The Australian downhillers, like the downhillers from any nation, have been waiting patiently in Lenzerheide. The track walk was done on Wednesday, and on Thursday the riders finally got onto the course - and to be honest that's when the carnage began. Spare wheels being brought into use after being cased in the rock garden, riders crashing, bits and bodies being broken and twisted.

But at the same time, plenty of riders are buzzing on the course. It's got a mix of high speed sections, that big old rock garden, huge drops and fast berms.

It's a course that suits a 29er Danni Beecroft reckons, and we took a look at her new Pivot.

"It's a prototype 29er and it has a different linkages to the carbon 27.5" model," said Beecroft in Lenzerheide. "We'll see how it goes this weekend, but hopefully we can get this thing in carbon because it runs so well. With how the linkages work, it keeps the bike really centred."

"I find that the 29er is getting through the rock garden so smoothly, it's like the rocks aren't even there. There are plenty of things I'm getting over that I'm sure a 27.5" wheel would catch on,"

Beecroft has some NoTubes Flow 29er wheels with yellow graphics, with Schwalbe Magic Mary tyres setup tubeless - with Stan's Sealant of course. Beecroft doesn't run any pool noodle rim protection, just plain tubeless.

"On the fast section the bike just pulls away - I'm really happy to have chosen a 29er for this race." The tyres use Schwalbe's Ultra Soft Addix compound. It's pretty race specific, but should mean Beecroft has the mix of traction on the wet sections and the dry. "These tyres just grip! I run them all the time - I love them."

 

Fox Factory suspension looks after the bouncy bits, with a DHX Air on the back and a Fox 40 on the front.

"With my suspension I run it the same for nearly ever track - I ride it really soft. Even for the slalom at Crankworx, I didn't change anything. Unless there is something dramatic like a big drop where I'm bottoming out heaps, then I put the air pressure up."

There's a 36t chainring on the front driving a narrow range cassette out the back with a Shimano Saint group set.

Braking is handled by Saint, with 203mm rotors keeping Beecroft in control, front and rear.

 

The Shimano Saint pedals are Beecroft's choice to put the power down, and Beecroft is well-impressed.

"They are so sick - they are awesome. This is the first year I have run Shimano pedals, they grip so well. Even if you don't clip in you don't slide - there is so much security with them," said Beecroft.