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MTB News & Racing Round-up, Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Date published:
May 18, 2011, 1:00 BST
  • IMBA and Clif Bar award 10 Trail Preservation Grants

    Winding Pennsylvania singletrack through the laurels
    Article published:
    May 13, 2011, 0:31 BST
    Cycling News

    2011 winners announced

    IMBA and Clif Bar announced that they are jointly awarding ten US$500 grants to IMBA-affiliated chapters and clubs to fund projects that promote environmental education and inspire conservation in the mountain biking community. Each of the recipients and their respective projects are described below.

    Wooly Bike Club (Wisconsin): This newly formed club has been working with IMBA Midwest Regional Director Hansi Johnson to better manage their trail system. The grant was for trails signs and a trailhead kiosk.

    JORBA, Allamuchy Chapter (New Jersey): This project is also for trail signage; the grant will be used to install better way-finding in this very popular riding area.

    Raystown Mountain Bike Association (Pennsylvania): User conflict between hunters and mountain bikers has been a concern of the Army Corps of Engineers since the trails opened in 2008. The club has come up with an innovative blaze-orange helmet cover program, with free loaners available at trailheads.

    Concerned Long Island Mountain Bikers (New York): In the highly populated counties of Long Island, mountain bikers enjoy great access thanks to CLIMB - but keeping a good public face is always important. The grant money will be used to create another chapter of the National Mountain Bike Patrol, including supplies and resources for patrollers.

    Monterey Off Road Cycling Association (California): One of the newest chapters of IMBA, MORCA has great enthusiasm but lacked enough tools for all their volunteer projects. The Trail Preservation grant, coupled with the excellent discounts offered by supporters of IMBA, will help rectify this situation.

    Nittany Mountain Bike Association (Pennsylvania): This club recently kicked its efforts to improve local trails into high gear. With a new slate of club officers, a quality board and motivated crew leaders, this...

  • Mulally and Hart tied in points for US Pro GRT series

    Neko Mulally races toward a win.
    Article published:
    May 17, 2011, 18:48 BST
    Cycling News

    Kintner continues atop women's standings

    After his win at the US Pro GRT round at the Highland Bike Park this weekend, Neko Mulally (Trek World Racing) tied Danny Hart (Giant Factory Off Road Team) for the top spot in the 2011 standings. Richie Rude, Jr. (Yeti Cycles) is in third place ahead of Aaron Gwin (Trek World Racing) and Andrew Neethling (Giant Factory Off Road Team), who are tied for fourth.

    Kintner, who won the women's downhill at the Highland Bike Park, has an 80-point lead over Joanna Petterson and Miranda Miller (Santa Cruz-SRAM-Pinkbike) in the women's standings. Mary Moncorge (Santa Cruz Alliance) is in fourth place, two points ahead of Lauren Daney (Specialized Grom).

    The next US Pro GRT round in this coming weekend on May 21-22 in Plattekill, New York. Due to snowy conditions, the following US Pro GRT in Northstar (UCI C2), previously slated for June 18-19, has been rescheduled for August 27-28, in Truckee, California.

    See Cyclingnews full coverage of the Highland Park US Pro GRT round and check out the full series standings below.


  • Killeen looking forward to Dalby World Cup

    Liam Killeen (Giant Factory Off-Road Team)
    Article published:
    May 17, 2011, 20:45 BST
    Sue George, Mountain Bike Editor

    British national champion aims for top 10 finish

    Liam Killeen (Giant Factory Off Road Team) will be among the home nation's favorites racing in the cross country UCI World Cup in Dalby Forest, Yorkshire, in the United Kingdom on May 22.

    The current British cross country national champion missed the Dalby round of the British Cross Country Series earlier this spring because he was already in South Africa preparing for the first World Cup in Pietermaritzburg. There, Killeen put in a solid performance that bodes well for this weekend.

    "In Pietermaritzburg, I was gridded 50th (at the start) and managed to finish 27th, which was ok for the first major race of the season," said Killeen to Cyclingnews. "That gives me a better start situation for Dalby, and every position helps." He will be gridded in the fourth row.

    "A top 15 finish would be good, but I'm aiming for a top 10," said 27-year-old Killeen.

    "The course is good at Dalby. It's got a little bit of everything," said Killeen. "They shortened it slightly - to 6km - and there is a mix of good, flowing singletrack with some natural sections through the woods and some fairly steep technical desecending and switchbacking climbs. It's a physical course."

    In 2010, Killen also raced the first-ever Dalby World Cup, which was the opening round of the season. There he got 50th place in what was his first major race of the season after a back problem in 2009.

    "Last season was different after I had a winter of rehab for my back injury," said Killeen. "It took time to get over it. That disrupted some of my winter training. Dalby was my first race last year, and it was tough. The tail end of the season was good though - I got seventh at the Worlds."

    Killeen said his back is healthy again and he's figured out...

  • Canada Cup celebrates 20 years of mountain bike racing

    Mikaela Kofman (ON) 3 Rox Racing
    Article published:
    May 17, 2011, 22:35 BST
    Cycling News

    Eight races featured in 2011 series

    The Canada Cup National Cycling Series is celebrating its 20th anniversary in Canada. Eight races will be held in six different regions, with the best cross country and downhill mountain bikers fighting for top honours of this most important series in Canada for each discipline.

    The Canada Cup Series is comprised of distinct categories, for both men and women: Elite/under 23 and junior for cross country and Elite/junior for downhill. There will be three downhill races and five cross country race, each with its own title to be won.

    "We are extremely fortunate to work with remarkable local organizing committees that can host these national events in their respective areas. For the last 20 years, the collaboration between the Provincial Sport Organisations and the local organizing committees have been the heart of this national cycling series, and we are thrilled to be surrounded by such passionate and dedicated group of volunteers devoted to the growth and development of our future champions," said Mathieu Boucher, Director of development for the Canadian Cycling Association.

    In 2010, Mikaela Kofman of Toronto, Ontario, won the women's elite title, and credited the Canada Cup races for her ascension to the World Cup level.

    "Winning the 2010 Canada Cup Series was a major step in my progression in the sport of mountain biking. It proved to me that my training and hard work was effective and that I can be competitive in the sport on a national level," said Kofman, who is turning her focus to World Cup competition in this pre-Olympic season.

    "Coming from the flat lands of Ontario, the Canada Cup series was my first exposure to more challenging terrain. The race series accelerated my technical skills set which is vital when racing on the world cup circuit. World Cup courses are notorious for very challenging, technical components and I can definitely say that the Canada Cup events are essential preparation," said Kofman....

  • Retired pro Haywood to race Trans-Sylvania Epic

    Sue Haywood (SBC) races on Massanutten
    Article published:
    May 18, 2011, 0:15 BST
    Mike Cushionbury

    Former national champion among top talent for Pennsylvania stage race

    "Retired" pro Sue Haywood has thrown her hat into the ring for the Trans-Sylvania Epic (TSE) mountain bike stage race from May 29 to June 4. The former US short track national champion and Pan American cross country champion will race among a talented women's field including defending champion Selene Yeager, Amanda Carey, Sonya Looney, Rebecca Rusch, Karen Potter and Vicki Barclay.

    Since stepping down from the elite, international race circuit, Haywood has kept herself busy by racing many of her region's top event. She classifies herself a "recreational pro".

    "I really haven't raced much since July of 2008," said Haywood, who retired after breaking her tibia and fibula at the US National Championships in Mount Snow, Vermont.

    "I've done a couple of races a year that are close to home in West Virginia. I love the Shenandoah Mountain 100, some of the West Virginia Mountain Bike races and now the east coast stage races."

    When asked about her current program, Haywood said, "I'm not motivated. You must have me confused with someone who gets up early to ride, or does intervals or doesn't put butter on her bread...That's not me. I like riding mountain bikes on mountain bike trails and occasionally I like doing that with some speed and style."

    At this year's TSE, her competition can expect plenty of speed and style from this humble yet legendary competitor.

    It will be Haywood's first time racing the TSE, which will be in its second edition. Doing the race was a logical choice. "I love stage racing and I love racing pretty close to home nowadays. State College is a little over four hours from my house. I've done the Pisgah Mountain Bike Stage Race the last two years and wanted to mix it up this year. I love riding rocks and apparently TSE has some rocks in it. I'm also intrigued with the possibility of Pennsylvania being an exotic, adventure vacation on a mountain bike."

    Haywood is from West Virginia and spends...

  • iXS European Downhill Cup resumes in Todtnau

    Harriet Rücknagel descends at the iXS Downhill Cup in Monte Tamaro
    Article published:
    May 18, 2011, 15:30 BST
    Cycling News

    Round 1 winners Pekoll and Sigenthaler return for round two

    The second round of the iXS European Downhill Cup will happen in Todtnau, Germany on May 21-22. One of Germany's best-known venues will return to the international downhill stage.

    Todtnau Bike Park was opened in 1997 and has hosted races such as the Maxxis Cup and the German Championship. After a long break, the 2.7km course with a 300m drop in elevation will once again be hosting a race. The road gap, numerous drops and steps, and difficult rooty areas will make the venue's course a genuine challenge for racers.

    Many have committed to competing in round two including favorites like Monte Tamaro first round winner Markus Pekoll (MS Evil) and last season's overall series winner Nick Beer (Scott 11). Other favorites include Joshua Button (SC Intense), Brook MacDonald (MS Evil), Luke Strobel (MS Evil) and multiple German Champion Marcus Klausmann (GHOST ATG), who is a serious contender for a podium spot here on his home course.

    The competition will also be fierce among the women. Reigning German Champion Harriet Rücknagel (OnTheEdge) will battle Monte Tamaro round winner Emilie Siegenthaler (Scott 11) and the number three ranked Floriane Pugin (Scott 11).

    The festivities will also include an expo for teams and companies and a riders' party on Friday evening.

    For more information, visit

  • Sauser to defend Trans Germany title

    Christoph Sauser (Specialized) clad in yellow at the Trans Germany
    Article published:
    May 18, 2011, 20:44 BST
    Cycling News

    Swiss rider optimistic about his chances

    Defending Trans Germany champion Christoph Sauser (Specialized) is optimistic about retaining his title in 2011. The former world champion will be returning to the four-day mountain bike race across Germany.

    "I'm in a very good shape," said the 35-year-old Sauser, who earlier this spring won the Cape Epic mountain bike stage race with teammate Burry Stander.

    But the Swiss rider was moderate in his expectations. "Two days prior to the Trans Germany I'm competing in a World Cup race (in Offenburg). So, I have to recover quickly."

    Sauser raced the Trans Germany for the first time in 2010. "I enjoy stage races. The Trans Germany offers four days full of action and is also a good training for all the races to come thereafter. In addition, I get the chance to get to know a new region."

    Sauser, who won a bronze medal at the 2000 Olympic Games said he had expectations of winning the race in his first appearance there.

    "I was totally focused on it. But it's hard to plan a victory. I was in very good shape, but there is more to it than that. When competing in a mountain bike race, one mechanical or crash can dash all of your hopes."

    In 2010, Sauser competed on his own, without a team. He will do the same again in 2011 and said the victory is even sweeter when obtained on his own

    "It also was a huge motivation to race all alone, without any help. As I will race again without a team, I have to be more attentive and have to have a very good knowledge of the route profile. I can't afford to be asleep when my competitors attack, especially on the flats."

    Sauser will race the Trans Germany from June 1-4.

  • Amateurs invited to race at Windham World Cup

    Catherine Pendrel (Luna Pro Team) holds off a late surge by Marie-Helene Premont to take the Windham World Cup victory
    Article published:
    May 18, 2011, 22:27 BST
    Cycling News

    Cross country and downhill races added for all categories

    Amateur mountain bikers are invited to join the pros competing in Windham, New York, during the UCI World Cup weekend on July 9-10 Organizers have added two open races to the weekend's calendar: a cross country and a downhill. Windham hosts the only World Cup round in the United States. 

    The Gravity East Series will bring downhill racing to the mountain on Saturday, July 9. The race is open to pros and Category 1-3 downhillers.

    The next day, cross country racers will get to compete on the same course as World Cup athletes on Sunday, July 10. Professionals, Category 1-3 racers and first timers are invited to participate. The Race the World cross country is part of the New York State MTB series and the Root 66 Northeast Cross Country Race Series.

    Kids will also have a chance to "Race the World" on eighth- and quarter-mile loops at the Windham Mountain base, near the lodge on Sunday, July 10. The Kids' Fun Race is appropriate for children up to age 12. Participants are asked to bring their own bikes. Heats will be broken down by age; there is no entry fee.

    Registration for any event entitles racers to participate in all World Cup festivities at Windham Mountain including a Friday night Block Party on Main Street in Windham; live music on Saturday night (bands TBD); and a "Big Wheel" race down a steep, paved course (BYOBW).

    Unlike most World Cup venues, there will be no fees charged to enter the venue or the consumer and tech expos. To help defray the costs of organization with the goal of keeping the World Cup in the US, fees will be charged for parking - $10 per car per day or $25 per car for three days.

    Windham is the seventh stop on the 2011 edition of the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup and it will include elite cross country and downhill competition after the originally planned four cross was cancelled. Other rounds...

  • Elite men US Pro GRT standings after two rounds
    # Rider Name (Country) Team Result
    1 Neko Mulally 60  pts
    2 Danny Hart 60