Van Der Ploeg wins Dalby Eliminator

Women's race

The new eliminator series in the UCI mountain bike World Cup had a highly successful debut at the Dalby World Cup on Friday evening. Twenty six women and 42 men took part in the qualifying time trial, with all of the women and the top 32 men moving on to the heats competition. Nathalie Schneitter (Colnago Arreghini Sudtirol) took the women's victory and Paul van der Ploeg (Felt Oetztal X - Bionic) won the men's.

After later afternoon rain showers threatened to impact the event, the skies cleared up and the roads dried out just before the start. Held in the north Yorkshire town of Pickering, the course took riders on a winding up-and-down course, through a church cemetery and down a set of stairs. The key was a strong start in the top two positions, since passing was difficult. Thousands of spectators came out to watch, lining the finishing uphill straightaway.

British rider Annie Last qualified first for the women, Sweden's Alexandra Engen. Tracy Moseley (Trek World Racing), the reigning downhill world champion qualified fourth, and four cross World Cup leader Anneke Beerten (Milka Trek) was ninth.

In the four rider heats, Moseley, her British teammate Annie Last and Katerina Nash (Luna) looked to be the strongest, but Schneitter was more consistent. Moseley rode to set up her teammate Last in the semi-final ride, but knocked herself out of the final in the process. Last and Schneitter were joined by Katrin Leumann (Ghost Factory) and Engen made up the other members of the final. Schneitter went to the front on the first short climb, and easily held off Last for the victory, with Leumann taking third.

Men's race

In the men's race, defending champion Thomas Litscher (Felt Oetztal X - Bionic) appear to be well on his way to another win, as he qualified first and won his intermediate heats easily. Also riding well were Marco Fontana (Cannondale) and Sepp Freiburghas, which made up the final foursome.

Surprisingly, pre-race favourite Brian Lopes went out in the first round, with Geoff Kabush (Maxxis-Rocky Mountain) the only North American to make it out of the first round. Also going out early were cross country World Cup leader Nino Schurter (Scott-Swisspower) and his teammate Florian Vogel.

In the final, Litscher got an uncharacteristically slow start, allowing his teammate to take the lead. Van der Ploeg led from start to finish, with Litscher striving to overtake him on the final climb to the finish, but just falling short.

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Big Final
#Rider Name (Country) Team
1Paul Van Der Ploeg (Aus) Felt Oetztal X - Bionic Team
2Thomas Litscher (Swi) Felt Oetztal X - Bionic Team
3Marco Aurelio Fontana (Ita) Cannondale Factory Racing
4Sepp Freiburghaus (Swi) Thoemus Racing Team
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Small Final
#Rider Name (Country) Team
5Jochen Kass (Ger) Multivan Merida Biking Team
6Martin Gujan (Swi) Cannondale Factory Racing
7Marco Schätzing (Ger) Team Firebike - Droessiger
8Daniel Federspiel (Aut)
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1/4 Finals
#Rider Name (Country) Team
9Manuel Fumic (Ger) Cannondale Factory Racing
10Severin Disch (Swi) Thoemus Racing Team
11Nicola Rohrbach (Swi) Elettroveneta - Corratec
12Moritz Milatz (Ger) Bmc Mountainbike Racing Team
13Geoff Kabush (Can) Team Maxxis - Rocky Mountain
14Steven James (GBr)
15David Collins (GBr)
16Lukas Flückiger (Swi) Trek World Racing
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1/8 Finals
#Rider Name (Country) Team
17Brian Lopes (USA)
18Kevin Van Hoovels (Bel) Versluys - Evenza Team
19Emil Lindgren (Swe) Rabobank - Giant Off-Road Team
20Robby De Bock (Bel)
21Michal Lami (Svk)
22Spencer Paxson (USA) Kona
23Florian Vogel (Swi) Scott - Swisspower Mtb - Racing
24John Whittington (GBr)
25Magnus Darvell (Swe)
26Ben Thomas (GBr)
27Mattias Wengelin (Swe)
28Francis Morin (Can) BH - Suntour - Peisey Vallandry
29Dave Henderson (GBr)
30Fredrik Edin (Swe)
31Nino Schurter (Swi) Scott - Swisspower MTB - Racing
DNFMilan Dolezal (Cze) GT Czech Team

Elite women

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Big Final
#Rider Name (Country) Team
1Nathalie Schneitter (Swi) Colnago Arreghini Sudtirol
2Annie Last (GBr)
3Katrin Leumann (Swi) Ghost Factory Racing Team
4Alexandra Engen (Swe)
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Small Final
#Rider Name (Country) Team
5Katerina Nash (Cze) Luna Pro Team
6Pavla Havlikova (Cze)
7Tracy Moseley (GBr) Trek World Racing
8Chloe Forsman (USA)
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1/4 Finals
#Rider Name (Country) Team
9Katherine O'Shea (Aus)
10Lisa Mitterbauer (Aut) Bikepark.Ch Scott
11Anneke Beerten (Ned) Milka Trek Mtb Racing Team
12Eva Lechner (Ita) Colnago Arreghini Sudtirol
13Aleksandra Dawidowicz (Pol) CCC Polkowice
14Lee Craigie (GBr)
15Anna Szafraniec (Pol) CCC Polkowice
16Lucie Vesela (Cze) GT Czech Team
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1/8 Finals
#Rider Name (Country) Team
17Karen Hanlen (NZl)
18Nicoletta De Jager (Ned)
19Hana Jezkova (Cze) GT Czech Team
20Krista Park (USA)
21Magdalena Sadlecka (Pol) CCC Polkowice
22Maxine Filby (GBr)
23Amy Dombroski (USA)
24Janka Stevkova (Svk)
25Vendula Kuntova (Cze) GT Czech Team


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