In less than two weeks time, athletes and fans from around the world will descend upon Whistler in celebration of all things mountain bike from August 8 to 17. Comebacks, rivalries and high stakes - they all come together during Crankworx. The energy of competition becomes especially palpable during some of the fan-favourite events that take place over the 10 day tournament, including the CLIF Bar Dual Speed & Style, the Official Whip-Off World Championships and the Ultimate Pump Track Challenge presented by RockShox. Entering into its second decade, the events are drumming up some major excitement ahead of mountain biking's defining celebration.
"With a sigh of relief, I crossed the finish line with an enjoyable cruise down the mountain and I had won! I took even more confidence from seeing that my time was still pretty good for the stage. There was one last thing to put the icing on the cake for the team and the weekend...Richie smashed the last stage, took the last stage win, took 2nd overall, and made it a Yeti clean sweep of the stages. What a way to round out three days of racing! Then, as another added bonus, Rosara also put together her best weekend of the year with a 5th place in the women's race...awesome!
It was a weekend full of success and titles for Northwave's cross country riders, taking part to their respective National Championships on Saturday 19th and Sunday 20th of July. First in time was Spaniard Juan Antonio Hermida, who earned the eight National title of his career in front of Carlos Colona wearing his Extreme Tech MTB Plus shoes.
It was a real thriller of a final at Swatch Prime Line Munich today. Dark thunder clouds loomed over Munich's Olympic Park as finals were about to begin. Once the crowd had gathered to witness the action, the weather gods were kind and cleared the sky. Right on point, the 16 qualified riders dropped in, in heats of 4, pulling everything out the bag to make into the finals. In the end, Frenchman Louis Reboul grabbed the top spot on the podium, leaving Swatch Proteam rider Sam Pilgrim (GBR) and Tomas Lemoine (FRA) with second and third.
The „Munich Action Sports Heroes" are heading towards the start gates. 24 top riders from no less than 12 different nations are making their way to the Bavarian capital to take part in the FMB World Tour Gold event Swatch Prime Line Munich. Who is going to show the biggest banger tricks? And who is brave enough to ride the first ever full loop in a FMB World Tour contest? We will find out on Sunday, July 20th at the Olympia Park in Munich (GER). Starting at 04.30 pm the riders will drop into the slopestyle course built in the heart of this historic location. To witness the action live, secure your tickets now right here: http://tiny.cc/SwatchPrimeLineTickets
At the end of a gnarly day of racing in the French Alps, Gee Atherton (GBR) and Myriam Nicole (FRA) sat atop it all in the Polygon Air DH-iXS European Cup. Atherton's finish, with a time of 3:35:62, won the men's elite category, while Nicole topped the women's podium with a time of 4:06:60.
Atherton's commanding win, with a time nearly three seconds faster than the second place rider, wraps up his third year of Crankworx Les 2 Alpes with an unbroken record - he's won the event every year since it came to France.
After a commanding second run, Anthony Messere (CAN) has taken the win at the Crankworx Les 2 Alpes Slopestyle. With a final score of 90.50, Messere's win makes him the first Diamond Series winner on the Freeride Mountain Bike (FMB) World Series for 2014, and the toast of Crankworx and the mountain bike world.
"The feeling is just insane. It feels like I'm in a dream," said Messere after the win. "I'm so happy to be here, and I'm so happy to be standing here right now. Everybody absolutely slayed it. And to be up on top with all these other dudes' runs? Just, wow."
Cam Zink (USA) proved that he is the master of both speed and style yesterday, claiming top spot in the GT Dual Speed & Style at Crankworx in Les 2 Alpes. The event kicked off the second day of competition in the French Alps.
"I feel great," said Zink from the finish corral. "Definitely starting off the fourth of July right."
The last rider, Greg Lee of Hawaii, has successfully crossed the finish line of the BC Bike Race in Whistler Village. "I think if I knew what this really involved I would have bailed and said I'm not ready, so in a way it was nice that I was busy with my life and had a rude awakening. BC Bike Race made the worst mountain biker in the history of the race come here and dramatically improve his skills. I'll be back when I'm really ready for this."
Happy Fourth of July to our neighbors across the border! Stage 6 of the BC Bike Race presented by Shimano in Squamish was a day for fireworks as the trails exploded with riders. It was also Industry Day for friends of the BCBR. 86 riders from the cycling industry and friends of the race from across the province joined in the journey of the 600 racers on the course that is most often voted the riders favorite.
Stage five of the BC Bike Race presented by Clif Bar is the last half of the two-day point to point tour of the Sunshine Coast. It's a legacy course that intertwines both the old format of stage races which satisfy a puritanical desire to worked hard to say you went somewhere, and the newer definition of riding miles for smiles.
The Queen stage of Earls Cove to Sechelt in the BC Bike Race is often the most tactile of all the stages. Bodies are beginning to feel the aches, pains, and euphoric effects of three days of trail riding. The forest texture changes from the extra lush first three days to a crispness that tells the tale of a dryer understory when tires press into loamy trails minus the moisture content. Visually the eyes are constantly adjusting to a white light piercing through the forest canopy, causing a dappled effect that often feels more like riding in a club with a strobe light and disco ball. By day four the bike, body, and trail are starting to become one unit dancing together between the start and finish lines.
For Canada Day the third stage of the BC Bike Race presented by Lululemon Athletica eased into the isolated town of Powell River on the Sunshine Coast. A short walk with the sunset as a backdrop and a village of people cheering for their arrival was the riders first introduction to this outpost of Canadian hospitality. Though it's not an island surrounded by water, the geographical boundaries and some of the worlds deepest fjords make this small community accessible only by ferry. The result is a backyard that that may as well extend to the edges of the universe. Deep forests with an extensive and still growing network of trails, positions Powell River to be a BCBR stop that can evolve with the race.
Day two of the BC Bike Race sponsored by Rocky Mountain Bicycles returned to it's annual stop in the village of Cumberland for a new 48km course never used in the BCBR. Taking up most of the small main street, 600 racers launched out of town going the opposite direction from the town's traditional mining economy. The BCBR's support of the communities that host stages allows them to build more trail and grow their appeal as a cycling destination. That symbiotic relationship is positively pushing forward the future of Cumberland and the BC Bike Race.
BC Bike Race has returned to the fabled North Shore of Vancouver for stage one presented by BC Ferries with the most attended edition of the ultimate singletrack experience. Without the North Shore the BCBR was missing the one obvious stage that represented a huge part of the history of mountain biking. Racers excitement to be able to race in a place that has been an immeasurable influence for their sport for the past three decades was thick in the air. They weren't disappointed. Keeping with it's reputation for being the land where wet trails are part of the lore, the clouds only kept the forest damp while their spirits were lifted by the thrill of riding through trails that mixed high speed flow with, berms, roller-coaster drops, rocks, root clusters, and tight corners. Every place has a flow unique to it's geography and the minds who create the trails. Even with the evolution of trail care each rider got a fresh reminder or an unexpected introduction to what makes the North Shore unique. Here is where free-ride was born, pushing the boundaries of what bikes and bodies can do on the trail.
The final runs of the UCI Mountain Bike Downhill World Cup stop topped off a legendary Out of Bounds festival in Bikepark Leogang. Bright sunshine accompanied the victories of Manon Carpenter and her fellow countryman from England Josh Bryceland, who celebrated his first world cup win ever. French Pierron Amaury took the win in the junior's category.
Banger tricks filled Leogang's evening air on Saturday. Riders showed combos, which are hard to describe, close to impossible to ride but simply amazing to watch. Two of the tricks were never even seen before! Young guns Nicholi Rogatkin (1st) and Matt Jones (3rd) made it clear at 26TRIX that they mean business this year. Top dawg Thomas Genon usual precision and consistency landed him in second. Just missing the podium, Antoine Bizet bagged the prize money for the GoPro Best Trick.
Yesterday's victory took its toll on the Columbian rider Leonardo Paez. During today's second stage of the 16th Int. Alpentour Trophy in Schladming he came third and lost too much time against the Italian stage winner Tony Longo, who takes over the lead overall. The Austrian Hermann Pernsteiner had a great race and placed sixth. In the women's classification the Belgian National Champion Githa Michiels secured herself the stage win on today's 14km time trial onto the Planai mountain.
Fort William, the classic stop on the international downhill calendar, once again delivered quality racing in front of a huge and passionate crowd of spectators yesterday in mixed weather conditions that had riders dealing with strong gusty headwinds and frequent outbreaks of light showers.
The demanding trails of Britain's Tweed Valley took their toll on the Enduro World Series' top riders this weekend, while revealing a depth of technical prowess amongst local riders.
"I think both the physicality and the technicality of the trails here caught a lot of riders off guard," said Organiser of TweedLove and the Santa Cruz TweedLove World Enduro presented by Sweet Protection, Neil Dagleish. "A lot of people told us they thought this was the hardest round of the EWS so far. The trails here are steep, technical and slippery which a lot of riders aren't used to but people who live round here have grown up on them - and that was evident in the results."
Swiss rider Nino Schurter won the men's cross country race in the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup presented by Shimano in Nove Mesto na Morave, Czech Republic. This is the third time he has won at this site.
Pauline Ferrand Prevot of France took the first victory of her career in the women's race.
Top U.S. riders for the men were Stephen Ettinger in 54th place and Kerry Werner in 62nd.
Georgia Gould was the first U.S. Woman rider, finishing in 21st place and Evelyn Dong also finished in the top 40 with a 38th place finish.
If you haven't already, then grab a big marker and highlight September 6th in your calendar. This is the day that Red Bull District Ride returns and it will be bigger than ever! The entire world will be watching freeride athletes take to the streets of the historical town of Nuremberg. Starting at the castle in the heart of the city – the urban course will challenge the riders like never before, but also give them every opportunity to add diversity and creativity to their tricks. The brains behind this FMB World Tour Diamond event course is no stranger to the scene.
The GO Enduro mountain bike race, presented by SRAM, helped launch the action for GO Fest Whistler on May 16. GO Enduro had 54 competitors compete, featured three timed stages in the Whistler Mountain Bike Park and ran for the first time ever on opening day for the Whistler Mountain Bike Park.
Northwave enjoyed an outstanding success at Bundesliga Opener in Saalhausen (Germany) with evergreen Gunn-Rita Dahle bringing her Extreme Tech MTB Plus at the top spot of the podium in the women's race. Multivan Merida's biker preceded on the finish line another Northwave's athlete, German Sabine Spitz (Team Haibike), whilst Alexandra Engen (Team Ghost) claimed fifth.
Northwave enjoyed absolute domination at XC Ötztaler Forest Cross, International cross country race held in Haiming (Austria), on Sunday, May 4th, where Ralph Naef (BMC) and eternal Gunn-Rita Dahle brought their Extreme Tech Plus all the way to the top of the podium in their categories.
Josh Bryceland tamed the wet and wild downhill track through the rainforest jungle to take second place at the second stop on the UCI World Cup Downhill circuit in Cairns, Australia. Steve overcame back pain that he was dealing with after the long plane ride to Australia and had a solid 7th place run. Greg Minnaar had a messy run and slid off the course through the tape. Unfortunately he didn't re-enter the track between the poles and what was a 10th place run soon turned into a disqualification.
Round 2 of the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup took place today in Cairns, in very difficult conditions that saw the venue pounded by torrential rains during the week, with very muggy and steamy conditions today. The track was extremely slippery in places and brought many an experienced rider undone. Neko Mulally who came into the race ranked 8th in the World Cup qualified well yesterday in 7th, despite a crash, but showed he had the speed to win. With a 1st at the first split, and 2nd at the second split, the signs were good for today.
Riders from 21 nations gathered at the ends of the earth, the Chilean Andes, this weekend, for the stage-setting opening event of the 2014 Enduro World Series.
The Santa Cruz Montenbaik Enduro by MTBLab 2014, in Nevados de Chillan, tested the world's best mountain bikers on 6 stages over 2 days, against a backdrop of spectacular terrain to kick-start what promises to be another epic season of enduro mountain bike racing.
After two days of to-the-wall racing through the Andes, Anne Caroline Chausson (Ibis Cycles) and Jérôme Clementz (Cannondale Overmountain) emerged victorious.
The UCI World Cup Downhill Series kicked off in the southern hemisphere in Greg Minnaar's backyard inPietermaritzburg. Minnaar had only been on a downhill bike for five weeks since recovering from ACL reconstruction and meniscus surgery last October. He didn't have any idea where his fitness would be leading into the race, but after a timed run, which was four seconds faster than the others, his curiosity about his chances turned to confidence. Josh and Steve were feeling strong, having just come off good performances at the first BDS round.
As mountain bike season kicks off, the enduro mountain bike racing community is headed south, massing in Chile for the first round of the 2014 Enduro World Series this weekend, April 19-20.
Against the backdrop and thin air of the Nevados de Chillan volcano, the Santa Cruz Montenbaik Enduro by MTBLab 2014 course will drop from the steaming vents and high altitude of the volcanic cone around Chile's Nevados de Chillan Bike Park to the densely forested valley floor.
Saalfelden Leogang in Salzburger Land, Austria, April 14th 2014 – With the mountain bike season upon us, the biggest players on the downhill scene are gearing up for the UCI Mountain Bike Downhill World Cup at the Out of Bounds Festival in the idyllic village of Leogang in Austria's Salzburger Land. Once a year, the fastest riders rip up the rough and tough downhill track at Bikepark Leogang. Alongside the UCI Mountain Bike Downhill World Cup action, the top FMB World Tour athletes will be dropping in for another edition of the awesome 26TRIX contest, an official Gold event on the FMB World Tour calendar.
Striking yet another goal of his career check list, 21 year old Neko Mulally from Pennsylvania has backed up his 7th in qualifying here in Pietermaritzburg with his first ever World Cup Top Ten race result, 8th.
LANGVAD AND KLEINHANS WIN LARGEST PRIZE PURSE FOR WOMEN
It was a traditional final day, all culminating at Lourensford Wine Estate where a hero's welcome awaited the tired riders. It was a short day with a late start, but definitely not a free ride to the finish! A few final hurdles challenged riders, like the climb up Nuweberg on forestry roads, with its steep and washed out descent. Once over the Hottentots Mountain Range, riders enjoyed the vistas over False Bay, all the way back to Cape Town where their journey began some odd 700km ago. A final steep single track climb and riders celebrated their homecoming as they entered the Lourensford Bowl.
It was another dramatic day at the Absa Cape Epic. Stage 4 was marred with the withdrawals of four-times champion Karl Platt and second-place mixed racer Cherise Stander. Team Bulls' Platt from Germany has finished all 10 previous editions of the Cape Epic, but was left with no choice but to withdraw from the race because of a knee injury suffered during Stage 2. Stander, who partnered with Theo Blignaut for Team RECM in the mixed race and won Stage 3, had to stop because of breathing difficulties.
Stage 3 was the longest day of the 2014 Absa Cape Epic, and was characterized by rolling hills and gravel roads. It had been described as a transition stage – with less demanding terrain – but a persistent wind made for tough conditions. It took riders from the succulent Robertson Karoo vegetation to the farmlands of Greyton and the Cape Country Meander. The first 50km on quiet district roads was fast, although there were some entertaining deviations from the beaten path with a few short but steep climbs. The route then headed through Melozhori Game Reserve, home to African wildlife such as antelope, zebras, giraffe and buffalo, as well as "The Big Drop", and riders had to watch out for the thorny bushes lining the descent. From here it was flat(ish) following the Riviersonderend River upstream. As the name (river without end) suggests, it was still a way to go, with "Puffadder Hill" a short but rocky climb slowing down the pace. After that participants experienced fast bunch riding on this relatively easy stretch of district and farm roads with some rolling hills. Just when it looked like the day was done, there was a sting in the tail, diverting riders onto the farmlands for the final approach of the brand new race village at The Oaks Estate, just outside Greyton.
AN act of sportsmanship on Friday's hot, rugged and mountainous stage five of the Absa Cape Epic may have decided the destination of the race.
The stage was won by Roel Paulissen of Belgium and Italian partner Riccardo Chiarini (Torpado) in a thrilling finish, but they have virtually no chance of getting into the yellow jersey by the finish on Sunday and a lot of the focus was on the overall battle behind them.
After the rude awakening of Stage 1, Stage 2 was supposed to be somewhat gentler, but heavy rainfall and muddy conditions posed a brand new challenge. The day started off with single track, before visiting the quaint village of McGregor with its well-preserved 19th century architecture. Water point 2 right in the main road promised a festival atmosphere where the warm hospitality of the Langeberg region was sure to lift the spirits. Speeds increased as district roads headed deep into the unspoiled expanses of this rugged and striking landscape of red sandstone and underlying shale formations. The hardest climb of the day, Neil's Folly, awaited around the 75km mark, but riders got to enjoy some wonderful sections of the day's characteristic flowing semi-desert Karoo trails, before descending into the lush Breede River Valley, and home to Arabella Wines.
The prologue and final stage of the Absa Cape Epic - already the most televised mountain bike race in the world - will this year be broadcast live in seven countries.
Television stations in the Czech Republic, Finland, France, Greece, Hungary and Switzerland will take live feeds for two hours on the March 30 seventh and final stage. In South Africa the Prologue (23 March) and Stage 7 will be shown live for more than four hours each day.
Rasputitsa is Russian for the mud season when roads become difficult to traverse. The 1st Annual Rasputitsa Spring Classic will be held on April 19th, 2014 starting at 9 AM EST at Main Street in Newport, VT. This 47 mile (31 miles of gravel) road race travels some of Vermont's coldest and barren landscapes.
Ralf Naef, one of the contenders for the men’s overall title at the Absa Cape Epic, has had to withdraw due to an injury picked up in a fall while training. And England’s Catherine Williamson, a favourite for a win in the mixed category, is also out of the Epic after breaking her leg in a skiing accident. The eight-day, 718km race starts with a prologue at Meerendal Wine Estate, Durbanville, on March 23.
In response to media queries about the Brandon Stewart case, the Absa Cape Epic has reiterated its "zero tolerance" approach to doping: last year it became the first race in world cycling to issue a lifetime ban to any rider found guilty of illegal use of performance-enhancing drugs.
Rasputitsa is Russian for the mud season when roads become difficult to traverse. The 1st Annual Rasputitsa Spring Classic will be held on April 19th, 2014 starting at 9 AM EST at Main Street in Newport, VT.
Just a few days before the official registration for the second edition of the BIKE Four Peaks will kick off next week, Race Organisers have not only announced the 2014 stage towns but also unveiled the course layout for next year's race.
It will be a first for the city of Dunedin, New Zealand, on Friday night when mountain bikers competing in the 2013 Urge 3 Peaks Enduro begin their first stage: a timed run through the city to a finishline in the city's bar, restaurant and cafe encircled Octagon.
The dramatic new route of the eleventh edition of the Absa Cape Epic, which takes place from 23 to 30 March next year (2014), will again offer participants from around the world an awesome trail that showcases the best that the Western Cape has to offer.
Stage win for Austria - in an impressive solo race over 163km Josef Benetseder wins the fifth and longest stage of this year's Crocodile Trophy at Granite Creek Dam in the mining country of Far North Queensland with a massive 12 minute lead ahead of race leader Australian Mark Frendo and Cory Wallace from Canada. More than half of the more than 900km have been completed and four stages including an individual time trial at Laura still lie ahead before the finish on Cooktown's Grassy Hill this Sunday.
The Canadian National Marathon Champion Cory Wallace claims his first Crocodile Trophy stage win today in Irvinebank after dominating the elite field together with the overall race leader Mark Frendo who came in second on the 80km stage.
Josh Bryceland finally cracked his way onto the podium at the final round of the UCI World Cup Downhill Series in Leogang, Austria finishing 5th. Steve Peat was on form all week and was faster than Josh at the first split, yet lost some time on the last section and finished a respectable 9th. Early in the week Greg suffered a knee injury in practice that kept him off the hill for the remainder of the week. Ironically, Sam Hill also suffered a knee injury and Danny Hart a wrist injury keeping these three top five riders out of the finals.
The overall title came down to a showdown between Gee Atherton and Stevie Smith with Smith smashing it for the win. Going into Leogang Greg was looking to hold onto the third place points position with danger men Sam Hill and Danny Hart in close pursuit, with Sam Blenkinsop and Loic Bruni also able to strike. In the end, Loic Bruni had an incredible run placing 2nd and just 2 points behind Greg. Josh finished the series in 14th and Steve in 19th.
Josh was stoked with his podium and says, " I made a couple of little mistakes at the top. I got unclipped a few times and was it was a bit sketchy, but I got it together at the bottom and felt strong. I could finally use my strength and fitness I've had all year and I held it together at the bottom. It was nothing outstanding, just a really solid run and I'm relieved to be on the podium again. What a nightmare of a season and I'm glad its behind us and I'm glad to end on a high."
Steve was pleased with his top ten and said, "I was well happy to end my World Cup season with another top ten finish in Leogang. A podium would have been better, but after my last few seasons, top tens are a great feeling. It took me a while to get up to pace this year but the big old diesel engine kicked in well for the last few races, better keep her going now ready for next season! It's been an awesome year and couldn't have happened without all the help from Kathy Sessler, Tom Duncan, Doug Hatfield, Jason Marsh and Rob Roskopp. The Syndicate has a great group of people and even greater sponsors, thanks to everyone for keeping it fun. Roll on 2014!!!!!"
Greg says, "I was really disappointed to injure my knee and miss the last race. Luckily I came into the race third overall and stayed there. I joined my crew to root for my teammates and watching the race was really exciting. I'll be getting my knee looked at soon to determine the next course of action, as it's likely that surgery will be needed."
The season ends on a high note overall with Greg being the World Champion and 3rd overall in the World Cup, and Steve and Josh's riding and results being the best so far this year.
Special thanks go to Lawrence Van Lingen for his help taking care of Greg and his injury and looking after Steve and Josh. With Lawrence's help Greg should be able to go into the 2014 season race ready and stronger than before.
Thanks to the Syndicate sponsors:SANTA CRUZ BICYCLES FOX SHIMANO ENVE MAXXIS MUC OFFCLIF BAR WTB BIRZMAN FOXHEAD CHRIS KING LIZARD SKINS
In the opening 2 stages of the 5 stage, 6th round, of the Enduro World Series in Val d''Isere, France, Justin Leov found himself in 2nd place overall behind Jared Graves (AUS), with only a few seconds separating them.
The mountain threw everything it had at racers and organizers during the sixth round of the Enduro World Series, held in the French Alps at Val d''Isere this weekend, including snow, an apocalyptic alpine storm, rolling fog, mud and sunshine, in equal measure.
Pushing the boundaries of slopestyle mountain biking once again, Red Bull Joyride descended the Whistler Mountain Bike Park today as the exhilarating, gravity-defying anchor event of the Crankworx Whistler Festival. Big tricks and plenty of clean runs blew the judges away, but it was 22 year-old Brandon Semenuk of Whistler, BC who reclaimed the podium''s top step after his first win in 2011 with the highest score ever recorded at this event and a cool $25,000. Martin S√∂derstr√∂m of Sweden took second place, followed in third by Sam Pilgrim of the UK.
"After the fall on my first run, it was a bit of a flashback to 2011 and 2010 having bailed on the same trick.¬† I was able to regroup and shake the nerves going into my second run and that really paid off.¬† Being back in my hometown in front of my friends and family, I wanted to put together the best run I could possibly think off and get the win at home." - Brandon Semenuk
This year''s brand new course design fused together elements of dirt jumping, slopestyle and classic North Shore mountain biking.¬† Eighteen of the world''s best athletes held nothing back in front of a high energy crowd of more than 25,000 spectators, one of the largest turnouts for a single event in Whistler''s history. As the sun broke through the clouds, it was a rider''s slopestyle paradise as competitors threw down massive tricks and some unique lines on one of the longest slopestyle courses ever built, with twelve trickable features.¬† "This year was definitely the best Joyride course yet, flowing really well and was lots of fun to ride" said Semenuk. ¬†"The features were a good size but not so big that you couldn''t do your biggest tricks". The course catered more to technical riders than speed demons, allowing more time to set up for tricks and complete plenty of runs from top to bottom.
THE EVOLUTION OF SLOPESTYLE
Each year at Red Bull Joyride, the level of talent continues to grow as slopestyle mountain biking evolves into one of the fastest growing mountain bike disciplines in the world.¬† Brandon Semenuk''s second run set the bar for the day''s event as the cleanest and most technical, earning him the highest score in Red Bull Joyride history.¬† Martin S√∂derstr√∂m threw down a clean triple tailwhip in the middle of his second run, the only rider to attempt it on the course.¬† Brandon Semenuk and Sam Pilgrim both backflipped off the Red Bull Joyride cabin, a significant trick that very few riders are able to do.¬† Thousands of spectators couldn''t shake the nerves of even the youngest competitors, including 19 year old Anton Thelander of Sweden who walked away with the events Breakout Award.¬†¬† "The feeling of being selected for the Breakout Award is really insane... I didn''t expect to be in that position" said Thelander.
Bernardo Cruz (BRA) has taken another win at the Official Whip-Off Worlds at Crankworx Whistler. In its third year as an event at Crankworx, the Offical Whip-Off Worlds has grown from being the brainchild of photographer Sven Martin into one of Crankworx Whistler''s biggest fan-favourite events and is based on the Crabapple Hits in the Whistler Bike Park. Judges and fans gathered around the massive jumps on the side of the Crabapple run to gauge riders on their style, whip angle and distance from the ground as they jumped.
"It was tough to tell who had the best whip between Thomas Vanderham, Kurt Sorge, Bas Van Steenbergen and Cruz today," says Crankworx General Manager Darren Kinnaird. "But the key was that Bernardo got his bike so sideways in the air that he was almost moving backwards. For him to land straight and clean once his bike hit the ground, that was the edge against the other three riders in real contention today for our judges."
Riders competed today for a winning prize purse of $1500, while another $1000 was doled out to deserving riders by the judges in increments of $100. 2012 Queen of Crankworx Casey Brown was on-hand, throwing her bike sideways with field consisting primarily of men and earned herself a notable $100 from that pool of cash. Riders who brought their bikes as far to - or past - ninety degrees perpendicular with the fall line of the jump were rewarded with higher points. Today, Bernardo Cruz, known for his incredible style and moto-whip skill, did so with the greatest consistency.
Cruz made a name for himself in the mountain bike world when he won the then-named Un-Official Whip-Off World Champs in its maiden year at Crankworx Whistler in 2011. At the time, he was unknown as a professional athlete and his style steadily became renown amongst Whistler locals, particularly on the massive jumps seen around the Whistler Mountain Bike Park. Since that time, Cruz has remained in the mountain bike arena and is well-known, particularly in Whistler and in his home nation of Brazil.
The Crabapple Hits have been a fixture in the Whistler Mountain Bike Park nearly since the park''s inception. Known for their intimidating size and tendency to draw the most style and finesse out of the talented riders willing to jump them, the Crabapple Hits are the ideal venue for the Official Whip-Off World Championships. Every year at Crankworx, fans line the jumps on the Crabapple ski run by the thousands to shoot photos, cheer and heckle the best (and worst) whips they see in the contest from more than forty riders who enter the event.
1. Bernardo Cruz - $1,500
Notable Mentions: Thomas Vanderham,¬† Kurt Sorge and Bas Van Steenbergen.
Wet conditions did not slow down Graeme Mudd (AUS), who took home the top spot in the GIANT Dual Slalom Pro Men''s final in the Whistler Mountain Bike Park. Steady rain showers fell throughout the ladders, making for a wet, sloppy course, but that didn''t bother Mudd who beat out Connor Fearon (AUS) in the final. Ryan Hunt (AUS) rounded out the all Australian podium taking the bronze with a win over Fab Cousinie (FRA) in the small final.
"This is awesome," said champion Mudd "I think my BMX background really helped to overcome the adverse conditions."
Jill Kintner (USA) continued her superb Crankworx, adding GIANT Dual Slalom Pro Women''s gold to her, Fox Air DH, and Ultimate Pump Track Challenge Presented by RockShox titles. Caroline Buchanan (AUS) finished in second place, and Katy Curd (UK) narrowly edged out Anneke Beerteen (NED) for the bronze.
The GIANT Dual Slalom''s crowd-pleasing format pits two competitors, side by side, with the clock''s second hand as the guillotine dropping to eliminate one rider per round. A bike-handling battleground, the finely sculpted track of jumps, berms, rhythm sections and drops pits fourcross specialists against gnar-chasing downhillers. Riders take one run down each side of the course. The fastest combined time wins.
Crankworx action continues tomorrow and includes the most anticipated event at Crankworx Whistler, the Red Bull Joyride. Red Bull Joyride will get underway from 4:00pm-7:00pm, and will be live webcast at www.crankworx.com.
Jill Kintner (USA) has taken her fourth consecutive win at Crankworx Whistler in the Ultimate Pumptrack Challenge, presented by RockShox. It was a night of upsets, airs, crashes and some of the best riders in the world duking it out for glory during Crankworx Whistler''s 10th Anniversary.¬† Expectations were high for Mitch Ropelato (USA) to earn his own four-peat, but these hopes were dashed when Martin Soderstrom prevailed in a semi-final battle that kept fans on their toes throughout Whistler Olympic Plaza. The men''s event was won by the flawless Adrien Loron (FRA).
"This is just such a fun event," says Jill Kintner. The Olympic Medallist in BMX had her work cut out for her tonight, however, as some of the finest dual slalom, fourcross and BMX champions showed up to challenge her three-year winning streak. "I had a little gate issue in the final but I had a smile on my face the whole time. It''s pretty special to win the four-peat [and as a result] I was pretty nervous. I''ll be real nervous next year." Kintner took her win in the final round against Australian BMX and fourcross technician Caroline Buchanan, while British fourcross National Champion Katy Curd rounded out the podium in third place.
Adrien Loron of France is no stranger to the podium at Crankworx after winning the Les 2 Alpes Pumptrack Challenge, presented by Rockshox, at Crankworx Les 2 Alpes in earlier in July. After Ropelato had a bobble that put him out of the final, Martin Soderstrom ran into his own bad luck when he hit a soft patch of dirt in the second last corner of the final run. He couldn''t catch Loron after that point.
"It''s like a dream for me," says Loron. "I came to Whistler just to have fun and to ride my bike; to win here is just so cool. For sure, Whistler is the best place to ride a bike."
The course for the Ultimate Pumptrack Challenge, presented by Rockshox, was a thing of marvel and precision again in 2013. The same crew of Adam Billinghurst, Andrew Gunn and Kenny Smith was tasked with building an elite-level pumptrack in Whistler Olympic Plaza in only nine days from start to finish. Despite the tight timeline the crew still managed to design and perfect a track that was bigger, more technical and more impressive than ever. The Ultimate Pumptrack Challenge, presented by Rockshox, is becoming known as a Crankworx Whistler crowd favourite both because of the art of the track is raced on, and also because of the fast-paced, high-action racing that can be seen right from Whistler''s Village Stroll.
Crowds gathered at the base of the Whistler Mountain Bike Park today to witness what laws of gravity would be defied at the Teva Best Trick Showdown. While everyone was anticipating jaw-dropping action, no one was prepared when California''s Mike Montgomery threw down the first backflip bar-hop to tailwhip ever landed on a bike.
"At Crankworx Whistler we are always shooting for progression. There are always new things jumping up at this event and Mike Montgomery''s trick today is definitely one of the highlights," says Crankworx sport announcer, Ryan Meyer. "He is always working on new things and this backflip bar-hop to tailwhip is typical of his style - jumping up with new things we''ve never seen."
Montgomery landed the motocross-inspired trick on his first attempt; securing him the first-place spot and a cool $4000.
France''s Yannick Granieri came in second with a backflip double tailwhip, which also happens to be the same trick he threw to win the Teva Best Trick at Crankworx Les 2 Alpes in July.
Newcomer Nicholi Rogatkin, who is coming in hot after winning the Pro Dirt category at the BMX Worlds 2013 in Germany, took third place with a lawn dart frontflip which he threw right out of the gate on his first run. Rogatkin hails from Lincoln, Massachusetts and was only seven years old when Crankworx began ten years ago. At 17, this is the second mountain bike competition this BMX prodigy has ever competed in.
The 2013 Teva Best Trick Showdown was an organized jam format for one run, meaning riders dropped in with a designated start order when the judges were ready. After the first run the competition rolled into an open jam which lasted one hour and 30 minutes. Riders sessioned the 35-foot dirt jump in front of the judges tower on the Joyride course and hit the feature as many times as they wanted to secure the highest single trick score.
A total prize purse of $10,000 was awarded to the top six riders, with an additional "Cash Grab" of $2000 total allocated in small chunks to deserving riders by announcer Brad Ewan.
With the Teva Best Trick Showdown now behind them, the slopestyle athletes will begin looking ahead to the Diamond level FMB World Tour event, the Red Bull Joyride, on Saturday, August 17 where they will unleash even more mind-blowing tricks on the world.
Tomorrow the action at Crankworx Whistler will include with the Official Whip-Off World Championships from 11:30am-1:30pm on the Crabapple Hits in the Whistler Mountain Bike Park and the Giant Dual Slalom from 6:00pm-8:00pm which will showcase exciting head-to-head race action at the base of The Boneyard. The Giant Dual Slalom will be live webcast at www.crankworx.com and will be followed by a Google Hangout with the top athletes hosted by Tristan Merrick and Mikey Haderer.
Steve Smith clinched the win in the Fox Air DH, plummeting down A-Line''s 1,200 vertical feet with a time of 4:12.08. Smith was the last rider of the day Wednesday and bumped Australia''s Mick Hannah out of first place, inching himself ahead of the field by one second and 77 one-hundredths of a second.