Young bones heal fast, and dust helps the blood clot quickly, so why not lay it all on the line? The Under 23 men’s XCO racing was absolutely bananas today as the next generation of cross country stars went into battle in the dust pit of Smithfield.
Sam Gaze, unbeatable form.
This course is really living up to its reputation as a breaker of bikes and bodies, but Sam Gaze had no troubles taming it. In fact the only thing that seemed to worry him today was the cork on his champagne bottle, blasting him in the face on the podium.
Reece Tucknott. Swapping his usual pain face for a bit of style down Caterpillars.
The Aussie contingent was led home by Reece Tucknott, who followed in his sister’s footsteps bringing home a 31st place, with the rest of the Aussie young guns all finishing on the lead lap. Check out our massive photo gallery below to get an idea of just how tough the fight is out there. Savage stuff!
Getting the heart going in the sweat box of the team tent.
Ice vests all round. It’s all about getting the heart rate up, but keeping the body temp down.
Tas. Soon those teeth will have a layer of grit.
Stone cold XCO killer.
Oi oi oi.
On the gas. If you’ve never seen an XCO start at this level before, it’s pretty damn wild.
Cough, cough, pedal, pedal.
Start loop tangles.
Head to head through the start loop.
No (r) way!
Nankervis fighting to hold ground early.
The hurt is hard to hide.
Nankervis, wings out.
Bombing through Jacob’s Ladder.
Nankervis drops into the tech.
Tucknott holding on tight.
Tipping it in, Tucknott style.
Ben Bradley going down at the bottom of Crocslide.
In trying to straighten his bars, Bradley burnt his leg on his rotor. Talk about getting kicked while you’re down!
The relentless climb to Crocslide.
Suffer, grovel, hurt.
Alex Lack eyes up Crocslide.
Levitating down Caterpillars.
Caterpillars is a moment of flow and fun amongst a lot of hurt and white knuckled moments.
Job done, Sam Gaze.
Red goes faster.
31st for Tucknott.
High fives all round Tas, you’re a legend.
The Tucknott clan.
You did bloody well mate.
Says it all.
Bet that tastes bloody good.
Brame, looking a little haunted.
Potter and Vandy – tune into Rainbow Warriors to hear what they’re saying.
Gratuitous good looking bird photo.
Gratuitous good looking tropical island photo