Who are Red Rock Trails? Hi – we’re Heather and Chris, and our two kids, Dan and Iona. We offer cycling and adventure holidays for everyone from the farmhouse we…
Snowshoe has only hosted 3 DH World Cups, yet it’s delivered more drama and memorable moments than some of the venues that have been staples on the World Cup calendar.
All photos: Red Bull Content Pool
- Will Vali be able to get the threepeat?
- Can Camille finish top 3?
- Will Amaury be fully recovered from his crash in Andorra?
- On home soil can Aaron Gwin continue his renaissance?
- He’s not having a great season but could Thibaut Daprela get some form of redemption in Snowshoe?
How and when to watch
Women’s DH Final: Saturday 30th July 5:25pm UK
Men’s DH Final: Saturday 30th July 6:45pm UK
In 2019 we had the greatest ever finish to a World Cup race season, as the World Cup overall title flip-flopped between Amaury Pierron and Loic Bruni throughout last rider down the hill, Danny Hart’s run. Hart won that day and in doing so handed the title to Bruni.
Then, last year we had the double header. In the Women’s race Myriam Nicole slid out on what for her was an innocuous section of track. Vali Hoell won both races and came out of nowhere to pinch the overall from Nicole.
In the Men’s Thibaut Daprela came into the double header with an almost unassailable lead but, he crashed out breaking his ankle leaving two possible contenders, Loris Vergier and Loic Bruni. Reece Wilson won the first race with Bruni second and Vergier third. Vergier was in pole position to claim the title but, Bruni knew that his fellow countryman and bast mate has struggled when under pressure. Bruni publicly declared that he was going to win seeding and then the race and with it the title, an incredibly bold move. Bruni won seeding, Vergier was fourth. But then in the race, Vergier cracked under the pressure crashing out. Last man down the hill, Bruni took the win and with it the overall, just as he had predicted.
This year it’s not the final round so don’t expect those levels of drama to be repeated but do expect the racing to be tight.
In the latest episode of the podcast, Jack Reading describes the track in Snowshoe as being “like a bumpy pump track”. At 2.1km in length and with a vertical drop of 474 metres it’s somewhere in the middle of this season’s World Cup tracks for both length and drop. The first part of the course is extremely fast, a mix of open ski piste turns and big jumps before the track disappears into the forest where technical sections are dominated by loose rocks. Times are genuinely quite tight until ‘the world’s longest rock garden’* which has a few different line options as riders fly around a right hander. Towards the end of the track the speed returns as there are a number of jumps as come back out into the open and cross the finish line.
For a more visual explanation here’s the 2021 Track Explanation video with Eliot Jackson and Neko Mulally.
And here’s Loic Bruni commenting on his winning run from 2021…
Standing after Round 5 – Elite Women
- Camille Balanche 1085
- Myriam Nicole 905
- Vali Hoell 811
- Eleonora Farina 675
- Nina Hoffmann 583
Balanche extended her lead in Andorra as Nicole crashed out but what was looking like a two horse race has now become three with Hoell’s victory. Having won both races here in 2021 she must enter as the favourite. She couldn’t nip in and steal the title again could she? She could, but she would need to win at least two of the remaining three races and do well in the third and she simply hasn’t shown that level of consistency this season. Nicole has had a rough ride this season with a big crash in Lourdes and food poisoning in Andorra and this has also led to some inconsistency. Balanche is Mrs Consistency and only really needs to finish in the top three at each of the last three races and she should take her maiden title.
Standings after Round 5 – Elite Men
- Amaury Pierron 930
- Finn Iles 666
- Loris Vergier 655
- Matt Walker 564
- Danny Hart 515
- Benoit Coulanges 515
Similarly in the Men’s, three podiums for Pierron should be enough to see him home. Benoit Coulanges has confirmed that he will return for this round after crashing out in practice in Andorra.
Matt Walker made it to his race run in Andorra but also crashed. He, like the majority of the top UK riders elected to miss National Champs in Glencoe last weekend to ensure he crossed the Atlantic in plenty of time for this race.
Despite breaking his collarbone in May, Bruni must be the favourite for this race. With his second place in Andorra last time out he showed us that it’s not bothering him too much, he doesn’t have the pressure of the overall on his shoulders and we know he can win on this track. Expect a strong charge from the US riders on home soil though with Aaron Gwin and Dakotah Norton on fine form.
Standings after Round 5 – Junior Women
- Gracey Hemstreet 275
- Phoebe Gale 270
- Jenna Hastings 210
- Izabela Yankova 150
- Aimi Kenyon 125
After 5 races Gracey has three wins and Phoebe has two. It’s an interesting battle as Gale has preparation on her side which coming into longer tracks on the final two rounds (Mont Sainte Anne and Val di Sole) should help her but the Canadian has been racing blind for much of this season after only racing two World Cups in her first Junior Season and is now much closer to home for the next two rounds.
Standings after Round 5 – Junior Men
- Jackson Goldstone 280
- Jordan Williams 260
- Lachlan Stevens-McNab 191
- Remy Meier-Smith 158
- Davide Cappello 140
In Andorra Jackson Goldstone set the fastest time of the weekend. The course deteriorated by the time the Elite Men came down but it still shows the level at which he and Jordan Williams are riding. It’s a fantastic battle and Jackson has the edge but one mistake could be all it takes for Jordan to take the title.
*It probably isn’t
Subscribe to Our Newsletter
Just by signing up you are supporting Singletrack World
Join our mailing list to receive Singletrack editorial wisdom directly in your inbox.
Each newsletter is headed up by an exclusive editorial from our team and includes stories and news you don’t want to miss.
While you’re here…
Premier Partner Spotlight
Singletrack Recommended Deals – Forks
Sign up as a Singletrack Member and you can leave comments on stories, use the classified ads, and post in our forums, do quizzes and more.
Join us, join in, it’s free, and fun.