Canadian Cyclist


May 7/06 1:22 am - World Cup DH #1 Final Results

Posted by Editoress on 05/7/06

Vigo DH World Cup #1 Spain

Report Courtesy 23 Degrees Sports

The UCI Mountain Bike Downhill World Cup once again chose the north eastern Spanish city of Vigo today to kick off the new international race season, and once again the two and a half minute trail (slightly shorter this year) took its toll on the world's best downhill racers and provided some unexpected results. 2005 World Cup Champion Greg Minnaar (RSA) crashed heavily in the final and was lucky to escape serious injury after a small tree stump caught his front wheel in a high-speed section of the course. Team mate Matti Lehikoinen (FIN) finished 16th after battling to find speed on the course all week.

As was the case last year, an estimated 15 to 20,000 spectators took to the hills to watch the action, which was spread over two days due to live TV schedule requirements, which had the semi final on Saturday and the final today, Sunday. Strangely, a timed training session was held this morning, before the final, but none of the riders took advantage of this to any degree as their times were already well known due to the semi final on Saturday and there was no need taking on any added risk before the final.

In the semi final, Greg took to the course first as the reigning World Cup champion, and crossed the line with a time of 2m 28.951secs but he was a little disappointed knowing that there were a few areas where extra time could have been found. Matti also had difficulty getting the speed needed but both improved on their timed runs recorded by the team staff earlier in the day. Greg finished 7th and Matti's time of 2m 34.516secs had him finishing 21st.

Today saw dry conditions for the men's final after a brief shower just 1 hour before the race. Times recorded by the riders earlier in the start list showed that the course was running just as fast as yesterday's semi final, and it was clear that the win would probably need to be around 2m 23secs or better. Both Team G Cross Honda riders took to the top of the hill with the clear objective of improving on their semi final times and starting the season well.

Matti rode his fastest time of the week on the course and ended in position 16th. His time of 2m 30.796secs was an improvement of nearly 4 seconds on his semi final. For Greg, it was to be his first major crash in a World Cup final in 4 years that was to take him out of contention for the day. Coming into a fast chicane in the top half of the course, where he needed to flick the bike from right to left at high speed, his front wheel seemed to hook up on a tree stump as he turned from left to right, and at high speed he flew over the handlebars landing on his head. His left wrist took some of the impact away from his head and neck, and he rolled down the track. Quickly getting to his feet and remounting his Honda RN01 to find only the seat nose broken, he continued on to finish 19th. His time for the 2nd half of the course was equal to that of 3rd place finisher Steve Peat.

#1 Greg Minnaar (19th Place)
"I'm incredibly disappointed by this crash. I felt really fast at the top and I was really on the limit. In this section where I crashed, I'd really got it dialled during practice. I'd seen the tree stump there before but in the final I must have just clipped it after running a little wide due to the speed I was carrying from the previous section. I was really nervous carrying the number 1 plate at the start of the new season and meeting so many expectations, not the least of which were from myself. I feel pretty disappointed not to have a achieved a strong result to build upon, and not to have backed up all the great work down by the team to get us so competitive this week."

#11 Matti Lehikoinen (7th Place)
"I'm having trouble finding the confidence I need at this level of racing after missing a lot of pre-season downhill training time on the bike, due to my compulsory military service. I was able to keep my physical fitness during winter, and that was not the concern today, it was the high speed technical sections where I was not really as comfortable as I was last year. I got faster each run and I think that this will improve a lot over the next weeks. In my final run today I hit all my lines well and made no real errors, I was just lacking a little speed. At one section of the course I nearly went off course because a spectator had something that made a fake chainsaw sound that I thought was a real chainsaw! I was scared and nearly crashed!"

Team Director Martin Whiteley
"We're lucky to have both riders in one piece after so many other injuries to other top riders, and especially after Greg's horrific crash which on video is really quite tough to watch as he hit the ground very hard. We timed the video footage from the moment he crashes to the point where he gets back on the bike, and it's 7.7secs, and that's not allowing for the fact that he also took time to get back up to speed. We're confident that without the freak crash, Greg would have had a solid podium result today. Matti improved on every run this week and it won't be long before he has the speed to chase those top ten results he was achieving regularly last year."

The team now heads to Lisbon for the Downtown street race, before preparing for World Cup Round 2 in Fort William, Scotland, on May 28th.

1. Tracy Moseley (GBr) Kona Les Gets Factory Team2:50.839
2. Sabrina Jonnier (Fra) Iron Horse2:52.6041.765
3. Emmeline Ragot (Fra) Qbikes2:53.2082.369
4. Celine Gros (Fra)2:55.1374.298
5. Rachel Atherton (GBr) Team Animal / Giant2:55.6114.772
6. Marielle Saner (Sui) Team Bikepark.Ch Tui2:56.1545.315
7. Danika Schroeter (Can)2:56.3885.549
8. Bernardita Pizarro (Chi)3:00.6739.834
9. Mio Suemasa (Jpn)3:00.85610.017
10. Claire Buchar (Can)3:03.83712.998
11. Kathleen Pruitt (USA)3:06.60915.77
12. Fionn Griffiths (GBr)3:08.71617.877
13. Anita Molcik (Aut) Arbo Rsp Downhill Racing Team3:12.62821.789
14. Anneke Beerten (Ned) Specialized Factory Racing3:12.83621.997
15. Floriane Pugin (Fra)3:21.84431.005
16. Mireia Bosca Ballester (Esp)3:26.07535.236
17. Petra Bernhard (Aut) Ms-Intense Factory-Racing T3:27.83836.999
18. Violeta Janeiro Alfageme (Esp)3:28.77237.933
19. Katrina Strand (Can)3:29.17738.338
20. Hannah L Steffens, (USA)3:31.15840.319
21. Anja Rees Jones (GBr)3:41.85651.017
22. Jaime Mart (Bar)3:46.64455.805
23. Maria Michalogiannaki (Gre)3:53.3651:02.526
24. Patricia Loureiro (Bra)3:57.9151:07.076
25. Ajnoha Fontan Omil (Esp)4:05.6711:14.832
DNS. Helen Gaskell (GBr)
DNS. Sophie Borderes (Fra)
DNF. Vanessa Quin (NZl)
DNF. Daniela Bossard (Sui)
DNF. Brook Baker (Can)
1. Mick Hannah (Aus) Cannondale/The Cut2:22.9420
2. Nathan Rennie (Aus) Santa Cruz Syndicate2:23.8000.858
3. Steve Peat (GBr) Santa Cruz Syndicate2:24.7561.814
4. Marc Beaumont (GBr) Team MBUK Santa Cruz2:25.1652.223
5. Gee Atherton (GBr) Team Animal / Giant2:25.2952.353
6. Samuel Hill (Aus) Monster/Iron Horse/Mad Catz2:25.7462.804
7. Cedric Gracia (Fra) Team Commencal2:26.4773.535
8. Chris Kovarik (Aus) Ms-Intense Factory-Racing T2:26.8293.887
9. Mickael Pascal (Fra) Qbikes2:28.0475.105
10. Markus Klausmann (Ger) Ghost International Racing2:28.2155.273
11. David Vazquez Lopez (Esp) Maxxis-Msc2:29.1126.17
12. Andrew Neethling (RSA) Team Mongoose2:29.3266.384
13. Julien Camellini (Fra) Cox2:29.3706.428
14. Fabien Barel (Fra) Kona Les Gets Factory Team2:30.1587.216
15. Jared Graves (Aus) Yeti Fox Factory Racing2:30.1697.227
16. Matti Lehikoinen (Fin) Team G-Cross Honda2:30.7967.854
17. Bernat Guardia Pascual (Esp) Maxxis-Msc2:30.9608.018
18. Fabien Pedemanaud (Fra)2:31.0668.124
19. Greg Minnaar (RSA) Team G-Cross Honda2:31.1578.215
20. Duncan Riffle (USA)2:31.2698.327
21. Dan Atherton (GBr) Team Animal / Giant2:31.3748.432
22. Adam Vagner (Cze)2:32.0119.069
23. Dave Wardell (GBr)2:32.3269.384
24. Neil Donoghue (GBr) Team Mbuk Santacruz2:32.3349.392
25. Claudio Caluori (Sui) Ms-Intense Factory-Racing T2:32.5619.619
26. Chris Ball (GBr) Mojo Suspension2:32.7159.773
27. Damien Spagnolo (Fra) Qbikes2:32.99010.048
28. Rowen Sorrell (GBr) Mojo Suspension2:33.23210.29
29. Damien Mermoud (Sui) Suspension Center2:33.26910.327
30. Lee Bertram (GBr)2:33.66410.722
31. Cyrille Kurtz (Fra)2:33.73410.792
32. Jorge Aguin Castro (Esp)2:34.20611.264
33. Lars Peyer (Sui) Suspension Center2:34.24911.307
34. Will Longden (GBr) Team Mbuk Santacruz2:34.40311.461
35. Samuel Zbinden (Sui)2:34.58711.645
36. Oscar Saiz Castañe (Esp) Giant-Racing-Team2:34.64811.706
37. Florent Payet (Fra)2:34.70411.762
38. Alan Beggin (Ita)2:34.90611.964
39. Dan Stanbridge (GBr) Mojo Suspension2:35.01212.07
40. Kyle Strait (USA)2:35.07712.135
41. Roger Gonzalez Salvador (Esp)2:35.39612.454
42. Yoann Barelli (Fra) Team Lapierre International2:35.45712.515
43. Romain Saladini (Fra)2:35.82012.878
44. Brendan Fairclough, (GBr)2:35.98113.039
45. Ralph Jones (GBr)2:35.99613.054
46. Joshua Toland (USA)2:36.25013.308
47. Ivan Oulego Moreno (Esp) Massi-Abarth2:36.38913.447
48. Pasqual Canals Flix (Esp)2:36.51213.57
49. Fabien Cousinie (Fra)2:36.85813.916
50. Remy Charrier (Fra)2:37.36114.419
51. Frank Schneider (Ger)2:37.36514.423
52. Scott Beaumont (GBr) Rocky Mountain Uk2:38.23315.291
53. Michal Marosi (Cze) Arbö Rsp Downhill Racing Te2:38.31215.37
54. Stuart Thomson (GBr)2:38.60715.665
55. Alexandre Sicard (Fra)2:38.96916.027
56. Herman Olund (Swe)2:39.06816.126
57. Emanuel Pombo (Por)2:39.15016.208
58. Rob Warner (GBr)2:39.34016.398
59. Richard Cheetham (GBr)2:40.68717.745
60. Vlastimil Hyncica (Cze)2:40.70417.762
61. James Hughes (GBr)2:40.71417.772
62. Dan Harper (GBr) Gumball 30002:40.92017.978
63. Tom Deacon (GBr)2:40.99618.054
64. Kamil Tatarkovic (Cze) Kona Les Gets Factory Team2:41.19518.253
65. Ben Reid (Irl)2:41.22818.286
66. Jose Antonio Diez Arriola (Esp)2:41.73518.793
67. Aurelien Giordanengo (Fra) Team Lapierre International2:42.57019.628
68. Pierre Charles Georges (Fra)2:42.58719.645
69. Jonathan Cheetham (GBr)2:42.63419.692
70. Joan Vicente Merida (Esp)2:43.41120.469
71. Andre Beato (Por)2:44.22621.284
72. Carlo Gambirasio (Ita)2:44.62121.679
73. Mario Schurter (Sui)2:46.19223.25
74. Renato Ventura (Por)2:48.23125.289
75. Gary Forrest (GBr)2:53.88330.941
76. Quentin Derbier (Fra)3:48.2661:25.324
77. Filip Polc (Svk) Gravity Group3:48.2741:25.332
78. Joris Bigoni (Fra)47:21.220 44:58.278
DNS. Justin Leov (NZl)
DNS. Ben Cathro (GBr)
DNF. Bryn Atkinson (Aus)
DNF. Thomas Braithwaite (GBr)


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