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July 16, Elite and Under 23 men cross country:

Plaxton wrestles elite national championship from Kabush

Rob Jones
July 17, 2011, 2:06 BST,
July 18, 2011, 2:50 BST

Bouchard claims Under 23 title

Max Plaxton (Specialized) finally dethroned seven-time men's champion Geoff Kabush

Max Plaxton (Specialized) finally dethroned seven-time men's champion Geoff Kabush

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After six consecutive years, Geoff Kabush (Maxxis-Rocky Mountain) has finally be dethroned as the Canadian elite men's cross country champion. Max Plaxton (Specialized), who has been pursuing this title for all of those years, took charge of the race early to record his first elite title.

Held in perfect conditions beneath the Three Sisters mountains in Kananaskis Country, the men's five lap, 35.5 kilometre race was expected to be a fight between Plaxton and Kabush. Plaxton has been inching closer to victory over the past few years, but the veteran Kabush has always managed to have something extra for the national championships. This year, Plaxton skipped the last two World Cups to training specifically for the national championships, and it paid off. He dropped Kabush on the second lap and steadily increased his lead over the remainder of the race to win by one minute and 41 seconds. Derek Zandstra (3 Rox Racing) finished third, three minutes and 22 seconds back.

"I've been chasing this a long time," admitted Plaxton. "I know it was a bit risky not doing the World Cups, but I also know my body pretty well, and this was the better choice for me. We were just sort of feeling each other out on the first lap, and then I attacked on the second lap and got maybe 20 seconds. Geoff held me there for a while, but then I pushed it on the fourth lap and was able to open it up. I'm super happy right now, this is probably the biggest result of my career."

Kabush was clearly disappointed with losing the title. "I knew that Max would be strong, but I have had good form the past few weeks, so I thought I had a good chance. He got a small gap on me in the second lap, and I was able to keep it to 18-20 seconds for the next couple of laps. But clearly he had more left in the tank than me and opened it up on the fourth lap."

Leandre Bouchard (Equipe Quebec) took the U23 men's title, after a tough race-long battle with Mitch Bailey (Team Ontario) and Evan McNeely (Team Ontario). Bouchard dropped everyone but Bailey by mid-race, and then attacked to leave Bailey behind on the final lap. McNeely faded to finish fifth, while Jeremy Martin (Equipe Quebec) moved up to take the bronze medal. In earlier morning races, Marc-Antoine Nadon (3 Rox Racing) scorched the Junior men's field to lead from start to finish and Marc-Andre Fortier (Sarto Gagne) won the U17 men's title.

Elite men
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Max Plaxton (Specialized Factory Team) 1:38:28  
2 Geoff Kabush (Team Maxxis-Rocky Mountain) 0:01:42  
3 Derek Zandstra (3 Rox Racing) 0:03:23  
4 Neal Kindree ( 0:04:40  
5 Adam Morka (Team Ontario/Trek Canada) 0:05:39  
6 Matthew Hadley (Xprezo-Borsao) 0:06:07  
7 Peter Glassford (Trek Canada) 0:06:50  
8 Stefan Widmer (West Point Cycles) 0:07:14  
9 Andrew Watson (Norco Factory Team) 0:07:43  
10 Kris Sneddon (KONA) 0:08:23  
11 Craig Richey ( p/b Blue)    
12 Cory Wallace (KONA) 0:10:29  
13 Félix Côté (Espresso Sports) 0:12:31  
14 Graham Torrie (Team Alberta) 0:12:56  
15 Cameron Jette (3 Rox Racing) 0:13:31  
16 Ryan Atkins (Kunstadt Sports Cycling Club) 0:14:30  
17 David Gonda (Cyclemeisters/Bow Cycle) 0:15:39  
18 Jamie Lamb (Garneau Club Chaussure Norton Rose) 0:16:07  
19 Drew Mackenzie (Condo Group/Shimano/Marin) 0:17:42  
-1Lap Gordon Jewett (RMCC Express)    
-1Lap Raphaël Gagné (Équipe Québec/Rocky Mountain Factory)    
-1Lap Matthew Krahn (Redbike)    
-1Lap Jon Kinsie (Lapierre Canada)    
-1Lap Leni Trudel (Garneau Club Chaussure Norton Rose)    
-1Lap Marty Lazarski (Nativo Concept/Devinci)    
-1Lap Eric Batty (Trek Canada)    
-2Laps Jamie Wagler (Two Wheel Express)    
-2Laps Dylan Harris (Olympia Cycle)    
DNF Roddi Lega (Team Alberta/Pedalhead)    
DNF Marc-André Daigle (Garneau Club Chaussure Norton Rose)    
DNF Shawn Bunnin (ATB Financial)    
DNF Brian Cooke (Cafe Racers)    
DNF Jonathon Firth (Honey Stinger/Cafe Racers/Norco Grass Roots)    
DNF Thomas Skinner (Oak Bay Bicycles/Rocky Mountain)    
U23 Men
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Leandre Bouchard (Équipe du Québec) 1:23:43  
2 Mitch Bailey (Team Ontario/Trek Canada) 0:00:38  
3 Jeremy Martin (Équipe du Québec/Rocky Mountain Factory) 0:01:41  
4 Evan Guthrie (Team Cycling BC/Rocky Mountain Factory) 0:02:09  
5 Evan Mcneely (Team Ontario/EMD Serono/Specialized) 0:02:59  
6 Antoine Caron (Équipe du Québec/CVM Subway) 0:03:07  
7 Zachary Hughes (Norco Factory Team) 0:05:34  
8 Jean-Philippe Thibault-Roberge (CVM Val-David) 0:07:21  
9 Jared Stafford (Team Ontario/Norco Factory Team) 0:07:22  
10 Tyson Wagler (3 Rox Racing) 0:08:09  
11 Xavier Perreault (CVM Val-David) 0:08:10  
12 Steven Noble (Team Ontario/Opus-OGC) 0:10:59  
13 Andrew L'esperance (Norco Factory Team) 0:11:22  
14 Etienne Moreau (EMD Serono/Specialized CC) 0:12:14  
15 Alex Lavertu (CVM Val-David) 0:12:25  
16 Jesse Melamed (Team Whistler) 0:12:39  
17 Simon Wagler (Two Wheel Express) 0:14:30  
18 Preston Wagler (3 Rox Racing) 0:15:57  
19 Sebastien Cadieux-Duval (Équipe du Québec) 0:16:41  
20 Michael Van Den Ham (Team Manitoba/United Cycle) 0:17:25  
-1Lap Emmanuel Boily (CVM Val-David)    
-1Lap Stephen Cooley (Team Saskatchewan)    
-1Lap Troy Henry (Cyclemeisters/Bow Cycle)    
-1Lap Peter Knight (Team Alberta)    
DNF Simon Lalancette (Équipe du Québec/DeVinci)    
DNF Pierre-Louis Chamberland (CVM Val-David)    
DNF Patrick Chartrand (Équipe du Québec)    
DNF Paul Benson (Alter Ego Sports)