Brosnan and Fry – 2017 Gravity Enduro National Champions

Adelaide’s Fox Creek trails were home to the 2017 Gravity Enduro National Championships over the weekend. Hosted by the Inside Line Downhill Club, racers were faced with the most technical and challenging stages this renowned trail network could offer. After eight stages of racing over two days, Troy Brosnan (SA) and Rowena Fry (TAS) won the 2017 elite men and women’s championship titles.

After 4 stages on Saturday, Troy Brosnan was sitting in 2nd behind fellow Adelaide local World Cup Downhiller Connor Fearon

Brosnan, who was four seconds behind Connor Fearon (SA) heading into the final day, was able to pull back the time to take top step by three seconds ahead of fellow South Australian Fearon and last year’s champion Chris Panozzo (VIC).

“It’s kind of interesting to actually be an enduro national champion; I’m not even the downhill national champion,” the Adelaide resident remarked. “After yesterday I knew I had to make that time up and really gave it all on that first stage and surprised a little bit it worked out.”

Fearon beat Brosnan at Fox Creek’s 2016 National Enduro Round. The local downhillers are hard to beat even when there’s some pedalling to be done.

Two-time defending National Enduro Champion, Chris Panozzo, had a consistent race, but couldn’t match the pace of the locals downhillers seeing him finish in 3rd.

For Fry, the 30-second gap she held to the 2016 champion Phillipa Rostan (SA) was enough to take out her first national enduro title with Shelly Flood (SA) in third.

The Tasmanian two-time cross-country Australian champion proved she was an even match for the local downhillers on their home track and added another title to her already impressive resume.

“I was always a little bit worried cause I didn’t actually feel that great on the bike today but knew I had a bit of time up my sleeve and could be a bit more conservative and stay upright,” Fry said.

Elite Female Gravity Enduro Rider of the Year and defending National Champion, Philippa Rostan, won stage 4 and rode consistently to 2nd overall.
Shelly Flood has had a great year of racing including World Cup DH, World Champs and three EWS rounds.
Launceston’s Rowena Fry had a tough task taking on the local ladies but kept it upright to win four stages and the race by 25 seconds.
Sydney’s Mel Hayes wrapped up 5th place in the Elite Women.

There was more local joy with junior men up-and-comer Sam Walsh claiming the green and gold jersey making it a perfect season after winning the national series.

Sam’s time of 17:58:24 would have placed him 5th in elite men.

Just as at the SA DH State Champs in Fox Creek a month earlier, Sam Walsh took the U19 Men’s win ahead of Bennett Wythe.

More than 200 riders were part of the weekend hosted by Inside Line Downhill MTB Club which used 22km of Fox Creek’s best trails.

Western Sydney’s Jon Gatt warming up with some stretches ahead of a big weekend of racing.
Gatt scored a couple of top 15 stage finishes and 18th overall
VIC’s Richard Kreuzer beat his number plate, by one place.
Ryan De La Rue focused, but this wasn’t to be his race.

After taking the win in the final National Round, Ben Cory managed 4th in the stacked field at National Champs
Keiran Volk
DHaRCO’s Mathieu Taris managed five stage wins, but finished 2nd in Masters 2 Men behind Kevin King.
National Series winner, Dave Ludenia, finished just off the podium in 6th
Fresh from an impressive 55th overall in the EWS, Sydney’s James ‘Cannonball’ Hall finished 10th on his first excursion to Fox Creek.

Michael Ronning wrapped up the National Series for Masters 3/4 Men and took the Masters 3 win in the Champs as well.
Yet another National Title for RonRon
Lower Blue Mountains’ Michael Vanos was too sick to race on Saturday but managed some impressive stage results on Sunday that would’ve seen him pushing into the top 10, including a 5th place in stage 6.
Ben McIlroy’s had a tough National Enduro season, missing multiple races due to injury. After busting his AC joint in Friday’s practice, he sat out the National Champs but continued his @flow_mtb Instagram Stories Takeover – thanks, mate! We’re keen to see him lay down some more race runs soon.
Elite Men’s Podium
Elite Women’s Podium

Find the full results here.

Racing: Chris Panozzo and Philippa Rostan Enduro Win National Titles

Panozzo made it back to back titles in the elite men ahead of Ben Cory and Jordan Prochyra, while Rostan claimed her first ever Australian enduro title in the elite women leaving Shelly Flood and Emily Parkes to fill the minor placings.

Despite Saturday’s compulsory practice being dry, Sunday was the total opposite, with the venue receiving around 46mm of rain forcing race organisers to cut some of the stages.

With sections of stage 3 unrideable, the race director started riders at the half-way mark before by passing stage 4 all together and finishing on stage 5.

“I’m glad that cut that top bit out on stage 3 as that clay can just turn icy like and you’ll slide all the way down,” Rostan said.

“I rode really well on the first two stages despite the conditions and I knew Em Parkes was really fit, so I just had to pedal as hard as I could on the first stage.”

The South Australian local was consistent across the four stages, with an overall time of 17min 51:23secs, 17 seconds in front of the reining title holder in Parkes.

It capped off a remarkable 2016 enduro season for Rostan, having taken out the national series with three wins and now the Australian title.

In the elite men, Panozzo, the current national champion, admitted it would be a tough ask to hold on to his title in the bleak and slippery conditions.

 “It was hard to know how hard to push, you know if you’d done enough and what conditions would be like so an interesting day for sure.”

“Everyone probably had a stack at some point in the day given conditions, it was a nervous wait.”

Panozzo held off the challenge of this season’s national series winner in Ben Cory, to finish with an overall time of 13min 37:24secs, while Troy Brosnan, who was riding for fun, finished fifth in his first time back on the bike in three weeks after the completion of the UCI MTB Downhill world championships. 

Panozzo thinks there are good signs ahead for the 2017 and 2018 national championships also to be held at Eagle MTB Park.

“I think Adelaide has got a huge amount of great trails and hopefully this is a learning and year and can only get better.”

Click here for full results.