Every sport has that one legendary event that gives the winner lasting immortality.
What the Streif ski race in Kitzbühel is for alpine skiing, the Blake Snake is for downhill mountain biking. Designed by Pier Paolo “Pippo” Marani, the Blake Snake celebrated its 20th year in the 2018 season, and was awarded the best event of the last Mercedes-Benz UCI MTB World Cup.
The Blake Snake traverses that thin line between love and hate for many. It’s a fight against gravity and the laws of physics around a monster track, where any mistake is costly.
Insanely difficult, the track is 2,4km long with 540 meters of elevation loss at an average of 22%, but peaking to 40%. In addition to tough sections such as Hell-Nomen Omen, the Red Bull Section and the Val di Sole jump, a new section was debuted in the 2018 season. With some new big jumps, most notable among them is the Trentino Jump at 15 meters. The final section of the track is aptly named “hell”, and has not been changed at all. A wall of rock and roots lie right before the Pippo jump where only the fearless take on that 20m dive through the air.
The defending champion in the men’s race is Amaury Pierron. He remains the big favorite for this year’s race on Saturday, August 3rd. In the women’s competition, Tahnee Seagrave cannot defend her title due to a shoulder injury. However, the race promises a spectacle thanks to some big names such as Tracey Hannah and Italian Veronika Widmann.
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