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Rachel Atherton is the undisputed queen of DH racing and had what she acknowledges herself as the year of her life in 2016 when she swept the UCI World Cup series – winning every single race. She promptly backed all that up by winning the UCI World Championships to boot.

Unlike the rain-affected men’s race, the elite women had probably the best of the track conditions at the opening round of the 2017 UCI World Cup DH campaign.

Although dry, strong winds still buffeted the track however and the hair-raising finish line drop was ultimately a huge roll of the dice. Rachel Atherton, beaten in qualifying by 1.3 seconds by Tahnée Seagrave, put together an insane run to continue her unprecedented unbeaten run of 16 UCI-ranked races.

Rachel Atherton racing Lourdes 2017. Photo: Jan Kasi / Red Bull Content Pool

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