Athertons, Rachel and Gee Double Up in Oz
“Proud of my bro!"
Those were the words of Rachel Atherton, winner of the 2014 UCI Mountain Bike World Cup Downhill in Cairns, Australia after she and her big brother dominated the brutal, rain-soaked, muddy course. The British brother-sister duo claimed the double on the weekend, something they’ve become accustomed to doing.
After torrential rain leading up to Saturday’s finals, the riders of the UCI MTB World Cup circuit took to the slippery course, hoping first and foremost to make it to the bottom upright and safe.
“It’s like riding through peanut butter,” Rachel said. “But when you hit the rocks you were worrying about crashing and you were sliding all over the place.”
It seemed the people who made the least mistakes to simply hold on would emerge the victors on this day in Oz. Rachel did just that, stomping her run and outriding her closest competitors, Manon Carpenter and Myriam Nicole by a eleven second margin.
“That was the hardest race ever,” the reigning World Champion said of Saturday’s mudfest. “The conditions made the racetrack horrifically muddy, slippery and slow to roll, it was so hard.”
After watching his sister claim the gold, Gee took to the slip-n-slide downhill coming out of the gates needing to put down an impressive run to win. He did so, blasting the competition with a 4:00.7 run, winning by a four second margin over fellow Brit Josh Bryceland. American Neko Mulally rounded out the podium six seconds back.
“It was a wild ride,” Gee added. “So I’m absolutely over the moon to be on the top step. In conditions like these you don’t know if you can do it.”
1 Rachel Atherton (GBr) Gt Factory Racing 0:04:50.600
2 Manon Carpenter (GBr) Madison Saracen Factory Team 0:00:11.655
3 Myriam Nicole (Fra) Commencal / Riding Addiction 0:00:25.846
4 Emmeline Ragot (Fra) Lapierre Gravity Republic 0:00:28.264
5 Tracey Hannah (Aus) Hutchinson Ur 0:00:29.581
6 Morgane Charre (Fra) Evil Vengeance Tour 0:00:32.181
7 Fionn Griffiths (GBr) 0:00:36.165
8 Tahnee Seagrave (GBr) Fmd Racing 0:00:39.261
9 Micayla Gatto (Can) Pivot Factory Dh Team 0:00:47.199
10 Claire Buchar (Can) 0:00:58.294
1 Gee Atherton (GBr) Gt Factory Racing 0:04:00.700
2 Josh Bryceland (GBr) Santa Cruz Syndicate 0:00:04.229
3 Neko Mulally (USA) Trek World Racing 0:00:06.930
4 Aaron Gwin (USA) Specialized Racing Dh 0:00:07.093
5 Samuel Hill (Aus) Chain Reaction Cycles.Com / Nukeproof 0:00:07.182
6 Samuel Blenkinsop (NZl) Lapierre Gravity Republic 0:00:08.576
7 Steve Peat (GBr) Santa Cruz Syndicate 0:00:10.073
8 Sam Dale (GBr) Madison Saracen Factory Team 0:00:10.284
9 Troy Brosnan (Aus) Specialized Racing Dh 0:00:10.535
10 Marcelo Gutierrez Villegas (Col) Giant Factory Off-Road Team 0:00:10.925
Sunday’s cross country competition saw two-time Olympic Champion, Julien Absalon claim his second consecutive UCI Mountain Bike World Cup victory, following up his impressive performance weeks prior in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa. The Frenchman put up an impressive time of 1:38.22 to edge Mathias Flückiger for the win.