Oscar Saiz, former downhill racer and current coach, worked with the Giant-Shimano team's riders to improve their descending skills. Saiz, who has also worked extensively with Giant's mountain bike pros, assessed the road riders' descending techniques.
"There are more guys who are quick down the hill and they are taking that advantage," said Saiz. "For me, it's also safety issue, and it can be career ending to crash."
"The important thing is knowing how to read the road quickly. You need to guess what's coming next. What's the next corner going to be like? You have to assess how a guy is braking on a bike. I give them a few messages to take home and practice every day."
With racers reaching speeds up to 100km/hour, good reflexes and proficient skills can make the difference between winning and losing.
Pro rider Luka Mezgec said, "It's important for every type of rider. You can win the race on the downhill and you can also lose it. I was a mountain biker before this and I really like this kind of stuff."
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