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Smith and Kintner take early US Pro GRT leads

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Jill Kintner (USA) Team Norco International

Jill Kintner (USA) Team Norco International
(Image credit: Tour of Japan)
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Canadian Steve Smith was in good form but fell just short of the podium.

Canadian Steve Smith was in good form but fell just short of the podium.
(Image credit: Luis Barbosa)

The USA Cycling Pro Gravity Tour (US Pro GRT) kicked off over the weekend with the NW Cup in Port Angeles, Washington. Canadian Steve Smith (Devinci Global Racing) and American Jill Kinter (Team Norco International) earned wins to take slight leads following the first of six 2012 Pro GRT races. The race also doubled as round one in the US Grand Prix of Mountain Biking downhill series.

Smith outdid 2011 UCI Mountain Bike World Cup downhill champion Aaron Gwin (Trek World Racing) by just over two seconds to take the victory in the elite men's event hosted at Dry Hill. Mick Hannah (Hutchinson United Ride) took third, just three seconds off Smith's pace at 2:33:57.

Mountain biking veteran and 2011 US Pro GRT champ Kintner took yet another victory, descending Dry Hill faster than any other female. Miranda Miller (Santa Cruz-SRAM) finished two seconds slower than Kinter for second while Holly Feniak earned bronze.

See full results from the NW Cup.

The US Pro GRT will head east for the Eastern States Cup - Mountain Creek on May 20 in New Jersey, before moving to nearby Roxbury, New York for Eastern States Cup - Plattekill on May 27.

Top Five Standings

Elite men's US Pro GRT Standings after one round
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Steve Smith (Can) Devinci Global Racing60pts
2Aaron Gwin (USA )Trek World Racing40
3Mick Hannah (Aus) Hutchinson United Ride30
4Josh Bryceland (GBr) Santa Cruz Syndicate25
5Neko Mulally (USA) Trek World Racing20

Elite women's US Pro GRT Standings after one round
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Jill Kintner (USA) Team Norco International60pts
2Mirando Miller (Can) Santa Cruz-SRAM40
3Holly Feniak (Can) GoPro-Cove-Shimano30
4Joanna Petterson (USA)25
5Katie Holden (USA) Specialized SRAM20