We’ve teamed up with Dainese to shine a spotlight on some of the luminaries from the world of action sports and adventure travel – from big name athletes to epic events that showcase ambition and achievement that goes above and beyond. There are few bigger names in downhill mountain biking right now than Danny Hart. In this exclusive feature, we ask Danny about his past, present and future with the competition that wrote his name into the history of his sport – the World Championships.
Words by Stuart Kenny | Photos courtesy Dainese
Ask any downhill mountain biker for the first thing that comes to mind when they hear the word ‘Champery’ and they’ll blurt out the name ‘Danny Hart’.
It was 2011 when Hart made history in the World Championships with what many would dub the most memorable downhill run of all time. In the hammering rain the then 20-year-old weaved nimbly round a mud-soaked trail that had beaten the rest of the best in the world.
“Nobody had ridden the track in those conditions before,” Danny says. “It was a level playing field. I knew I had ridden in that kind of stuff more than anyone else there though so I was ready for it.
“I wasn’t scared. There were a few things that I knew I had to get past in my run and then I would be good all the way to the bottom. I was comfortable. I was ready.”
He showed exactly that when he destroyed the time of his rivals and sent a huge whip on the home stretch to settle any remaining doubts over his control or composure – and send the crowd into chaos in the process.
The commentary from Nigel Page and Rob Warner on the footage is almost as famous as the run itself. “How does Danny Hart sit down with balls that big,” Rob Warner screams after the Redcar rocket flies over the finish line 11.669 seconds faster than the second placed Damien Spagnolo.