- schladming UCI world cup – part I -

I’m ashamed to say this is the first UCI event that we’ve ever attended. Was it worth it? Would we come back? By heck yes! Want to know why? Firstly we will talk about the expo and our meeting, part II will be more about the racing.

Give yourselves time, there are a fair number of people and parking can be quite a distance away. After paying a €10 entrance fee, you get to check out all the latest goodies and gadgets. We had a chat with the Garmin folk (pretty much the first tent at the expo!). They have some fantastic toys lined up. I like the Colorado, great touch screen and mapping and other nice perks such as geo-caching.

With approximately 20 or so manufacturers there, we had time to check out the eye candy and enjoy the vibe and great tunes that the DJ was pumping out across the finishing area. Schladming has a great feel to it and the finishing line was well placed with a large restaurant over looking it. People were enjoying a beer whilst watching the semi-finals of the men’s downhill race.

Unfortunately the weather wasn’t particularly great (on off drizzle) but this didn’t appear to dampen anyone’s spirits. Apart from the poor photographer that got a bike in the face which delayed the race for roughly an hour.

After just relaxing and taking everything in, we had to find the Intense stand. Now this wasn’t particularly tricky as it was an enormous stand positioned on top and behind the ms-racing team double decker bus! Oh and it was also right next to the finishing line.

We were there to meet Markus Stoeckl, Manu’s cousin. He owns and runs ms-racing, who use Intense downhill bikes in the UCI World Cup. To cut a long story short, we will be using Intense cycles in our fleet of bikes from 2009. Great news as guests will be able to try out some of the best mountain bikes in the All Mountain / Trail class, check out our Bike Hire page on UpandDownhill for more information.

So there you have it, a fun day with loads of positive stuff to come out of it.  Meeting Markus and his side of the family was nice and it was great to be able to spend the day enjoying the things that mean the most to us namely family, friends and mountain biking.