17–18 June 2023 262 days to go!

Rachel Atherton

With a record number of overall World Cup wins and the only perfect season in MTB history to her name, Rachel Atherton is the queen of downhill racing.

Over the years, Rachel Atherton has become the dominant force in women’s downhill racing. After winning a host of categories in 2005, she was named Times Young Sportswoman of the Year and hasn’t looked back since.

She totally dominated the women’s downhill circuit in 2008, winning the World Cup overall and taking World Championship gold. On her way to the World Cup overall she took four World Cup wins and only missed out on a top-two finish at one race, in Fort William.

Since 2008, she has taken six UCI World Cup titles (2008, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2016 and 2018) and five World Champion titles (2008, 2013, 2015, 2016 and 2018). Only illness or injury has denied her the chance to compete at the top end of the sport, but she has always returned stronger.

Following illness in 2014, she bounced back to redefine women’s DH racing, doing the ‘double double’ in 2015 and 2016, and completing an unprecedented perfect season in 2016 by winning every World Cup round.

2018 saw her take a record sixth World Cup overall, before capping the season off with a fifth World Championship, thus reconfirming her place as the best female downhill mountain biker on the planet.

The 2019 season was a mixed one for Rachel, with a strong start to the World Cup season cut short by a serious achilles rupture sustained in Les Gets. However, it also saw the successful launch of her very own Atherton Bikes brand alongside her brother, Gee.

Following the birth of her first child in 2021, Rachel is making her long-awaited return to racing in 2022.