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Here it is:

http://www.uci.ch/ucisite/doc/GPS%20Course%20Analysis%20-%20Laoshan/start.html

Is it just me, or does it mostly look like a dirt cyclocross course, or at most STXC? Where's the singletrack? And does 160 ft of vertical qualify as a mountain ? And sure there is one rocky section and some steep descents, but they are nice and wide with long runouts. I'm just a beginner and I've had to tackle much more technical terrain and way longer climbs.

What gives?
 

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Looks like quite the course, man made, some spots with fair difficultly to go fast on.

All in all if you practised the course you coould get really fast, first couple of times through you are going to be slow...

Betcha the Chinese have been running that exact course for over a year now.
 

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ups and downs
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You'd think it should be as challenging as a World Cup course, but then again Ft.William is not that challenging a trail surface either, but at least it has some climbs. I'm vacationing at Mont Sainte Anne this week and I walked the WC course this morning, it is just plain nasty in places with serious technical surfaces (and mud) and lots of elevation change.

The UCI tweaked the Beijing course a couple of months ago adding some length and some "more challenging sections" but it is still a weak sauce course that obviously favours the Chinese rider's lack of technical chops. Add in the factor that the atmosphere may be as clean as Los Angeles or Toronto on a smog alert day if they can halve the current smog levels. :skep:

If they're going to make it look like a CX course they should just but some of the barriers on it so they have to ride it like a CX course. :rolleyes:
 

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Zipp0 said:
Is it just me, or does it mostly look like a dirt cyclocross course, or at most STXC? Where's the singletrack? And does 160 ft of vertical qualify as a mountain?
Why does it need to be a mountain? 250m of elevation gain over 4.3km is more than reasonable. Sure it's all double track, but it looks like there is still some technical bits in there. It's probably not going to be something you'd want to go and ride for kicks, but as a race course I don't think it's terrible.
 

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What they need is a torrential rain a few days before that exposes rocks and roots and digs a bunch of ruts into those smooth sections. I'm not sure the terrain will allow for that, however. It doesn't look like it is a naturally rocky area.

In terms of the climbing, I tend to think it may be tougher than we can ascertain by just looking at pictures and the graphs. The racers are just going to be going a lot faster than if they were climbing a mountain that required maximum effort to keep going, but the hurt will be the same because they will be flying. It looks like it might be a hammerfest for most of the course.
 

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Looks good. The smog and heat will more than make up for lack of technical sections, though it does seem to have those anyway. Will look different after riders have been over it, more rutted out. Looking forward to seeing some mtn biking on TV.
 

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Id say its a phenomenal XC course.. long gradual entrance into trails so that bottlenecking is eliminated. Enough rocky chutes to keep things interesting. It looks like a course where speed will get you into trouble. Also looks to be a total gongshow if it rains.

My bet:

Women's XC:
1st: Kalentieva (RUS)
2nd: Premont (CDN)
3rd: Fullana (SPA)

Men's XC:
1st: Absalon (FRA)
2nd: Sauser (SWI)
3rd: Hermida (SPA)
 

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Hardtail course

Now we know why Craig asked Giant to design a new carbon hardtail this year for the olympics, with a premium on bottom bracket stiffness.
http://www.velonews.com/article/73826
I guess the UCI has to approve the Olympic course. The London organizers (2012) actually have been told by the UCI to find a new "more difficult" mtb venue. Any Brits out there who know what is wrong with the Essex course?

http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2008/02/01/sports/EU-SPT-OLY-London-2012-Mountain-Biking.php
 

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Great overview of the course.

It looks a little "meh" to me. It's probably not the best way to make the world go "WOW mountain biking looks awesome!" I'd like to see the course a little longer for the athletes perhaps, but maybe the shorter course will allow for better tv coverage?
 

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Is it just me or do technical sections of trail always look smooth in photos? I seen pics of local trails and the tech sections always look smooth. I wonder how much of this course "looks" smooth, but is a bit more technical than depicted?
 

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The course might not be that great, but a ton of racers couldn't even finish the preview race held there earlier this year due to the lung searing pollution and smog. Might be whoever can go the longest without breathing!
 

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jspharmd said:
Is it just me or do technical sections of trail always look smooth in photos? I seen pics of local trails and the tech sections always look smooth. I wonder how much of this course "looks" smooth, but is a bit more technical than depicted?
Very valid point.

A hill is always steeper-than-it-looks in the photos.
 

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While perhaps a bit short, plenty of climbing over such a short distance, and best of all - excellent TV and spectator coverage. It looks like it will be a course/event that - if covered / televised - will make people go 'whoa!' - cool.

If a racer races dozens of miles, unseen in the backcountry - who gets to see it?

(I'm being a little snarky here - as when I do big loop / point-to-point races, I used to care less, and in fact appreciate - never seeing another soul. Now with a little kid who is stoked on all-things with pedal powered wheels, I'd rather do crits, stxc races, or multiple-loop XC races so I can say 'hey guy!' as I whiz buy, and get stoked to suffer more as he's there watching his silly dad race bicycles...)


I sort of dig the compact, urban mtbike course for the exposure and excitement it ought to lend to the event. Not sure of the field sizes, but I may worry about lapping.
 
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