagnolo (Fra) MS Mondraker Team 320  
24 Luke Strobel (USA) 312  
25 Patrick Thome (Fra) Lapierre International 311  
26 Pierre Charles Georges (Fra) Team Lac Blanc / Solid / Batibois Alsace 299  
27 Mickael Pascal (Fra) CK Racing Santacruz 296  
28 Thibaut Ruffin (Fra) Commencal / Riding Addiction 274  
29 Mitchell Delfs (Aus) Kona 271  
30 Steve Peat (GBr) Santa Cruz Syndicate 255  
31 Connor Fearon° (Aus) Kona 253  
32 Markus Pekoll (Aut) MS Mondraker Team 250  
33 Sam Dale (GBr) 247  
34 Jared Graves (Aus) Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 246  
35 Brendan Fairclough (GBr) Scott11 245  
36 Bryn Atkinson (Aus) Team Norco International 235  
37 Lorenzo Suding (Ita) Pila-BlaCK Arrows-MTB Herin School Asd 232  
38 Mitch Ropelato (USA) Monster Energy-Specialized 210  
39 Lewis Buchanan (GBr) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 201  
40 Marcelo Gutierrez Villegas (Col) CG Racing Brigade 197  
41 Florent Payet (Fra) SC-Intense 196  
42 Johannes Fischbach (Ger) Ghost Factory Racing Team 192  
43 Greg Williamson (GBr) 189  
44 Matthew Beer (Can) 187  
45 Bernard Kerr (GBr) 179  
46 Robin Wallner (Swe) Team Are Bikepark By W-Racing 174  
47 Eliot Jackson (USA) Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 172  
48 Joshua Button (Aus) SC-Intense 170  
49 Julien Camellini (Fra) 167  
50 Ben Reid (Irl) Dirt Norco Race Team 165  
51 Oscar Harnstrom (Swe) Pila-BlaCK Arrows-MTB Herin School Asd 163  
52 Harry Heath (GBr) Unior Tools Team 157  
53 Richard Thomas (GBr) 151  
54 Cyrille Kurtz (Fra) CK Racing Santacruz 150  
55 Duncan Riffle (USA) Dirt Norco Race Team 150  
56 Harry Molloy (GBr) Madison Saracen Downhill Team 145  
57 Oliver Burton (GBr) 138  
58 Kyle Sangers (Can) 125  
59 Ruaridh Cunningham (GBr) 122  
60 Ziga Pandur (Slo) Unior Tools Team 122  
61 Neko Mulally (USA) Trek World Racing 120  
62 Nejc Rutar (Slo) Unior Tools Team 120  
63 Jack Reading (GBr) 114  
64 Filip Polc (Svk) 113  
65 Troy Brosnan (Aus) Monster Energy-Specialized 107  
66 Jono Jones° (GBr) 104  
67 Fraser Mcglone° (GBr) 99  
68 Fabien Cousinie (Fra) Hutchinson United Ride 95  
69 Francisco Pardal (Por) 94  
70 Cédric Gracia (Fra) CG Racing Brigade 93  
71 Bernat Guardia Pascual (Spa) 93  
72 Adam Brayton (GBr) 90  
73 Benny Strasser (Ger) 89  
74 Marcus Klausmann (Ger) Ghost Factory Racing Team 88  
75 Austin Warren° (USA) 84  
76 Johann Potgieter (RSA) 83  
77 Ivan Oulego Moreno (Spa) 82  
78 Alexander Kangas (Swe) 78  
79 Isak Leivsson (Nor) 78  
80 Phil Atwill° (GBr) Madison Saracen Downhill Team 73  
81 Matti Lehikoinen (Fin) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 67  
82 Boris Tetzlaff (Aut) Alpine Commencal Austria 64  
83 Alex Bond (GBr) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 60  
84 Mark Scott (GBr) 60  
85 Dan Stanbridge (GBr) Dirt Norco Race Team 57  
86 Thomas Braithwaite (GBr) 57  
87 Joe Connell° (GBr) 56  
88 Jack Moir° (Aus) 55  
89 Marco Milivinti (Ita) Torpado Surfing Shop 53  
90 Ludovic May (Swi) 53  
91 Dean Lucas° (Aus) 48  
92 Dan Atherton (GBr) GT Factory Racing 45  
93 Faustin Figaret (Fra) SC-Intense 45  
94 Logan Binggeli (USA) 44  
95 George Gannicott° (GBr) 43  
96 Fabien Pedemanaud (Fra) 42  
97 Yoann Barelli (Fra) 42  
98 Nico Vink (Bel) Rose Vaujany Gravity MTB Team 42  
99 Matej Charvat (Cze) 41  
100 Curtis Keene (USA) Specialized Racing - Usa Gravity 38  
101 Gaetan Ruffin (Fra) Commencal / Riding Addiction 38  
102 Benjamin Verrier (Fra) 36  
103 Lars Vatnebryn Sandviken (Nor) 35  
104 Guillaume Cauvin° (Fra) Hutchinson United Ride 35  
105 Mathieu Gallean (Fra) Dagg - Racing 35  
106 Miran Vauh (Slo) 34  
107 Manuel Gruber (Aut) Alpine Commencal Austria 34  
108 Cody Warren (USA) 33  
109 Timothy Bentley (RSA) Hutchinson United Ride 33  
110 Jonty Neethling (RSA) 32  
111 Kevin Aiello (USA) 32  
112 Niklas Wallner (Swe) Team Are Bikepark By W-Racing 31  
113 Gianluca Vernassa° (Ita) Devinci Global Racing 30  
114 Ralph Jones (GBr) 30  
115 Rob Fraser (Can) 30  
116 Alexis Pujol (Fra) 29  
117 Joe Barnes (GBr) 29  
118 Dennis Dertell (Swe) Team 23 Degrees 28  
119 Florian Arthus (Fra) XCYTT Racing 28  
120 Emanuel Pombo (Por) 28  
121 Stefan Garlicki (RSA) 27  
122 Kieran Bennett (NZl) 26  
123 Charly Di Pasquale (Fra) XCYTT Racing 23  
124 Lars Peyer (Swi) SC-Intense 22  
125 Remi Gauvin (Can) 22  
126 Scott Mears (GBr) 22  
127 Rudy Cabirou° (Fra) 21  
128 Thomas Jeandin (Swi) 18  
129 Carlo Caire° (Ita) Argentina Bike Gravity Team 17  
130 Fergus Lamb (GBr) 16  
131 Jérôme Crocombette (Fra) Passion Velo.Fr 16  
132 David Trummer° (Aut) 15  
133 Kazuki Shimizu (Jpn) 14  
134 Arthur Parret (Fra) Passion Velo.Fr 14  
135 Ville Ormo° (Fin) 13  
136 Emyr Davies (GBr) 12  
137 Alexandre Fayolle° (Fra) 12  
138 Junya Nagata (Jpn) 11  
139 Edgar Carballo Gonzalez (Spa) 11  
140 Tommy Herrmann (Ger) 11  
141 Matthias Stonig (Aut) 10  
142 Romain Payet° (Fra) 10  
143 Mark Wallace° (Can) 9  
144 Benoit Coulanges° (Fra) 9  
145 Lutz Weber (Swi) 8  
146 Joao Gois° (Por) 8  
147 Mathias Haas (Aut) Alpine Commencal Austria 7  
148 Tiaan Odendaal° (RSA) 7  
149 Benjamin Torrano (Fra) 7  
150 Yuki Kushima (Jpn) 4  
151 Dan Sheridan° (Irl) 3  
152 Hans Lambert (Can) 3  
153 Kristoffer Haugland (Nor) 2  
Teams World Cup standings after six rounds 
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 GT Factory Racing 463  pts
2 Santa Cruz Syndicate 347  
3 MS Mondraker Team 346  
4 Trek World Racing 289  
5 Lapierre International 280  
6 Devinci Global Racing 276  
7 Hutchinson United Ride 255  
8 Scott11 238  
9 Giant Factory Off-Road Team 231  
10 Commencal / Riding Addiction 201  
11 Monster Energy-Specialized 179  
12 Labyrinth Shimano Racing Team 133  
13 Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 127  
14 SC-Intense 86  
15 Madison Saracen Downhill Team 83  
16 Team Norco International 82  
17 Alpine Commencal Austria 78  
18 Passion Velo.Fr 74  
19 Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 67  
20 Kona 45  
21 Cg Racing Brigade 37  
22 Team Morzine - Avoriaz / Haute - Savoie 35  
23 Topcycle By Trek 32  
24 Team Lac Blanc / Solid / Batibois Alsace 28  
25 Pila-Black Arrows-Mtb Herin School Asd 20  
26 CK Racing Santacruz 17  
27 Unior Tools Team 11  
28 Torpado Surfing Shop 10  
29 Dagg - Racing 9  
30 Team Are Bikepark By W-Racing 9  
31 Dirt Norco Race Team 4  
32 Ghost Factory Racing Team 3