French dominate in 26” Trials final
Pietermaritzburg – It was the French who controlled the finals of the men’s Elite 26” Trials on a crisp evening at the Cascades MTB Park when they managed to grab first and second with Vincent Hermance dethroning Gilles Coustellier as the World Champion on Saturday.
The men’s final got underway in front of a great crowd and controversy arose early in the Husqvarna section of the course where defending champion Coustellier was initially adjudged to have moved his bike outside the area but he was later deducted the points that he had gained.
The one show piece section of the course was the ‘PMB’ section which claimed a number of victims as the angle up the obstacle was so tight a couple of the riders were penalised for their wheel axils crossing the boundary tape.
Hermance was in front throughout and only registered one five in his two laps as well as clears on five of the 12 sections of the final. He was put under a little bit of pressure right at the death as Coustellier only registered five on his last lap but Hermance proved his worth by matching Coustellier and claiming the victory by five points.
It was a Belgian who prevented a French clean sweep as Kenny Belaey claimed the bronze medal eight points ahead of fourth placed Aurelien Fontenoy who won the silver medal in the 20” final on Friday night.
The previous night’s riding was marred by the withdrawal of German rider Lucas Krell from the Junior men’s 20” after a bad fall but Saturday’s riding was not as abrasive with only Britain’s Andrei Burton taking a bit of a tumble as he attempted one of the more difficult jumps on the course.
It was a consistent performance from the Frenchman who had qualified in first place and maintained his composure throughout his two laps to claim the title.
The junior men’s final took place in the afternoon in sublime conditions compared to the two finals on Friday and it was Great Britain’s Jack Carthy who showed, once again, that he is in a class of his own as he claimed the junior World Championship title by 13 points from German Nils-Obed Riecker.
It was a stellar performance from the German who ended 18 points ahead of the third place rider – Jeremy Descloux – but he just had to sit back and admire the skill of Carthy, whose only blemish came in his second section of his first lap.
The success of winning a World Championship title had not quite sunk in for the 17 year old star who competes amongst the elites throughout the year in the World Cup events.
“I have been working so hard this year for this and it’s pretty unreal that I managed to win so well,” he said. “I compete in the elite division for the World Cups which gave me a little bit of experience but here I have to compete in my age group and I am just really glad I won.”
Even though Carthy made the Cascades MTB Park’s Trials course look easy by only scoring five points in the entire event – he said that that was not the case and he felt that it was a really difficult track to get to grips with.
“The course was really difficult but I guess I just had a really good ride today.
“It’s quite a small course which is not what I’m used to but it was a cool change from the bigger courses that we usually ride on.
“It isn’t really suited to my style of riding it seemed to work really well for me in the end,” he mentioned.
SUMMARY OF RESULTS – UCI MTB AND TRIALS WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS
1. Vincent Hermance (FRA) 14 points
2. Gilles Coustellier (FRA) 19 points
3. Kenny Belaey (BEL) 26 points
4. Aurelien Fontenoy (FRA) 34 points
5. Rafael Tibau Roura (ESP) 36 points
6. Andrei Burton (GBR) 43 points
7. Nicolas Vuillermot (FRA) 46 points
8. Kevin Aglae (FRA) 52 points
JUNIOR MEN’S 26”
1. Jack Carthy (GBR) 1 point
2. Nils-Obed Riecker (GER) 14 points
3. Jeremy Descloux (FRA) 32 points
4. Brian Allaman (SUI) 39 points
5. Jonathan Sandritter (GER) 42 points
6. Henri Tredup (GER) 46 points
7. Johan Buchwalder (SUI) 48 points
8. Moritz Mettenheimer (GER) 54 points