The 2015 UCI Mountain Bike World Cup series reaches its penultimate round in Windham, America for both cross-country and downhill this weekend.
British downhill bounced back in Mont Sainte Anne – not only with wins for Josh Bryceland, Rachel Atherton and Laurie Greenland – but also with strength in depth.
Rachel Atherton has led the charge all season, winning four races back to back and leading the series overall. She will again start as favourite in Windham, although a resurgent Manon Carpenter and emerging Tahnee Seagrave will also feel they have a chance to break Atherton’s winning run.
Both Carpenter and Seagrave have finished second on two occasions in the 2015 series but have perhaps seen more attention placed on a series of mistakes and crashes that have defined their season.
Josh Bryceland was the last British man to win a downhill world cup one year ago and became the first British man to win a world cup in 2015.
The astonishing comeback from injury was completed in Mont Sainte Anne and Bryceland is now fifth in the overall standings and highest-placed Brit, while Laurie Greenland leads the junior standings following a second consecutive win.
Grant Ferguson and Annie Last will hope for a clean race in Windham, while Alice Barnes will aim to find the podium once again.
Barnes delivered a career-best performance in Mont Sainte Anne last weekend, riding to third place in the under-23 event. At the halfway point of the race she was just one second behind the leader, showing her potential in only her second year in the category.
Ferguson will be hoping to return to the top ten of the under-23 men’s race after mechanical problems ended his chances not only in Lenzerheide, but also at Mont Sainte Anne.
Annie Last started well in Canada but a crash on the treacherous track put her down the order. If fully recovered she will be looking to hold on to the top ten position she started in last week.
How to watch
The UCI website will provide live timing for all races – including the under-23 women’s and men’s competitions, which are not televised.
Reports, results and reaction will be posted on the British Cycling website through the weekend.