The age of gold
Every season must come to an end, but the last race must be something spectacular. Well, nothing better than Cairns (Australia) to run the show. Riding through the amazing environment of the rainforest and watch the coral reef from the start house is not an every-day scenario, especially if the average World Cup weekend has always rainy mountains in the background. Needless to say, the excitement for this 2017 World Champs was huge.
The rainforest is not exactly the most common spot for a downhill race. Track walk in Cairns was made by rocks, roots, giant weird trees and all sorts of dangerous stuff. Among snakes and spiders of all kinds, the local fauna is certainly very entertaining.
The Specialized Gravity team put down a hell of a show for the weekend. Miranda Miller (Canada) has managed to win the gold medal with an outstanding run, 1,985 seconds ahead of Tracy Hannah. This is the first World Champ title for Miranda, a very well deserved achievement that comes after years of hard work.
Miranda: “I knew I could do well in Cairns but I was struggling to stay upright as the weekend progressed and the track got more blown out. I had a good discussion with Kevin, my mechanic, the day before the race that helped put my season in perspective – failures as well as my accomplishments. I was relaxed before my run and easy with the knowledge that I had the best prepared bike and equipment with the rest of the outcome being up to me. To share my first win with Formula means so much more to me than a new cool jersey! Thank you for having my back and welcoming me in the family”.
Loïc Bruni got the whole world watching with an incredible race. At the very beginning 2017 was not the luckiest season for the French rider. The rain storm in Lourdes and then the injury in Leogang kept him out of the battle for the overall, but Loïc is a strong guy. He did recover from a bad start and he achieved a well-deserved third spot in the overall by the end of the season. Cairns was definitely the main race of the season for Loïc, with an impressive run he managed to take home the gold medal and his second World Champs title in the élite category. The race was very tight, only 0.339 seconds between Loïc and Mick Hannah’s silver medal. This was enough to put Loïc back to the top of the world of downhill.
Loïc: “Cairns is a very weird track. It has everything, tight corners at the top, a huge rock garden and some technical sections, a few big jumps and it’s very enduroish in some ways, specially the bottom section. There are many sections with short little climbs where you have to carry momentum, you need to have a very good brake that can be powerful and progressive at the same time. I like progressive brakes, and this is the set up I use on my four-piston prototype. This kind of set-up it’s just perfect for a track like Cairns. I was pushing very hard in the finish area, I knew that I could have make my time there. I was very tired at the end but I’m glad I did it. The whole bikes were perfect, I’m very happy”.
Loïc Bruni showed what a true champion is. Almost nothing can really throw him down, and the race it’s not over if Superbruni is still at the start gate. For us being able to contribute to the success of such an exceptional rider is an honor.
The race in Cairns has been the crowning of a perfect season, we’re back to the top of downhill racing thanks to the amazing work of the Specialized Gravity team. Cura brakes now have nothing more to prove, after two gold medals in the élite category the story has been written.
Now it’s time to take a short break from racing. We’re sure that 2018 will be even more exciting.
Photo Credit: Michal Červený