Hill and Buchanan win Australian downhill round in Thredbo

Past world champs shows their skills

World champions Caroline Buchanan (Airborne Bicycles) and Sam Hill (Chain Reaction Cycles) showed why they are leading the Subaru Australian Gravity Cup National Series when the pair claimed victory in the second round in Thredbo on Saturday.


Hill, three time senior downhill world champion, backed up from Mt Buller to make it two-from-two when he clinched victory from 19-year-old Jack Moir (Yeti Cycles-Fox Racing Team) and Connor Fearon (Kona Factory Racing).

"It's two wins from two races so far," Hill said of his undefeated status in the series. "I'll see if I can get the number one at national champs and finish the last round of the national series with a win as well."

Hill completed the iconic Thredbo course almost one second faster than his seeding run, crossing the line in five minutes and 21.95 seconds, over five seconds ahead of Moir (5:27.74) and almost nine seconds to Fearon (5:30.27).

"It's a long track, and I felt like I had a bit more than a second in me after qualifying but it is hard on this track, it's a bit rough and I just tried to be smooth and carry good speed and stay out of the holes was the main thing. I feel like I'm building a bit of momentum which is the goal before racing overseas, with each win you get a bit more confidence and that's what I'm chasing," Hill said.

For young gun Moir, the silver medal was a first in the elite ranks.

"It was pretty good to be on the podium for the first time with the big guys," Moir said. "I was glad I stayed upright because I had a crash in Buller and a crash in my seeding run yesterday so I kept it clean and was real stoked when I got over the line."

Also in his first year racing in the senior ranks, South Australian Connor Fearon said he was pleased with his result. "I am pretty happy, I went a bit slower than seeding which is a bit disappointing, but it was a consistent run so I am happy to be on the podium again," Fearon said following his silver medal in round 1 at Mount Buller.


Buchanan, four cross mountain bike and BMX world champion took out her second win in as many rounds over Canadian Claire Buchar (Kovarik Racing) and Lisa Mathison (Planet Cycles) in what was a repeat result from round 1 in Buller.

Having seeded first, Buchanan shaved three seconds off her time to clinch the win in a time of six minutes and 13.78 seconds, 2.59 seconds faster than Buchar (6:16.37) and a further 18 seconds ahead of Mathison (6:32.03).

"After yesterday's seeding run, I wasn't sure how much time I could squeeze out," Buchanan said. "I thought if I could get two seconds then that would be amazing and I came down roughly three seconds quicker - I still surprise myself with my ability and that run I was pretty impressed.

"This is the toughest track I think mentally as well as physically, a lot of it is about telling yourself you are doing well and the race will be over soon. I just kept telling myself ‘let it roll' to try to stay off the brakes."

The win sets Buchanan up for a strong performance at the Australian national championships to be held in Canberra in a fortnight.

"I have done a bit of practice on the track in Canberra, they've changed it, they have some really cool new sections they've put in which has made it fresh and exciting," said Buchanan.

"I haven't raced at Stromlo since I raced at worlds in 2009 so it's been a while, it will be nice to be back in my hometown and hopefully have everyone out cheering," Buchanan said of her 2009 four cross world championship victory.

Former Canadian national champion Buchar has been racing alongside partner Chris Kovarik (Kovarik Racing) in Australia to gain form before the World Cup season kicks off later this year.

The podium was another positive step for her campaign, after breaking her collarbone late last year. "I had a good run, and I went as hard as I could, that's all I can do," Buchar said. "It's a long run and you can definitely make mistakes.

"I think it got a little bit blown out today after seeding, it was a little bit rougher but I enjoyed it."

2004 cross country Olympian Mathison said her lack of downhill experience came into play. "It's tough out there," Mathison said. "I hadn't ridden this course before and it's been on the circuit in the past so I assume most people have had a look.

"I was really stoked to even be able to post the times that I have."

U19 men and women

In the under 19 women's race, Tegan Molloy (Kona Factory Racing) claimed victory in a time of six minutes and 20:27 seconds over Danielle Beecroft (6:26.21) and Kellie Weinert (6:42.14).

"I had a really good run," Molloy said. "The track was a lot slower than yesterday but I gave it everything and I'm really happy with it. "I'm sure to be a lot stronger and fitter by the final round in Bright and hopefully I can hold onto the Subaru leaders jersey."

Thomas Crimmins (Giant) retained his series lead, taking out the men's under 19 race in a time of five minutes 32:69 seconds, two seconds over Luke Ellison (5:34.97) and three seconds in front of Dean Lucas (5:36.63).

"The goal towards the end of the national season is to hold onto the jersey," Crimmins said.


Elite men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Samuel Hill0:05:22 
2Jack Moir0:00:06 
3Connor Fearon0:00:08 
4Ben Cory0:00:09 
5Joey Vejvoda0:00:10 
6Chris Kovarik0:00:10 
7Todd Madsen0:00:10 
8David McMillan0:00:14 
9Rick Boyer0:00:15 
10Rhys Atkinson0:00:15 
11Liam Panozzo0:00:16 
12Tim Windshuttle0:00:17 
13Jared Rando0:00:19 
14Amiel Cavalier0:00:20 
15Phillip Piazza0:00:20 
16James Maltman0:00:21 
17Mark Conliffe0:00:22 
18Bruce Moir0:00:22 
19Cillian Kennedy0:00:24 
20Brendan Moon0:00:24 
21Joel Panozzo0:00:26 
22Graeme Mudd0:00:27 
23Max Kreuzer0:00:28 
24Ryan Hunt0:00:28 
25Trent Piribauer0:00:29 
26Alex Swann0:00:32 
27Conor Bullard0:00:33 
28Jon Odams0:00:33 
29Ben Goff0:00:39 
30Matt Swann0:00:41 
31Ben Crundwell0:00:42 
32Ben Morrison0:00:45 
33Nathan Parsons0:00:46 
34Damon Cuotts0:00:48 
35Adam Smithson0:00:48 
36Kye Hore0:00:49 
37Bradley Earl0:00:49 
38Angus Jackson0:00:50 
39Pedr Lapp0:00:50 
40Samuel Jones0:00:54 
41Kieran Jenkins0:00:54 
42Josh Bengtson0:00:55 
43Kyle Coutts0:00:57 
44Sam Trevor0:00:58 
45Michael Dargan0:01:06 
46Elliot Ried0:01:09 
47Shaun Ambrose0:01:11 
48Zenon Murtagh0:01:59 
49henry Blake0:02:58 
50Dylan Prohm0:00:34 
DNSTyson Schmidt  
DNSJulian Leighton  
Elite women
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Caroline Buchanan0:06:14 
2Clare Buchar0:00:03 
3Lisa Mathison0:00:18 
4Genevieve McKew0:00:25 
5Michelle Crisp0:00:32 
6Maddeline Taylor0:00:47 
7Philippa Rostan0:00:54 
8Jacqui Lovett0:01:03 
9Victoria Armstrong0:01:13 
10Trudy Nicholas0:01:43 
11Lucy Brandon0:01:48 
Under 19 men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Thomas Crimmins0:05:33 
2Luke Ellison0:00:02 
3Dean Lucas0:00:04 
4Aiden Varley0:00:07 
5Ben Hill0:00:07 
6Matthew McCorkell0:00:10 
7Peter Knott0:00:14 
8Brent Capel0:00:18 
9David Maggs0:00:19 
10Benjamin Dengate0:00:19 
11Jackson Davis0:00:24 
12Ryan O'Linn0:00:28 
13Sam Rohdmann0:00:34 
14Brent Smith0:00:35 
15Hayden Poptie0:00:37 
16Daniel Mikic0:00:39 
17Loughlin Murphy0:00:43 
18Timothy Kmetyk0:00:46 
19Mitchell Harrison0:00:50 
20Michael Roberts0:00:58 
21Brandon Maxwell0:00:58 
22Nicholas Greentree0:01:01 
23Geoff Harris0:01:06 
24Jake Morrison0:01:07 
25Oskar Catoggio0:01:16 
26Mathias Butcher0:01:18 
27Adam Dickson0:01:18 
28Harrison Reibelt0:01:21 
29Dylan Brown0:01:23 
30Josh Seaton0:02:05 
31Connor Mackne0:00:24 
32Austen Hawkins0:00:50 
33Connor Surgeoner0:00:57 
34Matti Bomford-Wind0:01:55 
35Kye Bowmaker Ksiazek0:09:34 
DNSZac Moss  
DNSDamon Bridgement  
Under 19 women
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Tegan Molloy0:06:20 
2Danielle Beecroft0:00:06 
3Kellie Weinert0:00:22 
4Gemma Greentree0:04:07 


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