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Steve Smith and Rachel Atherton qualify fastest at Mont-Sainte-Anne

Canadian downhill star Steve Smith (Devinci Global Racing), has one goal on his mind as he enter his final preparations for the finals of the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup in Mont-Sainte-Anne, on Sunday: to win his first ever World Cup race.

In the qualifying run on Friday, Smith proved that he has what it takes to accomplish this goal as he posted the fastest qualifying time of the group of 111 riders, which includes the reigning world champion Greg Minnaar (Santa Cruz) of South African, and the current World Cup Leader, Gee Atherton (GT Factory) of Great Britain.

Smith was impressed with the track here at Mont-Sainte-Anne. "It's a completely different track than what we normally see in the world. It's its own kind and completely amazing. It's so fast and the dirt is amazing. The rain we have received helped out quite a bit. Yesterday morning the track was pretty bad and slow. It allowed us to cut some ruts, but the rain helped out to pact it up. Now, we can hold speed through corners, and it’s as pretty good as it’s going to get right now."

Smith won the silver medal at the 2010 World Championships in Mont-Sainte-Anne, but the track changed and Sunday will offer new challenges. "There are some sections that are the same, but overall it changed quite a bit. It only evolved and it's getting better and better."

Smith recently won the Canadian Mountain Bike Downhill Championships in Panorama, British Columbia, and is now wearing the coveted Maple Leaf on his sleeve. "This my first time being the Canadian Champion. Its nice to race in Canada, even though I am not close to home. It feels really good to wear the sleeve."

For the race on Sunday, Smith is confident his equipment has the right components to go fast. "The suspension and geometry are going to stay the same for Sunday because the track is fast and I know what I need. What might change due to the sun or not will be the tire choice. Right now I have cut spikes, but we'll see what happens on Sunday."

In the women's race, Rachel Atherton (GT Factory) qualified fastest ahead of Emmeline Ragot (LaPierre) and Floriane Pugin (Gstad-Scott).

The current Canadian Champion Micayla Gatto of North Vancouver, BC, was the victim of a flat in the top section of the course, and finished last of the group. The flat didn’t deflate her spirit, and she'll be ready to perform on Sunday.

"I think [the track] is awesome here. The buffed out a lot of stuff so its less rough than most years. Unfortunately it rained so it roughed it up a little bit, but the dirt is perfect," said the unlucky Gatto, after her run. "I was having so much fun in practice. Today I happened to front flat near the top. I don't think I even run down a mountain that fast today. Despite the flat, I am really looking forward to race day. It's a smaller field since few of the girls are broken right now, but all the top girls are here so it should make for some tough competition."

Gatto was seen at the track wearing her Canadian Champion outfit. "It definitely feels good to have the Canadian Champion jersey again. Even though Mont-Sainte-Anne is a five hour plane ride, it still feels like home as I have been coming here for so long."

Full Results

Elite men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Steve Smith (Can) Devinci Global Racing0:04:05.200
2Danny Hart (GBr) Giant Factory Off-Road Team0:00:01.097
3Samuel Blenkinsop (NZl) Lapierre Gravity Republic0:00:02.645
4Aaron Gwin (USA) Specialized Racing DH0:00:02.728
5Greg Minnaar (RSA) Santa Cruz Syndicate0:00:03.157
6Samuel Hill (Aus) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof0:00:03.890
7Michael Hannah (Aus) Hutchinson Ur0:00:04.902
8Loic Bruni (Fra) Lapierre Gravity Republic0:00:05.030
9Troy Brosnan (Aus) Specialized Racing DH0:00:05.356
10Neko Mulally (USA) Trek World Racing0:00:05.446
11Brook Macdonald (NZl) Trek World Racing0:00:05.852
12Nick Beer (Swi) Devinci Global Racing0:00:06.075
13Marcelo Gutierrez Villegas (Col) Giant Factory Off-Road Team0:00:06.317
14Matthew Simmonds (GBr) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof0:00:07.717
15Josh Bryceland (GBr) Santa Cruz Syndicate0:00:07.844
16Patrick Thome (Fra) Gstaad-Scott0:00:08.588
17Brendan Fairclough (GBr) Gstaad-Scott0:00:09.336
18Gee Atherton (GBr) GT Factory Racing0:00:09.967
19Mitchell Delfs (Aus) Evil Vengeance Tour0:00:10.146
20Florent Payet (Fra) Evil CK Racing Evian0:00:10.174
21Bryn Atkinson (Aus) Team Norco International0:00:10.404
22Markus Pekoll (Aut) MS Mondraker Team0:00:10.567
23Faustin Figaret (Fra) Topcycle By Trek0:00:10.706
24Robin Wallner (Swe) Team W-Racing0:00:11.136
25Bernard Kerr (GBr) Pivot Factory Team0:00:11.522
26Lorenzo Suding (Ita) GT / 360 Degrees0:00:11.894
27Mitch Ropelato (USA) Specialized Racing DH0:00:12.419
28Marc Beaumont (GBr) GT Factory Racing0:00:12.628
29George Brannigan (NZl) Trek World Racing0:00:12.751
30Greg Williamson (GBr) Trek World Racing0:00:13.063
31Rémi Thirion (Fra) Commencal / Riding Addiction0:00:13.070
32Sam Dale (GBr) Madison Saracen Downhill Team0:00:13.260
33Jack Moir (Aus) Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team0:00:13.557
34Bernat Guardia Pascual (Spa)0:00:13.602
35Antonio Ferreiro Pajuelo (Spa) Evil Vengeance Tour0:00:14.873
36Francisco Pardal (Por) Evil Vengeance Tour0:00:14.886
37Connor Fearon (Aus) Kona0:00:15.079
38Austin Warren (USA) Pivot Factory Team0:00:15.497
39Ziga Pandur (Slo) Unior Tools Team0:00:15.790
40Niklas Wallner (Swe) Team W-Racing0:00:15.863
41Wyn Masters (NZl) Team Bulls - DH0:00:16.551
42Joe Connell (GBr) SC Intense0:00:17.392
43Isak Leivsson (Nor)0:00:17.453
44Harry Heath (GBr)0:00:17.570
45Remi Gauvin (Can)0:00:17.571
46Jack Reading (GBr)0:00:18.154
47Kirk Mcdowall (Can)0:00:18.811
48Kyle Sangers (Can)0:00:19.061
49Joseph Smith (GBr) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof0:00:19.577
50Aurélien Giordanengo (Fra) Topcycle By Trek0:00:19.651
51Mathew Stuttard (GBr)0:00:20.047
52Thibaut Ruffin (Fra) Commencal / Riding Addiction0:00:20.063
53Scott Mears (GBr)0:00:20.549
54Adam Brayton (GBr)0:00:20.755
55Dan Stanbridge (GBr) Dirt Norco Race Team0:00:20.766
56Christopher Mcglinchey (Irl)0:00:20.836
57Alexander Kangas (Swe)0:00:21.165
58Fabien Cousinie (Fra) Hutchinson Ur0:00:21.475
59Ben Reid (Irl) Dirt Norco Race Team0:00:21.723
60Luke Strobel (USA) Evil Vengeance Tour0:00:21.777
61Jono Jones (GBr)0:00:22.607
62Lars Peyer (Swi) SC Intense0:00:22.624
63Charly Di Pasquale (Fra)0:00:23.451
64Oscar Harnstrom (Swe) GT / 360 Degrees0:00:23.545
65Cyrille Kurtz (Fra) Evil CK Racing Evian0:00:23.591
66Matthew Walker (NZl)0:00:23.808
67David Mcmillan (Aus)0:00:24.077
68Sidney Slotegraaf (Can)0:00:24.086
69Pierre Charles Georges (Fra) Lac Blanc/Scott0:00:24.102
70Ruaridh Cunningham (GBr) Unior Tools Team0:00:24.113
71Samuel Thibault (Can)0:00:24.346
72Fraser Mcglone (GBr)0:00:24.752
73Dan Sheridan (Irl)0:00:25.016
74Forrest Riesco (Can)0:00:25.056
75Quentin Chanudet (Fra) Team Sodicycle Project0:00:25.553
76Andrew Neethling (RSA) Giant Factory Off-Road Team0:00:25.750
77Edward Masters (NZl)0:00:26.632
78Rob Fraser (Can)0:00:27.361
79Benjamin Staehle (Fra)0:00:27.787
80Oliver Morris (GBr)0:00:28.872
81Gaetan Ruffin (Fra) Commencal / Riding Addiction0:00:29.113
82George Belk (GBr)0:00:29.571
83Oliwer Kangas (Swe)0:00:30.082
84Trevor Parson (USA)0:00:31.584
85Louis Hamilton (NZl)0:00:32.275
86Josh Lewis (GBr)0:00:34.734
87Jose Villalobos (CRc)0:00:34.904
88Adriano Digiacinto (Can)0:00:36.725
89Ray Syron (USA)0:00:36.932
90Will Soffe (GBr)0:00:37.938
91Christoph Felix Schnettler (Ger)0:00:38.059
92Kiran Mackinnon (USA)0:00:38.104
93Chris Barlin (Aus)0:00:38.120
94Richard ° Rude Jr (USA) Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team0:00:38.702
95Cody Warren (USA)0:00:39.697
96Basil Weber (Swi)0:00:39.775
97Charlie Sponsel (USA)0:00:43.770
98Ivan Ortiz (Ecu)0:00:44.203
99Ryan Burney (USA)0:00:44.393
100Jesse Beare (Aus)0:00:44.684
101Benoit Rioux (Can)0:00:49.140
102Angus Maddern (Aus)0:00:50.367
103James Frost (Can)0:07:41.605
DNFGuillaume Cauvin (Fra) Hutchinson Ur
DNFLachlan Mckillop (Aus)
DNFChristopher Gallagher (GBr)
DNSMauricio Andres Acuna Quintana (Chi)
DNSHarry Molloy (GBr) Madison Saracen Downhill Team
DNSMario José Jarrin Molina (Ecu)
DNSJulien Laramee (Can)
DNSHans Lambert (Can)

Elite women
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Rachel Atherton (GBr) GT Factory Racing0:04:42.400
2Emmeline Ragot (Fra) Lapierre Gravity Republic0:00:00.892
3Floriane Pugin (Fra) Gstaad-Scott0:00:01.645
4Manon Carpenter (GBr) Madison Saracen Downhill Team0:00:06.399
5Emilie Siegenthaler (Swi) Gstaad-Scott0:00:11.685
6Morgane Charre (Fra) MS Mondraker Team0:00:11.754
7Myriam Nicole (Fra) Commencal / Riding Addiction0:00:12.241
8Tahnee Seagrave* (GBr) Fmd Racing / Intense Cycles0:00:15.240
9Fionn Griffiths (GBr)0:00:27.153
10Anita Ager-Wick (Nor)0:00:31.172
11Vaea Verbeeck (Can)0:00:45.128
12Jessica Stone (GBr) Unior Tools Team0:00:47.353
13Miriam Ruchti (Swi) SC Intense0:00:49.633
14Jaime Hill (Can)0:00:57.190
15Rachael Walker (GBr)0:01:17.790
16Alison Zimmer (USA)0:01:30.723
17Taylor Allison* (USA)0:01:53.957
18Rebecca Gardner (USA)0:01:59.849
19Kristen Courtney (Can)0:02:28.042
20Micayla Gatto (Can)0:05:44.118

Junior men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Innes Graham (GBr) MS Mondraker Team0:04:20.900
2Luca Shaw (USA) Specialized Racing DH0:00:01.685
3Noel Niederberger (Swi) Gstaad-Scott0:00:07.049
4Loris Vergier (Fra) Lapierre Gravity Republic0:00:07.116
5Morgan Gulland (GBr) Great Britain0:00:07.573
6Jack Iles (Can) Canada0:00:08.530
7Dean Lucas (Aus) Australia0:00:09.213
8Logan Mulally (USA) United States Of America0:00:10.775
9Gianluca Vernassa (Ita) Devinci Global Racing0:00:11.306
10Mckay Vezina (Can) Canada0:00:12.344
11Marcus Hansson (Swe) Team W-Racing0:00:12.571
12Francesco Colombo (Ita) Team Airoh Axo Santacruz0:00:14.880
13Jason Schroeder (USA) United States Of America0:00:15.764
14Luca Cometti (USA) United States Of America0:00:16.007
15Jackson Davis (Aus) Australia0:00:18.117
16Luciano Jose De Neufville Pascal (Ecu) Ecuador0:00:24.613
17Alexander Geddes (Can) Canada0:00:25.173
18Chase Nelson (USA) United States Of America0:00:26.894
19Shane Leslie (USA) United States Of America0:00:26.979
20Galen Carter (USA) United States Of America0:00:27.346
21Lachlan Blair (GBr) Great Britain0:00:27.737
22Walker Shaw (USA) Specialized Racing DH0:00:28.097
23Hugo Langevin (Can) Canada0:00:29.498
24Mitchell O'keefe (Can) Canada - B0:00:32.890
25Ross Wilcox (GBr) Great Britain0:00:33.799
26Chris Bennett (Can) Canada - B0:00:34.844
27Lee Jackson (Can) Canada0:00:35.223
28Francisco Matias (Chi) Chile0:00:41.104
29Luke Ellison (Aus) Australia0:00:43.222
30Matt Hardwick (Can) Canada0:00:46.220
31Kelln Wyatt (Can) Canada - B0:00:50.883
32Michael Jones (GBr) Fmd Racing / Intense Cycles0:01:16.107
33Ruaridh Mcritchie (GBr) Great Britain0:01:25.685
34Myles Weber (Swi) Switzerland0:02:56.083
35Benjamin Despres-Morin (Can) Canada - B0:05:14.470
DNFMark Wallace (Can) Devinci Global Racing
DNFGeorge Gannicott (GBr) Dirt Norco Race Team
DNFJay Fesperman (USA) Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team
DNFBowen Irvine (Can) Canada - B

 

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