The 3rd round of the DH World Cup took place in Vallnord in Andorra. The LP Gravity Republic riders had excellent results on the first two rounds and aimed once again for the top of the podium this weekend.
During the qualifs on Friday, all was looking good: Loris Vergier took a strong 4th place in the Juniors, Emmeline Ragot ensured the 3rd place in the womens behind the British girls Manon Carpenter and Rachel Atherton.
In the Elite Mens, Sam Blenkinsop and Loic Bruni were respectively sixth and seventh in the overall rankings of the World Cup before this round. Blenky kept up his good form and took 8th place. Loic Bruni continued to impress, he took 4th place despite a crash during his run... Only Sam Hill, Gee Atherton and Greg Minaar were in front of him. Enough to give him confidence for the final!
Loic Bruni in front of the Andoran crazy crowd!
In Sunday’s final: Loris Vergier realized an awesome run, with a 9 second gap at the 1st split. Unfortunately, he crashed on the last corner and ended his course in the barriers. (Check out the video here, at 1min20: https://www.facebook.com/video/embed?video_id=10151612311182815) He got up as fast as possible and crossed the line still with the best time! But 3 riders were still to go and the English Mike Jones dislodged him from the hot seat with less than half a second ... The first World Cup victory was close for Loris. It should be soon!
In the Womens, Emmeline could not quite take top spot ahead of the British girls! But as with all previous rounds she took a place on the podium, finishing in 4th place and staying 2nd overall.
In Elite Mens, the pressure was high, the commitment too! Cam Cole, former LP rider, crashed heavily and had to be evacuated by helicopter. The race was interrupted for a while. The Canadian from Devinci, Steve Smith kept the hot seat warm for most of the afternoon. Blenky made a strong run and finished close to the top 10, in 12th place.
Loic Bruni was expected at the front after his impressive qualification run! He finally took 8th place and holds the 6th place overall. He proves he is already part of the world’s best riders, while it is only his 1st Elite season!
The big surprise of the week-end was the victory of Frenchman Rémi Thirion (Riding Addiction Commencal). He claimed victory in front of Gee Atherton and ends four years of famine in the World Cup for the French (Fabien Barel’s last victory in 2009).
Another great team performance for Team LP Gravity Republic, who stay 2nd in the team standings behind the Athertons of Team GT.
Coming up next is the 4th round in Mont Saint Anne, Canada in 15 days.
2 podiums for the Team LP Gravity Republic!