2013 Mountain Bike World Championships - Athlete Profile - Gee Atherton
Overall World Cup Titles: 1 (2010)
World Championships: 1 (2008)
It’s been an incredible 2013 for Gee Atherton. The UCI Mountain Bike Downhill circuit has actually been pretty much an Atherton show. Winning both the Fort William and Val di Sole World Cup stops earlier in the season, along side his little sister Rachel, older brother Gee is in the driver’s seat for another World Cup Overall title. Now there’s just one more goal for 2013: become the World Champion for the second time in his career.
With the way he’s been racing this year, it’ll will be hard to beat the fast flying Brit, but find out what he has to say about his odds below, along with some other thoughts about this year’s World Championship in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa:
Oakley: How has your season gone leading up to World Champs in South Africa?
Gee Atherton: It’s gone really well. I’m leading the World Cup Series, so I couldn’t be happier going into the World Champs.
Oakley: Yes, you’ve been on fire this year! Well done! Any special prep going into South Africa we should know about?
Gee Atherton: Nothing more than hard work in the off season. I’ll be training right up to the event, but by now its just about topping up the work I’ve done already!
Oakley: Any superstitions going into South Africa? Do you keep the same routine as a normal MTB World Cup? Or are there any special rituals you keep for a special event like this?
Gee Atherton: I just try to treat it like a normal race. Obviously that’s tough and the schedule is pretty different, but mentally I approach it the same. It’s just all about giving yourself the best chance possible come race day.
Oakley: What are your goals for 2013 Worlds in South Africa?
Gee Atherton: To be the 2013 World Champion
Oakley: In your opinion, who is the man to beat? And what will it take to beat him?
Gee Atherton: Hard to say this year. There are a few people who I expected to be fast who seem a little off the pace this year and a bunch of new guys who are looking strong, so its just a case of racing my own race.
Oakley: What would it mean to you to become the 2013 World Champion?
Gee Atherton: It would mean a lot. Having won it in the past I know what it means to be World Champion and its a huge goal of mine.
Oakley: Pretend the person reading this knows NOTHING about professional mountain biking…what are a few quick essentials you could tell them about the sport?
Gee Atherton: It’s all about the speed. Finding all the areas you can to shave off those fractions of a second. It’s an intense, adrenalin fuelled 4 minutes of pin point precision bike riding!
Oakley: Now that they are prepped…what makes Worlds in South Africa such a big deal?
Gee Atherton: It’ a pretty unique place for World Champs. Hopefully the crowd will get behind the event and put on a good atmosphere.
Oakley: Any special plans or “must sees” for South Africa while you’re not racing? And how much do you rely on Minnaar for suggestions?
Gee Atherton: Well not much really. He likes to keep his cards close to his chest.
Oakley: What is your favorite memory/story from the 2013 season?
Gee Atherton: Winning Fort William alongside little sis, Rach.. It was an incredible feeling and one that will stick with me for a long time!