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MTB World Cup XC #3 & 4X #2 - CDM - CDM
Houffalize, Belgium, May 2-3, 2009
Race 3 - May 2: Elite women four cross
Kintner returns to the top
By Rob Jones in Houffalize
American Jill Kintner (Red Bull-Intense) came back from a disappointing first round to decisively put herself back into the fight for the women's World Cup. Anneke Beerten (Suspension Center) held onto the women's overall series lead after finishing third.
Kintner's run to the final wasn't quite as smooth. After winning her first two heats, Jana Horakova (Czech Republic) managed to get by her in the semi-final, and Kintner had to battle for that second spot to make the medal round.
In the medal race, it was Kintner, Beerten, Horakova and Romana Labounkova (Czech Republic). Kintner jumped into the lead followed by Beerten, but the World Cup leader miscalculated the first corner and had to brake, allowing Horakova to slip into the second position.
"I came on the inside of Jill, thinking that she would go higher through the corner, but she went in a straight line, and I had nowhere to go," explained Beerten. "But it was great racing, and I kept my jersey."
For Kintner it was a sign that she was truly back in the mix of four cross after taking last season off to prepare for the BMX event at the Olympic Games where she won the bronze medal. After a disappointing race at the World Cup opener in South Africa, where she finished fifth, the win in Houffalize was a big confidence booster.
"It felt good to get the monkey off my back," said Kintner.
For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here
Images by Rob Jones/www.canadiancyclist.com
1 Jill Kintner (USA) 2 Jana Horakova (Cze) 3 Anneke Beerten (Ned) Suspension Center 4 Romana Labounkova (Cze) 5 Melissa Buhl (USA) 6 Anita Molcik (Aut) 7 Emmeline Ragot (Fra) Suspension Center 8 Lucia Oetjen (Swi) 9 Diana Marggraff (Ecu) 10 Joanna Petterson (RSA) 11 Fionn Griffiths (GBr) Norco World Team 12 Helene Valerie Fruhwirth (Aut) 13 Mio Suemasa (Jpn) 14 Katarina Tothova (Cze) 15 Steffi Marth (Ger) 16 Rachel Seydoux (Swi) 17 Sarsha Huntington (Aus) 18 Angelika Hohenwarter (Aut) 19 Marielle Jonker (Ned) 20 Eva Castro Fernandez (Spa) 21 Tereza Votavova (Cze) 22 Elfriede Lehmann (Ger) 23 Stephanie Teltscher (Ger) 24 Neza Knez (Slo) Teams 1 Animal Commencal 53 pts 2 Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 40 3 GT Bicycles 30 4 Suspension Center 30 5 Team Sunn 22 6 Ghost A.T.G. Pro Team 19 World Cup Standings after two rounds Individual 1 Anneke Beerten (Ned) Suspension Center 150 pts 2 Jill Kintner (USA) 130 3 Jana Horakova (Cze) 115 4 Romana Labounkova (Cze) 90 5 Fionn Griffiths (GBr) Norco World Team 75 6 Melissa Buhl (USA) 40 7 Emmeline Ragot (Fra) Suspension Center 30 8 Anita Molcik (Aut) 20 9 Lucia Oetjen (Swi) 5 10 Helene Valerie Fruhwirth (Aut) 5 Team 1 Suspension Center 80 pts 2 Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 80 3 Animal Commencal 67 4 Ghost A.T.G. Pro Team 47 5 Team Sunn 44 6 GT Bicycles 30 7 Norco World Team 30 8 Specialized Factory Racing 30 9 Rocky Mountain UK 18 10 Chain Reaction Cycles/Intense 15 11 MS Evil Racing 7