Monster Energy’s Troy Brosnan captured a thrilling UCI World Cup downhill victory at an action-packed round four in Vallnord, Andorra this past weekend earning his second ever World Cup win following his Les Gets, France win at round two in June. His Monster Energy teammate Danny Hart took third following his recent win at round three of the Crankworx series in Innsbruck, Austria.
The high-altitude La Massana Bike Park brought some of the best World Cup racing featuring the world’s best as they battled it out through challenging sections, huge drops and lots of mud to the finish line. Nerves were on edge as clouds rolled in during the men’s final and a light drizzle fell on and off, but the predicted heavy rains never materialized and fans were treated to some of the best World Cup racing in recent memory. On a steep, natural track that pushes riders to their limits, it was a race of attrition as rider after rider fell victim to the roots and ruts that had come out during the week. With the previous rounds winner sitting in first place, Brosnan was the last man down the mountain and he rode to the very edge of his ability to take home a win by the slimmest of margins, just over two tenths of a second. Hart took third as he powered his way back up the rankings after a spectacular surge at the end of last season.
“That run was gnarly,” said Brosnan. "I pinned it on the top as hard as I could and felt like I had some time up my sleeve. At the bottom I just tried to hang it loose and I almost blew every single corner. I managed to hold on and made two mistakes in the bottom corners that frustrated me, but somehow it held for the win. I’m over the moon, this is just as good as my first win.”
Hart agreed that the track made for a scary time when you were trying to go for the win.
“It was probably one of the scariest runs of my life to be fair,” said Hart. "I knew I just had to let it all hang out and go for it, and that’s what I did. There were a few moments where I was lucky to hold on to it, but riding down that track to try and beat all these guys that’s what you’ve got to do. I’m happy with how I rode and to be back on the podium. It was a scary ride!”
Monster Energy’s Brendan Fairclough was 24th and Connor Fearon was on a tear when he had a sudden get off with just a few turns left and finished 28th. Even with the early season misfortunes, Brosnan climbed back up into 3rd place overall for the 2017 UCI World Cup DH series with Fearon in 8th, Hart in 10th and Fairclough in 21st overall.
The World Cup heads to Lenzerheide, Switzerland for the next round of racing this coming weekend.