Port to Port MTB 2017 Weekend Warrior Packages

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High in the Watagans on Stage 3.

Weekend Warrior Packages:

The full event spans fours days, but for 2017 Port to Port MTB are offering a two-day Weekend Warrior package, which includes entry into the event’s two finest legs, stages 3 and 4, on Saturday and Sunday. It’s the ideal way to do Port to Port MTB if you can’t take weekday time off work or away from family, or if you’re less inclined to train than you are to talk about it! What’s more, in our opinion, stages 3 and 4 are the real picks of the bunch, especially with some new tweaks for this years’ event.

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Stage 4 is a stunner, taking in the best parts of Glenrock.

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Stage 3 once again visits one of NSW’s best cross-country race tracks, the Awaba Mountain Bike Park. This lush singletrack is the perfect way to kick off the weekend, and for 2017 the race will dive straight into the trails from the gun – the long neutral section at the start of this stage has been removed, so it’s all action. Heading into the State Forest of the Watagans, a grunty climb leads you to some fast fireroad ridge running, before bombing back down on wild, raw singletrack to Cooranbong below.

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Tired legs need burgers. It’s #science. Refuelling after Stage 3.
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Awaba’s serpentine singletrack kicks off Stage 3.

After a mandatory post-race massage (you have just ridden 64km, after all), head back to Newcastle where you’ll receive a 25% discount at the Crowne Plaza, and get in a good sleep ahead of Sunday’s final fury.


Wondering where to stay? All Weekend Warriors receive a 25% discount at both the Crowne Plaza in the Hunter Valley and in Newcastle, so you’re sorted for both Friday and Saturday nights. 

Come up for Friday evening’s festivities! The sundown shootout gets underway at the Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley, in Lovedale, on Friday afternoon from 4:00pm. All Weekend Warriors will score a free Port to Port Pilsener with any burger purchase too, just as a little bonus for getting off work early.


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Come up on Friday for a pint of Port to Port Pilsner at Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley.

Sunday’s final stage has been given a big makeover for 2017, and it should be one hell of a way to cap off a couple of good day’s riding. An all-new start area at Swansea means more singletrack, less tarmac, and no more neutral zones. No longer does the race head up the Fernleigh Track, sticking to the dirt instead, before hooking into the singletrack of Glenrock, one of the event’s real highlights. It all wraps up on at Dixon Park, overlooking the ocean – crash out in the sun, enjoy the live music, and sink a couple of recovery ales, in true Weekend Warrior style.

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The event will be here before you know it, so lock your entry in sharpish, whether you’re opting for the full four days, or if you’re  more of the Weekend Warrior type. For all the details, visit porttoportmtb.com.

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Success For Schurter, Stirnemann, Suss And Stenerhag at Absa Cape Epic

Nino Schurter and ... took the win in the mens category.
Nino Schurter and Matthias Stirnemann took the win in the mens category.

Watch highlights video below.


Swiss duo Schurter and Stirnemann (SCOTT-SRAM MTB Racing) were first time winners of the men’s race, while Süss and Stenerhag (Meerendal CBC) claimed the Hansgrohe Women’s category.

It was Stenerhag’s first win in her fourth attempt, while for Süss it was a third title after winning the Mixed in 2011 and the Women’s category in 2012.

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Stirnemann wins the Absa Cape Epic in his first attempt, while for Schurter, a bronze, silver and gold Olympic medal winner in cross-country racing, the win comes in his fourth Cape Epic – his previous best had been a fifth place in 2014.

The current Olympic and world champion, cool and calm as ever at the end, admitted that the strategy was always to come and win the Absa Cape Epic, but only in 2018.

“The plan was to come here in 2018 and win, but we are a year early!” said Schurter. “This is very special. To win the Olympics and then come to South Africa and win the Absa Cape Epic, that is great. After Rio it was always my intention to come and win the race, but this has taken us by surprise. I thought next year would be our year. We are ahead of schedule.”

Stirnemann called the moment ‘unreal’ and said only tonight or tomorrow will he be able to let it all sink in. “This is amazing, just amazing. I really can’t believe it.”

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In the Hansgrohe Women’s category, there were emotional scenes at the finish. A year after having heart surgery Swede Jennie Stenerhag wept on Sunday as she and Esther Süss won the Absa Cape Epic in their first effort as a team.

“Since that day my biggest goal was to try and come back to win this race,” said Stenerhag. “To pull it off is something completely unreal. I cannot believe that I am standing here as the winner. I think we won by keeping everything smooth and consistent. We just kept calm and never thought we could win until now when we crossed the line.”

Experience and consistency were key to that win when Süss from Switzerland and Stenerhag crossed the line as third women’s team at the final stage to Val de Vie Estate near Paarl, but having done enough to claim a convincing victory overall in the Hansgrohe Women’s category.

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Süss was ecstatic about the win.

“I am only happy, happy, happy!” said the 2010 Marathon World Champion. “It was quite tough and fast and you had to really be focused because something can happen so fast. I am only happy.”

In the race for the Absa African special jersey, presented to the best all-African team at the Cape Epic, there was only going to be one winner after a strong week of riding from PYGA Euro Steel. Matthys Beukes and Philip Buys were in command of the jersey all week, and finished strongly yet again to claim seventh overall at the 2017 Absa Cape Epic.

“It was a great Absa Cape Epic!” said Buys. “It’s a pity we missed out on a stage win, but we really put everything out there today and we are really happy with the red jersey. We learned a lot this Epic, so I’m sure we will come back smarter.”

In the Virgin Active Mixed race the Scott-Sram Nextlevel duo of 22-year-old Rio Olympic Champion and 1996 world champion Jenny Rissveds of Sweden and 47-year-old Thomas Frischknecht of Switzerland were in a class of their own.

On Sunday they finished off a clean sweep of eight victories in eight days as they cruised to a massive 65-minute win overall over South Africans Grant Usher and Amy Beth McDougall (joBerg2c-Valencia), with Johan Labuschagne and Briton Catherine Williamson (RBI Tech – Mitas) a further 45 minutes a back in third.

In the Dimension Data Masters category, Australian Cadel Evans and American George Hincapie (BMC Absa Racing Team), riding in their first Cape Epic, got stronger with each day of the event. Starting the final day almost three minutes behind the category leaders Tomi Misser and Ibon Zugasti (Orbea Factory) of Spain, Evans and Hincapie cycled like demons to overtake Orbea Factory.

Cadel Evans made a return to racing, taking our the masters category with fellow road racer George Hincappie.
Cadel Evans made a return to racing, taking our the masters category with fellow road racer George Hincapie.

They eventually won the category comfortably, ending the day five minutes ahead of the team that had lead the category for most of the Absa Cape Epic. Evans and Hincapie finished 20th overall.

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“I didn’t know it was this hard, but fortunately I got in shape as the race went on,” said Hincapie. “I stay relatively fit at home but not by any means for this kind of effort. I’d love to be back next year and race again.”

There was no such drama in the Grand Masters category, with Swiss/Austrian duo Barti Bucher and Heinz Zoerweg (Meerendal CBC 3) leading from start to finish. They finishing 34th overall and won their category by an extravagantly comfortable two-and-a-half hours.

Diepsloot MTB Academy riders William Mokgopo and Philimon Sebona crossed the finish line in high spirits yet again, and after an impressive week of riding, claimed the Exxaro special jersey and finished the event in 42nd place overall. As they crossed the line, a delighted crowd clapped and cheered as the pair exchanged high fives and hugs with their team managers.

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William Mokgopo and Philimon Sebona claimed the Exxaro special jersey.

“It was difficult stuff today,” said Mokgopo. “I’m not a flat terrain type of person, I prefer it up and down and that’s the type of rider I am. I just try relax more when it comes to flats and really push it in the undulations. But today we didn’t need to do any work, we just enjoyed ourselves.”

Enduro World Series 2017 Begins: Ravanel and Masters win the battle for Rotorua


Heavy rain early in the day rendered Crankworx Rotorua’s opening event into one of the most savage EWS races to date, with all seven stages transforming from hero dirt during practice into something altogether more brutal come race day. The pro men’s field left the stage last and bore the brunt of the changing conditions. 

However the Kiwi men seemed completely unfazed  – taking every step on the podium. Wyn Masters (GT Factory Racing) finished nearly four seconds up on second placed Matt Walker, with Wyn’s brother Eddie Masters in third.   

Jerome Clementz
Jerome Clementz

Speaking after the race he said: “There were some stages today that I’ve never seen that tough and it was just a struggle – the ruts swallowed the bike and the rider. I had a few crashes but I managed to hold it together and somehow I took the win and lived up to my name.”32813235194_674db75db0_h

In the women’s race Cecile Ravanel (Commencal Vallnord Enduro Team) looked unstoppable – she may live in the south of France but she seemed perfectly at home in the mud. She won six stages, with only Katy Winton (Trek Factory Racing) standing between her and total stage domination – with Winton taking her first EWS stage win. Ines Thoma (Canyon Factory Enduro Team) put in a consistent ride to take home second on the day and Anita Gehrig (Ibis Cycles Enduro Race Team) did the same to take a well deserved third. 

Cecile said: “I was a little bit nervous this morning because of the rain, I live in the south east of France and there are never these conditions – if it rains I don’t ride! I enjoyed it though and I’m happy.” 

In its debut race, the new Master’s Women category was won by Melanie Blomfeld of New Zealand, with Mary Mcconneloug in second and Sarah Beadel in third. In the Master Men Karim Amour (BH-Miranda Racing Team) romped to victory once more, with Sean McCaroll in second and Nigel Page (Chain Reaction Cycles Mavic) in third.  

Martha Gill was all alone in the U21 Women’s race, but she definitely wasn’t complacent and still posted some incredible times that would have placed her in the top 15 in the women’s race. Chilean rider Pedro Burns won the U21 Men, with Killian Callaghan in second and local Lucas Cole in third. 

 Wynn’s victory means GT Factory Racing lead the team points table, Canyon Factory Enduro Team lie second with Ibis Cycles Enduro Race Team sitting third. 

The series now moves over the Tasman sea to Derby in Australia for round two and the Shimano Enduro Tasmania on April 9. 

Full results from today’s race can be found here.

The RockShox Judy Returns, Entry Level Fork With Iconic Name

PLUS FUN & PLUS CONTROL, FOR ALL

Who says entry level bikes can’t get all the latest features and performance? Judy is built around a brand new chassis, designed with the same philosophy of the award-winning Pike for the demands of modern mountain biking: stiff, yet very light. Boost™ means room for Plus tires, up to 2.8” in both the 27.5” and 29” models, while Torque Cap compatibility adds additional stiffness and steering precision.

Who remembers the iconic RockShox Judy, introduced in 1995 this was the fork to have!
Who remembers the iconic RockShox Judy, introduced in 1995 this was the fork to have!

 

JUDY GOLD RL

Bringing a legendary name forward, Judy Gold is definitely ready for the future with 2.8” tire compatibility in both 27.5” and 29” version. It’s also packed full of trail tech with Motion Control™ RL damping, OneLoc remote compatibility and Fast Black upper tubes for that unmistakable RockShox look and performance.

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JUDY SILVER TK

Judy Silver brings the benefits of Boost™ to bold new places with 2.8” tire compatibility in both 27.5” and 29” versions, and delivers proven RockShox technologies such as the Solo Air™ spring and the easy to use TurnKey™ damper with lockout.FS-JDYS-TK-A1_Black_3q_MH

 

Record Riders at Thredbo Australian Interschools MTB Championships

With a mountain of excited school kids, five huge events and a big crowd of family and friends, the stage was set for an epic display of young gun racing.

Junior pump track rider
Junior pump track rider
Lining up to take on the Downhill
Lining up to take on the Downhill
Great crowd support across the weekend.
Great crowd support across the weekend.

The championships are open to school aged from around the country, it is all about participation and this year there was a record breaking 470 riders representing 74 schools across four age divisions riding in three point scoring competitions plus two fun exhibition events. Downhill, Cross-Country and Flow riding all accumulated points for their school and the fast and flowing Pump Track Challenge and a Sprint Relay drew good numbers and big crowds.

Thredbo turned on perfect autumn weather with early fog and a sprinkle of overnight rain settling the dust on the gravity trails.

The Flow Motion race saw around 350 riders and had a solid field in all divisions.
“The Flow Motion Race on Friday was new to the Interschools schedule, it gave competitors a chance to race a gravity trail without the technical features of a pure downhill track. It was unbelievable to see riders as young as eight giving the Flow race a go” said Danny Taliana – Thredbo MTB Operations Manager.

Downhill day saw the track a little tacky to start but quickly become loose and dusty. As this event encourages participation, riders had the choice to take on the more technical

Cannonball Downhill or a modified b-line option. Fastest on the day was Knox Grammar’s Chris Pulsar setting the course alight with a 5:00 run. Local Snowy Mountains Grammar School rider Mackenzie Diver set the quickest pace in the female division.

The Pump Track Challenge was a crowd pleaser, schools nominated three riders in each division for this exhibition event – one pedalling lap then it was all free-rolling. The big crowd certainly were behind Pump Trackers as they cheered them around the berms and over the rollers to the finish.

Free rolling fun at the pump track.
Free rolling fun at the pump track.

The cross country event wrapped up the weekend, with around 300 kids lapping the 2.5 kilometre Friday Flat loop. The course was 70/30 uphill to downhill and at altitude, it certainly tested the fitness of the XC competitors. It was a close tussle in the division 1 men’s with Cameron Butcher of Chevalier College narrowly edging out Jindabyne Central School’s Lachlan Harrigan.

The hotly contested overall champion school saw Heathcote High School take the shield for the tenth year in a row.

Consistency was key with the crowning of eight divisional kings and queens of the mountain for those who participated and placed well right across the weekend.

XC through the trees.
XC through the trees.
Great support and cheer squad at the XC finish.
Great support and cheer squad at the XC finish.
Flow trail riders.
Flow trail riders.

With big crowds of friends and family supporting riders and their schools, there was a great fun vibe across the weekend.

Over the 20 years, the event has launched the career of many Australian and world champions including Troy Brosnan, Tegan Molloy and Andrew and Thomas Crimmins. With participation on the increase and record numbers at Thredbo gravity events, we are sure to see Australian riders star on the world stage for years to come.

Next stop on the Thredbo MTB summer calendar is the Rocky Trail Downhill Enduro and SuperFlow Roller Coaster 1-2 April.

For full results click here.

National Champs: Dan McConnell Claims Sixth Title

The three-time Olympian produced a gutsy performance to claim the title in a time of 1:21:41 after seven laps on a punishing course.

“It’s probably the most rewarding Aussie champs I’ve won and came into the village arms pumping and felt pretty good on this climb and for Bec to win this morning tops off the week.”

McConnell held off Cameron Ivory (NSW), a further three minutes back, and Mark Tupalski (ACT) who took bronze in his first major race in 15 months.

Cam Ivory
Cam Ivory

It was an emotional McConnell who crossed the line after admitting earlier in the week that it would be a struggle to retain his Australian title.

“I was pretty intimidated cause Cam’s been in good form and tried to save myself on the climb if that was possible on this course.”

“It’s the first time in six months I’ve actually felt comfortable and I’ll definitely soak this up for a few days,” McConnell admitted.

Cam Wright
Cam Wright

It was a brutal test for the 21 rider field, and while conditions had improved after the early morning downpour,  there were plenty of mind games out in front as Ivory came hunting for the coveted green and gold jersey.

The duo sat on each others wheel in the early exchanges before McConnell took the lead on the third lap and made his move on the fifth, recording a lap time of 11min30 which blew the competition apart.

“We were just testing each other out there and a few little moves here and there and Dan launched a big one with a few laps to go and I still felt good and thought I’ll let him sit just in front of me few seconds and I blinked and I couldn’t get anything back,” Ivory said.

The race also saw the return of Tupalski, who fought his way through the field with two laps to go to earn a bronze medal at the national championship.Nose Crash OT Riders

“I really don’t know how that happened, I’m actually speechless for a change.”

Tasman Nankervis (VIC) had plenty to say as he took charge from the first of his six laps, to claim the U23 title for the first time after finishing second last year.

“There are no easy laps, I’m happy to be mixing it up with the elites in lap times and finally feel as if I’m producing what I can do,” Nankervis said.

It was a story of redemption in the Junior Men for Cameron Wright (QLD), after a bronze at the Oceania, the Brisbane rider made amends as he ripped around the course to claim his first Australian title in 1:01:08 ahead of Kian Lerch-Mackinnon (VIC) and newly crowned Oceania champion Sam Fox (TAS).

“I’ve been pretty angry leading into this one and really wanted it that bad.”

“I just felt better until the last lap before I get to the tops and felt the cramps coming but I made it and tried to keep safe down the hill.”

National Champs: Bec Henderson Wins in Canungra

A morning downpour just before the race start would add an extra element of difficulty for the riders during their six-lap race.

Henderson, who by her own admission has not been in the best form, contradicted herself as she produced a vintage performance in the muddy, slick conditions to finish more 1:17:58, than three minutes ahead of Holly Harris (NSW) and Katherine McInerney (NSW).

“I’m really happy to call them (green and gold jersey) mine for another 12 months.”

“It was a real mountain bike course and a climbers course and there was certainly no hiding out there today.”

Henderson put the hammer down on lap one, despite taking a hit on the infamous rock garden, which claimed a number of riders during the morning.

“I didn’t quite have the confidence on the first lap and I took the B line in the rock garden and managed to crash so after that I took the A Line,” Henderson remarked.

It was a similar story for Harris, who was riding in the elite category at a national championship for the first time.

Holly Harris
Holly Harris

“I came to the A line and you know what I’m riding elite I may as well risk it all.”

2017 has been the coming of age for Harris, who after wins in the National Series and silver at Oceania is now confident of the next step.

“It’s so exciting especially against someone like Bec one of the world’s best riders,” Harris said.

The big mover through the field was McInerney, who after getting away to a bad start which saw her fifth in the field after lap two, move up into third where she would hold until the finish.

“On the third lap I started to take different lines so I didn’t have to walk on that pinch section of the course and that helped me to stay smooth, and that’s where I ended up overtaking Peta and Tori.”

While in the Under 23 women Megan Williams (QLD) made it a one-woman show as she collected the green and gold jersey ahead of Charlotte Culver.

“I think everyone was having a tough day out there, and getting down the slippery slopes was challenging,” Williams admitted.

Katherine Hosking (NSW) was also fearless on a course which tested the very best, the Armidale rider completed her three laps in a time of 52:48 taking gold in the Junior Women ahead of Tegan Atherstone (VIC) and Sarah Tucknott (WA).

Sound of Speed: Luca Shaw

Then along came Aaron Gwin to drag his nation proudly back to the top of the time sheets of World Cup downhill races.

To think that US downhill is a one man bandwagon would be a mistake however. Luca Shaw hails from San Francisco, California and has just signed with one of the sport’s most highly regarded race teams: Santa Cruz Syndicate.

The 20-year-old recorded some impressive results in 2016, including a fifth place at the legendary Mont-Sainte-Anne UCI World Cup. Blessed with an extremely level headed approach to racing, will 2017 be the big breakthrough year Shaw seems to be building towards?

We don’t have a crystal ball so we don’t know yet, all we asked him to do was to go as fast as possible for our latest Sound of Speed episode. Enjoy.

Epic weekend of riding at the GT Bike Buller Festival

Now in its ninth year, the GT Bike Buller Festival includes mountain bike races across a range of disciplines including Gravity Enduro, Downhill, X-Country, All Mountain, Pump Track, Kids, and Dual Slalom on Mt Buller’s internationally-recognised trails. untitled-4858

Riding commenced on Saturday with a 40km cross-country race over nearby Mt Stirling and a 20km race on the local Mt Buller trails with both events taking riders through some incredible snow gum wilderness in these high alpine areas. While these lung-busting races were under way an ‘all-mountain’ race was held for more gravity orientated riders on the Outlaw downhill track where speed and air time was more the order of the day as they powered down this technical downhill run before enjoyed the comforts of the chairlift for a free ride back up. 

The mixture of pedalling cross-country races and gravity hungry downhill races continued across Sunday with the Brakeburner and ABOM downhill races and on Monday with a 20km cross country race over Corn Hill and a huge gravity enduro race over the same popular trail network. 

It wasn’t all hard pedalling and challenging descents though with a range of spectacle events also included for the fun and enjoyment of everyone. Saturday night saw a hilarious dual slalom on kids 16” bikes and pump track pursuit for BMX elites, as well as MTB movie nights, kids rides and the Picnic in the Park gourmet food, wine and music festival at the base of the mountain. 

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Overall weekend winners were presented to riders with the fastest cumulative times across the three gravity events – titled the ‘Gravity God’ category, and the three cross-country events – titled the ‘XC Whippet’ category. Competitors in these events had to balance speed with endurance and bounce back each day ready to put it all on the line once again. 

After coming second last year by a margin of just one second, Shannon Hewetson claimed the Gravity God title with a cumulative time of 34.20 head of Kaine Cannan with 34.57 and Murray Stephens with 35.05. The leading Gravity Goddesses were Phillippa Norton with 39.27, Brody Chapman with 40.28 and the 2016 winner Sarah Booth in 3rd in a time of 41.18. untitled--5

The XC-Whippets categories were just as competitive with Adrian Jackson claiming victory in 4hr31.29. Adrian had a tough time of it though and suffered 2 punctures on the 40km race which set him back by 5 mins so needed to race hard in following days to secure the win over Bret Murray in 4hr44.07 in 2nd and Brad Clarke in 4hr48.28. The overall females saw Melissa Ansett, the 2016 winner, regain her title in a time of 5hr27.15 ahead of Daniela Erni Ruoss in 5hr40.08 and Suer Thompson in 5hr55.57. untitled--4

“We are absolutely thrilled with the 2017 GT Bike Buller Festival,” commented event manager Sam Maffett from Rapid Ascent, “to see so many riders across all popular MTB styles get together for a huge weekend of riding, fresh air and good times is always a thrill.” 

“We had some of Australia’s best riders from a range of disciplines and they all loved the trails and event format. There is a real sense of camaraderie between them that makes it a joy to be part of. Combined all this with the superb trails at Mt Buller and good weather and it really has been a superb weekend.”

For more information head to www.gtbikebuller.com 

FULL RESULTS:

Full results are available HERE

Racing: Josh Button and Dani Beecroft Oceania Champions

After a 2016 that saw Button reach the heights of a world cup podium in April, before crashing to a horrible low breaking his hip in June, Button made it back to racing and the top step with a surprising run to take gold.

“I thought I could have gone a bit faster but I’ll take it, really stoked.” “Just great to be back racing and can’t wait for next weekend,” he said.

Qualifying in fourth spot on Saturday, Button had a nervous wait as Graeme Mudd, was last down the hill.

But the Newcastle rider couldn’t top the 2:46:05 laid down by Button only moments earlier.

Mudd, who would end up fourth behind New Zealanders Keegan Wright and Wyn Masters, still produced the fastest time of the weekend in his qualifying run.

Wyn Masters
Wyn Masters

“I felt a bit flat as I didn’t eat enough in the hot weather, a rookie error.”

While in the women Danielle Beecroft added the Oceania Elite Women Downhill title to her 2017 national series victory, more than two seconds faster than Lisa Mathison (QLD) and Ronja Hill-Wright (NZL) who claimed the silver and bronze.

Four years ago, Beecroft from New South Wales, took out the U19 women’s category when the event was held in Glenorchy, Tasmania, but has never competed in an elite Oceania race.

“The run was great I made up a bit of time at the top so am really happy,” Beecroft said.

“It’s quite a simple course but hard to race cause it’s slippery and go too fast you could end up with a crash.”

Mathison, who finished second at last year’s national championship, turned up the heat on the regular national series riders and found herself again taking home silver.

Lisa Mathieson.
Lisa Mathieson.

“Haven’t been able to put in too much training so really don’t know how I would go but it’s great to be up amongst it,” the former cross-country Olympian admitted.

“I was conservative after a crash in practice yesterday but I knew there were areas you could stay off the brakes in some sections and it was a nice clean run.”

For Tegan Molloy (NSW) it was hardly the weekend that went to plan with the Thredbo rider struggling to put together a clean race run after her flat on Saturday and finishing seventh.

“I was going all out today and paid the price.”

“I rode off the track, hit a loose rock and rode off track and got caught in the bunting and lost a lot of time,” the current

Despite having notched up the wins at the recent national series, Baxter Maiwald (VIC) would have to play second fiddle by the barest of margins .1 to Joshua Clark (NSW) in the Junior Men with Josh Oxenham (NZL) third.

Wooo!
Wooo!

“Haven’t been on the bike much lately but it’s great to come back with a win and heading into Canungra.”

Full results timedresult.com

Racing: Cross Country Kiwis Claim Oceania Bragging Rights

Cooper, who was defending his jersey from last year, produced one of the rides of the day to fight his way back from a crash, which saw him drop to sixth on lap one to take the title in a time of 1:25:31 ahead of Cameron Ivory (NSW) and Daniel McConnell (ACT).

“I just went wide and the front wheel washed out and I went over the bar. That wasn’t a big deal but more the fact my chain came off then and it got tangled up so I had to run to the tech zone,” the Christchurch native said.

Anton Cooper.
Anton Cooper.

“It’s the first time I’ve been able to win Oceania’s and nationals in the same year and get all those points in the bag.”

The race also continued to see the rise of Ivory, as he battled to hold off the New Zealander.

“When I went pass Anton in the feed zone I thought he’s not only small but strong and he’s angry and he’s going to come back hard towards the end.”

“He was back buzzing on my tyre with a lap to go and I just couldn’t match him on the last lap,” said Ivory who now heads into the National Championships at Canungra next weekend with plenty of confidence.

Cam Ivory.
Cam Ivory.

While it has been a slow start for the 5 time Australian champion in Daniel McConnell, the Canberra based rider was pleased to fight his way back into the bronze medal position.

“It was always going to be hard race for me today and I was really happy to finish third and still get some good points for the rest of the season.”

“And the form is sort of coming back,”

Local favourite Jared Graves (QLD) put his foot down early to test the legs of the field, but even he admitted it wasn’t the best strategy in the five-lap race.

“I think I rode the rookie race of my life,” Graves admitted.

“Even though the body felt amazing the first two laps and thought I was in a really good spot then lap 3 I had a crash on the corner and don’t know what happened, I just started cramping from there.”

For Shepard, who along with Cooper was coming off victory at the New Zealand Championships a fortnight earlier, made the most of a mechanical by Rebecca Henderson (ACT) on the first lap to take the lead, which she held on to for the remaining three laps and win in a time of 1:23:03, more than 2 minutes in front of Holly Harris (NSW) and Henderson.

“I got out pretty well and I think Bec had an issue so I got to sneak past her and find my rhythm and ride as smooth as I could,”

“It is an unbelievable start to 2017. I’ve never had this good a result at an elite level and I’m planning a bit of a campaign to qualify at Commonwealth Games,” said Sheppard who finished fifth in the same race at Queenstown last year.

It was a huge result for Harris, who was given special dispensation from the UCI to ride up in the elite category.

The Armidale rider has found a burst of form, with two national series wins and now an elite silver medal at the Oceania Championships.

“I just can’t believe it.”

Holly Harris.
Holly Harris.

“I really am trying to wind it up this year and really get myself ready for World Championships in Cairns,” said Harris.

For Henderson, who got out to a strong lead before she her chain came off right at the feed zone, then faced more problems only a few hundred metres down the course.

“But then had to do the re-fit with the derailleur and the gears and trying to get instructions on how to do that without getting help.”

“This and next week are the two big races of the domestic summer and they really mean a lot to me and to get a bit of a sting losing my Oceania title so really hoping I can retain my national champs jersey,” said the two time Olympian.

In the Junior Men, Sam Fox (TAS) produced the upset of the season so far taking out the title ahead Matt Dinham (NSW) and the previously undefeated Cameron Wright (QLD) in third.

New Zealand again featured on top of the podium, as Jessica Manchester (NZL) was more than five minutes in front of Katherine Hosking (NSW) and fellow Kiwi Liv Bishop (NZL).

Full results timedresult.com

Video: CATALOCOS

After the intensive training session in Italy, we headed off to Spain (we were up with the sun!). Ahead of us, a 10-hours drive. It’s a long way to go and a long way from home, but we were rewarded with incredible views of the many beautiful landscapes along the journey.  When we arrived, we arranged to meet up at La Poma Bike Park, which was buffed out to a shine. After a few hot laps, it was time to check out the home of Bienve, Adolf, and Andreu.Catalocos_Bikebuildup_Erik_by-Ralf-Schupp Catalocos_by-Ralf-Schupp Catalocos_Shuttle_by-Ralf-Schupp

The guys showed us their local riding spots on their CAPRA and TUES. We had a great time together, and we also took the opportunity to build up two fresh new TUES for Andreu – not forgetting to enjoy the odd evening beer or two. All in all it was a great trip with awesome weather, excellent food, and good training for the upcoming season.Catalocos_Lacondeguy_by-Ralf-Schupp Catalocos_Bikebuildup_by-Ralf-Schupp

I would like to thank Andreu, Bienve, Luis, Adolf, Lisa and all the other locos who came to hang out. I appreciate your hospitality very much!”.

Rupert Chapman Shreds Christchurch Adventure Park

This vid is a taste of the Christchurch Adventure Park pre-fire. It may not look the same now, but we’re determined to come back bigger and better than before, just may need to wait a while for that riding fix! Thanks to Rupert Chapman for the good vibes. – Christchurch Adventure Park

Pivot Cycles would like to wish the Christchurch Adventure Park a speedy recovery process, and so would we here at Flow.

Coming Soon – RockShox Super Deluxe Coil

If you take a look at the top end of EWS racing, you’ll see more than a few bikes decked out with coil shocks in the rear. Yes, they’re heavier, and they offer less on the fly adjustments than many air shocks on the market, but their predictability makes them a winner for many riders.

We recently did a bike check with Josh Carlson, who told us the consistency of a coil shock during long, unpredictable downhills makes them an easy choice for his enduro race bike.

What about if you’re not racing in the EWS though? We would argue that as the weight of bikes relative to travel continues to fall, having a minor weight penalty in an area where real performance gains are possible, such as coil shocks is something that’s really worth looking into.

RockShox clearly think coil shocks are worth considering for your trail bike as well, as they’ve released a full range of Super Deluxe Coil shocks for 2017. Read below for a run through of the range as well as the updated Super Deluxe Air and Deluxe Air models.


Coil for all:

Super Deluxe allowed us to ditch old design constraints, and simply focus on building the best possible rear shock. And with that old thinking no longer holding us back, we began to wonder why coil-shock performance had to be limited to purely downhill and enduro applications, and why there should be any pedaling compromise associated with a coil shock.

The RockShox Super Deluxe Coil.
The RockShox Super Deluxe Coil comes in lockout and non-lockout variants.

No option spared:

In the words of a famous enduro racer, “Lean back and hang on,” because the all-new Super Deluxe Coil brings the consistency and feel of a coil sprung shock to trail and enduro bikes, and the benefits of metric design to downhill bikes. And with remote-lockout options, riders can capitalize on pedaling power anywhere, not just on fireroads.

A OneLoc handlebar remote is used to lockout the rear shock.
We think we’ll be seeing a few of these in Rotorua in a few weeks.

Sag gradients- coil setup:

All Super Deluxe Coil models feature sag gradients printed on the shaft to facilitate the correct setup. Steel springs will also be available in 50 lbs increments from 250 to 650, depending on length.

Sag indicators for simplicity.
Sag indicators make setup simple.

SUPER DELUXE COIL RCT:

Solid Threshold adjustment for pedaling performance, low speed compression adjustment to fine tune the ride to any trail and condition, the unmistakable feel of a coil spring and RockShox’s Super Deluxe design. A unique blend that’s now a reality, to push the benefits of coil shocks to bold new places.

p5pb14463776-1

FEATURES AND BENEFITS:

External rebound damping adjustment

2-position threshold adjustment (Open/Pedal) with low speed compression adjustment in Open mode

Steel springs available in 50lbs increments from 350lbs to 650lbs (depending on length)


SUPER DELUXE COIL RT REMOTE:

Remote rear shocks are no longer reserved to the XC elites – and Super Deluxe Coil RT Remote has already proven it with its 2016 EWS title with Cecile Ravanel. Riders can conserve energy and accelerate faster by switching to the “Threshold” mode, and click back into “Open” for full shredding capabilities.

RS-SDLC-RT_REMOTE-A1_Black_3Q_MH

FEATURES AND BENEFITS:

External rebound damping adjustment

2-position, remote-operated threshold adjustment (Open/Pedal) via OneLoc remote

In and Out cable routing

Steel springs available in 50lbs increments from 350lbs to 650lbs (depending on length)


SUPER DELUXE COIL RC WORLD CUP:

RockShox metric rear shock technology meets downhill World Cup racing – a shock designed for the new breed of downhill bikes, ultra-capable and light as never before. No-compromise damping, with precise low speed compression and rebound adjustments to dial in a podium-worthy ride.

p5pb14463778

 

FEATURES AND BENEFITS:

External rebound damping adjustment

Low speed compression adjustment

Metric Vivid replacement

Steel springs available in 50lbs increments from 350lbs to 650lbs (depending on length)


SUPER DELUXE COIL R:

No-nonsense performance for all coil-worthy applications, from the latest breed of trail and enduro bikes to downhill and park rigs that leave room in the budget for a season pass at the local hill. All the benefits of the Super Deluxe Coil package in a shock that’s as easy to understand as it is fun to ride.

RS-SDLC-R-A1_Black_3Q_MH

FEATURES AND BENEFITS:

External rebound damping adjustment

Metric Kage replacement

Steel springs available in 50lbs increments from 350lbs to 650lbs (depending on length)


SUPER DELUXE UPDATES:

STROKE INDICATOR:

All new Super Deluxe and Deluxe models feature a full stroke indicator on the damper body, to facilitate proper setup by confirming that you are using the full travel of your shock.


SUPER DELUXE RCT:

Solid Threshold adjustment for pedaling performance, low speed compression adjustment to fine tune the ride to any trail and condition, and the proven performance of RockShox’s revolutionary Super Deluxe rear shock in a package that’s ready to tackle any challenge.

The Super Deluxe RCT features two compression settings, as well as low speed compression in open mode.
Note the full stroke indicator at the bottom of the shock.

FEATURES AND BENEFITS:

External rebound damping adjustment

2-position threshold adjustment (Open/Pedal) with low speed compression adjustment in Open mode


SUPER DELUXE RT REMOTE:

Remote rear shocks are no longer reserved to the XC elites – and Super Deluxe RT Remote has already proven it with its 2016 EWS performance under the likes of Jerome Clementz and Cecile Ravanel. Riders can conserve energy and accelerate faster by switching to the “Threshold” mode, and click back into “Open” for full shredding capabilities.

p5pb14462389

FEATURES AND BENEFITS:

External rebound damping adjustment

2-position, remote-operated threshold adjustment (Open/Pedal) via OneLoc remote

In and Out cable routing


SUPER DELUXE RC WORLD CUP:

RockShox metric rear shock technology meets downhill World Cup racing – a shock designed for the new breed of downhill bikes, ultra-capable and light as never before. No-compromise damping, with precise compression and rebound adjustments to dial in a podium-worthy ride – with the precise ride tuning abilities of an air spring.

The Super Deluxe World Cup replaces the Vivid Air.
The Super Deluxe World Cup replaces the Vivid Air.

FEATURES AND BENEFITS:

External rebound damping adjustment

Low speed compression adjustment

Metric Vivid Air replacement


SUPER DELUXE R:

p5pb14463772

New stealth graphics

Additional stroke lengths (up to 75mm) to replace Vivid Air for metric bikes


DELUXE UPDATES:

METRIC GOES REMOTE:

NEW Deluxe RL Remote

New stealth graphics for Deluxe RT3, RT, RL and R


DELUXE RL REMOTE:

The efficiency of an Open/Lock remote switch meets the benefits of RockShox’s metric shock design. The ultra-low activation force required to operate Deluxe RL Remote via the OneLoc remote means that riders can access the efficiency of the Lock position more often.

The Deluxe Rl has also received the OneLoc remote lockout treatment.
The Deluxe Rl has also received the OneLoc remote lockout treatment.

FEATURES AND BENEFITS:

External rebound damping adjustment

2-position, remote-operated threshold adjustment (Open/Lock) via OneLoc remote

In and Out cable routing