Decisive move nets O'Shea first national cross country title

Significantly improving on her seventh position in 2010, Victoria's Katherine O'Shea fought back tears as she crossed the finish line to claim her first Australian championship in a time of one hour, 45 minutes and 27 seconds.

In what was an aggressively fought race, O'Shea made a decisive move on the steep pinch at the start of lap three and never looked back as she stretched her lead to over two and half minutes at the conclusion of the six lap event.

The 32-year-old was thrilled with her victory, the first top three result at a national championships in her career.

"It feels amazing, I really had a point to prove today and I can't believe I have final got here," an ecstatic O'Shea said after the race.

"I have been working towards this goal for a fair few years. I haven't had much success and this is actually the first time I have been on the podium so I am stoked."

In what was a much tighter contest for the minor positions, Canberra's Heather Logie (1:48:02) prevailed to take out the silver medal for the second year running, 27 seconds ahead of Victoria's Jenni King (1:48:30).

In what was a shocking day for reigning champion and pre-race favourite Rowena Fry (1:57:36), the Tasmanian fell right off the pace after the first lap to finish a disappointing ninth, over 12 minutes behind O'Shea. The 27-year-old vowed to fight back with a vengeance at the Oceania Championships in Shepparton next month.

Rebecca Henderson (1:31:47) took out the women's under 23 cross country race while Amy Austin (1:26:35) won the under 19 category.

The 2011 Australian Mountain Bike Championships will wrap up on Saturday with the cross country short track and downhill competitions. Cross country champion Chris Jongewaard will return to the track for the men's short track whilst Tasmanian Rowena Fry will also return in the women's event. Queensland's Michael Hannah will start as the fastest qualifier for the elite men's downhill whilst world under 19 champion Troy Brosnan has some work to do after seeding third behind fellow South Australian Connor Fearon. West Australian Holly Baarspul is the fastest Australian qualifier in the elite women's event, behind Canadian Clare Buchar.

Full Results

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Elite women
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Katherine O'Shea (Torq Nutrition)1:45:27
2Heather Logie1:48:03
3Jenni King (torq australia)1:48:30
4Jenny Fay1:50:02
5Gracie Elvin1:51:21
6Jodie Willett (Merida Flight Centre)1:51:49
7Therese Rhodes1:54:23
8Niki Fisher (Giant)1:55:48
9Rowena Fry (Avanti)1:57:36
10Anna Beck1:58:06
11Nicola Hogan (Drift Bikes)2:00:38
-2lapsJaclyn Schapel (Giant Australia)Row 11 - Cell 2
-2lapsNicole KeilyRow 12 - Cell 2
DNFRebecca MatesRow 13 - Cell 2
DNSKelly BartlettRow 14 - Cell 2
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Under 23 women
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Rebecca Henderson (Crowne Plaza Canberra)1:31:48
-1lapShelly FloodRow 1 - Cell 2
Swipe to scroll horizontally
Under 19 women
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Amy Austin (Oceania Cycles)1:26:36
2Jess Wigan1:33:39
3Rosemary Stewart1:34:38

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