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MTB World Cup XC, DH & 4X #1 - CDM
Pietermaritzburg, South Africa, April 10-12, 2009
Race 7 - April 11: Elite women four cross
Showdown fizzes as Beerten takes the bacon
By Rob Jones in Pietermaritzburg
The women's four cross race was expected to come down to the defending UCI World Cup champion Anneke Beerten (Suspension Center) and American Jill Kintner, who had previously dominated women's four cross, before leaving the sport for a year to prepare for and win the Olympic Games bronze medal in BMX. The two had qualified one-two, with Kintner four tenths of a second faster.
However the showdown never materialized, after Kintner had a poor first round and did not move on to the final. Beerten on the other hand easily qualified, and was joined in the final by Fionn Griffiths (Norco World Team), and two Czech riders: Romana Labounkova and Jana Horakova.
Beerten was again well out in front to retain the series leader's jersey, followed by Griffiths and Labounkova.
"Over the last three days I have felt really good on this course, " said Beerten. "I'm sort of bummed that I didn't get to meet Jill [Kintner in the Final], but I'm really stoked that I'll be wearing the jersey in Houffalize [Belgium,], which is almost like wearing it in front of a home crowd."
For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here
Images by Sven Martin
Images by Gary Perkin
Images by Rob Jones/www.canadiancyclist.com
1 Anneke Beerten (Ned) Suspension Center 2 Fionn Griffiths (GBr) Norco World Team 3 Romana Labounkova (Cze) 4 Jana Horakova (Cze) 5 Jill Kintner (USA) 6 Emmeline Ragot (Fra) Suspension Center 7 Melissa Buhl (USA) 8 Helene Valerie Fruhwirth (Aut) Team 1 Suspension Center 50 pts 2 Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 40 3 Norco World Team 30 4 Specialized Factory Racing 30 5 Ghost A.T.G. Pro Team 28 6 Team Sunn 22 7 Rocky Mountain UK 18 8 Animal Commencal 14 9 MS Evil Racing 7 10 Chain Reaction Cycles/Intense 6 World Cup standings after one round Individual 1 Anneke Beerten (Ned) Suspension Center 100 pts 2 Fionn Griffiths (GBr) Norco World Team 75 3 Romana Labounkova (Cze) 50 4 Jana Horakova (Cze) 40 5 Jill Kintner (USA) 30 6 Emmeline Ragot (Fra) Suspension Center 20 7 Melissa Buhl (USA) 10 8 Helene Valerie Fruhwirth (Aut) 5 Team 1 Suspension Center 50 pts 2 Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 40 3 Specialized Factory Racing 30 4 Norco World Team 30 5 Ghost A.T.G. Pro Team 28 6 Team Sunn 22 7 Rocky Mountain UK 18 8 Animal Commencal 14 9 MS Evil Racing 7 10 Chain Reaction Cycles/Intense 6