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Gwin and Kintner repeat as US national downhill champs

Aaron Gwin (USA) Specialized Racing DH

Aaron Gwin (USA) Specialized Racing DH
(Image credit: Tour of Japan)

The 2014 USA Cycling Gravity Mountain Bike National Championships wrapped up Sunday at the Angel Fire Bike Park with familiar faces standing on top of the pro men's and women's podiums. Aaron Gwin (Specialized Racing DH) and Jill Kintner (Team Norco International/Red Bull) both showed off their dominant downhill skills in repeating as national champions.

Men

The 71-rider pro men's field took its turn on the course following the pro women and it was the second rider down the hill, Graeme Pitts (Graeme Pitts Racing) who posted the early time to beat of 4:10.14. The next 53 riders were unable to oust Pitts from the hot seat until Neko Mullaly (Trek World Racing) took over the top spot by being the first rider to break the four-minute mark as he stopped the clock at 3:59.35. Mulally remained in the hot seat with just two riders left to complete the course. Mitch Ropelato (Factory Specialized) joined Mulally in the sub-four-minute club but finished a fraction of a second behind in 3:59.39. That left defending champ Gwin, the last rider to start, and he did not disappoint the fans on the slopes of the Angel Fire Bike Park. Gwin crossed the line in 3:52.17 to don the Stars-and-Stripes jersey once again.

"This track was hard this weekend," Gwin said. "As far as physically and a challenge to be smooth, the hardest track we've raced all year. I like it. It's fast, it's dry and it's good times racing in the U.S. I made a couple mistakes but they weren't too costly. All in all, I'm stoked."

Women

After the morning's amateur contests, the pro women took to the downhill course that started at 10,500 feet above sea level, and descended 1,700 feet over 2.8 miles. Abigail Hippely was the first to crack the five-minute mark at 4:55.70. The second-to-last rider down the mountain, Amanda Batty, joined the sub-five-minute club when she crossed the line in 4:57.40. The only female rider left was 12-time national champion Kintner who left no doubt as she blazed down the trail with a winning time of 4:30.10 to gain her 13th Stars-and-Stripes jersey. Hippely took the silver medal and Batty the bronze.

"It's crazy to see the evolution of the track from day one until now with how loose and dry and blown out it got with so many people riding it," said Kintner. "That run was pretty smooth for me, no real big mistakes. I just tried to keep my momentum going and look ahead and keep my hands loose so I didn't get too tight. You can always go faster but I'm happy with that to get the title."

Junior men 17-18

The junior men's 17-18 downhill kicked off the afternoon session on the final day of competition. Demetri Triantafillou took over the hot seat with six riders to go as he posted a time of 4:19.90. Podium favorite Luca Shaw (SRAM Factory), the third-to-last rider to start, fell out of contention after suffering a rear flat tire. The next rider down, Charlie Harrison took over the lead with a time of 4:14.83, but his time was quickly bettered by Shane Leslie, who claimed the victory with a time of 4:10.95.

Results

Elite men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Aaron Gwin (Factory Specialized)0:03:52.179
2Neko Mulally (Trek World Racing)0:00:07.173
3Mitch Ropelato (Factory Specialized)0:00:07.212
4Logan Binggeli (KHS Bicycles)0:00:09.264
5Kevin Aiello (KHS Bicycles)0:00:11.208
6Austin Hackett Klaube0:00:13.097
7Ben Furbee0:00:14.760
8Austin Warren (Pivot cycles factory)0:00:15.345
9Kiran MacKinnon0:00:15.708
10Max Morgan0:00:15.780
11Cody Warren (Armer Energy MTB)0:00:17.395
12Graeme Pitts (Graeme Pitts Racing)0:00:17.962
13Zach Graveson0:00:18.389
14Michael Day (GT)0:00:18.824
15Trevyn Newpher0:00:18.996
16Dylan Conte0:00:19.126
17Chris Higgerson0:00:19.663
18Luca Cometti (Factory Intense Cycl)0:00:20.082
19Kyle Thomas (Diamondback Racing)0:00:21.097
20Kyle Strait0:00:21.938
21Steven Wentz (SRAM/Santa Cruz)0:00:22.761
22Kyle Hogan0:00:22.919
23Kyle Hickey0:00:23.205
24Corey Hatch0:00:23.399
25Chris Boice (MTB Racing Solutions)0:00:23.720
26Daniel Weinman0:00:24.369
27Johnathon Keep (ARMA ENERGY/EVIL)0:00:25.111
28Adam Digby0:00:25.115
29Kellen Lutz0:00:25.162
30Brian White0:00:25.311
31Tanner Stephens0:00:25.796
32Dillon Lemarr0:00:25.861
33Logan Mulally0:00:26.619
34Harrison Ory (Mojo Wheels)0:00:26.668
35Todd Renwick0:00:28.891
36Brandon Blakely0:00:28.956
37Weston Walker (University of Wyomin)0:00:29.416
38Dylan Crane0:00:29.948
39Timothy Price0:00:30.072
40Brendan Looby0:00:30.425
41brian scolforo (Giant Northeast Pro)0:00:30.795
42Ray Syron0:00:30.940
43Kevin Littlefield0:00:31.118
44Brandan Bohl (One Ghost Industries)0:00:31.439
45Parker Robinson0:00:31.504
46Matthew Thompson (SRAM/SANTA CRUZ)0:00:32.143
47Jason Schroeder0:00:32.367
48Christian Gonzalez0:00:32.551
49Ryan Paquette0:00:33.410
50Cody Johnson0:00:33.964
51Craig Carlson0:00:34.179
52Jonathan Allyn (Banshee Bikes/Hi-5 B)0:00:34.272
53Gavin Gargiulo0:00:34.305
54William O'Brien0:00:34.348
55Riley Mueller0:00:34.369
56Conrad Culleney0:00:34.570
57Kyle Grau0:00:34.664
58Brett Tetzloff0:00:35.885
59Matthew Condrashoff-Domingue0:00:36.072
60Brandon Watson0:00:36.646
61Leigh Harris0:00:38.284
62Kai Rogers0:00:38.662
63Tim White (Vermont Gravity Raci)0:00:41.032
64Shea Jordan0:00:41.064
65Joshua Nevelson0:00:41.409
66Mikey Haderer (IXS Unique Sports)0:00:41.852
67Thomas McCoy0:00:42.141
68Matthew Callahan0:00:44.788
69William Lujan0:00:49.051
70Antonio Gradillas (Heart and Soul Racin)0:00:50.697
71Ryan Pepper0:01:14.949
DNSChris Callahan
DNSScott Gladu
DNSCole Picchiottino (Trek Southridge Raci)
DNFBen Calhoun
DNFNate Furbee
DNFBrian Yannuzzi

Elite women
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Jill Kintner (Team Norco Intl.)0:04:30.104
2Abigail Hippely0:00:25.596
3Amanda Batty0:00:27.304
4Lauren Daney0:00:31.970
5Lindsay Yost0:00:46.984
6Rebecca Gardner0:00:55.376
7Amanda Cordell0:01:05.472
8Mary Elges0:01:08.761
9Katy Hanlon0:01:13.081
10Amber Price (The Fix Bike Shop)0:01:18.020
11Hannah Trimble0:01:28.863
12Christen Boyer (One Ghost Industries)0:01:55.318
DNFElinor Wesner

Junior men 17-18
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Shane Leslie (1 - Cat1)0:04:10.956
2Charlie Harrison (2 - Cat1)0:00:03.883
3Demetri Triantafillou (3 - Cat1)0:00:08.971
4Bryce Hermanussen (4 - Cat1)0:00:09.606
5Chase Nelson (5 - Cat1) (Trek Southridge Raci)0:00:09.840
6Matthew Fitzgerald (6 - Cat1)0:00:11.836
7Matthew Branney (7 - Cat1)0:00:12.937
8Roy Benge (8 - Cat1)0:00:16.912
9jason bohl (9 - Cat1)0:00:23.703
10Tyler Krenek (10 - Cat1)0:00:25.283
11Bryce Helbling (11 - Cat1)0:00:25.612
12Tanner Spence (12 - Cat1)0:00:25.667
13Triton Nelson (13 - Cat1)0:00:27.687
14Kasper Dean (14 - Cat1)0:00:32.165
15Luca Shaw (15 - Cat1) (SRAM Factory)0:01:18.839
16Niko Kilik (16 - Cat1)0:01:23.567

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