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As the wise old Chinese would say, be careful what you ask for because it might just come true. Well, we wanted action, and June delivered. With an Enduro World Series and 2 World Cup DH races, we hardly had time to come up for a breather during this deep diving exploration of speed and skill put on show by the fastest riders on the planet. With two first-time World Cup winners, the oh-so-close return of the Flat Pedal King, and an EWS venue that delivered the gnarliest racing seen in the series to date, it was all about quantity AND quality as our team of world-class photographers inundated our screens with nugs by the bucketful. Throw in a slew of new product announcements and the usual stream of exciting shr-edits, and you have yourself the makings of one massive month of mountain biking. If you missed out or just want to relive the epicness, dig into the Best Of goldmine and get out with as many nuggets as you can carry. Boosh!

No Time Like The First Time - Fort William World Cup Finals

Another incredible World Cup Downhill mountain bike race went down in the history books in Fort William, Scotland. Battling a brutal track, Troy Brosnan earned his first-ever World Cup victory, standing up to the pressure of his 1st place qualifying run and putting Vital's Power Rankings writers on the spot in the process. Fan-favorite Sam Hill continued his return to form with an impressive 2nd place finish on flat pedals while Emmeline Ragot raced her brand new Lapierre to the top of the Women's podium. Sven Martin, Duncan Philpott, Boris Beyer and Joe Bowman were on the front lines to bring us unparalleled imagery and in-depth stories from what is arguably the greatest mountain bike racing on earth.

Young of age, but a run for the ages - Troy Brosnan held it together when it mattered the most.

The Year of the Rat is Upon Us - Leogang World Cup Finals

Everybody knew it had to be coming, but sometimes these things drag on and leave a little sliver of doubt as to whether or not they are actually going to happen. Bike park this and bike park that, Josh Bryceland paid little heed to the doubters and naysayers as he finally delivered the run we knew he had in him to claim his first ever World Cup victory. The happy-go-lucky Mancunian led his team-mate Greg Minnaar to a Syndicate 1-2, and to add fuel to the internet wheel size debate bonfire, they were both on 26-inch wheels. The fastest camera-slingers of the west were on hand to capture all the excitement as it went down under blue skies and against one of the most scenic backdrops on the planet.

It took bloody long enough, but it was worth the wait!

To The Edge of Reason and Beyond - Vital RAW, Fort William World Cup

When an unstoppable force meets an immovable object, bending the laws of physics seems like the only way out. Vital was on hand to capture the otherworldly phenomenon that is World Cup downhill racing, and with a symphony of controlled chaos filling our headphones and speakers we would have to be fools to think that any other soundtrack could make it any better. When it comes to racing edits, accept no substitutes - RAW is what you want, and Vital is where you get it.

RAW rocks our world.

Value DH Project: Building The Best Downhill Bike For Your $$$

These days you’re more likely to see the latest and greatest $10,000 full carbon race bikes on websites and in magazines than you are the bikes that the average guy can afford. We’re guilty of it too, but we’ve listened to your cries for reviews and features on low cost components and bikes and we’re taking action. We're gonna build a sick DH sled for a lot less money than you'd think, and you're gonna help us do it. Check out our Value DH Project launch feature and get ready for action in July.

Value for money, and your chicks for free.

Never Say Die - Enduro World Series Valloire

After an hour and 20 minutes of racing the Top 3 Pro Men were separated by only 4-seconds. The Enduro World Series in Valloire, France, was a battle of attrition for both man and bike. Nearly every rider suffered some kind of mechanical or flat tire as thousands of feet of descending took its toll on equipment and bodies. When the clock finally stopped, Jared Graves and Tracy Moseley took the overall wins and went home with EWS leader's jerseys to boot. Sven Martin, Dave Trumpore and Lee Trumpore followed the battle to bring you the sights and sounds of agony and victory as another Enduro World Series event concluded in epic fashion.

The Gravesy Train rolls on.

Vital Exclusive: Eddie Masters, E-Duro RAW

Eddie Masters of Bergamont / Hayes is always looking for ways to increase his winning margins at enduro races and his outside-the-box thinking is what will put him at the top of the podium. We followed Eddie on a secret test session in Austria as he tried out some new, super-secret, enduro-specific technology. Bovines beware.

Holy cow, it's the future already.

Bike Checks

When you own a shop, you owe it to yourself to pimp your ride. Our Bike of the Day on June 29 looks pretty much like a dream on two wheels, except this one is still there when you wake up! All the Bike Checks can be found HERE, and if you didn't share your bike yet - add it HERE.

Crushing it.

First Look: Birzman Tools

Birzman crafts high-end tools with a clear focus on design, aesthetics, and clever innovation that make working on your bike a more pleasurable experience. They're the type of tools you'd be proud to hang in your garage or workshop. We took some time to learn more about the brand and some of the key pieces in their impressive catalogue.

Prepare for serious man-cave envy.

Sunset Sideways

Vital's own Andy Holloway got the big bike out for one of those epic sunset sessions we all so fondly remember. The resulting radness was our Daily Shot on June 3. If you want your shots to be considered too, upload them HERE.

Getting after it in the golden hour.

First Look: Trek's RE:aktiv Damper and the 2015 Fuel EX 27.5, Remedy 29 and Lush 27.5

Trek’s 2015 lineup is expected to be available late this summer, and it looks to be an improvement in many ways over their 2014 offerings. Perhaps the most striking addition is the new RE:aktiv equipped shock that will come standard on several models. In this slideshow we take a look at the new shock, the Fuel EX 27.5, a carbon version of the Remedy 29 complete with 148mm rear hub spacing, and a Lush 27.5 model for the ladies.

Formula 1 meets mountain biking - sparks will fly.

First Look: 2015 Roval Traverse Fattie Wheels - Wider is Better

Fat is where it’s at, according to Roval Wheels. That’s why they’ve increased the width of their hand-built carbon Traverse SL and aluminum Traverse rims, in addition to several other key updates. After over a year of testing and more in development the all-new Traverse Fattie wheels are ready for the trails. Boasting a 30mm internal width and Zero-Bead Hook, the wheels unlock the potential of a low-pressure tire while helping to maintain sidewall support and stability.

Do these make my tires look fat?

Vital RAW - British Downhill Series, Llangollen Practice Carnage!

Rather than bemoan the lack of tracks like Champery and Schladming on the World Cup calendar, the British Downhill Series stepped up to the plate with a seriously steep and slippery Llangollen that even had Josh Bryceland, Steve Peat, Danny Hart struggling to stay on. Race organizer, Simon Paton intros the chaos (Gee and Rachel Atherton would go on to sign another family double win come race day).

Oh look, a penny!

Around the Web

Totally awesome stuff we found on the internet...

Brook MacDonald's Wild Ride at Leogang

We've all been there, that moment when you know that in a second or two, you're going to have a rather unpleasant encounter with mother earth. And a second or two later, sure enough, here comes the lawndart. Except if you're Brook Macdonald, in which case you can just keep riding and won't have to bother with the whole writing off your bike and going to hospital thing.


A Massive Crash Right Before the Finish Line

Fifteen year old Sick Skills racer James Purvis goes down right before the finish at the 3rd round of the Scottish Downhill Series. Taking it like a champ, he's up in a flash, retrieves his bike, and wins by 4 seconds! That's going to hurt in the morning.

Who wants to win by 15 seconds anyway?

Hardtail Sessions with Chris Akrigg

While most of us would find riding a skinny bridge terrifying, Chris describes it as, "Chilled out old school hardtail sessions." Sit back and get your mind blown. Again.

Skills and flow - vintage Akrigg.

Tom van Steenbergen Raising the Bar in Whistler

It's hard to shoot the bike park in Whistler and make it stand out these days. Well, it may be early in the year still, but Tom van Steenbergen has thrown down the gauntlet with an absolutely sick season opener shr-edit. Catch him if you can!

Yup - now we're frontflipping Crabapple Hits.

More Road Bike Insanity - Brumotti's Tribute to Martyn Ashton

Inspired by Martyn Ashton's Road Bike Party movies, Italian trials superstar Vittorio Brumotti has put together his own version. It's wild!

Your excuses are invalid.

Officially Official Race Movie of the Bratislava City Downhill 2014

The City Downhill World Tour 2014 rolled into Bratislava for the third round, and it delivered the usual mix of high speed stair hucking, big drops, and crazy fans. Filip Polc made it three for three as his sick gamble on the last stair step-down paid off.

Go big or go home - urban DH is not for the faint of heart.

Crazy Chutes and Huge Hits with Kurt Sorge

Kurt Sorge is back from 10 months off the bike, but if you thought that was going to slow him down, think again! The big mountain shredder already looks back at his very best, whether it's ripping down the chutes or sending a huge new line built for the occasion. Wild!

Big hits and steep chutes - it's like Sorge was never off the bike at all.

To The Death! It's Mountain Biker vs. Road Biker In This Epic Rap Battle

There's only one way to settle this...

Handbags at dawn, ladies.

Pushing the Boat Out with Reece Wallace

Virtu Media and Reece Wallace have been doin' work out in the woods! From the trail bike to hard tail, there is some seriously progressive riding in this sick edit from Chromag.

Why do we fall? So we can pick ourselves up, and hit it again.

Things That Go Braap in the Woods

See, mountain bikes DO go braap!


Best of Vital will return next month!

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