March 27, 2015 (Rotorua, New Zealand) – On a course running fast after a week of mixed conditions, Frenchman Loic Bruni crushed the field in the Crankworx Rotorua Downhill presented by iXS, besting the field by over two seconds.
“I felt in a really good mood all day and to win here is great stuff for the head—my confidence. I had a really good day. No rain. Good weather. A lot of people on the track. It was amazing,” said Bruni.
“I think I had a really smooth run. The atmosphere was really good. Everyone was really chill at the top, so there was no pressure,” he said, noting Bruni is an amazing rider with whom he is pleased to share the podium.
Canada’s Steve Smith (Devinci Global) and Greg Minnaar (RSA) Santa Cruz did not compete due to injuries.
“First race of the season and I haven’t raced since the world champs last year, so it’s amazing to come away with the win and quite a confidence boost,” said Atherton.
Both Atherton and Bruni attributed much of their energy to the incredible crowd gathered for the event, the first of the new Crankworx DH Championships.
UP NEXT: Tomorrow, the first-round of the 2015 Enduro World Series begins with 400 athletes taking on the opening round of the Series, the Giant Toa Enduro. Dubbed the race of champions, the race will see no less than 15 world champions from across cycling disciplines on the startline at Te Puia’s world-famous geyser, ready to take on the Whakarewarewa Forest’s iconic singletrack. And despite the racers facing seven stages that take in nearly 60km, the top contenders will be separated by just seconds when they drop into the finish line at the Skyline Rotorua Gravity Mountain Bike Park.
For more information about all other Crankworx Rotorua events, visit here.
1. Rachel Atherton 3:22.10
2. Tracey Hannah 3:22.84
3. Emilie Siegenthaler 3:33.46
4. Claire Buchar (Can) Kovarik Racing 12.15
6. Casey Brown (Can) Bergamont Hayes 34.43
1. Loic Bruni 2:50.60
2. Eliot Jackson 2:53.16
3. Sam Blenkinsop 2:53.23
Full results here.