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Atherton wins Val d'Isere downhill World Cup

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. Rachel Atherton (GT Factory) took her fourth win of the season to extend her lead over Emmeline Ragot (MS Mondraker Team) in the overall standings, with one round remaining.

Atherton won round six ahead by 1.49 seconds ahead of Ragot and 3.12 seconds ahead of Floriane Pugin (Scott11).

Petra Bernhard (Alpine Commencal Austria) was the first to record a sub-2:50 run, but Myriam Nicole (Commencal / Riding Addiction) immediately took nearly seven seconds off the leading time, good enough to eventually finish fourth. Floriane Pugin (Scott 11) then knocked a further second off, but the final two riders were in a class of their own.

World champion Emmeline Ragot (MS Mondraker) was 1.6 seconds faster than Pugin, but Atherton, the fastest qualifier, once again showed that her return this season, after struggling with injury, is complete - finishing a second and a half ahead of Ragot and recording the only sub-2:40 time of the day.

"I am so happy," said Atherton. "I think this is the most nervous I have been all year. This track is very, very difficult. One day it's dry and then it's really, really wet, so tire and suspension changes are so important, and you don't know how it's gonna be on your race run. Everyone was just playing it like a guessing game.

"I almost crashed today [in training]; I landed on my seat. My stomach was hurting really bad, but I thought, this is like Fort William: I need to just switch off and then switch back on for the race. I have learned that from racing and crashing."

Several riders were missing, including Jill Kintner, who is recovering from surgery following a crash earlier this month, and Tracey Hannah, who crashed out earlier this weekend

Atherton now holds an 80-point lead over Ragot, 1,200 points to 1,120, with Nicole a distant third at 892 points.  There is one round of the downhill World Cup remaining in mid-September.

Full Results

Elite women
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Rachel Atherton (GBr) GT Factory Racing0:02:38.97
2Emmeline Ragot (Fra) MS Mondraker Team0:00:01.49
3Floriane Pugin (Fra) Scott110:00:03.12
4Myriam Nicole (Fra) Commencal / Riding Addiction0:00:04.25
5Manon Carpenter (GBr) Madison Saracen Downhill Team0:00:04.90
6Emilie Siegenthaler (Swi) Scott110:00:08.18
7Petra Bernhard (Aut) Alpine Commencal Austria0:00:11.12
8Sabrina Jonnier (Fra) Labyrinth Shimano Racing Team0:00:12.79
9Mio Suemasa (Jpn)0:00:13.50
10Morgane Charre (Fra) Passion Velo.Fr0:00:14.37
11Tahnee Seagrave° (GBr)0:00:18.46
12Chloe Gallean° (Fra) Dagg - Racing0:00:19.86
13Mélanie Pugin (Fra) Team Morzine - Avoriaz / Haute - Savoie0:00:20.53
14Zarja Cernilogar (Slo)0:00:21.49
15Anita Molcik (Aut)0:00:23.72
16Fiona Ourdouillie° (Fra)0:00:26.40
17Caroline Sax (Fra) Team Lac Blanc / Solid / Batibois Alsace0:00:28.10
18Elke Rabeder (Aut)0:00:29.30
19Jana Bartova (Cze)0:00:31.53
20Harriet Rucknagel (Ger)0:01:25.56

#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1GT Factory Racing99pts
2MS Mondraker Team87
3Santa Cruz Syndicate81
5Commencal / Riding Addiction42
6Labyrinth Shimano Racing Team38
7Lapierre International36
8Devinci Global Racing31
9Trek World Racing28
10Hutchinson United Ride26
11Monster Energy-Specialized22
12Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof22
13Madison Saracen Downhill Team22
14Giant Factory Off-Road Team21
15Alpine Commencal Austria18
17Pila-BlaCK Arrows-MTB Herin School Asd14
18Passion Velo.Fr12
19Dagg - Racing9
21Team Morzine - Avoriaz / Haute - Savoie8
22Topcycle By Trek7
23CK Racing Santacruz6
24Team Lac Blanc / Solid / Batibois Alsace4
25Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team3
26Unior Tools Team1

Elite women individual World Cup standings after round 6
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Rachel Atherton (GBr) GT Factory Racing1200pts
2Emmeline Ragot (Fra) MS Mondraker Team1120
3Myriam Nicole (Fra) Commencal / Riding Addiction892
4Tracey Hannah (Aus) Hutchinson United Ride732
5Emilie Siegenthaler (Swi) Scott11705
6Floriane Pugin (Fra) Scott11500
7Manon Carpenter (GBr) Madison Saracen Downhill Team425
8Petra Bernhard (Aut) Alpine Commencal Austria402
9Morgane Charre (Fra) Passion Velo.Fr381
10Anita Molcik (Aut)380
11Jill Kintner (USA) Team Norco International363
12Sabrina Jonnier (Fra) Labyrinth Shimano Racing Team239
13Miriam Ruchti (Swi) SC-Intense232
14Mio Suemasa (Jpn)230
15Micayla Gatto (Can)221
16Miranda Miller (Can)140
17Tracy Moseley (GBr)124
18Fionn Griffiths (GBr)115
19Casey Brown (Can)95
20Tahnee Seagrave° (GBr)90
21Céline Gros (Fra) Team Morzine - Avoriaz / Haute - Savoie90
22Luana Maria De Souza Oliveira (Bra)84
23Mélanie Pugin (Fra) Team Morzine - Avoriaz / Haute - Savoie75
24Harriet Rucknagel (Ger)75
25Caroline Sax (Fra) Team Lac Blanc / Solid / Batibois Alsace75
26Zarja Cernilogar (Slo)70
27Jacqueline Harmony (USA)65
28Claire Buchar (Can)57
29Alia Marcellini (Ita) Torpado Surfing Shop55
30Jessica Stone (GBr) Unior Tools Team50
31Chloe Gallean° (Fra) Dagg - Racing45
32Martina Bruehlmann (Swi)35
33Sarah Newman (GBr)30
34Fiona Ourdouillie° (Fra)25
35Gabriela Williams (Cze) CG Racing Brigade25
36Carina Cappellari (Swi)20
37Lauren Rosser (Can)20
38Elke Rabeder (Aut)15
39Tamara Maria Ulrich (Aut)15
40Jana Bartova (Cze)10
41Jaime Hill (Can)10
42Jaime Rees (USA)5

World Cup team standings after round 6
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1GT Factory Racing463pts
2Santa Cruz Syndicate347
3MS Mondraker Team346
4Trek World Racing289
5Lapierre International280
6Devinci Global Racing276
7Hutchinson United Ride255
9Giant Factory Off-Road Team231
10Commencal / Riding Addiction201
11Monster Energy-Specialized179
12Labyrinth Shimano Racing Team133
13Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof127
15Madison Saracen Downhill Team83
16Team Norco International82
17Alpine Commencal Austria78
18Passion Velo.Fr74
19Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team67
21CG Racing Brigade37
22Team Morzine - Avoriaz / Haute - Savoie35
23Topcycle By Trek32
24Team Lac Blanc / Solid / Batibois Alsace28
25Pila-BlaCK Arrows-MTB Herin School Asd20
26CK Racing Santacruz17
27Unior Tools Team11
28Torpado Surfing Shop10
29Dagg - Racing9
30Team Are Bikepark By W-Racing9
31Dirt Norco Race Team4
32Ghost Factory Racing Team

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