ELITE MEN DIVISION:
The rider to watch this weekend was no other than Amaury Pierron. At the 2022 season opener in Lourdes, France, The Flying Frenchman stunned the competition by claiming a dominant win, finishing 1.5 seconds ahead of the next rider. What’s more, Pierron is no stranger to Fort William, having defended his men’s downhill title on the course in 2019.
Then again, Pierron’s weekend in Fort William was off to a less than perfect start. “It’s been tough; I struggled a lot on my bike all day on the first day. It was hard,” said Pierron, who qualified in fourth place for the final.
But when it was time for the final showdown, Pierron found his groove: “I try to tell myself that each day is a new day. So, you can improve every day. I didn’t rush things. Just take my time and build my weekend.”
Speaking on his two consecutive wins in the 2022 season, Pierron added: “It’s never easy. Every weekend is a new weekend. You start from zero, there are new tracks, and changes in set-ups. I just want to take care of myself, and stay injury-free that’s the main goal. And of course, I will give my best to be the most consistent this year and I want to win.”
This weekend’s win marks the third successive Fort William victory for Pierron. “It is a dream come true for me to win three times in a row here at Fort William. I just gave everything, but it was really tough mentally and physically.” Pierron has cemented his spot at the top of the 2022 season leaderboards with 430 points.
In what ended up being a tight race, Pierron faced competition from fellow Frenchman Dapréla. When the dust settled, the 21-year-old completed the course less than half a second behind his teammate with a finish time of 4.37:584 minutes.
Speaking on his race experience in Scotland, Dapréla said: “Tough, really tough. The track was hard, and it was difficult to find the speed for me. But I found it for the final! This time I changed my strategy and was smooth all the way down. Now I’m ready to keep pushing and I’m back fighting for the podiums. Everything is ready to go so I’m really stoked.”