Chris Firman (Qld) made history by being Australia’s first individual JWOC MTBO podium placegetter with his 5th in the middle championships yesterday in Hungary. He was also in our history making relay team that placed 5th in 2010. What a great result in the 65 person field that has increased dramatically in depth since the Jwoc’s inception! Chris has travelled extensively to our national series and also to New Zealand to get competition and this fine result is a pleasing reward. Chris was an early starter and actually was leading until the last starting group came through with some faster times. The winner Czech’s Krystof Bogar was a dual gold medal winner in 2011. All our other junior boys raced well also, showing tremendous fitness on the fast, physical course and in very hot conditions.
Melanie Simpson also rode excellently being just 4 minutes from a medal although in 23rd place. Overshooting a turn-off to control 8 cost her almost two and a half minutes, but other than that she was riding as fast as the top women. Switzerland’s Ursini Jaggi won her first gold medal. Finnish rider Susanna Laurila was initially thought to have won but had punched a men’s control in a detailed area near the finish . Quite a few riders “lost” a minute or so on an unmarked track towards the end of the course, which was quite a topic of debate.
With the courses being more physical than technical, with relatively few route choice headaches it was no surprise that the stronger male riders dominated the medals. Finland’s Samuli Saarela added another gold to his collection ahead of Russian speedster Anton Foliforov, whilst there was a tie for 3rd place. Steve Cusworth was our best but had a variety of mistakes that interrupted his flow.
There was further excitement when the Jackson name won gold also today. This time it was Carolyn Jackson who had a strong win in W50.
There is a rest day tomorrow with the Championships resuming on Friday with the relays which are again being held in the open terrain, as utilised in the sprint.
I’m sure that there will be some interesting write ups in the team blog –http://ausmtboteam.blogspot.com.au
1 Krystof Bogar Czech Rep 41:25
2 Taaniel Tooming Estonia 42:05
3 Grigory Medvedev Russia 42:17
4 Marcell Horváth Hungary 43:02
5 Chris Firman Australia 43:22
6 Cedric Beill France 43:35
13 Tom Goddard 45.08
21 Marc Gluskie 46.18
32 Heath Jamieson 49.21
36 Karl Withers 50.55
1 Ursina Jäggi Switzerland 46:40
2 Ingrid Stengard Finland 47:35
3 Nina Hoffmann Denmark 48:42
4 Ramune Arlauskiene Lithuania 48:44
5 Laura Scaravonati Italy 48:46
6 Gaelle Barlet France 48.48
23 Melanie Simpson 52.26
42 Marquita Gelderman NZ 57.25
58 Christine Browne NZ 66.50
1 Samuli Saarela Finland 50:49
2 Anton Foliforov Russia 51:42
3 Samuel Pökälä Finland 51:46
3 Jan Svoboda Czech Rep 51:46
5 Ruslan Gritsan Russia 52:18
6 Jussi Laurila Finland 52:19
68 Steve Cusworth 62.54
79 Oscar Phillips 67.09
80 Ricky Thackray 67.22
W40 – 9th Tasmin Barnes
M40 – 40th Bruce Patterson
W50 – 1st Carolyn Jackson
M50- 23rd Peter Cusworth
M50 – 40th Richard Robinson
M60 – 1st – Rob Garden (NZ)