Watching racing on TV is fine but what about moving your lazy posterior and experience some really cool gravity events in person? These four are the gnarliest mountain biking competitions in Europe we’ve hand-picked for you.
UCI WORLD CUP DH
Where: Lourdes, France
When: April 29 – 30
What: For the third consecutive year, the French venue of Lourdes has become the opener of the UCI MTB World Cup DH season. Again, this small town at the foot of the Pyrenees that has turned into a major place of pilgrimage, will be the witness of mountain biking miracles executed by the fastest men behind the handlebars. Jagged rocks, ultra-steep slopes, and slippery moss while it’s probably raining all the time make this course one of the hardest in the 2017 calendar.
Look out for: Everyone will focus on Danny ‘The Redcar Rocket’ Hart to see if his winning streak from the end of the 2016 World Cup season will be continued.
Watch now: The 2016 race recap, including Aaron Gwin run
Where: Leogang, Austria
When: June 10
What: Despite being bathed in rainfalls in the finals, 26TRIX was undoubtedly one of the most prestigious dirt jump contests of the last year. Shortly after the snow melts, the best dirt jump riders of the world gather to fight for the precious 26TRIX title again.
Look out for: Technical tricks, big airs, and a lot of style in the beautiful Austrian countryside with the splendid snowy peaks in the background.
Watch now: The highlights of last year’s 26TRIX
Where: Innsbruck, Austria
When: June 21 – 25
What: Originally coming from Whistler, British Columbia, Crankworx has made its name as the biggest gravity mountain biking festival in the world. The new editions are spreading to more countries and after the USA, France, or New Zealand, also Austria will have the honour to welcome the best riders at home. With the legendary freestyle contest on snow, Innsbruck knows how to draw the attention of demanding spectators. The combination of Downhill, Slopestyle, Whip Off, Dual Speed & Style, and Pump Track events will definitively make this a worthy show for the action sports diehards.
Look out for: Similar to other years of the Crankworx festival, the slopestyle will be the top of the bill also in Austria. There’re rumours about building the course at a town-based location, which would bring the spectacular show to a new audience. As usual, the show will be broadcasted live exclusively on the Red Bull TV.
Watch now: Best runs from the Crankworx slopestyle in Whistler in 2016. If in a hurry, skip to 2:55 to see Brett Rheeder’s winning ride.
RED BULL DISTRICT RIDE
Where: Nüremberg, Germany
When: September 2
What: After a two-year break, the fifth edition of the famous city slopestyle contest will bring the best MTB freestyle riders within its mighty walls once again. The 1-km-long course, running through the historical centre, is well known for its insane airs attracting thousands of spectators to see the show live.
Look out for: Watch out for the top-class drops from medieval fortifications. Additionally, you can bet on the potential winner of the big air contest, which takes place on the square. World’s top freeride bike athletes, like Szymon Godziek and Nicholi Rogatkin, announced to pull their best tricks in five different course districts.
Watch now: Brandon Semenuk vs. Brett Rheeder fight for the title in 2014