Atherton tops Hannah and Ragot in Windham

Round five of the UCI Mountain Bike Downhill World Cup in Windham, New York gave Rachel Atherton (GT Factory) her third victory in four races, and she claimed the overall leader's jersey, despite a controversial decision not to disqualify her for exiting the course.

The hot, dry conditions that have turned the track into a dusty, loose and fast run all week, persisted for race day. The short, sub-three-minute run meant that there was no margin for error, and a few riders either flatted or crashed out of contention as they pushed the limits.

Third ranked Myriam Nicole (Commencal/Riding Addiction) started uncharacteristically early after crashing in qualifying, and set the first sub-three minute time for the women. It would stand up until the final five women, when it was beaten by four riders. First, Emilie Seigenthaler (Scott 11) knocked 1.3 seconds off. American champion Jill Kintner (Norco International) was next, but crashed out, breaking her arm. Then Tracey Hannah, winner of round one, rode and took over the Hot Seat, two seconds faster than Seigenthaler.

"I've been struggling on some of the longer course, as I get used to racing those distances again," said Hannah. "This shorter, fast course was more to my liking."

However, World Cup leader Emmeline Ragot (MS Mondraker) was right behind her, and looked to be on a good run, over three seconds ahead by the second split time. Unfortunately for Ragot, she was hit by a crosswind on the final jump, crashing within sight of the finish line, pushing her behind Hannah after she ran across the line, dragging her bike.

Atherton, the fastest qualifier, was last to ride. The British rider was fastest at both splits but then almost crashed herself after a jump, due to the wind which blew her sideways while she was in the air. The GT rider remarkably managed to avoid going down, fishtailing off the course before recovering without coming to a stop. She managed to finish a slim 0.262 seconds ahead of Hannah.

This set up a controversy: Atherton clearly did not re-enter the course where she had exited it, which traditionally has meant disqualification. However, the rules were changed in recent years, allowing the Commissaire President to avoid disqualifying a rider if he or she did not gain an advantage.

It was clear that Atherton had not gained an advantage, but for Ragot's MS Mondraker team, it left a bitter taste when it lost the leader's jersey over what they felt was an incorrect interpretation of the regulations.

"When I crossed the line I didn't even think that I'd be disqualified," said Atherton. "I celebrated and then they said we're not sure if the commissaire is ok. So we waited and waited. Everyone kept saying 'Yah you have the win'. It kind of puts a dampener on things, but at the end of the day the commissaires were ok with it. I lost all my time, I was two seconds up at the split, and I lost all that time, so it's the commissaire's decision."

"It has been an amazing season so far. The girls are getting so fast. Emmeline is on fire and she pushes me on. I have to step my game up every race. It is exciting to have everyone going so fast."

Atherton takes over the World Cup lead after five rounds with 950 points, 30 points in front of Ragot. Nicole continues to hold third with 751 points, followed by Hannah at 732.

Full results

Swipe to scroll horizontally
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Rachel Atherton (GBr) Gt Factory Racing0:02:52.062
2Tracey Hannah (Aus) Hutchinson United Ride0:02:52.324
3Emmeline Ragot (Fra) Ms Mondraker Team0:02:52.369
4Emilie Siegenthaler (Swi) Scott110:02:54.646
5Myriam Nicole (Fra) Commencal / Riding Addiction0:02:55.917
6Micayla Gatto (Can)0:02:56.667
7Manon Carpenter (GBr) Madison Saracen Downhill Team0:03:01.360
8Miriam Ruchti (Swi) Sc-Intense0:03:02.685
9Petra Bernhard (Aut) Alpine Commencal Austria0:03:03.993
10Morgane Charre (Fra) Passion Velo.Fr0:03:04.912
11Mio Suemasa (Jpn)0:03:05.683
12Jacqueline Harmony (USA)0:03:06.152
13Sabrina Jonnier (Fra) Labyrinth Shimano Racing Team0:03:08.531
14Miranda Miller (Can)0:03:10.433
15Anita Molcik (Aut)0:03:10.817
16Fionn Griffiths (GBr)0:03:11.141
17Lauren Rosser (Can)0:03:17.387
18Caroline Sax (Fra) Team Lac Blanc / Solid / Batibois Alsace0:03:21.497
19Jaime Hill (Can)0:03:29.742
20Jaime Rees (USA)0:03:34.490
DNFJill Kintner (USA) Team Norco InternationalRow 20 - Cell 2
DNFDanielle Beecroft° (Aus)Row 21 - Cell 2
DNSFloriane Pugin (Fra) Scott11Row 22 - Cell 2
Swipe to scroll horizontally
Teams
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResultHeader Cell - Column 3
1Devinci Global Racing76pts
2GT Factory Racing72Row 1 - Cell 3
3Hutchinson United Ride58Row 2 - Cell 3
4Lapierre International53Row 3 - Cell 3
5Giant Factory Off-Road Team52Row 4 - Cell 3
6Trek World Racing40Row 5 - Cell 3
7Santa Cruz Syndicate40Row 6 - Cell 3
8MS Mondraker Team37Row 7 - Cell 3
9Monster Energy-Specialized32Row 8 - Cell 3
10SC-Intense28Row 9 - Cell 3
11Labyrinth Shimano Racing Team27Row 10 - Cell 3
12Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof27Row 11 - Cell 3
13Scott1126Row 12 - Cell 3
14Commencal / Riding Addiction22Row 13 - Cell 3
15Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team20Row 14 - Cell 3
16Kona20Row 15 - Cell 3
17Madison Saracen Downhill Team18Row 16 - Cell 3
18Alpine Commencal Austria14Row 17 - Cell 3
19Passion Velo.Fr12Row 18 - Cell 3
20Team Lac Blanc / Solid / Batibois Alsace12Row 19 - Cell 3
21Pila-Black Arrows-Mtb Herin School ASD5Row 20 - Cell 3
Swipe to scroll horizontally
World cup individual standings after five rounds
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResultHeader Cell - Column 3
1Rachel Atherton (GBr)950pts
2Emmeline Ragot (Fra)920Row 1 - Cell 3
3Myriam Nicole (Fra)751Row 2 - Cell 3
4Tracey Hannah (Aus)732Row 3 - Cell 3
5Emilie Siegenthaler (Swi)580Row 4 - Cell 3
6Jill Kintner (USA)363Row 5 - Cell 3
7Anita Molcik (Aut)350Row 6 - Cell 3
8Floriane Pugin (Fra)335Row 7 - Cell 3
9Morgane Charre (Fra)326Row 8 - Cell 3
10Petra Bernhard (Aut)308Row 9 - Cell 3
11Manon Carpenter (GBr)295Row 10 - Cell 3
12Miriam Ruchti (Swi)232Row 11 - Cell 3
13Micayla Gatto (Can)221Row 12 - Cell 3
14Mio Suemasa (Jpn)160Row 13 - Cell 3
15Sabrina Jonnier (Fra)157Row 14 - Cell 3
16Miranda Miller (Can)140Row 15 - Cell 3
17Tracy Moseley (GBr)124Row 16 - Cell 3
18Fionn Griffiths (GBr)115Row 17 - Cell 3
19Casey Brown (Can)95Row 18 - Cell 3
20Céline Gros (Fra)90Row 19 - Cell 3
21Luana Maria De Souza Oliveira (Bra)84Row 20 - Cell 3
22Harriet Rucknagel (Ger)70Row 21 - Cell 3
23Jacqueline Harmony (USA)65Row 22 - Cell 3
24Claire Buchar (Can)57Row 23 - Cell 3
25Alia Marcellini (Ita)55Row 24 - Cell 3
26Caroline Sax (Fra)55Row 25 - Cell 3
27Jessica Stone (GBr)50Row 26 - Cell 3
28Tahnee Seagrave° (GBr)35Row 27 - Cell 3
29Mélanie Pugin (Fra)35Row 28 - Cell 3
30Martina Bruehlmann (Swi)35Row 29 - Cell 3
31Zarja Cernilogar (Slo)35Row 30 - Cell 3
32Sarah Newman (GBr)30Row 31 - Cell 3
33Gabriela Williams (Cze)25Row 32 - Cell 3
34Carina Cappellari (Swi)20Row 33 - Cell 3
35Lauren Rosser (Can)20Row 34 - Cell 3
36Tamara Maria Ulrich (Aut)15Row 35 - Cell 3
37Jaime Hill (Can)10Row 36 - Cell 3
38Jaime Rees (USA)5Row 37 - Cell 3
Swipe to scroll horizontally
World Cup team standings after five rounds
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResultHeader Cell - Column 3
1GT Factory Racing364pts
2Santa Cruz Syndicate266Row 1 - Cell 3
3Trek World Racing261Row 2 - Cell 3
4MS Mondraker Team259Row 3 - Cell 3
5Devinci Global Racing245Row 4 - Cell 3
6Lapierre International244Row 5 - Cell 3
7Hutchinson United Ride229Row 6 - Cell 3
8Giant Factory Off-Road Team210Row 7 - Cell 3
9Scott11188Row 8 - Cell 3
10Commencal / Riding Addiction159Row 9 - Cell 3
11Monster Energy-Specialized157Row 10 - Cell 3
12Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof105Row 11 - Cell 3
13Labyrinth Shimano Racing Team95Row 12 - Cell 3
14Team Norco International82Row 13 - Cell 3
15SC-Intense71Row 14 - Cell 3
16Yeti Fox Shox Factory Race Team64Row 15 - Cell 3
17Passion Velo.Fr62Row 16 - Cell 3
18Madison Saracen Downhill Team61Row 17 - Cell 3
19Alpine Commencal Austria60Row 18 - Cell 3
20CG Racing Brigade37Row 19 - Cell 3
21Kona36Row 20 - Cell 3
22Team Morzine - Avoriaz / Haute - Savoie27Row 21 - Cell 3
23Topcycle By Trek25Row 22 - Cell 3
24Team Lac Blanc / Solid / Batibois Alsace24Row 23 - Cell 3
25CK Racing Santacruz11Row 24 - Cell 3
26Unior Tools Team10Row 25 - Cell 3
27Torpado Surfing Shop10Row 26 - Cell 3
28Team Are Bikepark By W-Racing9Row 27 - Cell 3
29Pila-Black Arrows-MTB Herin School ASD6Row 28 - Cell 3
30Dirt Norco Race Team4Row 29 - Cell 3
31Ghost Factory Racing Team3Row 30 - Cell 3

 

Thank you for reading 5 articles in the past 30 days*

Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read any 5 articles for free in each 30-day period, this automatically resets

After your trial you will be billed £4.99 $7.99 €5.99 per month, cancel anytime. Or sign up for one year for just £49 $79 €59

Join now for unlimited access

Try your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1