Kirkcaldie retires

John Kirkaldie (Team Maxxis)

John Kirkaldie (Team Maxxis) (Image credit: Steve Medcroft)

Now that the 2006 World Championships is behind him, Team Maxxis rider John Kirkcaldie has raced his last race as a professional mountain biker. Kirkcaldie, a fixture on the podium during six years with Team Maxxis, revealed his decision in August.

In his final season, Kirkaldie scored a downhill victory in the US Open and taking the mountain cross title at the Oceania Championships. He’s also scored podiums in the gravity omnium at Sea Otter and several top-three spots at NORBA races, including a victory in Super D at NORBA #2 and second place in dual slalom at NORBA #5.

Kirkaldie won the 2005 New Zealand National Championships in both downhill and four cross and finished third in the NORBA downhill series overall. He also took fourth place overall in the downhill in the 2004 NORBA series and sixth place in downhill at the 2004 UCI World Cup Race in Calgary, BC (Canada). He was also the 2004 New Zealand National Champion, and took NORBA championships in 2000 and 2001.

“John's presence will be deeply missed not just by Team Maxxis, but by his colleagues around the circuit," said Christopher Warrick, bicycle sponsorship coordinator for Maxxis. "His impact went beyond riding and is visible through the riders he inspired and lent a helping hand to over the years. John always gave back much more than he could ever receive from the sport. We were lucky to have had John as a part of the team and appreciate his hard work and loyalty. I know that he will be successful in any direction he chooses to go.”

Kirkcaldie’s plans include a move back to his native New Zealand, where he hopes to open a construction company and build custom houses. He has also indicated interest in working as a New Zealand downhill coach.

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Sue George is an editor at Cyclingnews.  She coordinates all of the site's mountain bike race coverage and assists with the road, 'cross and track coverage.