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September 15, Elite women downhill:

Rachel Atherton wins Hafjell World Cup round

By:
Rob Jones
Published:
September 15, 2012, 15:01 BST,
Updated:
September 16, 2012, 15:57 BST

British star clinches overall World Cup title

Hafjell elite women's downhill World Cup podium: Casey Brown, Emmeline Ragot, Rachel Atherton, Morgane Charre, Jacqueline Harmony

Hafjell elite women's downhill World Cup podium: Casey Brown, Emmeline Ragot, Rachel Atherton, Morgane Charre, Jacqueline Harmony

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Rachel Atherton (GT Factory Racing) took her first World Cup title since 2008 on Saturday, after winning the final round of the downhill mountain bike World Cup in Hafjell, Norway.

The Hafjell track is new to the World Cup, but has already drawn strong praise from riders for its varied and technical terrain. After rain earlier in the week, the course dried considerably for a sunny and windy race day.

American Jacqueline Harmony, 10th fastest in qualifying, set the first sub-4:25 time for the women, a time that proved to be strong enough for fifth, and her first podium appearance. Harmony held the hot seat for two riders before Canadian national champion Casey Brown knocked over 10.5 seconds off to take the lead. Brown held the lead for four riders until the newly crowned world champion, Morgane Charre (Passionvelo.fr), bumped her by nearly two seconds.

However, everyone was waiting for the final three riders to come down, which included the two who have been battling for the World Cup title all season: Atherton and Emmeline Ragot (MS Mondraker). Ragot qualified third fastest, and came through the speed trap significantly faster than anyone else, the first to beat Atherton's qualifying time with 4:03.828. Manon Carpenter (Madison Saracen) was the second fastest qualifier, but crashed hard in the middle of her run, leaving it up to Atherton.

Atherton had finished a disappointing fifth at the world championships, struggling with back problems and, at the first split Ragot was ahead by three-tenths of a second. But the British rider put in a brilliant lower half to her run, to win by 2.283 seconds, and take her first World Cup overall title since 2008.

"I am so happy the race is done," Atherton said. "The track was really hard, really challenging and really physical. I was probably the most scared I have been all year. I am really tired, I pushed all the way. It is an awesome track. I am really happy."

"It is cool [because] I haven't won the overall title since 2008, with all the injuries I've had. It is cool to finally be back at the top. I missed out at the world championships last week with an injury. It is just an amazing feeling, it hasn't quite sunk in yet."

Atherton won the 2012 title with 1450 points, despite missing the first round, with Ragot 140 points back, followed by the absent and injured Myriam Nicole (Commencal/Riding Addiction) with 892 points.

Race note

- Many top women were not competing due to injury.  Among them were Tracey Hannah, Myriam Nicole and Floriane Pugin

- Former four cross world champion Anita Molcik was in her final World Cup race prior to retirement.

Full Results

Elite women
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Rachel Atherton (GBr) GT Factory Racing 0:04:01.545  
2 Emmeline Ragot (Fra) MS Mondraker Team 0:00:02.283  
3 Morgane Charre (Fra) Passion Velo.Fr 0:00:08.853  
4 Casey Brown (Can) 0:00:10.692  
5 Jacqueline Harmony (USA) 0:00:22.271  
6 Petra Bernhard (Aut) Alpine Commencal Austria 0:00:25.399  
7 Anita Molcik (Aut) 0:00:25.893  
8 Anita Ager-Wick (Nor) 0:00:26.848  
9 Tahnee Seagrave° (GBr) 0:00:28.079  
10 Jessica Stone (GBr) Unior Tools Team 0:00:28.740  
11 Marianne Ruud° (Nor) 0:00:30.787  
12 Caroline Sax (Fra) Team Lac Blanc / Solid / Batibois Alsace 0:00:31.074  
13 Céline Gros (Fra) Team Morzine - Avoriaz / Haute - Savoie 0:00:32.934  
14 Manon Carpenter (GBr) Madison Saracen Downhill Team 0:00:35.138  
15 Harriet Rucknagel (Ger) 0:00:36.454  
16 Sophiemarie Bethell (NZl) 0:00:37.833  
17 Mélanie Pugin (Fra) Team Morzine - Avoriaz / Haute - Savoie 0:00:38.787  
18 Lina Skoglund (Swe) 0:00:50.154  
19 Veronique Sandler (NZl) 0:00:51.283  
20 Gabriela Williams (Cze) 0:01:02.377  
Teams
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Devinci Global Racing 103  pts
2 MS Mondraker Team 74  
3 GT Factory Racing 72  
4 Santa Cruz Syndicate 55  
5 Lapierre International 36  
6 Passion Velo.Fr 30  
7 Monster Energy-Specialized 24  
8 Scott11 21  
9 Alpine Commencal Austria 20  
10 Hutchinson United Ride 20  
11 Giant Factory Off-Road Team 18  
12 Commencal / Riding Addiction 15  
13 Team Are Bikepark By W-Racing 14  
14 Unior Tools Team 12  
15 Team Morzine - Avoriaz / Haute - Savoie 12  
16 Trek World Racing 12  
17 Madison Saracen Downhill Team 11  
18 Team Norco International 11  
19 Team Lac Blanc / Solid / Batibois Alsace 9  
20 SC-Intense 9  
21 Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 7  
22 Pila-Black Arrows-MTB Herin School Asd 3  
23 CG Racing Brigade 1  
24 Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 1  
Elite women individual final World Cup standings
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Rachel Atherton (GBr) GT Factory Racing 1450  pts
2 Emmeline Ragot (Fra) MS Mondraker Team 1310  
3 Myriam Nicole (Fra) Commencal / Riding Addiction 892  
4 Tracey Hannah (Aus) Hutchinson United Ride 732  
5 Emilie Siegenthaler (Swi) Scott11 705  
6 Morgane Charre (Fra) Passion Velo.Fr 546  
7 Petra Bernhard (Aut) Alpine Commencal Austria 511  
8 Floriane Pugin (Fra) Scott11 500  
9 Manon Carpenter (GBr) Madison Saracen Downhill Team 500  
10 Anita Molcik (Aut) 480  
11 Jill Kintner (USA) Team Norco International 363  
12 Sabrina Jonnier (Fra) France 239  
13 Casey Brown (Can) 232  
14 Miriam Ruchti (Swi) SC-Intense 232  
15 Mio Suemasa (Jpn) Japan 230  
16 Micayla Gatto (Can) Canada 221  
17 Jacqueline Harmony (USA) 180  
18 Tahnee Seagrave° (GBr) 166  
19 Miranda Miller (Can) Canada 140  
20 Céline Gros (Fra) Team Morzine - Avoriaz / Haute - Savoie 130  
21 Tracy Moseley (GBr) Great Britain 124  
22 Caroline Sax (Fra) Team Lac Blanc / Solid / Batibois Alsace 120  
23 Fionn Griffiths (GBr) 115  
24 Jessica Stone (GBr) Unior Tools Team 105  
25 Harriet Rucknagel (Ger) 105  
26 Mélanie Pugin (Fra) Team Morzine - Avoriaz / Haute - Savoie 95  
27 Luana Maria De Souza Oliveira (Bra) Brazil 84  
28 Anita Ager-Wick (Nor) 80  
29 Zarja Cernilogar (Slo) Slovenia 70  
30 Claire Buchar (Can) Canada 57  
31 Alia Marcellini (Ita) Torpado Surfing Shop 55  
32 Marianne Ruud° (Nor) 50  
33 Chloe Gallean° (Fra) France 45  
34 Martina Bruehlmann (Swi) 35  
35 Sarah Newman (GBr) 30  
36 Gabriela Williams (Cze) Cg Racing Brigade 30  
37 Sophiemarie Bethell (NZl) 25  
38 Fiona Ourdouillie° (Fra) France 25  
39 Carina Cappellari (Swi) 20  
40 Lauren Rosser (Can) Canada 20  
41 Lina Skoglund (Swe) 15  
42 Elke Rabeder (Aut) 15  
43 Tamara Maria Ulrich (Aut) 15  
44 Veronique Sandler (NZl) 10  
45 Jana Bartova (Cze) Czech Republic 10  
46 Jaime Hill (Can) 10  
47 Jaime Rees (USA) United States Of America 5  
Team final World Cup standings
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 GT Factory Racing 535  pts
2 MS Mondraker Team 420  
3 Santa Cruz Syndicate 402  
4 Devinci Global Racing 379  
5 Lapierre International 316  
6 Trek World Racing 301  
7 Hutchinson United Ride 275  
8 Scott11 259  
9 Giant Factory Off-Road Team 249  
10 Commencal / Riding Addiction 216  
11 Monster Energy-Specialized 203  
12 Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 134  
13 Labyrinth Shimano Racing Team 133  
14 Passion Velo.Fr 104  
15 Alpine Commencal Austria 98  
16 SC-Intense 95  
17 Madison Saracen Downhill Team 94  
18 Team Norco International 93  
19 Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team 68  
20 Team Morzine - Avoriaz / Haute - Savoie 47  
21 Kona 45  
22 CG Racing Brigade 38  
23 Team Lac Blanc / Solid / Batibois Alsace 37  
24 Topcycle By Trek 32  
25 Team Are Bikepark By W-Racing 23  
26 Unior Tools Team 23  
27 Pila-Black Arrows-Mtb Herin School Asd 23  
28 CK Racing Santacruz 17  
29 Torpado Surfing Shop 10  
30 Dagg - Racing 9  
31 Dirt Norco Race Team 4  
32 Ghost Factory Racing Team 3