I had already missed 3 legs of the French championship but this was one date I would definitely attend!
The Rigalet downhill race took place near Bordeaux close to the Gironde river. It’s about 600km from Lyon. For motivation, we passed through the Col de la Croix Saint-Robert (read my article from April about the first downhill session of the year on this fabulous spot). It was a great pleasure to ride this awesome leg-burner again and see the volcanoes!
I left Lyon with Philippe Dupuy and two other friends who only wanted to stop at the X st rob and then head back to Lyon.
We continued our journey to Rigalet at the end of the day of good riding. We arrived in the evening, checked on our friends, did a lot of blablabla life and blablabla skate, barbecue, drinking beers… many nice moments.
We woke up early in the morning thanks to a “cute” Spanish voice shouting through the campground. We had coffee at a nice little village near the spot and came back to the event.
Schedule for the day: Freeride, warm-up, then after a nice meal = the qualies! On this little french race we used the point system, no chrono, only a pool with 3 riders who get points according to their rank on each heat (five for this day)
For this first day of qualifiers I was 6 of 33, there were no other women doing stand up, so I fought against the boys. Not that bad! In the first places we had: Yoann Bethus, Julien Peypelat, Philippe Dupuy, Christophe Gatignon. Ended the day tired, we had dinner and came back to the campground.
Second round of qualification: I fell in one heat and finished 2nd in another one, thus I finished 12th on the final rankings.
Selected for the final heat were Yoann Bethus, Philippe Dupuy and a foreigner from Spain. They all fought hard on this little road. Philippe pushed harder than the others and kept the first position until the finish line. Yoann fell in the last corner after a failed attempt to catch up with Philippe, he finished third because the Spanish guy took advantage of this fall to overtake him. This final heat was really exciting to watch, riders were close and put on a good show!
The Juniors were really good too, the podium was held by the Ducourneau brothers!
I had a prize for my “women” participation (still waiting for you other girls!
After the prize ceremony we had to leave the place, to arrive back early in Lyon. The drive back was really tiring in the night but I was happy about my weekend and my performance against the boys, I had a great time with friends and fun on the road!
Photo credits: Thor Photohraphie , Bastien Caron , Julien Peypelat.