photo by Johan Hjord

​Leogang provided arguably the most dramatic race we've ever experienced from the UCI World Cup Downhill with incredibly close racing and unbelievable race run tales. The Elite Men Top 5 were separated by less than 2-seconds. The Leogang downhill course included new, natural steep sections compared to 2014 which livened up the historically-described "bike park" course.

The Junior Men raced first with dry conditions but overcast skies. Andrew Crimmins (Kona Factory Team) backed up his 1st place qualifier with a considerable 3-second victory over Jacob Dickson (Orange/Dirt) and Laurie Greenland (Trek World Racing).

Elite Women's racing was drama-filled with windy conditions on the upper part of the course, so spotty rain showers and a DSQ for the current World Champ, Manon Carpenter (Madison Saracen). Carpenter, just feet from the finish line, hit the final jump and ran too far inside, breaking the tape and re-entering the course further down than where she left. She crossed the finish line before she could even try to stop and re-enter the course. An inspired Tahnee Seagrave finished in 2nd place with a strong run, edging out 3rd place Emmeline Ragot (MS Mondraker) by less than .2-seconds. Rachel Atherton (GT Factory Racing) finally broke her non-winning streak at Leogang with a top-of-the-box performance in Austria. Confident and collected, Rachel put together a run without any major mistakes to earn gold with a 4:04.10 time, 2-seconds faster than her qualifying result.

Loic Bruni (Lapierre Gravity Republic) ran early due to a crash in qualifying and held the fastest time by 2-seconds before the Top 20 dropped. His run was consistent, but he admitted to riding tight and did not think his time would hold up for the victory. His 3:38 was 3-seconds slower than Aaron Gwin's qualifying time from the day before. Bruni's time held up to the performances of the next 10 riders down the track and he remained in the hot seat. Brook MacDonald (Trek World Racing) described the strong winds on course, specifically in the motorway, proved to be a challenge. The riders continued to drop in, falling short of Bruni's time until Troy Brosnan (Specialized Racing), the 8th place qualifier, took out Bruni by 2.5-seconds with a 3:35.92. 7 riders remained. 2014 Leogang winner, and arguably the last rider to win a World Cup Downhill on 26-inch wheels, Josh Bryceland was nearly 2-seconds off Troy's pace. Last week's winner, Greg Minnaar (Santa Cruz Syndicate) who was looking for his 18th World Cup win, was on pace to beat Troy, but made some minor bobbles right before the finish drop which may have cost him the .3-second deficit that kept him from taking the lead. Gee Atherton (GT Factory Racing), also chasing his first-ever Leogang win could not match the pace of Brosnan and went into 3rd with 3 riders remaining. All eyes were on Remi Thirion (Commencal Andorra). A stylish fan-favorite, the French rider had the pace at the top of the course and a slight edge at the 2nd split. Brushing trees and taking some unique lines, Thirion pushed Brosnan out of the hot seat by just .2-seconds. Young Australian, Connor Fearon (Kona Factory Racing) dropped in and left everyone in his dust. 1.5-seconds up at the 2nd split, he finished his run 1.2-seconds ahead of Thirion, but he rode outside of the tape on the finish drop leaving everyone questioning a DSQ. With cat-like reflexes, however, he managed to stay within the poles which kept his run legal. Aaron Gwin (Specialized Racing) left the start gate in and instantly snapped a chain and had to coast his entire run. AARON GWIN WON THE RACE WITHOUT A CHAIN by just .04-seconds over Connor Fearon in a mind-boggling feat of flow.

Gwin retains the 2015 World Cup overall lead with Loic Bruni in 2nd and Greg Minnaar in 3rd.

Elite Men's Results

1 GWIN Aaron USA19871224 SPECIALIZED RACING 3:34.354
2 FEARON Connor AUS19940119 KONA FACTORY TEAM +0.045
3 THIRION Remi FRA19900423 COMMENCAL / VALLNORD +1.330
4 BROSNAN Troy AUS19930713 SPECIALIZED RACING +1.569
5 MINNAAR Greg RSA19811113
+1.948
6 ATHERTON Gee GBR19850226 GT FACTORY RACING +2.798
7 BRYCELAND Josh GBR19900323
+3.544
8 BRUNI Loic FRA19940513 LAPIERRE GRAVITY REPUBLIC +4.326
9 MACDONALD Brook NZL19911125 TREK WORLD RACING +5.076
10 GUTIERREZ VILLEGAS Marcelo COL19900509 GIANT FACTORY OFF-ROAD TEAM +5.083
11 FAIRCLOUGH Brendan GBR19880110 GSTAAD-SCOTT +5.206
12 BRANNIGAN George NZL19920409 TREK WORLD RACING +5.739
13 SIMMONDS Matthew GBR19870520 MADISON SARACEN FACTORY TEAM +6.078
14 KERR Bernard GBR19910216 PIVOT FACTORY DH TEAM +6.350
15 BLENKINSOP Samuel NZL19881028 NORCO FACTORY RACING +6.810
16 HEATH Harry GBR19910805 NORCO FACTORY RACING +6.857
17 MASTERS Edward NZL19890818 BERGAMONT HAYES COMPONENTS FACTORY TEAM +7.257
18 DALE Sam GBR19900212 MADISON SARACEN FACTORY TEAM +7.406
19 VERGIER Loris FRA19960507 LAPIERRE GRAVITY REPUBLIC +7.631
20 PEKOLL Markus AUT19871013 MS MONDRAKER TEAM +7.949
21 MULALLY Neko USA19930219 GSTAAD-SCOTT +8.248
22 RUFFIN Thibaut FRA19841030 COMMENCAL / VALLNORD +8.483
23 COULANGES Benoit FRA19941220 ROC VTT OZ-EN-OISANS +8.596
24 LUCAS Dean AUS19950502 DEVINCI GLOBAL RACING +9.192
25 WILLIAMSON Greg GBR19920608 TREK WORLD RACING +9.203
26 CHAPMAN Rupert NZL19920409 BERGAMONT HAYES COMPONENTS FACTORY TEAM +9.517
27 CUNNINGHAM Ruaridh GBR19890215 UNIOR TOOLS TEAM +9.570
28 SHAW Luca USA19961225 SRAM/TLD RACING +9.815
29 MASTERS Wyn NZL19870418 TEAM BULLS - DH +9.844
30 LEBL Martin CZE19960816
+9.973
31 CABIROU Rudy FRA19940511
+10.098
32 WALLACE Mark CAN19950601 DEVINCI GLOBAL RACING +10.306
33 VERNON Taylor GBR19960912 GT FACTORY RACING +10.668
34 MOLLOY Harry GBR19910530 SOLID-REVERSE FACTORY RACING +10.963
35 GRUBER Manuel AUT19921127 RADON MAGURA FACTORY +11.296
36 SMITH Joseph GBR19900704 CHAIN REACTION CYCLES / PAYPAL +11.329
37 THOME Patrick FRA19911020 CK RACING +11.402
38 FIGARET Faustin FRA19931107 CALVISSON VTT +11.406
39 GUARDIA PASCUAL Bernat ESP19820930 INTENSE FACTORY RACING +11.555
40 LEIVSSON Isak NOR19931017
+11.701
41 READING Jack GBR19881210 ONE VISION GLOBAL RACING +11.837
42 GEORGES Pierre Charles FRA19860206 LAC BLANC SCOTT +11.942
43 PAULHAN Romain FRA19880416 KONA - X1 RACING +12.132
44 BEER Nick SUI19870917 RADON MAGURA FACTORY +12.215
45 TETZLAFF Boris AUT19900121
+12.273
46 JORBA PRATS Ferran ESP19960425 INTENSE FACTORY RACING +12.286
47 FERREIRO PAJUELO Antonio ESP19900103
+12.350
48 SUAREZ ALONSO Angel ESP19951202
+12.738
49 NIEDERBERGER Noel SUI19950821 SWISS DOWNHILL SYNDICATE +12.861
50 STUTTARD Mathew GBR19930604 TWOTWO GRAVITY RACING +13.003
51 PIERRON Baptiste FRA19930808
+13.094
52 TRUMMER David AUT19940601 GHOST RRP +13.195
53 CEPELAK Jan CZE19940702
+13.983
54 BRAYTON Adam GBR19881019
+14.233
55 ESTAQUE Thomas FRA19961115 LAC BLANC SCOTT +14.443
56 PAYET Florent FRA19861121 CK RACING +14.484
57 BOUVET Jacques GER19940806 TEAM BULLS - DH +14.602
58 STRASSER Benny GER19890805 RADON MAGURA FACTORY +14.647
59 CONNELL Joseph GBR19940320
+14.782
60 DICKERSON Bryn NZL19911015
+14.922
61 GALLAGHER Kenta GBR19920622
+15.002
62 CARBALLO GONZALEZ Edgar ESP19881222
+15.010
63 DAVIES Emyr GBR19900315
+15.284
64 JORBA PRATS Guillem ESP19940319
+15.786
65 PONS Melvin FRA19940805
+15.948
66 WIBMER Fabio AUT19950630
+16.023
67 VAUH Miran SLO19821104
+16.200
68 LEVESQUE Dylan FRA19961009
+16.441
69 BUCHANAN Lewis GBR19930927 BANSHEE BIKES FACTORY TEAM +16.746
70 JONES Michael GBR19950222 CHAIN REACTION CYCLES / PAYPAL +17.658
71 WILSON Reece GBR19960611 UNIOR TOOLS TEAM +17.731
72 HANSSON Marcus SWE19960429 EXCEPTIO SPORT - COMMENCAL +17.817
73 SPLICHAL Lukas CZE19920406
+18.153
74 GRAHAM Innes GBR19960703 MS MONDRAKER TEAM +18.353
75 PAZDZIORKO Gregoire BEL19950328
+18.471
76 JAUCH Jasper GER19910721
+19.605
77 RUFFIN Gaetan FRA19910629 COMMENCAL / VALLNORD +19.678
78 SMITH Steve CAN19891125 DEVINCI GLOBAL RACING +35.133
79 CAIRE Carlo ITA19940804 AB DEVINCI ITALY +2:21.324

PIERRON Amaury FRA19960304 LAC BLANC SCOTT DNF

photo by Duncan Philpott

Elite Women's Results

1 ATHERTON Rachel GBR19871206 GT FACTORY RACING 4:04.108
2 SEAGRAVE Tahnee GBR19950615 FMD RACING +3.018
3 RAGOT Emmeline FRA19860527 MS MONDRAKER TEAM +3.171
4 SIEGENTHALER Emilie SUI19860919 PIVOT FACTORY DH TEAM +10.022
5 KINTNER Jill USA19811024
+10.392
6 HANNAH Tracey AUS19880613 POLYGON UR +10.947
7 CHARRE Morgane FRA19900609 SOLID-REVERSE FACTORY RACING +14.214
8 MILLER Miranda CAN19900302
+19.227
9 CAPPELLARI Carina SUI19911106 RADON MAGURA FACTORY +19.677
10 CURD Katy GBR19890427
+21.034
11 SALAZAR PALOMO Mariana ESA19940506
+24.770
12 CABIROU Marine ° FRA19970312
+26.560
13 BROWN Casey CAN19901027 BERGAMONT HAYES COMPONENTS FACTORY TEAM +26.639
14 BARTOVA Jana CZE19900217 GHOST RRP +31.722
15 MOLLOY Tegan AUS19960118 KONA FACTORY TEAM +32.509
16 MARCELLINI Alia ITA19910711 KORAX/LAPIERRE/DIRTYTEAM +33.882
17 OURDOUILLIE Fiona FRA19950726
+36.372
18 WUNDERLIN Alba SUI19841117
+36.964
19 LOHNER Laura FRA19920415
+1:04.396
20 JENSEN Hope ° GBR19970717
+1:38.665
21 ARACIL ALBA Blanca ° AND19981120
+1:42.045
22 STRIVENS Rona ° GBR19980131
+2:34.022
23 PETROVA Polina ° BUL19980423
+3:49.862

CARPENTER Manon GBR19930311 MADISON SARACEN FACTORY TEAM DSQ

photo Johan Hjord

Junior Men's Results

1 CRIMMINS Andrew AUS19970809 KONA FACTORY TEAM 3:42.706
2 DICKSON Jacob IRL19971005 ORANGE DIRT WORLD TEAM, XFUSION +3.087
3 GREENLAND Laurie GBR19970218 TREK WORLD RACING +3.362
4 LALY Thibault FRA19970520 FRANCE +6.856
5 FREW Jackson AUS19980626 AUSTRALIA +8.105
6 FITZGERALD Henry CAN19980813 STEVE PEAT SYNDICATE GLOBAL +9.488
7 STEWART Neil GBR19970424 FMD RACING +9.500
8 WARSHAWSKY Max AUS19970609 BERGAMONT HAYES COMPONENTS FACTORY TEAM +9.555
9 GRANDY Silas GER19971029 GERMANY +9.909
10 MARIN TRILLO Alex ESP19970325 GIANT FACTORY OFF-ROAD TEAM +11.184
11 SWINBANK Bradley GBR19970630 STEVE PEAT SYNDICATE GLOBAL +11.585
12 HARRISON Charlie USA19971018 UNITED STATES OF AMERICA +12.469
13 MASARYK Oskar SVK19970707 SLOVAKIA +12.502
14 MCCUBBING Frazer GBR19970208 STEVE PEAT SYNDICATE GLOBAL +12.574
15 OTONICAR Nal SLO19970626 UNIOR TOOLS TEAM +13.037
16 PFEIFFER Bryan FRA19970311 FRANCE +13.279
17 HEAP Elliott GBR19980106 CHAIN REACTION CYCLES / PAYPAL +13.294
18 MARRY Kevin FRA19980517 FRANCE +13.798
19 HATTON Charlie GBR19980223 GREAT BRITAIN +14.925
20 OXLEY Nial GBR19970610 TWOTWO GRAVITY RACING +15.906
21 MACEK Libor CZE19970615 CZECH REPUBLIC +18.075
22 PAYET Jordan FRA19980329 FRANCE +18.164
23 LONG Yann FRA19970616 FRANCE +20.979
24 BICHLER Hannes AUT19970727 AUSTRIA +21.300
25 MCGEE Calum GBR19970119 GREAT BRITAIN +21.908
26 BERGINC Luka SLO19970717 SLOVENIA +23.522
27 HAVARD Kyle GBR19980619 GREAT BRITAIN +28.705
28 BUISAN Sylvain FRA19980514 FRANCE +46.021
29 COUGOUREUX Benoit FRA19970928 TEAM LES GETS BIKEPARK +46.770
30 MORTON Remy AUS19980309 POLYGON UR +1:46.525
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