Preview: British National Downhill and XC Championships

Preview: British National Downhill and XC Championships

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The British National Downhill Championships kicks off this weekend in Glencoe – as does the British National XC Championships in Dumfries – with the best British riders taking to the start line. Here we’ve pulled together all the key information you need, and a few of our ones to watch across both events.

National Downhill Championships

In the senior class, the two reigning national champions will be in attendance, with KJ Sharp and Matt Walker both looking to defend their national titles.

Sharp had a big crash at the first World Cup race of the year in Lourdes and has found it tricky to get back to full fitness but is back on form ahead of the championships.

Last year's national series champion Stacey Fisher will be another rider to watch, with consistent performances in the World Cup rounds, and sits in the top 20 of the World Cup rankings. She also leads the national series.

stacey fisher downhill

There is a wild card in the mix as the 11-time British motocross champion Kerry Wilson will also take to the course.

The men’s reigning national champion Walker is having a fantastic season, taking his first ever World Cup win in Leogang, and is the clear favourite going into the championships. Fellow World Cup racers Adam Brayton and Taylor Vernon will also be competing to make it a tight race.

The junior women's field will be an open race with the absence of the current national champion, Phoebe Gale. Bethany McCully has been gaining plenty of World Cup experience this year, boosting her development as a rider, and Elin Berry will also be up there.

In the junior men's, Jordan Williams has proved he's as fast as the elite in recent National Series races and the World Cup alike. Williams took his first World Cup win this year in Fort William, backed up by a second win in Leogang. But the junior men's class is one of the most competitive of the weekend, with so many riders now out racing at the World Championships.

jordan williams downhill

Keep your eyes on British Cycling's social media throughout the day for updates on the racing. If you are in the Highlands, head over to Glencoe Mountain resort on Sunday, with racing running from 11:30 to 16:00.

British National XC Championships

On the same weekend, the National XC Championships also takes place within the Scottish borders at Kirroughtree Forest in Dumfries.

With this year's new addition of the short track to the event, the weekend will be packed with fast-paced XC racing action, with a total of eight national champion jerseys up for grabs.

The senior men’s and women’s short track races will kick off the weekend on Friday evening, headlined by Charlie Aldridge and Evie Richards.

cameron mason XC

The Trek Factory Racing duo of Richards and Hattie Harden, alongside fellow World Cup riders Isla Short and Anna Last, will ensure some competitive and tight racing in the women's field.

The men's short track will see the same dominant group of four riders, who have battled it out all year in the National Series, go head-to-head once again. Aldridge, the newly crowned under-23 European champion, is a firm favourite, but Cameron Mason, Corran Carrick-Anderson, and Cameron Orr will all be challenging for the top spot.

In the XC Olympic races, the same big names in the women's field will be in attendance once again on Sunday. Current world champion Richards is the favourite to claim the national title, but injuries and illness have rocked her season and forced her to miss most of the World Cup rounds this year. Current XC and XC marathon national champion Short will also be racing, with Last also taking to the start line.

In the women's under-23 race, Harden will be defending her title, but will be challenged by current National XC Series champion Elena McGorum.

The men's senior race will see Mason step up to senior level with the aim to take the national title over Orr, who won the last round of the National Series.

mens podium mountain bike XC

Aldridge is again the clear favourite to win after reaching the podium of the last two World Cup races, but will be challenged by Carrick-Anderson.

Hope Factory Racing's Max Greensill should be the favourite for the junior men’s, but it has been a tight National Series with Ben Askey taking a round win and Nathan Smith taking two second places throughout the series.

The women's junior race has Emily Carrick-Anderson as the clear favourite after dominating the National series, but Ella Maclean-Howell, Libby Bell, and Phoebe Roche have all had consistent podiums throughout the National Series.

Follow British Cycling's social media to stay on top of all the action from this amazing weekend of mountain bike action, or, if you're in Kirroughtree Forest, head down and watch the action live for yourself.