Check out the 2021 Mercedes-Benz UCI World Cup venues
When the World Cup mountain bike season comes around, fireworks are pretty much guaranteed. Here's where you'll be able to witness the fast-paced action in 2021.
Events around the world put a stop to a full Mercedes-Benz UCI Mountain Bike World Cup season taking place in 2020. For those who were left starved of their normal diet of thrill-a-minute action from the downhill and cross-country disciplines the good news is that 2021 looks good to go in terms of having a competitive World Cup series that once again travels the world. Here's a run down of the venues where it will (hopefully) all happen:
May 7 – May 9: (XCO) Albstadt, Germany
Albstadt in Germany has the honour of hosting the opening stop of the 2021 Mercedes-Benz UCI Mountain Bike World Cup following the news that the downhill-only round in Maribor is now taking place in the middle of August. This will be the eighth time that Albstadt has hosted a cross-country World Cup. The track here features two physically demanding climbs and has technical sections aplenty.
May 14 – May 16: (XCO) Nové Mesto, Czech Republic
Nové Mesto is one of the best places to race cross-country bikes on the planet. The track, which is located between the Czech cities of Prague and Brno, features a litter of short, punchy climbs and fast, technical descents that make it a firm rider favourite and pretty much tailor-made for producing drama.
Cross-country highlights – Nové Město
June 11-13: (DH/XCO/XCC) Leogang, Austria
Leogang had a year off from the World Cup circuit in 2020, but was the venue for the UCI Mountain Bike World Championships instead. The downhill course is well-known, but for the cross-country racers Leogang is rather new. The DH course was created afresh at the Austrian venue when the UCI moved the cross-country Worlds to Leogang from Albstadt after the German town couldn't host it as intended. Let's hope for the sunnier weather after the 2020 Worlds turned into a swamp-fest thanks to heavy rain.
July 2-4: (DH/XCO/XCC) Les Gets, France
To Les Gets we go for what will be the last race for the cross-country athletes before they head to the Olympics. The venue is getting ready to host the UCI Mountain Bike World Championships in 2022, so there's half an eye on preparing the downhill and cross-country courses for that. Downhill athletes will be racing on a redesigned top part of the track for 2021, while the cross-country riders will be tested by two steep climbs and technical downhill sections that will require some focussed concentration.
Les Gets DH highlights
August 14–15: (DH) Maribor, Slovenia
This once-regular World Cup course fell off the calendar for a number of years, before rightfully being reinstated as the opening round of the 2019 series. It was one of just two downhill-only locations to survive race cancellations in 2020, with racing taking place in October. The huge rock gardens are the big focal point of the track, but there are a myriad of intricacies that require deft hooking-up either side of them.
Maribor DH finals highlights with Rob Warner
September 3-5: (DH/XCO/XCC) Lenzerheide, Switzerland
The Swiss venue, which was first introduced in 2015, is now a staple of the World Cup circuit. This 2021 visit sees both downhillers and cross-country athletes in action. A quick dip in the idyllic lake that sits below in the valley is a temptation for riders and fans alike when the temperature gauge hits the roof.
September 17-19: (DH/XCO/XCC) Snowshoe, USA
Snowshoe is only non-European stop on the 2021 Mercedes-Benz UCI Mountain Bike World Cup calendar and it hosts the season's final race. At an elevation of 1,478m above sea-level it’s the highest venue on the circuit. Both the cross-country and downhill tracks are relatively new and with the first visit to the US location having been in 2019, the athletes will have to take some time to learn the courses again.
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