Courtesy of Red Bull Bike
Replay the racing, watch the winning runs and read the race report from Vallnord, as its vertical course tested the nerve of the world’s elite this weekend. The steepest track of the year had already claimed a number of big names by the time finals came around.
The steepest track of the season was creating huge gaps in the Elite Women’s field, with a number falling victim to its unruly terrain. Italy’s Eleonora Farina managed a long stint in the hotseat, pulling together a strong run that saw off competition from most of the top 10.
Tahnée Seagrave cranked out of the start hut with grit and determination. No doubt Rachel Atherton’s incredible qualifying time (nearly 14 seconds faster than that of Seagrave’s time) added pressure to deliver a fast and perfect run.
Starting outside the top 25 riders seemed to have a beneficial effect for Finn Iles in Vallnord. The Canadian hadn’t yet put in a final run that matched his qualifying performances, but here the youngster took the bull by the horns to sit in the hotseat, with a scorching time that was faster than that of Luca Shaw’s winning qualifying time the day before.
Loris Vergier took to the track. Starting eighth-from-last, Vergier took some creative lines down the course compared to what’d previously been seen, remaining smooth throughout.
At each split he was making second upon second on Iles, and he came in at the finish a big 4.5 seconds faster than the Canadian. Like Bruni, Vergier was riding with a hand injury that he sustained in qualifying.