Behind the Build: Race Track Design with Léandre Alegri

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It’s impossible to mishear the noise in the woods. A commotion growing bigger and coming nearer, the sound turns the heads of scattered spectators on its way through the terrain. A figure flashes between the trees, its arrival only preluded by the sharp warning of whistles. A blur appears, carrying a speed that is near incomprehensible. You can hear that it is fast. It’s July 2021 and trail builder Léandre Alegri witnesses first hand how the noise materialises into a downhill rider charging down the newly cut World Cup track, hunting in the margins of time. The riders are pushing hard and the track responds by almost becoming an entity of its own, getting out of its way for no one. There seems to be a tug of war between the riders and the ground itself as the weekend progresses. For each run counted, the earth unveils yet another one of its riddles that the riders will be forced to decipher. Roots previously stealthily hidden in the earth suddenly appear in the ruts that become...

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