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Joseph and Benko out of La Bresse World Cup due to injury

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Barbara Benko wins the women's race

Barbara Benko wins the women's race (Image credit: Finias Miron)
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Rosara Joseph (Rabobank Giant Offroad Team)

Rosara Joseph (Rabobank Giant Offroad Team) (Image credit: Tour of Japan)

New Zealand's Rosara Joseph (Rabobank Giant) and Hungary's Barbara Benko (Focus-MIG) are both out of this weekend's World Cup in La Bresse, France, after crashing and injuring themselves in separate incidents. For both, it is a blow to their Olympic aspirations.

Joseph, who broke her arm, was in a heated battle with fellow New Zealand rider Karen Hanlen for the single spot New Zealand is qualifying, while Hungary had an outside chance of catching Denmark for the final women's spot. Benko injured her ankle and while it is probably not broken, she will not be able to race this weekend.

Heavy clouds are now moving in after sunny weather earlier in the week, which follows closely the predictions for rain this weekend. If it does rain, the course will become muddy and slippery quickly - particularly the downhill. Riders have being saying that it is still ride-able when wet, but that doesn't take into account the damage that will be done by some 400 under 23 and junior riders on Saturday prior to the elite races on Sunday.

Stay tuned to Cyclingnews for full coverage of the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup in La Bresse France.