Markus Pekoll

Mont Sainte Anne- 6th round of the 2017 UCI world cup

Mont Sainte Anne- 6th round of the 2017 UCI world cup

Déjà-vu of Lourdes: rain became again the grinch of world cup racing. Danny Hart again 3rd


The world cup in Mont Sainte Anne kicked off with a very bad start already with traveling. Almost everybody was struggling with canceled flights, delays, lost bikes and packages.

Practice MSA-1

 

When we finally arrived we had very good and dry weather, the track was in perfect conditions and the world cup venue as usually well prepared. The course was picked with detail changes, but the riders couldn’t wait to be back on the maybe fastest track of the world cup circuit.

Qualies MSA-1525

MSA = wheel destruction = wheel building = hard labour and headaches for the mechanics.

 

As the track is very fast and rough mechanics and riders have to do little adjustments on the material, but even that the track is very hard on the material. We had in general a very good setup already before so it just took some little tweaks to be ready for this track.

All the riders looked very good in the training sessions even Markus Pekoll had some issues in the last training session before his qualification run. He crashed in one section, pushed back up to try again, but suffered then from a front flat tire- but this was it regarding issues.

Qualification was a kind of ho-hum- Danny had a pretty good run and ended up in 4th position. His run was not 100% and he had some potential left for his race run. Laurie’s run was picked with small mistakes here and there, but he knew where to gain time for his race run- he ended up in 18th position. Markus had some little mistakes as well and finished in 29th position.

Qualies MSA-207

 

For race day bad weather was forecasted. We got the information for heavy rain showers in the late afternoon hours, but for some reason, the organization and the UCI risk the same scenario as we had in Lourdes, where we also knew in advance that we would suffer from heavy showers during the race.

Markus Pekoll came down first of the MS Mondraker team. He had good and almost dry conditions, but wasn’t fast enough to overtake the hot seat when he crossed the finish line- with a little bit of weather luck he finished in 29th position. Pretty soon after Markus’s run the weather changed to what was forecasted- heavy rain and we saw a Déjà-vu of what has happened in Lourdes at the beginning of the season.

Practice MSA-777

Laurie already came down in heavy rain and it was obvious that he had to fight with a problem. As it turned out afterwards he struggled with his vision as water came between the lens and the roll-off system, which normally should help to have a good vision in rainy conditions. Laurie could hardly see in the last section of the track, but managed to come down in one piece- unlucky 59th place.

Finals MSA-1201

As everybody already thought the race is over Jack Moir crossed the finish line in 4th, which was a ray of hope for us. The conditions of when Danny left the start hut reminded of the conditions when he had his famous race run at world championships in 2011. Danny was the first who came down with just being up and down a few tenth of a second and missed the top spot by just 3 tenth of a second.

Finals MSA-2120

With only three more riders to come the podium was a sure thing, but there was a ray of hope for another top 3 result. Current overall world cup leader came down with problems and also Loic Bruni couldn’t beat the time of Danny. Last to come down was Aaron Gwin, who suffered from a mechanical at the last round in Lenzerheide on a winning run. He was hungry for the win and managed to set the final best time in these unreal conditions. Danny finished in 3rd, which took him into 4th in the world cup overall.

We are now heading back to Europe to prepare for the final round of the 2017 UCI MTB world cup in Val di Sole/ Italy- stay tuned for the finals!

 

full results:

Lenzerheide- 5th round of the 2017 UCI world cup

Lenzerheide- 5th round of the 2017 UCI world cup

The MS Mondraker Team did a double podium with Danny Hart and Laurie Greenland with 3rd and 4th place in Lenzerheide/ Switzerland. This is the first Elite podium for youngster Laurie Greenland and the second podium in 2017 for double world champion Danny Hart.


Lenzerheide/ Switzerland hosted the 5th round of the 2017 UCI MTB world cup. We came here with good memories as in 2016 this was the place of Danny’s first ever world cup victory and we were super excited to race here again.

Lenzer Practice-640

As usual we had good and very warm weather in Lenzerheide. The track was very dusty which in combination with a hard track surface and rocks made the track very slippery. The track itself didn’t change a lot from the year before apart from a new finish jump and a few little things- in total the track was again a warrantor for tight and exciting racing.

We started into the week with some little issues concerning our setup, but with the help of the race support of our sponsors we get everything sorted. Danny crashed once on Friday where he ripped open his hand palm and Laurie crashed twice in practice, but without any injuries.

Lenzer Practice-460

Danny had a good qualification run, which took him into 6th place. Laurie went into his qualification run without the normal warm up procedure. He suffered from a crash in the morning and just wanted to cruise down the track as he was protected anyway. This cruising run put him into 13th place, which was pretty promising for the race. Markus Pekoll struggled in his qualification and had some mistakes in his run- he ended up in 36th position.

Lenzer Qualie-348

A thunderstorm during the nighttime packed the course a little bit. The track was still slippery, but not as in the days before. Markus Pekoll was the first rider of the MS Mondraker team. Already the first split time was a sign for that he wasn’t on a good run. There were no obvious big mistakes, but it wasn’t a good run in general and he crossed the finish line in 20th position and end up in 52nd.

Lenzer Qualie-830Laurie Greenland was next and he came down in his typical manner. He was on a wild run and he was the first who was able to undercut the 3 minute mark. Laurie jumped into the hotseat and even there were a few more riders to come it looked good for him to enter the top five. Last Man to come down was Danny. Like in Andorra on the weekend before Danny was again on a “flying” run. Not wild but very precise and fast he made it into the finish without big mistakes and finished 3rd in the end.

Lenzer Finals-1232

 

The double podium of Laurie and Danny put us into the 2nd place of the today’s team ranking and we made up 2 positions to rank 4 into the overall ranking.

Lenzer Finals-1847

We are super happy with this results and now we are going into a well-deserved 3 week world cup break and will be back in Mont Saint Anne/ Canada for the 6th round of the 2017 UCI MTB worldcup.

Stay tuned and follow us on our facebook site as well as on our instagram account.

 

 

Riders statements:

Markus: ”I am shocked. I thought I was on a good run. I was just 71st in the first split time and I have no explanation for this. I feel a bit tired after 6 weeks of racing and I am happy to have some time to refresh- hopefully I can come back for the last 3 races of the season.”

Laurie: “I can’t be more happy. First Elite podium… I am stoked! The week didn’t start too good for me as I was struggling a bit with my setup. I crashed twice in practice and I just cruised down in my qualification run. It seems like I am able to work my way up…”

Danny: “well… another podium result which is good. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to repeat my victory from 2016. I struggled a bit. It was slipper all week long and I crashed once, where I ripped open my hand palm- that’s far from being optimal… but it’s good to be back on the podium!

 

full results:

Vallnord/ Andorra-  4th round of the 2017 UCI world cup

Vallnord/ Andorra- 4th round of the 2017 UCI world cup

The 4th round of the 2017 UCI world cup in Vallnord/ Andorra was a race with mixed feelings for us… while Markus and Laurie were unlucky and crashed in their race runs Danny was back on the world cup podium with a hell of a run…


Coming to the place of our biggest success in 2016 was exciting. In 2016 Danny won his 3rd race in a row and with both Markus and Laurie in the top 10 we were able to win the team overall world cup by 1 point.

Vallnord Practice-1342

All the riders love the track of Vallnord as it has a little bit of everything: technical parts, very fast sections and it has a lot of natural elements- this mixtures is what riders want to see and don’t complain about. The track is pretty steep in some sections and rough and for sure it separates the wheat from the chaff.
From the very beginning of the training sessions the MS Mondraker squad showed that the rest of the fiield has to count with them. Laurie’s showed up with top split times in the trainings, Markus looked very confident and fast and Danny set the first best time 0,3 ahead of future winner Troy Brosnan.

Vallnord Practice-1109

The qualification didn’t go as good as we expected after the performance on the first day. Markus and Laurie had some bad luck and crashed in their qualifications runs. Markus ended up in 51st position, but Laurie finished in 18th spot even he had a big spill. Danny needed a solid run to qualify- nothing crazy or pushing to hard as he had to see the finish to qualify for the race. He ended up in 6thposition and was able to collect some points for his overall ranking.
Markus and Laurie knew that they were missing some seconds to be in the very top and both were working hard with our line checker to find the one or other second.

Vallnord Practice-745

Markus was the first to come down and was about 2,5 seconds ahead of the current leader Johannes Fischbach till the second last corner before the finish, where Markus slipped out and crashed again. Being on a good run, with being 2,5 seconds ahead of the current leader could have taken him into the top 30. Unfortunately the crash cost him several places and so he end up in 49th place.

Next of the MS Mondraker squad was Laurie. He came into the first split with the overall 9th fastest split time, but also he slipped out and crashed before the second split time. Unfortunately this spill buried his hopes for another top ten result- Laurie finished in 43rd position.

 

Danny was the 6th last man to come down and immediately show up with top split times with being more than 6 seconds ahead of the current leader Mark Wallace. Danny was on a hell of a ride. He knew he had to push to be on the podium and he did- Danny ended up in 3rdposition.

The results of this race turned the positions in the overall ranking quite a bit. While Danny moved from 25th into 10th place, Laurie lost 2 positions and is now in 11th and Markus dropped into 31st position.

Vallnord Qual 425
The racing was tight and we saw a lot of crashes, but this made this race so special and exciting. It was a fair race without any lottery sections and we saw a hard earned winner!

Next stop is the 5th round of the 2017 UCI MTB world cup in Lenzerheide/ Switzerland upcoming week – join us there or follow us on instagram profile or our facebook page.

Fort William- 2nd UCI worldcup stop 2017

Fort William- 2nd UCI worldcup stop 2017

Racing at it’s finest in the 2nd round of the 2017 UCI MTB worldcup in Fort William. The MS Mondraker team pointed out with some highlights, even the necessary ounce of luck was missing for a good team overall result.


Fort William is apart from Mont Sainte Anne THE classic track in mountain bike world cup downhill racing and this is the 15th worldcup edition on this infamous track. The track is very well know for its characteristics such as length, the woodless and hand build top section as well as the last section called the highway. The venue is also known for that it’s well attended and this year they had to stop ticket pre selling as they were already 15% over the previous year bookings.

 

Fort Bill Quals-853

The MS Racing program can’t really look back on many top results here in Fort William apart from Brook MacDonald’s 3rd place in 2011 and Emmeline Ragot’s victory in 2012. To keep the track attractive during all the years, the organizers always try to keep us entertained by changing parts of the track very year. The year one of the new sections caused a lot of controversial opinions and not all the riders weren’t happy about how this sector might change during the days.

 

Apart from this discussion the use or not use of 29” wheel bikes was the dominating topic in the pits. Quite a few teams were working on their version of 29” wheel fitting bikes and they got tested in Fort William in the British Downhill series race 3 weeks before the world cup. With a victory of Danny in the pocket we decided to insert the one bike we have got to keep up in the battle of material with one rider,. Laurie was testing in a different direction with a lock-out shock and Markus kept his current setup, which he felt confident on.

Fort Bill-105

While it was expected that the field will be dominated by a 29” wheeled Laurie shocked the competitors with a time of 4:42:318 1,6 seconds ahead of 2nd place and 2,1 seconds ahead of the first 29er.

Unfortunately after this promising time- which was the fastest of the weekend- things went different than we hoped for. Laurie crashed in his qualifications run, Markus had a puncture and had to repair the tire to be able to finish his qualifying run and Danny simply didn’t had the perfect run you need to finish the qualification in first position.

Fort Bill Quals II-59

The finals showed a similar picture: Markus the first to come down struggled in the top part and almost got kicked off the bike. Laurie was a little bit handicapped because of his crash on the day before. He managed to clear the very difficult and controversial wood section and a clean run flushed him into 9th place. Danny came into the wood section with one of the fastest split times, but crashed at the entry of the wood section and another time in the woods- luckless he ended up again in unsatisfying 59th place.

Fort Bill Quals-174

 

These results set us back to the 7th place in the team overall- we have to buck up now and strike back. Stay tuned for the 3rd round of the 2017 UCi world cup, which takes place in Leogang next weekend.

 

Results & rankings:

 

Lenzerheide- 5th UCI worldcup stop with a victory of Danny Hart

Lenzerheide- 5th UCI worldcup stop with a victory of Danny Hart

Lenzerheide/ Switzerland hosted the 5th round of the 2016 UCi MTB worldcup. Lenzerheide is one of those spots we really enjoy going to as the venue is situated in a nice area with a little lake and there is almost the touch of being on holidays- apart from that Lenzerheide offers a short, but firm track, which is always good for a tight and thrilling race.

Lenzer Prac-313

Danny came to Lenzerheide with a little handicap. Since the IXS cup in Schladming he suffered from a little fracture in his thumb, but with the okay of the doctors he was ready to race. Because of this handicap we didn’t see as many training runs in practice as we are used to. Laurie felt good on the track throughout the training sessions and he came to Lenzerheide with a win in his pocket from the former year in the junior’s race.

Lenzer Prac-401

His time back then was just 5 seconds of the win in the Elite category and this was a good reason for us to hope for more. Markus is lives thru a though period and missing that extra little bit of luck at the moment. He saw Lenzerheide as another chance to strike back and so he was fully motivated and committed, which is hard in this situation.

The race weekend started a little bit unexpected, but exciting considering circumstances. Markus wasn’t really able to connect his fast sections, but managed to finish in 34th position. The first big surprise was Laurie finishing 5th with just 2,35 seconds of 1st which was Danny. He had a solid but not perfect run and some of his competitors struggled, crashed or had a mechanical, but the result was still promising.

Lenzer Prac-295

The weather forecast showed constant weather conditions and so everything was arranged for a fair race. Markus was the first man to come down of our squad, but he crashed just 20 seconds out of the start house. The crashed ruined his chance on fighting back and so Markus finished in unsatisfied 76th position. Next to come down was Laurie. He passed the split time sin reach of the current hotseat, but missed it by just a few tenth of a second. Laurie finished in 13th spot which also got him into 13th place in the overall.

Lenzer Finals-795

Last man to come down was Danny this weekend. Aaron Gwin, who crashed in his qualification run, was the current leader and his time seemed to be unbeatable. Danny came into first split with 0,2 off Aarons time, lost a bit more to the 2nd split and came into 3rd split with almost 1 second off. The race for the win seemed to be done for Danny as non of the riders before made up time in the last section. Danny came into the 4th split and was just 0,4 seconds behind Aaron- there was room for hope. Danny crossed the finish line with 0,096 seconds ahead of Aaron Gwin. This was a big relieve for Danny as he hasn’t won a world cup race yet since he won the world championships in 2011. Finally the combination of a top rider, with the material of our sponsors and the support of the team got Danny into the position to accomplish this mission.

 

The results of Danny and Laurie got us in 2nd position in the team results and also in 2nd position in the UCI worldcup overall team ranking.

We leave Lenzerheide with happy faces and looking forward to the next race in Mont Saint Anne in a few weeks. Stay tuned for more news!

 

full results:

Fort William- 3rd UCI worldcup stop 2016

Fort William- 3rd UCI worldcup stop 2016

Boom- another podium for Danny Hart and Laurie Greenland enters the top 10.

3rd round of the 2016 UCI MTB worldcup ended with a 3rd place of Danny Hart, a 8th place of Laurie Greenland and a 31st place of Markus Pekoll.


Wow what a thrilling weekend. We came back to Fort William after the British national series a few weeks back. We knew that this will be our race and we were prepared for a podium and maybe more. Danny took the win at the national round, which was promising considering the well-staffed starter field.

From the very first time practice Danny was dominating the course of Fort William and he left no doubt on that he is one of the aspirants on the top box of the podium. Also Markus and Laurie did well in their training session and new that with a solid run they will easily make into the top 20.

Fort Bill 16-247-2

As mentioned Danny dominated the time practice with 2 seconds ahead of the closest competitor. This was promising and so we hoped for the sensation- the eagerly awaited world cup win.

Danny crashed in his qualifying round, which didn’t affect him too much and Laurie (15th) and Markus (13th) shone with 2 top 15 results- so everything was again prepared for the race.

Fort Bill 16-780

Because of the current ranking Markus was the first to come down. Unfortunately Markus crashed and couldn’t make up enough time to finish in the top 20. Markus ended up in 31st place, but made up some positions in the overall ranking. In between Markus and Danny the future winner Greg Minaar set a best time, which was 5 seconds faster than Danny’s best time over the weekend- Danny tried hard, made up a second from his best training time, but crossed the finish line in 2nd and finished 3rd in the end. Last man to come down of the MS Mondraker team was Laurie and he crossed the finish line in 3rd position. Laurie shared the hotseat with Greg and Danny for a while till he got replaced by Greg Williamson- Laurie finished in 8th position.

Fort Bill 16 Finals 1025

The team finished 2nd overall this weekend and made up a spot in the overall team ranking. We are now 5th and working our way up in the ranking.

Now we are heading back to Austria to compete in our home race in Leogang. Stay tuned for more news…

Results

2016- let’s get the season started

2016- let’s get the season started

The MS Mondraker team enters into the 2016 season with a lot of changes and some little surprises. After a so-so season with a lot of crashes and injuries, we all went back to work, determined to return stronger for the new 2016 season !

Danny Hart and Markus Pekoll remain in the team, but the squad gets buoyed by the arrival of the 2015 junior worldcup overall winner and junior world champion Laurie Greenland.

 

lauriewelcome3

 

Team manager Lukas Haider: “We are stoked to have Laurie on our roster. We were looking for a passionate, race-driven character to join forces with Danny and Markus. With Laurie we found the right person and the future looks very bright indeed !

Furthermore we are happy to announce a last minute add-on to our team, which is Emmeline Ragot. This may be a surprise to most of you as Emmeline officially retired in 2015. This should not be seen as a comeback, but as a backdoor for her if she is able to recover 100% after her bad ankle and elbow injuries. We always stand by our riders to give them the optimal chances of success.

Apart from the A Team lineup, we started again a B Team support program under the responsibility of Maria Ulrich and Rainer Wollendorfer. The main focus will be on European races such as the European IXS cup where our promising riders, Fabian Ulrich, Matt Lawton and Pascal Engel will be competing.

 

LaurieDannyMarkus

 

Rider’s statements:

Danny Hart: “A few changes for me in 2016: firstly I have been working with the RMJ-Acadamy for training, so that means spending a lot of time in Liverpool at the John Moore University, and I am loving it, training in a group has been really cool. I am also excited to be working with a few new team sponsors, Maxxis tyres is cool for me, they are the OG of the tyre industry: I used these when I was an amateur coming through. Concerning Dainese, a lot of you may know that I am a big Moto GP fan and these guys are the biggest name in leather suits, so I can’t wait to see what they are going to do for our team: We visited see the facilities and I was blown away. Finally, Fox, what can I say! They have dominated the last few years of DH racing, and I am really looking forward to bolting their stuff to my bike. 2016 looks like it is going to be good!“

 

Markus Pekoll: “2016 is going to be a very interesting year for me! After four years on Marzocchi, 5 Years with Alpinestars and 8 Years with Schwalbe, new things start with Fox suspension, Dainese clothing and Maxxis tyres!

I’m really looking forward to compete with this winning proofed products with a great history against the best in the world! When I started riding Downhill around 2004, the first protection I used was Dainese and Maxxis rubbers fitted my bike! My first real DH bike had the fox 40 in it! So, for me this is something like going back to the roots, and yes as I wrote before I can´t wait to race with this stuff on my Summum!
Another good thing for 2016 is that we got the fastest Junior in the World to race with us! I met Laurie earlier this year and I think we got along well from the first second as teammates! His speed and style for his age are incredible and I am sure we will have a great time on and off the track!  With Danny and Laurie I have two of the best riders in the world as team members and that definitely should help me to reach my goals for the upcoming season!!”

 

Laurie Greenland: “The MS Mondraker team has been one of the most professional teams on the circuit for years- working with these guys, my good friend Chaz as a mechanic and being able to keep my favorite components and sponsors going into this year make me very excited!! Riding along experienced elite riders like Marcus and Danny will help me a lot going into my first year in the category. My goals are to progress on my results from last year, pushing towards more top 20 results!

 

Emmeline Ragot: “a lot of you guys may be surprised seeing me in the current roster of the MS Mondraker Team. My last season was not what I was hoping for. At the start of the previous season I was almost sure that I was going to retire at the end: But as we got more and more into the season I was feeling good, that is until my crash in Mont Sainte Anne- the injuries I got made the decision easier for me. Right now I am doing a kind of re-education to get my elbow and ankle up to a 100% level, which means I am still training. Registering with the team keeps a door open for me… we will see!”

 

Partner’s statements:

Mondraker, Miguel Pina: „At Mondraker we are delighted to have such a talented rider as Laurie racing with our MS-Mondraker Team in 2016, especially as he dominated the junior field last season and is the current Junior World Champion. With his consistency, seven podiums out of seven World Cup events, three World Cup wins and overall World Cup title as a junior, no doubt Laurie and his Summum Carbon Pro Team will be one of the rookies to follow this coming racing season which is about to start soon and, of course, he is one of the rising and brightest stars on the international DH scene. We wish him the best for his first season in Elite category, along with our current and fellow riders Danny Hart and Markus Pekoll“

 

MS-RACING, Markus Stoeckl: “It was during the last races in 2015 that I met Laurie in person for the first time. By then it was already clear that he is one of the most promising young athletes to come up to elite category in 2016. But it was not just his riding skills that made a big impression on me but also his personality and happiness were a huge factor for me to come up with an offer for him.

After he won the overall junior world cup and world champs, many of the top world Cup teams were competing for Laurie. But in the end he made the choice to join our team after feeling the trust we had in him and discovering the professionalism of our crew. (I deleted the part about the offered package as it sounds negative, making it look like Laurie came for the money)

We are extremely happy to welcome Laurie and his long term friend and mechanic Chaz Churry and see them representing our Team and sponsors.

I think Laurie will be able to reach top 20 results in the first year in the Elite category and maybe even further up. However we will give him all the necessary freedom to adjust to the new environment and support him as much as possible.”

 

For 2016 we are also pleased to announce deals with new sponsors:

 

 

foxlogoPR2

The biggest change in our sponsor line-up is for sure the suspension partner. After Marzocchi has been bought by Fox Suspension, we are now happy to be a part of the Fox family. For 2016 we will race on the Fox 40 and DHX 2 and we are looking forward to working with the race support team of Fox.

Fox, Mark Fitzsimmons: “Following the purchase of Marzocchi, we are allocating our efforts into making sure we have all the surrounding elements in place to continue the success of the brand. Our goal at FOX is making sure our suspension products, including Marzocchi, are properly supported in the market place. This process takes time. For 2016 we are excited to have the MS Mondraker racing on FOX suspension while we continue our efforts on expanding the Marzocchi service and support.

FOX has experience working with the MS team in the past and look forward to restarting the racing relationship again. Laurie won his world championship on FOX and we hope to help him continue his success into the elite class”

 

 

MaxxislogoPR

Having fought for multiple championships with Schwalbe tires in the past, MS Mondraker is excited about its new cooperation with Maxxis Tires and is ready for a winning and successful 2016!

Maxxis, Robert Tsai: Maxxis has always sought opportunities to sponsor excellent teams, and is pleased to announce the new sponsorship for the outstanding MS Mondraker team in 2016. Maxxis is proud of building this new partnership with Mondraker and providing high-quality tires to the team.

 

 

daineselogoPR

MS Racing is more than happy to annoumce the new partnership with Dainese. We are known in the industry for the strong will to develop new products. Dainese is a company we had an eye on since we saw their developments in skiing regarding the airbag technology. We now have the chance to invest our knowledge into new products at Dainese, which is the base of our new partnership.

Dainese, Giovanni Fogal: „At Dainese, we are committed to innovating products that help our athletes push the boundaries of their given sport. Working with and learning from top tier athletes like Danny and Markus is at the root of the development of premium gear. We are extremely excited to partner with MS and will stand behind them as they push the envelope of the downhill mountain biking community.“

msmondrakerjersey1

 

MS Mondraker also competing in the Enduro World Series

This season we will also support four riders on the Enduro World Series. Cyril Pages and Matthias Stonic will represent the team in the Masters category. Two junior riders, Gabriel Torralba and Alexi Cuellar-Primot, will compete in the U21 category.

And now it’s time for the serious business! We can’t wait to start the season and race!

We are looking forward to meeting you at the races: Make sure to follow all the team news our facebook site 

 

 

2015 world championships Andorra

2015 world championships Andorra

The 2015 UCI MTB world championship of Andorra is in the books…

…and the race reflected our performance throughout the season- we were well prepared, everything was served, but we haven’t been able to deliver.

We came to Andorra with two aces up the sleeve for 2 rather save top 10 results and maybe for more. We were looking forward to the track of Val di Sole as with Cedric Gracia one of the most well known riders was involved in the organization of this event. We knew the track of Andorra from previous worldcups and we knew that it might be a rough track especially in the wet… wet conditions suit Danny as we know from his world championship run in 2011 and so we were hoping for rain.

The course builders did a great job with building a worthy world champion track: not a lot of pedaling, but steep, rough… simply a little bit of everything.

On day after coursewalk the weather changed from dry and sunny to really wet. We had heavy rain and the more it rained the bigger the smile of Danny became. The training became really difficult, almost surreal and the riders had problems with staying on the bike. As it was world championships we also saw some exotic riders, which were sometimes a handicap on the track, especially because of the gnarly conditions.

Worlds Practice 2-383

 

World Champs 1st Prac-731

Another specialty of the world championships is the fact that at this race we neither have qualification nor seeding, but we have a timed training, which is on the day before race day.

Saturday was the day of the timed training session. After two days of heavy rain, the sun came out and started to dry up the track. This might seems to be a good thing, but it wasn’t. The grooves on the track got deeper and the mud more sticky, which affects the riding quite a lot. Even the conditions were hard we did well in the timed training. Markus stand out another time with the 3rd best 1st split time and 5th best 2nd split time, but finished in 13th position as he had a little mistake in the last wood section. Danny finished in 21st as he crashed before the 2nd split. Markus’s result was promising and Danny’s didn’t bothered us too much as we know how fast he is on the track by video analyses.

Vallnord Practice 3-620

On race day the track was almost tried up, but the previous days left marks. The track was so demanding, that we see some top riders struggling. In some sections it was not about finding the right line, but about catching the right groove. With number 30 Markus was the first rider of the MS Mondraker team to come down. As it was a world championship run, it was not about putting a solid run down, it was about risking everything and pushing as hard as possible. Markus pushed too hard, struggled in some section and almost crashed- Markus ended up in 19th position. Danny was our last ace up the sleeve and as a former world champion you have to have him on the list for being a podium aspirant. Unfortunately Danny didn’t look as committed as in the previous training session and he struggled to find his lines… unfortunately he was not able to ace out his competitors and ended up in 11th place.

World Champs 1st Prac-575

Maybe this sounds hard, but we are disappointed. We are not coming to world championships for a good result. In the end the only thing, which counts at worldchamps are the medals. It would have been a nice thing to finish a season with some top results and maybe to start with a world champion into the next season… thats what we are aiming for! That said it’s clear we have some work to do over the winter and we will come back more competitive- not just prepared, but also able to deliver.

Results

final Worldcup webisode #7 Val di Sole

final Worldcup webisode #7 Val di Sole

this is the last webisode for 2015 of the final world cup round in Val do Sole Italy. Markus and Danny where the last remaining riders of the MS Mondraker squad… we saw a thrilling race with a lot of action, but we also saw a really sad movement with Emmeline Ragot retiring from her 13 year world cup career…

enjoy this last edit of Markus Zimmermann from level26.

Val di Sole- 7th and final round of the 2015 UCI world cup

Val di Sole- 7th and final round of the 2015 UCI world cup

Val di Sole- the grade finale of the 2015 UCI MTB Worldcup.

 

Even it’s hard to believe, the 2015 worldcup season is in the books and there is just one more race to attend, which is the world championships in Vallnord/ AND.

The last stop of the 2015 UCI MTB worldcup took place in Val Di Sole Italy. This venue was in the race calendar for several years and is now back after one-year brake. Val di Sole offers one of the most technical and hardest tracks on the circuit and Danny showed from the very beginning that he likes that kind of track.

Val Di Sole Practice-375

Fridays qualifying reflected the performances of the season- Brosnan, Gwin and Bruni in a package 3 seconds ahead of the field and the rest of the top 10 within 5 seconds. Danny finished his qualifying run in 6th place and Markus in 24th. Both riders had their moments on the track and weren’t happy with their line choices and their mistakes. There was room for improvement and we know that Markus is fast enough for the top ten and Danny could make a podium.

Since Emmeline was out after her crash in Mont Sainte Anne we were focusing on the men’s race and even Emmeline couldn’t race she came to Val di Sole to support her teammates. Markus already came with a big deficit into the first split as he crashed in top section. He went off the track, has to carry back his bike to the spot were he exit the course to complete the race. He crossed the finish line with a big gap and ended up in 73rd.

Val Di Sole Practice-784

In the men’s race the top spots where almost carved in stone: Brosnan, Gwin and Bruni qualified within 1,3 seconds and 3 seconds ahead of the field. We knew it will be hard to break into this package, but Danny was very committed this weekend and spend some time in his last trainings sessions to test some different lines. Danny came into the first split with almost 2 seconds ahead of the current leader Brook MacDonald and was still 1,6 seconds ahead at the second split. Unfortunately Danny crashed just before the last section and gamed away a save podium spot and maybe a top 3 result.  Danny finished 25th and was able to make up one spot in the overall ranking. Watch the replay of his run.

Results:

Unbenannt-1

Apart from the racing we had another big moment in Val di Sole. Emmeline announced her retirement in the Red Bull pre live show and on the podium after the worldcup overall tribute: “I can’t keep breaking myself like this, it’s time to stop.”

Val Di Sole Finals-608-2

Here is the statement of Emmeline:

Today is a big day….

I think there is a time for everything, it has been 13 year that I’m racing and I now take the heavy decision to stop. It‘ s time for my retirement- I will not be racing in 2016.

I’m really happy to be part of the Downhill mountain bike family and I will keep amazing memories from over the year.

I was a great sport career with 60 world cup podiums and some amazing wins and great fun and for sure couple of good crashes, but it‘ s part of the game.

I would like to say a big thank to Rach for the great battle over the years.

I remember our first battle in 2004 at the European champ when we were junior J

Thanks to all the people and sponsors and family, friends that help me since the start.

I will not disappear completely. I’m looking to join a team for next year as a physio, so I can look after the riders at this time.

THANK YOU….. AND A SMALL GOOD BYE

Read the complete story of Emmeline’s retirement on Redbull.com

Val Di Sole Finals-624-2

“Emmeline, it was always a pleasure to work with you. Together we went thru ups and downs and we will always have good memories with you. You retired like a pro, as you know, when it was time to stop. We wish you all the best for you further career and hopefully it will not take too long till we meet again!”

 

We had a tough worldcup season with a lot of injuries and lost points. Here our season in numbers:

Emmeline:

+ 4 podiums in 4 races, 1 victory, 2 3rd places, national champ

– 5th overall (missing the last three races)- with her points average from the former 4 races a 2nd place would have been more than possible.

Danny:

+ 4 top ten results in 6 races, 1 worldcup podium, national champ

– 7th overall (missing the worldcup in Leogang)

Markus:

+ 2 top 15 results in 6 races

– 36th (with Lourdes and Fort William Markus was missing 2 worldcups)

Innes:

+ 1 top 20 result in 3 worldcups

– 83rd (missed Lourdes, Lenzerheide, Monte Sainte Anne, Windham and Val di Sole)

 

Team:

– 4th overall- we missed 3rd place by 28 points.

– We had 17 of 28 possible race runs (4 riders, 7 races, total 28 race runs)

 

For sure the whole team is a little bit gutted, as we had a good start into the season. We hoped for more and the constellation with Danny, Emmeline, Markus and Innes was more than promising. For sure we could be proud about the fact that we as a private race team have been able to compete with the big factory programs, but we are here for racing. This is our passion and we will work hard to be prepared to fight back next season…

 

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