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MTB World Cup XC #4 & DH #2 - CDM

Fort William, Scotland, May 27-28, 2006

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Race 5 - May 28: Women's downhill

Home crowd cheers British one-two

By Rob Jones in Fort William

The women's podium
Photo ©: Rob Jones
(Click for larger image)

The 2.5 kilometre course at Fort William isn't one of the steeper runs in the World Cup, but it more than makes up for it rough, rooty and muddy conditions. The course really pounds the riders, require both upper body strength and endurance for all the pedalling involved.

British riders gave the partisan crowd something to cheear about, with Tracy Moseley (Kona Les Gets) and Rachel Atherton finishing 1-2 in the women's race. Moseley qualified fastest by 10 seconds, and then proved that it wasn't a fluke by winning the final by over seven and a half seconds. Compatriot Rachel Atherton, who had qualified fifth, had a big improvement over the two rides, knocking 10 seconds off her time, as did Sabrina Jonnier in third, taking 15 seconds off her qualifying run.

"There was a lot of pressure", admitted Moseley. "As the favourite, with all the fans out there, and given that I have won here twice before, I was feeling a bit nervous. But one thing I did which helped, I think, is that I didn't ride the course as much as some. I walked it, took only a few practice runs and rested. this course takes a lot out of you, so you're better to be rested and strong."


For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here

Images by Rob Jones/www.canadiancyclist.com


1 Tracy Moseley (GBr) Kona Les Gets Factory          5.12.05
2 Rachel Atherton (GBr) Team Animal / Giant          5.19.63
3 Sabrina Jonnier (Fra)                              5.20.94
4 Helen Gaskell (GBr)                                5.22.57
5 Céline Gros (Fra) Alvarez Racing                   5.25.13
6 Emmeline Ragot (Fra) Qbikes                        5.28.08
6 Kathleen Pruitt (USA)                                     
8 Marielle Saner (Sui) Team Bikepark.Ch Tui          5.29.00
9 Fionn Griffiths (GBr)                              5.30.35
10 Mio Suemasa (Jpn)                                 5.35.54
11 Bernardita Pizarro (Chi)                          5.40.22
12 Anneke Beerten (Ned) Specialized                  5.44.08
13 Melissa Buhl (USA)                                5.47.79
14 Claire Buchar (Can)                               5.51.43
15 Anita Molcik (Aut) Arbö Rsp Downhill Racing       5.53.68
16 Calamaty Jayne Cann (GBr)                         5.53.74
17 Floriane Pugin (Fra)                              5.57.25
18 Pascaline Reusser (Sui)                           6.00.92
19 Emily Horridge (GBr)                              6.03.03
20 Patricia Loureiro (Bra)                           6.03.34
21 Maria Conway (GBr)                                6.05.54
22 Brook Baker (Can)                                 6.05.72
23 Diana Marggraff (Ecu) Zenith-Mtb-International    6.06.07
24 Daniela Bossard (Sui)                             6.07.81
25 Michela Thaler (Ita) Arbö Rsp Downhill Racing     6.09.39
26 Katrina Strand (Can)                              6.11.83
27 Mireia Bosca Ballester (Esp)                      6.24.16
28 Anja Rees Jones (GBr)                             6.29.36
29 Danika Schroeter (Can)                            6.34.00
30 Adele Peat (GBr)                                  6.43.04