The final race at the Kokanee Crankworx in Whistler saw Trek World Racing take 2 top fives in the Pro Men's Canadian Open Downhill yesterday, with Justin Leov (NZL) securing 3rd place on the podium and teammate, Andrew Neethling (RSA), just tenths behind in 5th.
Taking place on the hottest day of the week, conditions on the mountain were tough and saw the course become a serious dust bowl in the on-going dry weather. Already quite technical, the course remained largely unchanged from last year with lots of rocks and roots so the dust made things trickier still, loosening up the track and making it seriously slippery as well as hard for the riders to see.
A nail-bitingly close top 5 saw just 0.63 seconds between 2nd and 5th places, with Gee Atherton (GBR) taking the win posting 3mins 04.14secs, more than 5 seconds clear of 2nd placed rider, Lewis Buchanan (SCO). Justin finished only 0.04 of a second behind Buchanan, while Andrew finished a slightly frustrating 0.59 seconds off Justin’s time and the podium spot he'd hoped for.
Justin said: "It was good today. The course was pretty blown out and dusty and I was a bit nervous at the start gate that maybe I'd wash out on a couple of turns so I didn’t go for anything too flashy. I just focussed on riding down the hill to get back on the podium so I'm pretty happy with that."
Andrew said: "It felt like a really good quali run I reckon, but unfortunately it was a race. I just lacked a bit of pace and we don't do a quali at this race, and I feel I needed that. I felt good and really calculated but I got 5th and I wanted way more than that. If we had another race run I reckon I'd do better but we didn't and that's the format and I got beaten. It's a good kick for getting focussed on another race in two weekends".
Next stop for Andrew and Justin is the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup in Windham, NY, (USA) where the boys join the full Trek World Racing team for the 6th and final rounds of both the Cross Country and Downhill World Cup series taking place on 28/29 August 2010.
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For more information on the team visit: www.trekbikes.com/twr