CYCLING Preview: Mountain Bike Downhill World Cup starts in Germany, but can anyone beat Nino Schurter?

Swiss Mountain Bike superstar Nino Schurter (Photo: UCI)

The opening of the UCI Mountain Bike Downhill World Cup season in Albstadt (GER) brings new opportunities, but the same old challenge.

Can anyone beat Swiss star Nino Schurter?

The six-time World Cup champ, he’s now 33, but has won the last four World Championships races in a row and has 30 career World Cup wins, second only to the now-retired Julien Absalon (FRA: 33).

Consider this for dominance: the competitors with the next-highest number of wins are Jasoslav Kulhavy (CZE: 9), then Sam Gaze (NZL) and Mathieu van der Poel (NED: 3). Van der Poel finished second to Schurter in the World Cup standings last year, with France’s Maxime Marotte third (for the third year in a row). .

In the women’s division, another Swiss star, Jolanda Neff, is the defending World Cup champion from 2018 – her third career title – and is tied for the most career wins by active riders. She has 12 World Cup wins, the same as Catherine Prendel (CAN) and just one ahead of Annika Langvad (DEN: 11). All are expected to ride.

Schurter and Neff both won in Albstadt last season. The Cross Country final will be on Sunday. Look for results here.