TEAM NORCO INTL. - World Cup DH #3 - Vallnord, Andorra

Vallnord, Andorra - July 25-28, 2013 - This past weekend, Team Norco International headed to Vallnord, Andorra for the third round of the UCI World Cup.

Andorra is a beautiful country nestled high within the Pyrenees Mountains boarding both France and Spain. The best description of this course was very raw, fast, natural, technical, extremely steep, and ever changing. All qualities that keep the best riders in the World on their toes.

For Norco riders Jill Kintner and Bryn Atkinson, each rider came in with a different story. Bryn had been recovering from a back injury sustained in Val Di Sole and was barely cleared to be riding, but gave it a go. With flashes of glory in practice Bryn attempted a full seeding run, but wash't quite ready for that kind of push and irritated the muscles placing him just outside of qualifying position in 106th.

Jill had been riding strong, and was really enjoying the course. For seeding she started in 27th position due to the UCI world ranking rule, and had to pass yet another rider in seeding finishing 8th. The final race had some rain fall in the afternoon, but conditions were dry and fast again for finals. Jill started quick in the top portion of the course, clocking 2nd at the first split, 6th and the 2nd split, and ultimately 8th at the final. At over 5 minutes of racing on the steepest, most technical race of the year, Vallnord proved to be a worthy World Cup venue.

Jill had this to say,,,

"This course was physical, steep and rough, which made bike set up really important and unique to combat the hard braking and massive holes. A race run took so much focus and energy to hold on. I pinned it up top for the first couple minutes, and did my best to keep my hands from flying off the bars on the last few steep chutes, but was too conservative and a couple mistakes. The Brits and Frenchies are really quick in terrain like this. I picked up good experience and learned a lot, and will have to take these 8th places for now. As gnarly as this course was, I enjoyed it, so yeah, I am proud of myself and have more races coming up."

Bryn had this to say,

" With only 5 weeks since breaking bones in my back, I was on the fine line of being ready to race in Andorra. My Dr. cleared me to ride "mellow trails", so I rode up in Whistler for 2 days before getting on the plane, but that was it. I was going to go to help Jill, but could rip sections in practice, which was fun, so I decided to race. To race flat out was a different story though, as I found out in qualifying. Early into the run I could feel my back muscles locking up and starting to spaz. It was hard to accept, but I had to take it on the chin and just roll down the rest of the course which put me out of qualifying range. Disappointing, but A few more weeks of rehab will do me some good. "

Big thanks to Reg for mechanical support!!!



1. Rachel Atherton - GBR

2. Manon Carpenter- GBR

3. Myriam Nicole - FRA

4. Emmeline Ragot- FRA

5. Floraine Pugin - FRA

6. Morgane Charre - FRA

7. Tahnee Seagrave - GBR

8. Jill Kintner- USA

9. Fionne Griffiths - GBR

10. Emilie Siegenthaler -SUI


1. Remi Thirion - FRA

2. Gee Atherton - GBR

3. Sam Hill - AUS

4. Steve Smith - CAN

5. Troy Brosnan - AUS

6. Greg Minnaar - RSA

7. HART Danny- GBR

8. Loic Bruni - FRA

9. Marcelo Gutierrez -COL

10. Aaron Gwin - USA

Next up is USA National Champs in Anglefire, New Mexico……

Team Norco International is supported by: Norco Bicycles, Red Bull, Crankbrothers, Fox Shox, Shimano, Renthal, Bell Helmets, Sombrio, Maxxis, Stevens Pass Bike Park, 5.10, e.13, Oakley, Jet Black trainers, PotentrX health and performance, High Performance Nutrition, Motorex, Cane Creek, Fi’zi:k, Camelbak, Alpinestars protection, and Park Tools.

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