Traditional downhill race with the Indian name Wayra gathered the best riders of the country on the slopes of the Main Caucasus Range, near the village of Nizhny Arkhyz. This year the competition was held under the aegis of the Russian Cup, which indicates the serious status of the race and responsibility of its administrators. Anna Skumbina, the member of the FORMAT Factory Team DH, tells about it.
On September 16-18 near the village of Nizhny Arkhyz the final of the Russian Cup on Downhill took place. Excellent track and the high-level organization impressed all the participants. Comfortable ascent by car 15 munites before the start; the route slightly improved in comparison with the previous year; particular attention to safety - a lot of nets, pads, painted rocks and edges of wooden constructions; feed zone at the finish during all the days of the race.
Another interesting fact deserves attention. During all the five days of the race the roadbed stayed homogeneous. Without any loose rocks or broken counter slopes. The fog covered the mountain every evening, but in the morning it lifted preventing loose rocks. I was sure that the ground would not prepare any unpleasant surprises. It was amazing! And even quite relaxing - I started ascending counter slopes more aggressively, with drifting.
On the qualifying day we had to descent at least twice before the start with registration at the judge of the RCF. By tradition I did the qualification quiet, slightly mistaking a couple of times in trajectories, with the result 5:32. Julia Anastasyina lost to me 13 seconds, having crossed a part of the track with a broken rear derailleur, which by some miracle did not hit the spokes and didn’t cause any other damages. In the elite category Nikolai Puhir came in first with an excellent time of 4:47.
On the day of the final competition the race began an hour earlier and I descended three times, that was common for me. In my race I accelerated, I coped with the upper part of the route quicker than at trainings but handling the situation. I really like this track and I get great pleasure every time when I ride on it, especially on some its parts. I was surprised by support of the audience along the entire route and by a great number of marshals who encouraged the participants as well. The results of the riders immediately appeared on the big board above the stage at the finish line, as well as on-line on the site of the race.
Julia improved her result and showed 5:37, Vera was the second with 5:56 and Victoria was the third, 6:30. I could estimate my result and thought that I improved it by ten seconds, but when I saw on the scoreboard my name and the result 5:17, I was agreeably surprised. My joy increased after the admiring "Wow!" of male riders.
In the elite category Nikolay Puhir won and his time 4:45 is the best at the moment. Ivan Kunayev came in second and Vitaly Hripunov ran third. In the category of masters the winner is Zamaliev Timur, among the amateurs - Yuri Polischuk, and in the category of juniors - Yevgeny Polnikov. My time was the 12th in the final standing among 60 participants.
In conclusion, I would like to express gratitude to the main administrator Renat Ardilanov and his team. Holding such high-level events inspires respect and a desire to support you even in small things like visiting them. I hope to repeat the race next year. Thank you for promoting our sport, thank you for your work!
Photos by Andrey Zhelenkov, Andrey Rakovsky, Roman Ustinov.