The final of the UCI Downhill World Cup presented by Vidéotron was one that will leave a long-lasting mark on the memory of the thousands of spectators gathered at Mont-Sainte-Anne in spite of the deluge pouring down on the mountain. A thrilling final it was for sure, but above all it gave the world’s top riders a golden opportunity to prove just how tough and talented you have to be to rise the top of the rankings. Today, all eyes were on the Canadians at the UCI Cross-Country World Cup as a reluctant sun drew out an impressive crowd for this 27th annual UCI event here at Mont-Sainte-Anne—the 15th year of this festival we know and love, Vélirium presented by Vidéotron.
On Saturday, it was Aaron Gwin who stole the show, launching down the last run of the day through torrential rain. Poor visibility on the course meant it was a long shot to hope for the win, but the American rider put on a stellar show, pulling through against all odds to nail the fastest run of the day! Other major highlights of this World Cup weekend include third and fourth place finishes by Canadian favourites Catharine Pendrel and Emily Batty in front of a big home crowd. In the men’s race, Swiss rider Nino Schurter rewrote history by taking his fifth consecutive win of the season.
Amateur races hit the mark
New for this year’s Vélirium, the GAAP Enduro race presented by Rocky Mountain attracted some 100 riders, while the 15th annual Raid Vélo Mag presented by CamelBak drew no fewer than 642 entrants. And with 350 kids riding the Véli-Kidz race presented by Normandin restaurants, it’s safe to say the amateur races are getting more and more popular every year. “It’s fantastic to see such a strong turnout here at Mont-Sainte-Anne,” said Chantal Lachance, Vice-President of Marketing and Operations for event producer Gestev. “People come to see the world’s best riders in action, and they also come to give it their all in these great amateur races.” “The Epic Pumptrack and Duel de la Côte races are always crowd-pleasers too, especially for those who bring their own bikes to really make the most of this weekend of fun at Mont-Sainte-Anne. And what’s not to like about the famous party nights in the Budweiser Lounge, which always draw a strong crowd and have quite a reputation to live up to!” A special thank you to the 600+ volunteers who turn out year after year to lend a hand to the organizing committee and help make a big event like this such a huge success on so may levels. We couldn’t do it without you.
On track for 2019
In September 2019, Mont Sainte-Anne will have the honour of hosting not only the UCI Mountain Bike World Championships—for a record third time since 1991—but also the UCI Masters Championships. “It’s a huge privilege to be organizing these two top-tier events, especially considering that the last time these championships were held together as a combo was back in 1998,” said Chantal Lachance. And what’s even more exciting is that 2019 will mark the 30th anniversary of the UCI World Championships in this discipline.