Here is the latest results for the world cup last weekend with Five Ten® and Greg Minnaar taking the top spot again with his signature shoe. The story of the weekend is below. FIVE TEN® rider Sam Blenkinsop also took 4th place.
The week started out warm and pleasant in the breathtakingly beautiful village of Leogang, Austria.
The summer weather quickly disappeared and the cold rain arrived making the course a muddy mess. As it was, the course was dangerous and the mud had riders crashing all over the place in the qualifier. Greg was first man down and posted a 4:03, which held up for 2nd place.
The night before the race Steve Peat commented that every time he wore the World Champs jersey he crashed. Ricky Bobby had a solution and suggested he crash before the start to get it over with. Race day Steve took it to heart and Ricky says, “Steve did the Dead Turtle before the start and threw himself into the bushes, through the fence, into someone’s front garden, pulling up flowers and rolling around in the mud to get the jersey dirty.” Apparently the strategy worked and Steve had a great run, upright, and crossed the line in 4:11.82 and held the hotseat for over a half hour while creeping into the top ten. It looked like the podium was in reach until Cameron Cole came across the line just .05 seconds faster. “Now I know how Greg felt at World’s,” said Steve.
Fifteen minutes later Josh Bryceland was on course and after the first split he slipped in the greasy conditions and was sent sideways in the air and his head and shoulders took a direct hit into a tree at quite high speed. Concussed, he stood up, walked off the track and sat for a bit before cruising down the side of the course, not to finish the race. He felt as though he may have separated his shoulder and was still in shock at the bottom. Josh said, “The weekend was good and I found my pace again, but I am devastated to crash out like that. It’s not where I want to be in the overall, but I’m ready now to prepare for Champery and Val Di Sole.”
Soon Gee Atherton came through the finish with a time of 4:06.39, a staggering 5 seconds faster than Cameron Cole and Steve, each on 4:11. This looked to be a lofty goal to reach, but Greg was up to the task and put .74 seconds into Gee with a 4:05.65 at the finish after being down on Gee 2.22 seconds at the first split. With fastest qualifier Sam Blenkinsop last he was flying down the track, but was getting out of shape at the bottom. He also finished on 4:11, dashing Steve’s hope for a podium, but it secured Greg’s win (in front of some of the PMB oneLife crew in attendance), for his 2nd World Cup win this season. It was his 13th UCI Downhill career win. This was also his 45th World Cup podium, which ties Nico Voilleuz record, and is 5 behind Steve’s 50 career podiums.
Greg was very happy, and surprised to win with the run he had. Greg says, “It was an amazing weekend with a 2nd in qualifier and 1st in the race. The race was really hard and conditions made it hard to stay on line and even on the track. I made a few big mistakes on the top. I wanted to be smooth and carry speed and work hard on the pedaling, but it didn’t really happen that way and I was all over the place and taking dabs with my gangly legs. Thanks to Doug for having my bike perfect!”
We now have half of the World Cup season under our belt and Greg is still in the leaders jersey, 73 points ahead of Gee Atherton. With 4 weeks until the next World Cup, this week we will be competing at the Pro GRT race in Northstar at Lake Tahoe, California. Josh may sit this one out depending on the doctor’s report on his shoulder.
Pro Men’s Downhill Results:
1st: GREG MINNAAR (SANTA CRUZ SYNDICATE) 4:05.65
2nd: Gee Atherton 4:06.39
3rd: Aaron Gwin 4:10.09
4th: Sam Blenkinsop 4:11.17
5th: Cameron Cole 4:11.77
6th: STEVE PEAT (SANTA CRUZ SYNDICATE) 4:11.82
7th: Bendan Fairclough 4:12.61
8th: Justin Leov 4:12.93
9th: Matti Lehikoinen 4:13.25
10th: Matt Simmonds 4:13.82
DNF: Josh Bryceland
Pro Men’s Overall Standings:
1st: GREG MINNAAR (SANTA CRUZ SYNDICATE) 660
2ND: Gee Atherton 587
3rd: Aaron Gwin 410
4th: Cameron Cole 404
5th: Sam Blenkinsop 394
6th: Brendan Fairclough 345
7th: Justin Leov 274
8th: Matti Lehikoinen 265
9th: Fabien Pedemanaud 257
10th: Marc Beaumont 232
12th: STEVE PEAT (SANTA CRUZ SYNDICATE) 222
30TH: JOSH BRYCELAND (SANTA CRUZ SYNDICATE) 138