Red Bull Hardline 2024 – Rónán Dunne doubles up with his second Hardline win of the year

Rónán Dunne riding the Road Gap at Red Bull Hardline 2024
Rónán Dunne was on fire at Red Bull Hardline (Image credit: Paul Brett)

The dust has settled on Red Bull Hardline 2024 and the best downhill mountain bike event on the planet delivered one of its best editions yet – loaded with exciting racing and just a little controversy. Hardline celebrated its 10th anniversary in style with a reworked course and new features that pushed the riders and their bikes to the limit.

After last year's cancellation, Red Bull Hardline and the Dan Atherton-designed track returned with a bang. After Red Bull Hardline Tasmania had upped the Hardline game, its spiritual home track in Wales underwent some major changes. The talking point of the entire week was the Canyon Gap measuring 70 ft across with a huge 100 ft+ drop.

Views of the Red Bull Hardline Wales track including the Canyon Gap

The Canyon Gap was removed for the 2024 edition of Hardline but looks here to stay (Image credit: Paul Brett)

The Canyon Gap was removed from the final track after Jim Monro took a massive slam while testing the jump. He was seen taking on the gap before being jettisoned from his bike, flying across the void, and slamming into the landing deck on the other side, which resulted in a hospital visit and Jim escaping with 'just a concussion'. 

Rumors circulated that a crash net couldn't be sourced in time for finals – so Canyon Gap may well be back in 2025.

Bernard Kerr riding Red Bull Hardline 2024

Bernard Kerr wowing the fans on the Lily Pad section (Image credit: Paul Brett)

So for qualifying and race day, the track would revert to a semi-familiar layout in the bottom half and the top would see a new line that missed out the step-up and the super fast cannon shot just before it. The new top section would take no prisoners as the wind and sunshine dried out the track and challenged the riders in qualifying and finals runs as rocks previously hidden would be revealed leading to punctures, broken rims, and last-minute line changes.

Matt Jones pushing his bike in the crowd at Red Bull Hardline 2024

Matt Jones would be one of many riders to fall victim to the tough new upper section of track (Image credit: Paul Brett)

After Saturday's qualifying saw Rónán Dunne take the top spot with a blistering run, the Mondraker rider would be last down the mountain for Sunday's final. Race day was delayed for two hours with gusting winds deemed dangerous. 

When racing got underway it was the first man down – Adam Brayton who would set the benchmark time and he sat in the hot seat for most of the day with a time of 2:29.702 as riders fell victim to the ever-changing track conditions with plenty of crashes and punctures, the Jones twins (Matt and Jono) both suffering punctures and failing to finish, as the Hardline track showed the riders no mercy.

Charlie Hatton in rainbow jersey side on at Hardline 2024

Charlie Hatton would fly the flag for Atherton Racing (Image credit: Paul Brett)

Brayton's time would finally be bettered as the top riders from qualifying pulled out impressive runs one after another. Although Gee Atherton didn't race, the Atherton Racing's World Champion Charlie Hatton would fly the flag for the Atherton brand, taking the hot seat briefly much to the delight of the partisan Welsh before Hardline debutant Juanfer Muñoz grabbed it and a spot on the podium.

Juanfer Muñoz riding at Red Bull Hardline 2024

Juanfer Muñoz on debut would grab a spot on the podium alongside Kerr and Dunne (Image credit: Paul Brett)

It was then down to the top two in qualifying three-time Hardline winner Bernard Kerr and Rónán Dunne to battle it out and try to better Muñoz's time. Kerr set an impressive time of 2:24.327, managing to make up the lost time in the first section of the track, and it seemed like Kerr was on his way to securing his fourth Hardline title. However, in a thrilling finish, Dunne would be green in all sectors and crossed the finish line with a winning time of 2:23.045 to grab the win.

Rónán Dunne's Red Bull helmet and Mondraker bike at Red Bull Hardline 2024

Dunne was fittingly presented with a Red Bull helmet earlier in the week (Image credit: Paul Brett)

Rónán Dunne is undoubtedly the hottest rider in downhill racing at the moment and his win in Wales adds to his World Cup and Hardline Tasmania victories from earlier in the year. So what next for the 21-year-old? You certainly wouldn't be surprised to see him pulling on the rainbow jersey in Andorra at the World Championships in August.

Red Bull Hardline Wales full results

  • Rónán Dunne – 2:23.045
  • Bernard Kerr – 2:24.327
  • Juanfer Muñoz – 2:25.234
  • Charlie Hatton – 2:26.256
  • Matteo Iniguez – 2:27.502
  • Sebastian Holguin – 2:29.700
  • Adam Brayton – 2:29.702
  • Sam Blenkinsop – 2:29.790
  • George Brannigan – 2:30.426
  • Harry Molloy – 2:33.935
  • Brook McDonald – 2:36.330
  • Josh Bryceland – 2:36.545
  • Josh Lowe – 2:38.355
  • Alex Storr – 2:38.776
  • Brendan Fairclough – 2:38.916
  • Taylor Vernon – 2:41.952
  • Dennis Luffman – 2:43.253
  • Sam Gale – 2:44.025
  • Craig Evans – 2:46.062
  • Edgar Briole – 2:51.253
  • Sam Hockenhull – 2:53.331
  • Vincent Tupin – 2:53.885
  • Thibault Laly – 3:43.121
  • Thomas Genon – 3:53.361
  • Matt Jones – DNF
  • Jono Jones – DNF
  • Theo Erlangsen – DNF
Paul Brett
Staff writer

Paul Brett is a staff writer for He has been an avid cyclist for as long as he can remember, initially catching the mountain biking bug in the 1990s, and raced mountain bikes for over a decade before injury cut short a glittering career. He’s since developed an obsession for gravel riding and recently has dabbled in the dark art of cyclocross. A fan of the idea of bikepacking he has occasionally got involved and has ridden routes like the North Coast 500, Scotland and the Via Francigena (Pilgrim Route), Italy.

Current rides: Marin Alpine Trail 2, Ribble 725, Cube Stereo 160

Height: 175cm