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Graves Aussie National 4X Champ

It’s the height of the mountain bike season Down Under at the 2011 Specialized Australian Mountain Bike Championships are underway in Adelaide.

In four-cross, 2009 world champion Jared Graves survived a clash with New South Wales’ Graeme Mudd on the second last corner to take his fourth national mountain bike championship title on Thursday. Queensland’s Sarsha Huntington comfortably claimed the Australian championship jersey in the elite women’s race.

“I thought I was coming in tight (to the second last corner) but he just came in hot and a bit tighter.  I started sliding and he started sliding a bit more and I was pretty lucky not to go down with him,” said Graves, the current UCI world number 1.

After the clash Mudd ended up in the fourth and final position. 16-year-old Joe Vejvoda put in an impressive performance to take the silver medal, while Richard Levinson took out the bronze.

In the women’s competition, current Oceania champion Huntington rode to a comfortable victory ahead of Canberra’s Julia Boer and fellow Queenslander Jayne Rutter.

The 2011 Specialized Australian Mountain Bike Championships continue Feb. 25 with the cross-country competition.

Elite men’s 4X

1. Jared Graves (QLD)

2. Joe Vejvoda (NSW)

3. Richard Levinson (QLD)

4. Graeme Mudd (NSW)

Elite women’s 4X

1. Sarsha Huntington (QLD)

2. Julia Boer (ACT)

3. Jayne Rutter (QLD)

4. Natasha Bonney (NT)

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