The first round of the mountain bike World Cup, scheduled for 24-25 April in Maribor, Slovenia has been postponed until 14-15 August. The adjustment to the calendar signals that mountain bike events are still not immune to COVID-19 impacts.
Last week, the organizers of the Fort William World Cup in Scotland announced that the event will go ahead, but no spectators will be allowed at the venue.
"Whilst we all desperately want a return to the usual Fort William crowds and the amazing atmosphere they create, despite the progress of vaccination and planned easing of lockdown restrictions, the reality is that the World Cup on 22 and 23 May will not be possible with spectators in attendance," the organizers wrote in a press release.
So far, no amendments have been made to the cross-country World Cup calendar, which will kick of on 8-9 May in Albstadt, Germany. The following weekend, cross-country riders will race in Nove Mesto na Morave, Czech Republic, and downhill racers will get their first chance at competition on 22-23 May in Fort William.
In total, there are six World Cup rounds planned for both cross-country and downhill. That's compared to just two cross-country and four downhill rounds in last year's series, which was severely impacted by the pandemic.
The 2020 mountain bike World Cup saw racers take on a series of double-header races, completing multiple races on similar tracks over the course of a long weekend.
If all goes to plan, the 2021 World Cup season will offer more races that are spread out more evenly throughout the year for both racers and fans alike.
2021 mountain bike World Cup calendar
- 8-9 May: Albstadt, Germany (XCO)
- 15-16 May: Nove Mesto na Morave, Czech Republic (XCO)
- 22-23 May: Fort William, United Kingdom (DHI)
- 12-13 June: Leogang, Austria (XCO/DHI)
- 3-4 July: Les Gets, France (XCO/DHI)
- 14-15 August: Maribor, Slovenia (DHI)
- 4-5 September: Lenzerheide, Switzerland (XCO/DHI)
- 18-19 September: Snowshoe, United States (XCO/DHI)