- The Mountain of Hell is an Alpine downhill race like no other
- Riders start on a glacier, before racing into steep shale and technical forest singletrack
- Winning Mountain of Hell riders, record immense speeds
Mountain bike racing can mean different things, to different riders.
Then there is the gravity aspect, of mountain biking. Those daring downhill racers, who rarely pedal, but have to launch off drops and land huge jumps, as they literally fly down the side of a mountain.
A really big mountain experience
One of the more extreme downhill races is hosted on France’s glacier des Deux Alps, called the Mountain of Hell.
This year it saw 600 mountain bikes, race a 25km downhill course, with the first portion being mostly snow and ice.
The mass start format is chaotic, with many riders gently crashing, and then sliding down the snow slope.
Riders who finish the Mount of Hell race, descend 2500m. That is like riding down, two and a half Table Mountains. Such extreme gradient makes for high speeds. Very high speeds.
For the third consecutive year, Frenchman Kilian Bron, won the Mountain of Hell.
Bron is a highly regarded freeride mountain biker and managed to hit speeds of more than 100km/h, during his winning race run.