Pressure Makes Perfect: Steve Smith Is The 2013 World Cup Champion
LEOGANG DH WORLD CUP FINALS: SMITH WINS, BRUNI GETS CAREER-BEST 2ND, RAGOT GOES FIRST AND VERGIER CLINCHES JUNIOR WORLD CUP OVERALL
Going into the final round of the World Cup finals in Leogang, Austria, all eyes were on Steve Smith (Devinci Global Racing - Photo above by Sven Martin): on a roll with his victories in Mt. Saint Anne and Hafjell, and never off the podium this year, Smith was a mere 17 point behind the overall leader Gee Atherton. With 250 points at stake in the final round, Steve Smith knew there was only one way to succeed: win. He went on to dominate both the qualifications and finals, securing an iconic World Cup championship title that will have a place in mountain bike racing’s history. Riding his Charger damper equipped BlackBox BoXXer, Smith demonstrated not only his speed and talent, but also proved himself as a truly consistent and clear-headed racer, capable of handling the tremendous pressure of a down to the wire season’s finale.
Loic Bruni on his way to second place in Leogang (Photo: Sven Martin)
Adding emotions to an already heart-stopping afternoon of racing Loic Bruni (Lapierre Gravity Republic) finished a career-best 2nd and jumped to 4th in the final overall World Cup ranking, in his first season out of the Junior ranks. His teammate Sam Blenkinsop rounds up the final overall podium in 5th.
Emmeline Ragot clearing the final jump in Leogang for the second win of her 2013 season (Photo: Sven Martin)
Emmeline Ragot (Lapierre Gravity Republic) claimed her second win for the 2013 season, solidifying her 2nd place in the final overall ranking – the two times World Champion is an established force on the circuit and a constant podium threat.
Loris Vergier lifts his first overall World Cup trophy (Photo: Sven Martin)
In the Juniors field Loris Vergier (Lapierre Gravity Republic) crowned his first year racing World Cups by taking the overall juniors title, finishing off his great season with a 2nd place in Leogang.
DH World Cup 6, Leogang, Austria
1. Steve Smith (Devinci Global Racing) – SRAM X0 DH, RockShox BlackBox Boxxer and Vivid, Avid BlackBox brakes, TRUVATIV BlackBox bars
2. Loic Bruni (Lapierre Gravity Republic) - SRAM X0 DH, RockShox Boxxer and Vivid, Avid BlackBox brakes
Steve Smith's winning machine (Photo by: Sven Martin)
1. Emmeline Ragot (Lapierre Gravity Republic) - SRAM X0 DH, RockShox Boxxer and Vivid Air, Avid BlackBox brakes
Emmeline Ragot's bike on the stage in Leogang (Photo by: Sven Martin)
2. Loris Vergier (Lapierre Gravity Republic) - SRAM X0 DH, RockShox Boxxer and Vivid, Avid Code brakes