Krenn logs a win for Austria at Mt Mulligan

Pirard tops women's podium on stage 5

Two new faces topped the men's and women's podiums at the Crocodile Trophy on Wednesday. Wolfgang Krenn from Austria won among the men ahead of Ivan Rybarik and Ondrej Fojtik in a thrilling finish sprint into the Mt Mulligan. Belgian mountain bike marathon racer Alice Pirard finished as the fastest woman of the day.

"The track until Mutchilba is very rough," was the first sentence of today's rider briefing. During the last rainy season, the direct road between Irvinebank and Mutchilba had been heavily damaged and some sections have been unpassable for vehicles ever since. So this morning, the Croc riders were sent off into the wilderness with a leading quad bike who accompanied them throughout the first part of today's stage. A large crowd of supporters, a police escort and the official lead and media vehicles then awaited them eagerly at Mutchilba and from then on the mid-section of the stage meant a few kilometres to recover on wide open roads.

Elite men

"It was business as usual this morning," said stage winner Wolfgang Krenn at the finish at Mt Mulligan. "Ivan Rybarik attacked right away, and I knew I had to stay with him. Soon he saw that I was able to keep up and when three more riders caught up to us on the open roads, we all worked together really well."

Ondrej Fojtik, Cory Wallace and yesterday's second place finisher Michiel Van Aelbroeck were the ones who entered the last 25km rolling hill section with them, forming the breakaway group, which achieved a significant lead on the chasers.

Rybarik and Fojtik had tried to push away on the rough road through Pinnacle Station, but both admitted that at the last 50m sprint towards the Crocodile Trophy finish arch, Krenn was the stronger rider and deserved the stage win.

Van Albroeck from Belgium displayed again a solid performance on the day, riding and pulling his weight in the lead group. He said that he was a bit disappointed that he couldn't finish in first today. "When you're in such a small lead group, each rider has the chance to take out the win. The Czech riders were very strong today and they certainly don't hand out any presents. But I'm happy with my second and fourth place for now and there's still four days to go," he said.

Wallace finished as fifth in the stage and said that he was really enjoying the technical sections. "In the beginning, I was actually in the lead for a while - I loved those technical descents, I'm good at that. But Ivan soon got me, attacked and then Wolfgang went as well. It was good that I could catch them again with the other two riders."

The Canadian is an experienced stage racer and said that he didn't mind coming to the Crocodile Trophy by himself. "You have enough time in the afternoon to relax, recover and look after yourself; however, out on track a teammate would come in real handy." And of the race tactics he added with a cheeky grin, "The guys were talking in German and Czech today, and I had no idea what they were up to - but hey, I held on."

Elite women

The Belgian cross country amateur champion Alice Pirard was the fastest female rider across the finish line. The girlfriend of Michiel Van Aelbroeck was welcomed at the finish line by their family, who travel with the sporty couple to support them at the Crocodile Trophy.

"I am just so happy to win the boomerang and not only because I got one before Michiel did," laughed the 24-year-old Pirard at the finish today. Of her race, she said that she won the stage on the last 50km and had a bit of luck also, being able to ride with a strong peloton.

Amongst her fellow riders were none other than fellow Belgians Mike Mulkens, Christof Marien and the Austrian Dominick Hrinkow. The trio had tried a break right at the start, but were struck with flat tires one by one and overtaken by the Krenn-Rybarik-train. "I was able to get some rest from the headwind in between stints at the front and was able to overtake Kate Major because I still had enough water and didn't have to stop at the last depot. But tomorrow I think my legs are going to be heavy." The plan for the rest of the week is to hang on to second place overall in the female classification and to enjoy the time in Australia with her family.

Behind the scenes in the supporter Croc camp

As Pirard came across the finish, Charlotte van Aelbroeck and her parents were cheering the loudest today at the finish line. "We try to see them at least once a day out on the track at a feeding zone to encourage them and cheer them on," said Aelbroeck-team chef Charlotte today. "I'm responsible for driving the car and it's great because we can see so much of this beautiful country while travelling from one stage camp to the next. We've arrived a week before the event and plan a holiday after the event, but to see Alice and Michiel in action and all those other riders, who give everything every day, is really special. And they really appreciate it when you clap and cheer!"

The Crocodile Trophy is a massive logistical undertaking with 11 trucks and 15 4WD cars transporting staff, luggage and supplies. Whilst the more than 120 riders brought 45 supporters who travel in 15 4WD support cars, the organisational team includes 85 crew, including organisers, race director, tent builders, mechanics, physiotherapists and two doctors, a paramedic, four media crew, quad riders and most importantly twelve kitchen staff headed up by the cook, Thorsten. "We go through about 60kg of raw pasta, 20 litres of milk and 25 dozen eggs every day", said the busy head chef.

Hana Kosikova, mother of eight

One of the busiest supporters is Hana Kosikova, partner of Ondrej Slezak, cook, massage therapist, motivator and angel of the Rubena Rocky Trail racing teams. Eight riders race under her wings, including Ivan Rybarik, the current race leader. Hana said today that after five days, she and her two helpers who look after all the equipment and help with building up the team's camp every day, she was really exhausted. "I get up at 5:15 am, make the boys their breakfast so that they have a lot of energy for their race. They asked me to come and cook for them, because I know how to prepare their favourite foods. Then I pack up all the stuff and go to the next stop, cook lunch, massage them, clean the dishes, cook dinner, go to sleep and wake up again at 5:15 am", the massage therapist, living in Sydney with Slezak, describes a typical Crocodile Trophy day. "I know Ondrej and Michal, who is my brother-in-law, really well. Ivan has been my friend for years, so I can see in their faces what they need and every day I get to know the other team riders from Australia and Austria better." About the days which sometimes get long she added, "You get tired, but I love it, because I can see that the boys are doing well and I hope that it's also a little bit because of me."

Tomorrow will be another day for the riders and crews at the 18th Crocodile Trophy. Stage 6 six will take the entire event circus from Mt Mulligan to Maitland Downs via 127km and 2600m of elevation and the race book promises "breathtaking scenery".

Video coming!

Full Results

Elite men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Wolfgang Krenn (Aut)4:00:23 
2Ivan Rybarik (Cze) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing CZE0:00:02 
3Ondrej Fojtik (Cze)0:00:04 
4Michiel Van Aelbroeck (Bel) O2 Bikers - WMTB.be - Schwalbe0:00:09 
5Cory Wallace (Can)0:00:32 
6Josef Benetseder (Aut) Team Eybl-Gastrogas.at0:06:58 
7Ondrej Slezak (Cze) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing CZE0:07:42 
8Mike Blewitt (Aus) Subaru/marathonMTB.com0:07:43 
9Paul Mashford (Aus) Tenni's / SKM0:08:31 
10Ritchie Motke (Ned)0:08:32 
11Justin Morris (Aus) Subaru/marathonMTB.com0:08:46 
12Steven Rankine (Aus) Tenni's / SKM0:08:48 
13Evan Corry (Aus) RUOK Corry Cycles 10:10:21 
14Matthew Page (GBr)0:13:52 
15Luke Haines (Aus)0:23:09 
16Dominick Hrinkow (Aut)0:23:14 
17Peter Fröhlich (Aut) Rams Cycling Black tusk0:41:52 
18Mike Mulkens (Bel)0:44:55 
19Patrick Konrad (Aut)0:44:57 
20Francis Ransley (Aus) RUOK Corry Cycles 20:50:30 
21Guillaume Bourgeois (Swi)0:55:25 
22Evert Desmidt (Bel)1:12:43 
23Lukas Babor (Cze)1:29:09 
24Tommy Arnoldy (Lux) CT Toproad Roeserbann 021:30:20 
25Sebastian Einsle (Lux) CT Toproad Roeserbann 011:30:21 
26Stefan Hackl (Aut)1:46:42 
27Den Hutmacher (Lux) CT Toproad Roeserbann 012:50:45 
Elite women
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Alice Pirard (Bel) O2 Bikers - WMTB.be - Schwalbe4:44:55 
2Kate Major (Aus)0:05:17 
3Tinneke Van de Voorde (Bel)0:50:49 
4Annie van der linde (Ned)1:08:33 
5Jade Forsyth (Aus)2:05:43 
6Kirsten De Keyser (Bel)3:16:53 
M1
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Bjorn De Baets (Bel) WACKY4:07:25 
2Henri Delheye (Bel) WACKY0:01:26 
3Werner van der Merwe (GBr) Subaru/marathonMTB.com  
4Jason Chalker (Aus) Crocodile Tears0:01:39 
5Jeremy Ross (Aus) Crocodile Tears0:01:55 
6Wesley Reibel (Aus) RUOK Corry Cycles 10:06:07 
7Raf De Bakker (Bel) Belgian Connections MTB Team0:10:59 
8David Osmond (Aus) Crocodile Tears0:11:00 
9Davy Blancquaert (Bel) Belgium F-16 Ridley Team0:21:28 
10Kris Hendrickx (Bel) Belgium F-16 Ridley Team  
11Ken De Trogh (Bel) Belgium F-16 Ridley Team0:21:29 
12Michal Kafka (Cze) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing CZE0:23:43 
13Peter Lister (Aus) RUOK Corry Cycles 20:26:46 
14David Carrillo (Spa)0:36:38 
15Christof Marien (Bel)0:37:53 
16Christophe Heinix (Bel) Team Lingier-Versluys-Beachbikers0:41:23 
17Martin Wisata (Aut) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing Master0:42:15 
18Ryan Corry (Aus) RUOK Corry Cycles 10:42:47 
19Barry Sey (Bel) Wacky Immobilia Team0:43:17 
20Pieter van der Eijk (Ned)0:47:41 
21Lukas Mraz (Cze)1:00:16 
22Kris Van De Putte (Bel)1:05:44 
23Stephen Jackson (Aus) RUOK Corry Cycles 21:10:01 
24Wim Verheyen (Bel)1:21:07 
25Mathias Deleu (Bel)1:55:25 
26Gunter Selleslagh (Bel)2:31:59 
M2
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Jakob Steen-Petersen (Den) HMTBK SRAM4:20:16 
2Marc Baechli (Swi)0:00:15 
3Bart De Boeck (Bel)0:02:31 
4Johan Frooninckx (Bel) Belgian Connections MTB Team0:06:09 
5Hans Planckaert (Bel) Smart Cycling Team0:07:21 
6Bart Heirewegh (Bel)0:08:38 
7Peter Urdl (Aut)0:11:52 
8Stephen Billington (Aus) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing Master0:18:31 
9Brendon Skerke (Aus) Tenni's / SKM0:18:40 
10Alain De Munter (Bel) Fietsen Mertens0:20:43 
11James Heron (Aus) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing Master0:26:20 
12Peter Roelands (Bel)0:44:24 
13Guy Sorensen (Aus) Superior Screens0:46:23 
14Nicholas Westwood (Aus) Koiled imports /cleanskin coffee racing0:48:57 
15Johny Thielemans (Bel)0:54:26 
16Stefan Plas (Bel)1:11:57 
17Allen Liversage (RSA)1:13:39 
18Peter Stubbe (Bel) Wacky Immobilia Team1:13:56 
19Rik Rohart (Bel)1:15:29 
20Alex Moonen (Bel) ATB kempen1:24:21 
21Bohuslav Babor (Cze)1:27:42 
22Jaroslav Hrdlicka (Cze)  
23Kelly Duhig (Aus)2:00:27 
24Chris Neal (Aus)2:02:27 
25Paul Fitzgerald (Bel) Wacky 2XL-team2:17:29 
26Thierry Ide (Bel) Wacky 2XL-team  
27Sven Demunter (Bel) Wacky 2XL-team  
28Barto Du Plessis (Aus)2:36:30 
M3
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Sam Sprunger (Swi) GVFI Fleisch gibt Kraft4:28:56 
2Ruedi Senn (Swi) Top Müller.ch0:12:43 
3Freddy Cassiers (Bel)0:12:58 
4Robrecht De Meyer (Bel) Fitopia Bikers0:21:57 
5Luc Verlinde (Bel) Luc Verlinde0:25:01 
6Rudy Motke (Ned)0:25:09 
7Freddy Vekens (Bel)0:27:17 
8Johannes Sewald (Ger) bavarian-riders0:27:38 
9Erik Defillet (Bel) Fitopia Bikers0:36:31 
10Milan Spolc (Cze)0:44:19 
11Georg Schollerer (Ger) bavarian-riders0:52:30 
12Manfred Ertl (Ger) bavarian-riders  
13Andrew Radcliffe (Aus)1:01:55 
14Guy Vandijck (Bel)1:15:38 
15Philippe Maertens (Bel) Belgian Connections MTB Team1:15:39 
16Luc Janssens (Bel)1:51:47 
17Robert de la Motte (Aus)  
DNFAntonio Spidalieri (Swi) GVFI Fleisch gibt Kraft  
DNFEddy Snelders (Bel) Fitopia Bikers  
DNFLuc Van Aelbroeck (Bel)  
CA M1
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Pierre Paligot (Bel) CROCO RR Team Habay6:18:10 
1Dirk Abeloos (Bel) CROCO RR Team Habay  
CA Man
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Mark Griffin (Aus) Rubena RockyTrail Racing4:17:44 
1Aaron Lakeman (Aus) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing4:17:48 
2Szymon Wojciech Zacharski (Pol) Team KUBIS Gomola Trans Airco0:00:36 
2Filip Kuzniak (Pol) Team KUBIS Gomola Trans Airco0:00:01 
Points
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Ivan Rybarik (Cze) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing CZE20 pts
2Ondrej Fojtik (Cze)15 
3Wolfgang Krenn (Aut)25 
4Michiel Van Aelbroeck (Bel) O2 Bikers - WMTB.be - Schwalbe10 
5Cory Wallace (Can)5 
Elite men general classification after stage 5
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Ivan Rybarik (Cze) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing CZE17:12:53 
2Ondrej Fojtik (Cze)0:15:31 
3Wolfgang Krenn (Aut)0:39:49 
4Ondrej Slezak (Cze) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing CZE0:52:43 
5Michiel Van Aelbroeck (Bel) O2 Bikers - WMTB.be - Schwalbe1:08:57 
6Steven Rankine (Aus) Tenni's / SKM1:17:37 
7Cory Wallace (Can)1:18:55 
8Dominick Hrinkow (Aut)1:32:22 
9Mike Blewitt (Aus) Subaru/marathonMTB.com1:40:25 
10Matthew Page (GBr)1:41:00 
11Josef Benetseder (Aut) Team Eybl-Gastrogas.at1:58:23 
12Mike Mulkens (Bel)2:08:02 
13Paul Mashford (Aus) Tenni's / SKM2:16:51 
14Evan Corry (Aus) RUOK Corry Cycles 12:21:33 
15Ritchie Motke (Ned)2:28:20 
16Luke Haines (Aus)3:15:36 
17Patrick Konrad (Aut)4:25:28 
18Peter Fröhlich (Aut) Rams Cycling Black tusk4:30:27 
19Guillaume Bourgeois (Swi)4:53:01 
20Justin Morris (Aus) Subaru/marathonMTB.com7:19:14 
21Francis Ransley (Aus) RUOK Corry Cycles 27:41:08 
22Tommy Arnoldy (Lux) CT Toproad Roeserbann 027:54:22 
23Sebastian Einsle (Lux) CT Toproad Roeserbann 018:17:24 
24Stefan Hackl (Aut)8:31:20 
25Lukas Babor (Cze)9:07:41 
26Evert Desmidt (Bel)9:10:17 
27Den Hutmacher (Lux) CT Toproad Roeserbann 0115:13:48 
Elite women general classification after stage 5
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Kate Major (Aus)22:05:42 
2Alice Pirard (Bel) O2 Bikers - WMTB.be - Schwalbe1:29:16 
3Tinneke Van de Voorde (Bel)5:28:10 
4Annie van der linde (Ned)7:46:57 
5Jade Forsyth (Aus)9:33:17 
6Kirsten De Keyser (Bel)12:07:20 
M1 general classification after stage 5
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Werner van der Merwe (GBr) Subaru/marathonMTB.com18:13:15 
2Jeremy Ross (Aus) Crocodile Tears0:14:25 
3Jason Chalker (Aus) Crocodile Tears0:32:24 
4Henri Delheye (Bel) WACKY0:43:05 
5Raf De Bakker (Bel) Belgian Connections MTB Team1:14:32 
6Michal Kafka (Cze) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing CZE1:46:38 
7Wesley Reibel (Aus) RUOK Corry Cycles 11:59:14 
8David Osmond (Aus) Crocodile Tears2:03:36 
9Kris Hendrickx (Bel) Belgium F-16 Ridley Team2:18:52 
10Ken De Trogh (Bel) Belgium F-16 Ridley Team  
11Davy Blancquaert (Bel) Belgium F-16 Ridley Team2:24:01 
12Bjorn De Baets (Bel) WACKY3:02:00 
13Christophe Heinix (Bel) Team Lingier-Versluys-Beachbikers3:07:30 
14Peter Lister (Aus) RUOK Corry Cycles 23:07:32 
15David Carrillo (Spa)3:37:52 
16Christof Marien (Bel)4:24:26 
17Ryan Corry (Aus) RUOK Corry Cycles 14:46:40 
18Martin Wisata (Aut) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing Master4:50:05 
19Barry Sey (Bel) Wacky Immobilia Team5:02:34 
20Stephen Jackson (Aus) RUOK Corry Cycles 25:09:17 
21Kris Van De Putte (Bel)5:31:21 
22Pieter van der Eijk (Ned)6:38:29 
23Lukas Mraz (Cze)7:47:06 
24Wim Verheyen (Bel)7:52:42 
25Mathias Deleu (Bel)11:11:49 
26Gunter Selleslagh (Bel)14:37:13 
M2 general classification after stage 5
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Marc Baechli (Swi)18:58:25 
2Hans Planckaert (Bel) Smart Cycling Team0:53:18 
3Bart Heirewegh (Bel)1:09:40 
4Stephen Billington (Aus) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing Master1:10:18 
5Peter Urdl (Aut)1:34:30 
6Johan Frooninckx (Bel) Belgian Connections MTB Team1:58:00 
7Alain De Munter (Bel) Fietsen Mertens2:08:18 
8Bart De Boeck (Bel)2:38:39 
9Brendon Skerke (Aus) Tenni's / SKM2:50:11 
10Peter Roelands (Bel)3:01:48 
11James Heron (Aus) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing Master3:05:26 
12Jakob Steen-Petersen (Den) HMTBK SRAM3:36:42 
13Guy Sorensen (Aus) Superior Screens3:53:55 
14Rik Rohart (Bel)5:35:48 
15Nicholas Westwood (Aus) Koiled imports /cleanskin coffee racing5:38:26 
16Johny Thielemans (Bel)5:49:03 
17Bohuslav Babor (Cze)7:41:46 
18Alex Moonen (Bel) ATB kempen8:09:41 
19Peter Stubbe (Bel) Wacky Immobilia Team8:36:28 
20Allen Liversage (RSA)9:01:59 
21Jaroslav Hrdlicka (Cze)9:21:26 
22Stefan Plas (Bel)10:09:33 
23Kelly Duhig (Aus)11:42:28 
24Chris Neal (Aus)12:02:32 
25Thierry Ide (Bel) Wacky 2XL-team13:27:07 
26Sven Demunter (Bel) Wacky 2XL-team13:30:12 
27Barto Du Plessis (Aus)14:37:48 
28Paul Fitzgerald (Bel) Wacky 2XL-team15:37:59 
M3 general classification after stage 5
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Milan Spolc (Cze)20:46:04 
2Ruedi Senn (Swi) Top Müller.ch1:15:49 
3Sam Sprunger (Swi) GVFI Fleisch gibt Kraft1:34:31 
4Freddy Cassiers (Bel)1:44:42 
5Robrecht De Meyer (Bel) Fitopia Bikers2:09:01 
6Johannes Sewald (Ger) bavarian-riders2:25:19 
7Luc Verlinde (Bel) Luc Verlinde2:29:33 
8Freddy Vekens (Bel)2:55:42 
9Erik Defillet (Bel) Fitopia Bikers3:08:50 
10Rudy Motke (Ned)3:24:40 
11Andrew Radcliffe (Aus)3:55:42 
12Manfred Ertl (Ger) bavarian-riders4:43:40 
13Georg Schollerer (Ger) bavarian-riders4:55:31 
14Luc Janssens (Bel)7:06:02 
15Guy Vandijck (Bel)7:53:23 
16Philippe Maertens (Bel) Belgian Connections MTB Team8:57:23 
17Robert de la Motte (Aus)12:13:12 
CA M1 general classification after stage 5
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Pierre Paligot (Bel) CROCO RR Team Habay30:38:07 
1Dirk Abeloos (Bel) CROCO RR Team Habay30:38:12 
CA Man general classification after stage 5
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Mark Griffin (Aus) Rubena RockyTrail Racing19:46:03 
1Aaron Lakeman (Aus) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing19:46:10 
2Filip Kuzniak (Pol) Team KUBIS Gomola Trans Airco0:43:37 
2Szymon Wojciech Zacharski (Pol) Team KUBIS Gomola Trans Airco0:00:02 
Points classification
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Ivan Rybarik (Cze) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing CZE115 pts
2Ondrej Fojtik (Cze)75 
3Wolfgang Krenn (Aut)65 
4Michiel Van Aelbroeck (Bel) O2 Bikers - WMTB.be - Schwalbe30 
5Mike Mulkens (Bel)20 
5Cory Wallace (Can)20 
7Jason English (Aus) RUOK Rocky Tail Racing15 
7Ondrej Slezak (Cze) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing CZE15 
7Dominick Hrinkow (Aut)15 
10Werner van der Merwe (GBr) Subaru/marathonMTB.com5 
Teams classification
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Ivan Rybarik (Cze) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing CZE55:18:49 
2Mike Blewitt (Aus) Subaru/marathonMTB.com1:40:03 
3David Osmond (Aus) Crocodile Tears2:10:55 
4Steven Rankine (Aus) Tenni's / SKM4:21:39 
5Davy Blancquaert (Bel) Belgium F-16 Ridley Team6:22:41 
6Wesley Reibel (Aus) RUOK Corry Cycles 18:08:10 
7Stephen Billington (Aus) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing Master9:57:05 
8Stephen Jackson (Aus) RUOK Corry Cycles 213:36:47 
9Barry Sey (Bel) Wacky Immobilia Team14:28:13 
10Lukas Babor (Cze)14:30:38 
11Johan Frooninckx (Bel) Belgian Connections MTB Team14:48:50 
12Georg Schollerer (Ger) bavarian-riders19:03:53 
13Thierry Ide (Bel) Wacky 2XL-team40:32:53 
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