Rising star of the German downhill scene Max Hartenstern is the current U19 European Downhill Champion and German Downhill Champion of 2016 and 2017. The 18-year-old posted times faster than the elite men two years in a row to bag the coveted national champion‘s jersey for a second time. 

THE 80/20 RULE.

„If you put nothing in, you‘ll get nothing out! „Success is 80% hard work and 20% talent. You have to put the work in if you want to hold your own with the fastest guys out there.“ 

With team mates Matt Walker and Greg Williamson on hand, Max can learn a trick or two from these experienced riders. And team riding is great for mutual support and motivation.


A World Cup event is much more than just three or four minutes of racing. The preparations have to be absolutely on point: Start times to be checked, final bike set-up to be tweaked, eating together with the whole team – it all runs like clockwork and rituals like these create the perfect conditions for concentration and relaxation. Sometimes there‘s even time for a couple of wheelies on the e-bike. World Cup days are long, so having a great team is at least as important as getting the right shock set-up.


Walking the track before a race is essential. Today, it‘s Lourdes, the first stop of the UCI Downhill World Cup. Braking points, corners, jumps, treacherous rock gardens – each individual piece of the puzzle melds together in your head, ready to be called up at a moment‘s notice. And if the heavens open, a plan B is essential. That‘s where three pairs of eyes are better than one. And handy tips from team colleagues who have already raced on the track can be the trump card that makes all the difference.


Tightening up the last bolts, checking the tyre pressure, warming up the muscles: It‘s all about getting bodies and bikes ready to race. Great when you‘ve got a professional team behind you: „Having a mechanic to double-check crucial bolts beforehand and a team manager who looks after all the organisation saves loads of time and energy that you can put into racing.“


Gold reloaded: Following his success in 2016, Max has shown that he‘s here to stay with a second German Championship win in 2017. So what‘s next on his to-do list? „An overall top-10 spot in the World Cup and a couple of podium finishes at other races. Ideally with an injury-free season.“

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