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Transition Factory Racing Episode 2: Bielsko-Biala, Poland
May 28, 2024


A new track and hectic weather for Episode 2 with Transition Factory Racing!

Round 2 of the UCI DH World Cup brought TFR to Bielsko-Biala, Poland, which was an entirely new venue for the World Cup circuit. The South Poland town is home to rolling hills with fresh dirt that provided a track mixed with loamy sections as well as new jumps and wood features. Throughout practice and qualifying the weather couldn't make up its mind, blasting rain and sun for a tricky few days of riding. The team managed to make subtle improvements even if it came with some frustration, and they are looking forward to some time at home to reset before the next racing block.


Words: Rachel Baxter | TFR Team Operations Manager

Transition Factory Racing ventured to Bielsko-Biala in southern Poland, marking Poland’s debut on the World Cup circuit at a new venue with a fresh track. Teammates Valentina Roa Sanchez and Matilda “Tilly” Melton tackled the untouched track like champions, braving challenging and ever-changing weather conditions.

Track walk left Valentina and Tilly smiling, fueling their excitement to let the puzzling begin on practice day. Training began smoothly under hot and dusty conditions, making for a dry and fast morning. However, the second practice session brought showers and a brief downpour, drastically transforming the course into a slippery mess.

Qualifying and Semi Finals day saw the rain from the previous day turn dust into mud and hardpack sections into mush. The changing track conditions and necessary line changes made it a long and grueling day for Valentina and Tilly. Despite the challenges, qualifying went as planned and both Valentina and Tilly made it into the next race. Valentina faced the added pressure of racing Semi Finals later that day. She put everything on the line to make it into the top 10 for Finals, but a slight mistake in a corner left her just short. Still, this was Valentina’s best result to-date in the Elite Women's category.



Finals race day brought its own set of challenges for Tilly. With thunderstorms in the forecast again, we knew track conditions could change at any moment. Right before Tilly’s race run, the skies opened up, turning the tacky track into a slippery nightmare. Despite this, Tilly kept her composure and managed to secure 6th place in Finals with a solid run.

Valentina and Tilly are using the next two off-weeks to train and reset for the next block of racing in June across the Alps. They are more motivated than ever to get back on the track for DHI #3 at Leogang, Austria.

Stay tuned for the next World Cup round in Austria, June 7-9th!

Video | Nick Robertson

Photos | Jack Rice


     

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