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Cooper cruises to junior men's cross country title

Anton Cooper won a gold medal for New Zealand in the junior men's cross country race at the mountain bike world championships in Saalfelden, Austria on Saturday morning. The Kiwi rider upset defending champion Victor Koretzky (France) and Titouan Carod (France).

"One of my goals I set for this year was to win the world championships," said Cooper. "It's been a dream as a kid to win this thing. I'm finally satisfied. I felt relaxed. Everything just fell into place."

Cooper set the pace from the start and only Koretzky could hang at first; however, the French maintained a strong presence at the front of the field. On the first lap, Cooper was chased by three French riders in a row: Koretzky, Carod and Antoine Bouqueret (France) and Romain Seigle (France) was not far behind them.

"The pace was hot. I knew going up the first climb because I could listen to the other riders breathing," said Cooper. "I got first into the singletrack. I wasn't quite on to it and I let a couple of the riders pass me, but I managed to get them back not long after and took the lead again. I played my cards well. I felt comfortable with my race and how it was going."

Carod bridged up to Cooper and Koretzky on lap two, but by the end of that lap, Cooper had dropped them both and would ride the rest of the start-loop-plus-four-lap race on his own off the front.

Koretzky and Carod were left to battle for silver and they remained close throughout the race, but the defending champion triumphed in the end.

"I felt good today, but Anton was stronger," said Koretzky. "For me, it was difficult on the uphill road sections. After he dropped me, I ended up in a race with Titouan. I went into the last singletrack first to keep my second place on that final lap.

"The French junior team is so good. It's a good achievement for us French juniors."

Carod said, "I feel very good. In the start, I had a bobble, and on the second lap, my legs were good, and I got on the wheel of Anton. We French are very strong. Anton and Victor got clear of me, but in the finish, Victor and I were very tight."

Seigle was fourth ahead of Keegan Swenson (United States) in fifth.

"I had a little problem at the start and missed my pedal. I had to catch up, but I felt good," said Swenson. "The race was fast - consistently fast."

Swenson, who will move up to the U23 ranks along with all of the top nine finishers on the day, is looking forward to the transition and was delighted to make his goal of finishing in the top five. "It was a great season. I had a bunch of top 10s and World Cup finishes and a national title. I'm excited for the U23s. It will be fun."

Full Results

Junior men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Anton Cooper (New-Zealand)1:06:53
2Victor Koretzky (France)0:02:17
3Titouan Carod (France)0:02:34
4Romain Seigle (France)0:04:06
5Keegan Swenson (United States Of America)0:04:35
6Antoine Bouqueret (France)0:04:54
7Enea Vetsch (Switzerland)0:04:57
8Kevin Panhuyzen (Belgium)0:05:06
9Beltain Schmid (Italy)
10Manuel Fasnacht (Switzerland)0:05:07
11Nicolas Sessler (Brazil)0:05:34
12Eirik Sverdrup Augdal (Norway)0:05:40
13Georg Egger (Germany)0:05:52
14Ben Zwiehoff (Germany)0:06:01
15Martin Frey (Germany)0:06:05
16Dominic Zumstein (Switzerland)0:06:06
17Piotr Konwa (Poland)0:06:18
18Andri Frischknecht (Switzerland)0:06:26
19Artem Shevtsov (Ukraine)
20Lukas Baum (Germany)0:06:35
21Oleksii Zavolokin (Ukraine)0:06:42
22Boris Cara (Belgium)0:07:07
23Martin Stosek (Czech Republic)0:07:21
24Sebastian Carstensen Fini (Denmark)0:07:24
25Jesper Slik (Netherlands)0:07:30
26Emil Linde (Sweden)0:07:35
27Toki Sawada (Japan)0:07:44
28Ben Bradley (Australia)0:07:46
29Nigel Mcdowell (New-Zealand)0:08:13
30Raphael Gay (France)
31Peteris Janevics (Latvia)0:08:14
32Jan Vastl (Czech Republic)0:08:48
33Marc-Antoine Nadon (Canada)0:08:50
34Daniel Voitl (Germany)0:08:51
35Luis Camacho (Costa Rica)0:09:04
36Philipp Bertsch (Germany)0:09:13
37Edvard Vea Iversen (Norway)0:09:21
38Ruslan Boredskiy (Russian Federation)0:09:25
39Massimo Rosa (Italy)0:09:26
40Elias Hagspiel (Austria)
41Michael Mayer (Austria)0:09:40
42Patrick Belton (South Africa)0:09:43
43Niels Rasmussen (Denmark)0:09:47
44Omer Shubi (Israel)0:09:49
45Javier Cerdeno (Spain)0:10:02
46Sam Gaze (New-Zealand)0:10:31
47Denis Fumarola (Italy)0:10:42
48Samuel Stean (Great Britain)0:10:46
49Amado Goncalco Duarte Basilio (Portugal)0:10:55
50Casey Williams (United States Of America)0:11:07
51José Pedro Silva Dias (Portugal)0:11:28
52Alberto Rossi (Italy)0:12:01
53Max Foidl (Austria)
-1lapPaul Rodenbach (South Africa)
-1lapAlexandre Vialle (Canada)
-1lapKohei Maeda (Japan)
-1lapMathieu Dehaeze (Belgium)
-1lapMichael Thompson (Great Britain)
-1lapFelipe Rodrigo Garry Rojas (Chile)
-1lapLouis Bendixen (Denmark)
-1lapFranco Nicolas Adaos Alvarez (Chile)
-1lapIain Paton (Great Britain)
-1lapDiego Gonzalez Calderon (Spain)
-1lapKarl Henrik Nordbakken (Norway)
-1lapMartin Fusek (Czech Republic)
-1lapSylwester Seweryn (Poland)
-1lapGregor Krajnc (Slovenia)
-1lapPhilipp Wetzelberger (Austria)
-1lapRoman Vladykin (Russian Federation)
-1lapChristopher Aitken (Australia)
-1lapLukasz Szymczuk (Poland)
-1lapGuy Niv (Israel)
-1lapPeter Disera (Canada)
-2lapsFabian Costa (Austria)
-2lapsAmit Krispil (Israel)
-2lapsMaksymilian Jedrzejczyk (Poland)
-2lapsAndrea Maccagli (San Marino)
-2lapsCristian Losonczi (Romania)
-2lapsGregor Dimic (Slovenia)
-2lapsBen Comfort (Australia)
-2lapsKyle Dorkin (South Africa)
-2lapsConnor Bell (United States Of America)
-2lapsBlaz Kadivec (Slovenia)
-2lapsJihun Lim (Republic Of Korea)
-2lapsJose Antonio Barroso Roque (Spain)
-2lapsLeandro Baez (Argentina)
-2lapsNikita Fedorov (Russian Federation)
-2lapsRicardo Pelegrina (Argentina)
-2lapsSimon Vozar (Slovakia)
-2lapsAndreas Mündle (Liechtenstein)
-2lapsAdam Horvath (Hungary)
-2lapsMatej Fackovec (Slovakia)
-2lapsDominik Banyai (Hungary)
-2lapsLuka Pussnik (Slovenia)
-2lapsDylan Hattingh (South Africa)
-2lapsPaolo Rigo (Croatia)
-3lapsLukas Kaufmann (Austria)
-3lapsPawel Kawalec (Poland)
-3lapsSlobodan Stankovic (Serbia)
DNFOndrej Glajza (Slovakia)
DNFRomain Bannwart (Switzerland)
DNFFredrik Fang Liland (Norway)
DNSLucas Newcomb (United States Of America)
DNSJohan Widen (Sweden)

Rankings by nation
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
8Czech Republic189
11United States Of America172
15Great Britain141
16South Africa132
21Russian Federation115
29Costa Rica68
31San Marino26
35Republic Of Korea19


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Sue George is an editor at Cyclingnews.  She coordinates all of the site's mountain bike race coverage and assists with the road, 'cross and track coverage.

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