Words By: Bernard Kerr
Photos By: Boris Beyer
Well that's a wrap for the 2022 World cup season...don't worry Redbull hard line and EWS still to come, but what a finale it was!
We keep thinking each track cant get rougher and gnarlier but it really does. The track at Val di sole is always one of the hardest but this year was next level...so much so that all the riders have asked to retire the track and tape in something new for next year!
Eddie was still feeling the racing fatigue after 5 weeks on the trot and coming straight from world champs in Les gets. After finally getting into the swing of things for qualies he had a mechanical with his chain coming off on the second turn...after it slapping and getting caught and jamming his cranks it was a no qualy for Eddie.
Matt, even though in the early B practice was starting to get to grips with the black snake track and qualified after what he said was a messy run. Watching him ride finals day morning though, he was different rider with the confidence of qualifying again...it was honestly so impressive and good to see! A super solid run early in finals put Matt in 19th for the day and a season best!!!! Not done yet Matt decided to race the final round of the 4X world tour. After winning every heat Matt was in the final, unfortunately being taken out on the second turn he finished 4th but still on a world tour podium...a solid finals day if you ask me!
After Jenna's incredible performance last week in Les Gets taking home the rainbow jersey it was looking tough this week on her still cracked thumb. The track was just so rough, and she took practice easy doing less laps than usual. Like we've come to learn though when it counts, she turns it on and even though it wasn't the run she wanted, struggling to hold on she hammered it home for another 3rd place to stand on the podium at the final round. In the end she tied points for 3rd Overall in the series, but it went to the other rider as she placed higher at the last round. Still an unbelievable first year on the international circuit for Jenna Hastings!
I was excited for this one after my slightly disappointing result in Les gets, really fired up for a good one here. I was feeling good going into qualies but laid it down near the bottom and went over the bars on a super slow part of the track just being a little impatient and turning in too early. Qualifying 20th with a crash knowing I had the pace but leaving an hour before the end of the race turned out not to be the most ideal as a rain storm came in just before my run. Luckily it stopped 5 minutes or so before and I was able to lay down a decent run and push super hard on the bottom of the course. 5th on the day was everything I had and it ended up putting me 5th overall the series which is a personal best...honestly bar winning a world cup I could not be happier with a 5th overall!