Darrell defies conditions to secure comeback victory in Thredbo

Huntington wins women's race

Canberra rider Leigh Darrell has stormed to a convincing victory in the men's elite four cross at round three of the Australian Mountain Bike Series in Thredbo.

In wet and muddy conditions, the 22-year-old never looked like being beaten. He flew out of the gates and maintained his rapid speed to the finish line to secure his first win of the 2010 series.

After a tough year, Darrell made it clear from the start that he was returning to top form by dominating the earlier rounds before opening up a 10-metre advantage in the final to leave Graeme Mudd, Richard Levinson and Michael Young in his wake.

"I've had some bad luck in the last couple of races I've had, and things have finally come my way," said Darrell, a multiple world junior champion in BMX.

"I popped out at the start, and I couldn't see anyone in my vision, so I thought I was in front.

"I came into the first corner, got a bit sketchy and my front wheel washed out a little and I nearly came down. But I held it together and after that I tried to keep a smooth fast race and it paid off."

With one more race left in the series for 2010, Darrell will be looking for a repeat performance on his home soil in Stromlo on March 12.

"Canberra is my home track, but I don't really ride there much, I'll just have to wait and see hopefully luck comes my way again."

In the absence of world champion Caroline Buchanan, who is in New Zealand on BMX duties, Queensland's Sarsha Huntington had no trouble taking the women's elite race, to extend her lead in the overall series standings.

Under 19 racer Blake Nielson and Under 17 racer Max Hughes continued their domination in the series, securing another victory on the muddy Thredbo course.

In the veteran men's race, James Collins held off Brett Minion for the win, whilst Harriet Burbridge-Smith was too strong for Danielle Beecroft, clinching the junior women's category.

Sean Anderson won the sport men's category, and Jackson Frew the under 15 men.

Racing in round three of the Australian Mountain Bike Series will continue in Thredbo over the weekend with the cross country being contested on Saturday and the downhill on Sunday.


Elite men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Leigh Darrell  
2Graeme Mudd  
3Richard Levinson  
4Michael Young  
Elite women
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Sarsha Huntington  
Under 19 men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Blake Nielson  
2Joey Vejvoda  
3Sean Fitzpatrick  
4James Shepherd  
Under 17 men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Max Hughes  
2Jordan Butler  
3Wade Budden  
4Ryan Cameron  
Under 15 Men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Jackson Frew  
Sport Men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Sean Anderson  
Veteran Men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1James Collins  
2Brett Minion  
3Mitchell Turner  
4Brett Thompson  
Junior Women
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Harriet Burbridge-Smith  
2Danielle Beecroft  
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