Red Bull Hardline is a World Cup Downhill course on steroids. It’s still very much a race, but added in are monstrously sized features that are never found on the rest of the race circuit. Held after the UCI-endorsed race season is over, Hardline is often the last big event of the year for riders, which lends to the all-out nature of the riding seen there. Originally the brainchild of Dan Atherton, Hardline holds special meaning for the entire Atherton clan. Dan’s brother, Gee, is a regular competitor, but has never won the event--that is until this year.
Race-day track conditions were borderline atrocious from earlier rain, and for many it was a struggle just to stay upright. Nevertheless, competition was still fierce, and times kept falling throughout the day as racers pushed the envelope. Gee had qualified first, and so was the last to drop in. His teammate, Charlie Hatton, had just been bumped out of the hot seat by previous Hardline winner, Bernard Kerr, who put down a nearly flawless run. As the splits came in for Gee, he was in the green for most of the track, but had a slight bobble just above the massive road gap toward the bottom. Despite this, Gee kept charging and crossed the line faster than Kerr, taking his first ever Hardline win.
To watch the full replay of the event, visit Red Bull.