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MTB News & Racing Round-up, September 16, 2010

Date published:
September 16, 2010, 1:00 BST
  • Moseley happy with first world title

    Tracy Moseley (Great Britain) rides toward her first World Championship title
    Article published:
    September 11, 2010, 17:56 BST
    Sue George, Mountain Bike Editor

    Rainbow jersey makes up for tough season

    Great Britain's Tracy Moseley raced to her first career elite downhill world championship on one of her favorite courses at Mont-Sainte-Anne, Quebec, Canada last weekend. Her victory came after a trying World Cup season.

    "There have been so many years of trying, and watching Steve Peat win last year, I thought, 'is it ever going to happen?'"

    Her morale wasn't helped after what was her "worst World Cup season in the past four to five years". However, the 31-year-old couldn't help but notice that her riding was improving leading up to the Worlds.

    "I've been riding better and better lately and at Windham, I didn't quite get the result I could at the finals. Mont-Sainte-Anne is one of my favorite courses, but you never know until you actually get to the race."

    Moseley had adjusted her training over the off season. "I didn't want to get to the end of the season and just want it to end," she said. "I wasn't too concerned about my early poor start to the World Cup because I didn't train as hard earlier in the year."

    But that also ment the pressure was on. "I knew I had to pull something out of the bank at Worlds to salvage a pretty good season. I tried to put all thoughts away before the run, especially as this season I hadn't been racing as well as I was practicing."

    "My biggest goal was to put together my perfect race run. Last year, I felt like I rode as well as I could on this day. I didn't have that feeling most of this season. I wanted to be able to walk away and not feel like I could have done any better." Wearing the rainbow stripes, Moseley did just that.

    With three riders to go, she took over the hot seat with the fasest time. "Seeing their splits behind me made me want to think I'd done it, but I knew that it's racing and anything can happen. You have to just wait for the last person to come by. I didn't feel like I could celebrate until (2009 World Champion) Emmeline (Ragot) had crossed the...

  • Tour de Timor starts Monday

    There were plenty of big hills in Timor.
    Article published:
    September 11, 2010, 20:00 BST
    Cycling News

    Race follows different track for 2010

    The Tour de Timor will kick off on September 13 and run through September 17. It's the richest mountain bike race in the Southern hemisphere, with a $US100,000 prize list

    The 2010 race follows a different track from last year's tour of central Timor-Leste. This year's course travels west from Dili along the scenic coastline, past Portuguese forts and stops on the first night in the historic town of Balibo. The place is steeped in the Australian and Timorese consciousness and was the subject of the gripping drama Balibo. The finish line is alongside of "Australia House" - a memorial to the five Australian newsmen killed during the Indonesian invasion. The house where they were executed is just across the road and remains much as it was that day.

    Day 2 will wind through the farm and rice plains of Maliana to Suai and the lush valleys of Ermera coffee country. This finish line is in front of the city's partly-built new cathedral. The huge building was started before independence in 1999, and today many of the skilled artisans working to complete it are Indonesian. It is hoped to have the building finished around May next year.

    On days 3 and 4, riders will climb through the mountainous areas of Ainaro and Maubisse - up and over "Horta's Heartbreak Hill" at 1900 metres.

    His Excellency the President of Timor-Leste, José Ramos-Horta, welcomed riders back. "You are all heroes and each and every one of you are special friends of the people of Timor-Leste. I am delighted to invite riders, both new and returning, to experience the world's toughest bike race, in Asia's newest nation."

    Unseasonal torrential rains just a few weeks ago have washed away bridges and large sections of roads. Riders will have to be especially alert to avoid the massive pot holes that dot the course. The tracks into Suai on day 2 are a nightmare, even in a four-wheel drive. Suai is sometimes referred to as the "forgotten" city because it gets cut off...

  • Bishop, Haywood return to Pisgah to defend titles

    Sue Haywood (SBC) races on Massanutten
    Article published:
    September 12, 2010, 17:42 BST
    Daniel Simms

    Pisgah Mountain Bike Stage Race will kick off Tuesday

    The five-day Pisgah Mountain Bike Stage Race returns for its second year in 2010, and it will begin on Tuesday, September 14 and run through Saturday, September 18. Racers will cover 175 miles of singletrack in and near the Pisgah National Forest in the Brevard, North Carolina area.  It will include over 40,000 feet of climbing.

    For riders, it is a true test of endurance. Defending champions Jeremiah Bishop and Sue Haywood will be returning to the race, which is happening about one month earlier than last year, when racers battled extreme cold and some snow.

    "It's like running five ORAMMS in a row," said Race Director Todd Branham in reference to the Off Road Assault on Mt. Mitchell which draws 400 participants yearly to the town of Old Fort, North Carolina. That means a lot of work and a lot of volunteers with some of them in remote locations on the course.

    Last year Blue Ridge Adventures partnered with the Southern Off Road Bicycle Assocation (SORBA) to do volunteer work that sometimes included bikepacking to get to the volunteers' positions in time. In return, Blue Ridge Adventures donated US$3,000 to the Pisgah Area SORBA Chapter in appreciation for their efforts for three days on the course. This year the two organizations will be teaming up again to help man the 25+ volunteer positions per day.

    The race is a big production that keeps getting bigger. Changes for 2010 include the addition of a full stage, making the race five days instead of four and $5000 more in the cash purse, making it US$20,000 total.

    In an effort to give back to the community the Pisgah Stage Race will host several public events. First on Friday night, the race will screen "Ride the Divide" with a pro autograph session and an auction to benefit World Bicycle Relief. Then on Saturday, the Cascadia Evening will celebrate the race's overall finish with an awards party that promises to be a good time for the whole family. Some of the planned...

  • Crank the Shield returns for third edition this weekend

    The start of the 2009 Crank the Shield
    Article published:
    September 14, 2010, 20:14 BST
    Cycling News

    Mountain bike stage race set for Ontario

    The third annual Crank the Shield Mountain Bike Stage Race has attracted over 260 riders for its 2010 edition from September 17-19. Racers will travel to the beautiful Haliburton Highlands Region of Ontario for a three-day weekend of racing.

    This year's highlights include many of Canada's top mountain bike riders. In the duo division, two World Championship Team Canada riders are favorites: under 23 racer Tyson Wagler and Derek Zandstra (both of 3 Rox Racing). Trek Canada has also entered a duo, which is capable of taking the top step of the podium: 2008 overall winner Peter Glassford and Eric Batty.

    No stranger to Crank the Shield, National Team Member Andrew Watson (Norco) has also entered the mix, and should contend for the overall victory among the solo men.

    Canadian national championship silver medalist Amanda Sin, a first time Crank the Shield participant, has partnered with 2009 Crank the Shield Champion Kyle Douglas to form a powerful mixed team.

    For 2010, two-time mountain bike Olympian Seamus McGrath is returning home to Ontario to ride the race. McGrath is excited to be a part of this event, as he will be partnering up with various riders throughout the event. Caleb and Ronald Graves (father, son team), will ride stage 1 with McGrath; Leslie Green and Anne Flannigan will ride Stage 2; and Chris Durand and Tecia White will get to ride Stage 3 with the Canadian mountain bike legend.

    "This event is shaping up to be one of the most exciting mountain bike races in Ontario this year," said Chico Racing President Adam Ruppel. The race is promoted by Chico Racing.

    2010 brings the best course yet for the race. The first improvement riders will notice is a large, brand new section of singletrack for stage 1 in Haliburton Forest. For stage 2, riders will finish directly at Camp White Pine, which makes the stage more enjoyable by eliminating a bus transfer and adding more trail. The most exciting trail change is...

  • SEB Tartu Rattamaraton coming up this weekend

    The peloton at the 2009 SEB Tartu Rattamaraton
    Article published:
    September 16, 2010, 11:30 BST
    Cycling News

    Mountain bike marathon draws over 5,000 participants

    The Estonian mountain bike marathon, SEB Tartu Rattamaraton, a UCI category 1 race, broke its record number of registered participants for 2010. The second largest mountain bike marathon in the world has nearly 5300 racers from 13 countries signed up for the 40 and 89km distances with only 200 starting places left. The 13th edition of the race will be held in beautiful and variable landscape of Southern Estonia on Saturday, September 19.

    A day before the main event, a mountain bike sprint for elite riders will take place. Special races for the children will also be held. Organizers predict more than 2000 kids will participate, which make the event biggest of its kind in the world.

    Allan Oras, who won European Marathon Championships on the same course last year, predicts an interesting day for both professionals and amateurs.

    "If the weather is good, then the track will be quite fast and since the race is very prestigious among many good riders, the competition for the first place will be quite tough," said Oras. Even though he ended his career as a professional last year, he will still be on the starting line fighting for a top finish.

    Oras will have to compete with many other riders from Estonia and abroad. Most of the foreign rides are coming from Latvia (nearly 400), Lithuania, Russia and Finland but people are also finding their way to the Tartu Rattamaraton from much further places like Canada and Ireland.

    For more information on the event, visit

  • Cape Epic winners Platt, Sahm head to Trans Zollernalb

    Karl Platt and Stefan Sahm of team Bulls 1 celebrate winning The 2010 Absa Cape Epic during the final stage (stage eight) of the 2010 Absa Cape Epic Mountain Bike stage race held in and around Oak Valley in the Western Cape, South Africa.
    Article published:
    September 16, 2010, 13:05 BST
    Cycling News

    Sundstedt a favorite in the women's race

    The Sparkasse Trans Zollernalb is taking place this weekend from September 17-19 in Germany. Racers like three-time Cape Epic winners Karl Platt and Stefan Sahm (Team Bulls) are planning to compete.

    "The race will be a very good preparation for the marathon national championships one week later," said Sahm of the race on the Swabian Alb. The two racers also won the TransAlps for the third time earlier this year. Another Bulls rider, Tim Böhme, is joining them in racing the 200km Trans Zollernalb to prepare for nationals.

    DS-Rennsport's Torsten Marx, who finished third at the German cross country nationals will also be racing. The final stage will be a special experience for him, because it ends in his hometown Hechingen. He will ride with the support of teammate Balz Weber, the 2003 Under 23 world champion.

    Volker Ordowski is a local hero, with roots in the Swabian Alb, will start the race with the established mountain bike stars. The former road pro with Team Gerolsteiner is riding his mountain bike for Rocky Mountain.

    The women's start list features several prominent names including Pia Sundstedt, who was on the winning TransAlp mixed team this year.

    Sparkasse Trans Zollernalb 2010
    September 17: Stage 1 - Haigerloch-Bad Imnau - Balingen, 50km
    September 18: Stage 2 - Balingen - Albstadt, 75km
    September 19: Stage 3 - Albstadt - Hechingen, 80km