Who is not a fan of downhill track in Maribor? And who doesn’t remember all the amazing World Cup events on this venue? That is why we were so excited about the opening round of 2018 iXS European Downhill Cup – the competition kind of resembled the glory of the biggest events there.
Timing for the race was perfect, so it came to no surprise that lots of top teams decided to stop in Maribor on their way to Croatia. The latest version of the downhill track in Bike Park Pohorje is great as ever, there is not a rider that doesn’t like it (don’t forget that this is the track that is considered as one of the best out there by Steve Peat!).
We had Dakotah, Rudy and Jure on the race. In fact we knew that Jure will just test his arm ahead of the World Cup weekend; his injury is still not fully recovered. On the end he even decided not to compete in the Super Finals.
So we had Dakotah and Rudy on the race, both fast from the qualifications. Rudy was 10th, Dak even faster – he set 3rd time of the day on Saturday. But that good run in fact contributed to his slide down the ladder on Sunday. Last men on the hill had to race in rainy conditions, which made the open parts of the track slippery. Dak lost something and finished in 7th. Rudy made a mistake and was 14th. Not the results we’re aiming for, but a confirmation of a good form ahead of Lošinj.
Dakotah Norton: “Overall the race weekend was a success getting valuable time on the bike and with the team before the first World Cup. I was excited to put down a race run and feel I performed in the quickly changing greasy conditions the final riders faced. I took a lot of things away from the weekend and am excited to be ready for World Cup 1.”
Rudy Cabirou: “Maribor weekend was a good training in race conditions. The track is so nice and complete! There were also a lot of good riders on the start and was cool to race in that conditions.
About my race run… I’m really happy to find the flow. I had play with the limits and a big mistake pushed me to the fault. Hence the 14th place. I’m happy with the feeling on the bike, I can’t wait now to the first World Cup in Croatia!”
Dakotah Norton – 7th
Rudy Cabirou – 14th
Jure Žabjek – DNS
Photos by Klemen Humar