For a second week in a row, wild weather has forced the UCI into last-minute schedule changes at the World Cup. This week, forecasted lightning led UCI to shift the schedule at the Loudenvielle enduro and downhill World Cup. Last week, the downhill schedule was thrown into disarray in Andorra.
After last week’s mess, UCI is trying to get ahead of things this week. The organization announced on Thursday that it would be shifting the schedule to try avoid the worst of the storms.
“Due to forecast electrical storms on Saturday afternoon the UCI, WBD Sports and the LOC have confirmed changes to the racing schedule in Loudenvielle. This safety decision has been made to ensure the welfare of the athletes, teams, marshals, volunteers, spectators, and everyone working at the event.”
Trying to accurately predict which part of a specific day lightning will arrive in the mountains is, well, bold, but the UCI is going for it.
Enduro and juniors schedule changes
The most heavily impacted race is the enduro World Cup. Enduro racers see their event moved forward by a whole day, from Saturday to Friday, Sept. 1. That is a big adjustment to make at the last minute, but riders are already out on course practicing so they should at least get to see the course before racing.
Juniors and elite downhill will race their qualifying runs on Friday. Juniors DH finals are scheduled for Saturday while elite semi-finals and finals remain on Sunday. That doesn’t leave much wiggle room for the elites if the forecasted lightening should arrive late, but the UCI are the experts so they’re making the call.
Check out the full, updated Loudenvielle EDR/DH World Cup schedule for more details.