Willemse claims Oceania Championship in men's downhill

Elite downhill riders Rhys Willemse and Holly Baarspul celebrated victory on Sunday, taking out the 2011 Oceania Championships and round four of the 2010-2011 Australian Mountain Bike Series in Mt. Major near Shepparton.

Rhys Atkinson secured the overall Australian national series jersey after placing second in the elite men's category while national champion Leonie Picton, who was undefeated all series until today, took out the elite women's national series title.

In the men's under 19 event, world junior champion Troy Brosnan remained undefeated all series. Proving true to form, he came away with the win over fellow South Australian and national champion Connor Fearon by just a tenth of a second.

In the elite men's event, Willemse posted a swift time of 2:12.05 which saw him claim the leader's hot seat and a resultant nervous wait as the final six riders made their way down the course.

The top two qualifiers, Rick Boyer and Joshua Button, made their way down the mountain, however former series leader Boyer was unable to match the pace and Button ran into some bad luck with a flat rear tyre allowing Willemse to claim the win.

The newly crowned Oceania champion was over the moon with the victory.

"I'm just excited, so stoked," Willemse said. "A lot of people had been riding over the track, which made it choppy and really hard to ride. I pushed it a lot harder, and to come out on top today, I'm just stoked."

Rhys Atkinson clocked 2:12.61 to take silver and the series title, followed by Timothy Eaton (2:13.22) with bronze.

Reigning Oceania Champion, New Zealand speedster Cameron Cole, entered as the pre-race favourite but was a little off the pace today finishing in fourth position in 2:13.29.

Women's race

In the elite women's event, a breakthrough performance by West Australian youngster Holly Baarspul saw her collect her first senior elite title and win over national champion and series victor Leonie Picton.

The 18-year-old was particularly happy to wrap the season with an impressive performance given it was her first year in the senior elite category.

"I'm stoked with the win," said Baarspul. "It's my first year in elite and I wasn't ever expecting a top five finish this series, so to be able to win Oceanias is pretty sick.

"It was awesome riding with her (Leonie Picton) all weekend, I think she rubbed off some of her winning charms onto me. She deserves the series win overall, that's for sure."

Under 19 men's and women's races

The ongoing duel between national champion Connor Fearon and world junior champion Troy Brosnan came to a head in the men's under 19 event with Brosnan taking out both the Oceania Championships and national series title. Brandon Yrttiaho secured third position.

"It was pretty close, it's been close all season," Brosnan said. "I got some pretty good support from the spectators. I just kind of let it go loose, and it got a bit wild but in the end I had a little bit in my legs, and only just got it.

"It's good racing between Connor and I and hopefully it will stay like that overseas. I wanted to get the series wrapped up and to win all the races is a bonus, really good."

In the overall national series standings, the pair also finished in the same order.

Kiwi rider Sarah Atkin claimed the under 19 women's Oceania title and at just seventeen years of age was the fastest female across all categories today.

Full Results

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Elite men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Rhys Willemse (Aus)0:02:12.05
2Rhys Atkinson (Aus)0:00:00.56
3Troy Brosnan (Aus)0:00:00.80
4Connor Fearon (Aus)0:00:00.90
5Tim Eaton (Aus)0:00:01.17
6Cameron Cole (NZl)0:00:01.24
7Brandon Yrttiaho (Aus)0:00:01.91
8Will Rischbieth (Aus)0:00:03.25
9Ricky Boyer (Aus)0:00:04.16
10Daniel Franks (NZl)0:00:04.35
11David Mcmillan (Aus)0:00:05.46
12Tom Matthews (NZl)0:00:05.71
13Trent Piribauer (Aus)0:00:05.94
14Aden Wyber (Aus)0:00:06.15
15Ben Power (Aus)0:00:06.93
16Chris Barlin (Aus)0:00:07.12
17Jesse Beare (Aus)0:00:07.18
18Bryce Stirling (Aus)0:00:07.59
19Aaron Oates (Aus)0:00:08.17
20Jai Motherwell (Aus)0:00:08.20
21Graeme Mudd (Aus)0:00:08.32
22Mathew Dodd (Aus)0:00:08.59
23Nicholas Mcconachie (NZl)0:00:08.78
24Jarrah Davies (Aus)0:00:08.91
25Conor Bullard (Aus)0:00:09.19
26Bryn Dickerson (NZl)0:00:09.30
27Ben Morrison (Aus)0:00:09.32
28Ryan Hunt (Aus)0:00:09.54
29Aaron Bashford (Aus)0:00:10.55
30Clint White (Aus)0:00:10.63
31Daniel Paine (Aus)0:00:11.30
32Joe Vejvoda (Aus)0:00:11.31
33Mac Westmoore (Aus)0:00:12.61
34Nicolas Bohle (Aus)0:00:13.00
35Jarrad Connolly (Aus)0:00:13.11
36Mat Prior (NZl)0:00:13.32
37Dean Evans (Aus)0:00:13.34
38Marcus Fairbanks (Aus)0:00:13.75
39Remy Adderton (Aus)0:00:13.91
40Sam Trevor (Aus)0:00:14.06
41Ben Goff (Aus)0:00:14.19
42Nathan Murphy (Aus)0:00:15.16
43Ben Crundwell (Aus)0:00:15.24
44Max Hughes (Aus)0:00:15.39
45Jacob Hunter (Aus)0:00:16.60
46Hayden Lester (Aus)0:00:16.61
47Henry Blake (Aus)0:00:16.71
48Louis Hamilton (NZl)0:00:16.98
49Angus Jackson (Aus)0:00:17.38
50Ben Mundy (Aus)0:00:17.42
51Jackson Crowe (Aus)0:00:17.77
52Dan Mccombie (NZl)0:00:18.03
53Robin Frogier (NZl)0:00:18.64
54Josh Mitchell (Aus)0:00:18.87
55Benjamin Toudic NCL0:00:20.43
56Andrew Meagher (Aus)0:00:22.60
57Blake Nielsen (Aus)0:00:28.79
58Tysen Haley (Aus)0:00:29.63
59Tom Morrison (Aus)0:00:31.27
60Jeremy Hills (Aus)0:00:33.15
61Michael Watt (Aus)0:00:36.33
62Phillip Piazza (Aus)0:00:42.76
63Kaine Cannan (Aus)0:00:46.15
64Joshua Button (Aus)0:00:46.45
65James Mcconachie (NZl)0:00:48.30
DNSShaun O'connor (Aus)Row 65 - Cell 2
DNSCillian Kennedy (Aus)Row 66 - Cell 2
DNSBenjamin Cory (Aus)Row 67 - Cell 2
DNSEric Conliffe (Aus)Row 68 - Cell 2
DNSJames Kelly (Aus)Row 69 - Cell 2
DNSDaniel Bender (Aus)Row 70 - Cell 2
DNSMax Nielsen (Aus)Row 71 - Cell 2
DNSJesse Sutton (Aus)Row 72 - Cell 2
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Elite women
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Sarah Atkin (NZl)0:02:34.73
2Holly Baarspul (Aus)0:00:04.08
3Leonie Picton (Aus)0:00:05.84
4Sophie Tyas (NZl)0:00:06.38
5Shelly Flood (Aus)0:00:08.61
6Sarah Booth (Aus)0:00:08.86
7Emma Mcnaughton (Aus)0:00:18.20
8Amy Laird (NZl)0:00:21.00
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Junior men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Troy Brosnan0:02:12.85
2Connor Fearon0:00:00.10
3Brandon Yrttiaho0:00:01.11
4Daniel Franks0:00:03.55
5David Mcmillan0:00:04.66
6Trent Piribauer0:00:05.14
7Ben Power0:00:06.13
8Jai Motherwell0:00:07.40
9Graeme Mudd0:00:07.52
10Conor Bullard0:00:08.39
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Junior women
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Sarah Atkin0:02:34.73
2Sophie Tyas0:00:06.38

Australian Mountain Bike Series downhill final standings

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Elite men final standings
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResultHeader Cell - Column 3
1Rhys Atkinson250pts
2Rick Boyer246Row 1 - Cell 3
3Tim Eaton196Row 2 - Cell 3
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Elite women final standings
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResultHeader Cell - Column 3
1Leonie Picton305pts
2Julia Boer228Row 1 - Cell 3
3Holly Baarspul226Row 2 - Cell 3
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Under 19 final standings
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResultHeader Cell - Column 3
1Troy Brosnan320pts
2Connor Fearon233Row 1 - Cell 3
3Brandon Yrttiaho230Row 2 - Cell 3

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