It has become an annual tradition for Giant Factory Off-Road Team rider Marcelo Gutierrez to kick off the new year at his hometown urban downhill race in Manizales, Colombia. It has also become an annual tradition for Gutierrez to win the action-packed race down the steep city streets of Manizales on his Glory Advanced DH bike.
It never gets easier, but the Colombian national champion always manages to rise to the occasion. He raced it again this past weekend, and walked away with his seventh straight win.
“One more victory here in Manizales, it’s been a great run for me,” said Gutierrez, who wore the new Giant Shuttle DH shoe to earn the win. “The stress of trying to win increases every year, but the satisfaction of doing it is huge. The crowds here are impressive, and the people are always there to support me.”
The cityscape terrain of the Manizales track always presents some interesting, crowd-pleasing challenges for the riders. This year competitors faced a few new obstacles in their high-speed run through the streets, sidewalks and stairs of the central Colombian town.
“There was a jump through the middle of a house, and a final leap off a truck,” Gutierrez said. “Also, it rained, which made me hesitate a bit. But everything went well, I had a clean run to score the best time. It’s a great start to the year for me.”