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Graves wins Leogang four cross

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Spectators stand in the rain

Spectators stand in the rain
(Image credit: Gary Perkin)
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David Graf leads his heat

David Graf leads his heat
(Image credit: Gary Perkin)
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Jared Graves (Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team)

Jared Graves (Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team)
(Image credit: Gary Perkin)
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Men's 4X podium (L to R) Michal Prokop (4th), David Graf (2nd), Jared Graves (1st), Tomas Slavik (3rd), Roger Rinderknecht (5th)

Men's 4X podium (L to R) Michal Prokop (4th), David Graf (2nd), Jared Graves (1st), Tomas Slavik (3rd), Roger Rinderknecht (5th)
(Image credit: Gary Perkin)
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Overall men's 4X leader Jared Graves (Yeti-Fox)

Overall men's 4X leader Jared Graves (Yeti-Fox)
(Image credit: Gary Perkin)

Despite rain and cold temperatures, the third round of the four cross World Cup in Leogang, Austria, produced some of the most exciting racing of the season. Jared Graves (Yeti-Fox Shox) was the class of the field, taking the men's title with ease.

After a lapse of concentration last weekend at round two in Fort William, Scotland, where Graves missed the final, the Australian was eager to reassert his dominance on the men's field, and did so with authority in Leogang. Graves qualified first, and advanced through the first four rounds with ease, snatching the holeshot in every heat, and extending his lead on every section of the course.

Switzerland's David Graf continues to improve at every race and joined Graves for the final from their half of the draw, from a hard-fought semi-final containing round two winner Roger Rinderknecht and Romain Saladini.

From the other half of the field, former World Cup champion Michal Prokop was equally strong to advance, while world champion Thomas Slavik (RSP 4 Cross) took the final spot for the final.

In the final, it was Graves in the front from the start to the finish, while a tremendous battle was being fought behind him. Prokop grabbed second place into the first corner, but Graf made a daring move by taking a little-used second line through the middle of the course, which paid off and allowed him to overtake Prokop for second, while Slavik did the same to take third. Round two winner Rinderknecht won the small final for fifth.

"I had my worst race in about three years last week in Fort William, so to get the win back was exactly what I hoped for," said Graves.

To avoid crashing in the muddy, slippery conditions, he said, "I just tried to ride like I did in practice, not do anything too silly. When you're in that race frame of mine, you just let it go. I tried to hold everyone up a bit [coming into the first corner] to try and stop that 'high-low' move, and I think that worked really well. That was a good tactic, and I'm happy with it."

Graves now leads the men's standings with 300 points. He is 50 points ahead of Graf, while Rinderknecht and Prokop are tied at 100 points in arrears.

Full Results

Big Final
#Rider Name (Country) Team
1Jared Graves (Aus) Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team
2David Graf (Swi)
3Tomas Slavik (Cze) RSP 4 Cross Racing Team
4Michal Prokop (Cze)

Small Final
#Rider Name (Country) Team
5Roger Rinderknecht (Swi)
6Romain Saladini (Fra)
7Lukas Mechura (Cze) Chain Reaction Cycles / Nukeproof
8William Evans (GBr)

1/4 Finals
#Rider Name (Country) Team
9Kamil Tatarkovic (Cze)
10Guido Tschugg (Ger) Ghost Factory Racing Team
11Jakub Riha (Cze)
12Michal Marosi (Cze) RSP 4 Cross Racing Team
13Joost Wichman (Ned) RSP 4 Cross Racing Team
14Pascal Seydoux (Swi)
15Lear Miller (USA)
16Premek Tejchman (Cze)

1/8 Finals
#Rider Name (Country) Team
17Johannes Fischbach (Ger) Ghost Factory Racing Team
18Daniel Prijkel (Ned) Team Merida Combee
19Petr Muhlhans (Cze)
20Simon Waldburger (Swi)
21Benedikt Last (Ger)
22Jakub Hnidak (Cze)
23Piotr Paradowski (Pol)
24Ashley Gray (Aus)
25Hannes Slavik (Aut) Alpine Commencal Austria
26Blake Carney (USA)
27Quentin Derbier (Fra)
28Scott Beaumont (GBr)
29Scott Roberts (GBr)
30Reto Schmid (Swi)
31Jurg Meijer (Ned) RSP 4 Cross Racing Team
32Adam Stasek (Cze)

Teams
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1RSP 4 Cross Racing Team47pts
2Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team40
3Milka Trek MTB Racing Team25
4Chain Reaction Cycles / Nukeproof18
5Team Morzine - Avoriaz / Haute - Savoie15
6Ghost Factory Racing Team12
7Alpine Commencal Austria10
8Team GR5

World Cup standings after three rounds
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Jared Graves (Aus) Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team300pts
2David Graf (Swi)250
3Roger Rinderknecht (Swi)200
4Michal Prokop (Cze)200
5Tomas Slavik (Cze) RSP 4 Cross Racing Team158
6Joost Wichman (Ned) RSP 4 Cross Racing Team98
7Johannes Fischbach (Ger) Ghost Factory Racing Team83
8Michal Marosi (Cze) RSP 4 Cross Racing Team82
9Kamil Tatarkovic (Cze)66
10Romain Saladini (Fra)65
11Lukas Mechura (Cze) Chain Reaction Cycles / Nukeproof38
12Guido Tschugg (Ger) Ghost Factory Racing Team37
13Michael Mechura (Cze) Chain Reaction Cycles / Nukeproof30
14William Evans (GBr)25
15Scott Roberts (GBr)25
16Daniel Prijkel (Ned) Team Merida Combee20
17Milan Mysik (Cze)17
18Scott Beaumont (GBr)17
19Jakub Riha (Cze)14
20Quentin Derbier (Fra)14
21Graeme Mudd (Aus)8
22Pascal Seydoux (Swi)6
23Lear Miller (USA)4
24Premek Tejchman (Cze)2
25Jordan O'keeffe (RSA)2

 

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