CYCLING Preview: Kimman tries to keep winning in BMX; Pierron & Atherton defending titles in Mountain Bike Downhill in Austria

The unique BMX Stadium at Saint Quentin (FRA)

The UCI BMX Supercross World Cup series reaches the halfway mark with a two-race series at the national velodrome at Saint Quentin (FRA) this weekend. So far:

1. 500 Niek Kimmann (NED) ~ Two wins at Papendal and a silver at Manchester
2. 435 Joris Daudet (FRA) ~ One win, one second this season
3. 365 Sylvain Andre (FRA) ~ Two bronzes, one fourth
4. 360 David Graf (SUI) ~ Two fourths so far this season
5. 350 Jeremy Rencurrel (FRA) ~ One second, one third this season

Kimmann and Andre were the World Cup seasonal champs in 2018 and 2017, respectively, and Daudat was second last season.

1. 445 Judy Baauw (NED) ~ One win at Papendal, one second at Manchester this season
2. 420 Alise Willoughby (USA) ~ Second in both races at Papendal
3. 390 Laura Smulders (NED) ~ Third and first at Papendal
4. 370 Manon Valentino (FRA) ~ One win at Manchester
5. 355 Simone Christensen (DEN) ~ Won at Manchester, fourth at Papendal

Baauw emerged last season with a seasonal bronze, but Smulders is looking for her fourth seasonal World Cup title in a row. Willoughby (nee Post) and Christensen are trying to vault past their third-place finishes in 2012-15 (Willoughby) and 2016-17 (Christensen).

Look for those at the top to stay there. In 2018, Kimmann and Daudet won the two races at Saint Quentin for the men, with France’s Romain Mahieu second in both. Smulders won both Saint Quentin races, with Natalia Afremova (RUS) second in the first race and Australia Saka Sakakibara the runner-up in the second.

Scoring is 150-130-115-100-90-80-75-70-65-60 for the top 10 places. The venue is the unique national BMX Stadium in Saint Quentin, opened in 2015 and pictured above.

There is prize money for the top three finishers: €1,200-1,000-500 for both men and women. Look for results here.

The Mountain Bike World Cup Downhill tour is in Leogang (AUT) this week for the third of eight stops, known as the Out of Bounds Festival.

The first two events have produced familiar faces on the podium:

● Loic Bruni (FRA) ~ Won at Maribor
● Danny Hart (GBR) ~ Second at Maribor
● Troy Brosnan (AUS) ~ Third at Maribor, second at Ft. William
● Amaury Pierron (FRA) ~ Won at Ft. William; defending St. Quentin champ
● Loris Vergier (FRA) ~ Third at Ft. William

● Rachel Atherton (GBR) ~ Second at Maribor; won at Ft. William; defending champ
● Tahnee Seahgrave (GBR) ~ Won at Maribor
● Tracey Hannah (AUS) ~ Third at Maribor; second at Ft. William
● Nina Hoffmann (GER) ~ Third at Ft. William

All of these stars are entered; also entered is five-time World Cup champ Aaron Gwin (USA), who has won three times at Leogang. Atherton, 31, is trying for her seventh seasonal title, having completed her comeback from a bad crash in 2017.

Look for results here.