Mountain: Page 391

Mountain Bike Racing

Top guns cocked to fire at World Cup opener

Sunday’s opening round of the 2002 World Cup is lining up to be the firstshowdown of the season with all the top guns at the starting line. So far,most of the Euros have been sticking to Continental races, while the NorthAmericans have stayed closer to home at Sea Otter and the NORBA openerlast week at Big Bear.Sixty-eight women and 158 men are competing on a fast, rolling 8km coursein Madrid´s Casa de Campo. World champion Roland Green says he´sready to take on Miguel Martinez, Filip Meirhaeghe and the rest of Europe´sheavy hitters.“The course is fast,” Green said after training on it

Mountain bike World Cup season set to go in Spain

The 2002 mountain bike World Cup season opens Sunday with cross-country No. 1 in Madrid. With a scaled-back schedule of just five stops this year and some teams cutting back their commitment to racing, Madrid will be a litmus test on how the international racing season shapes up. Defending world champion Alison Dunlap, Todd Wells, Gina Hall and Susan Haywood will lead the American contingent in Spain. Canadians making the trip include world champ Roland Green, Ryder Hesjedal, Alison Sydor and Chrissy Redden. It will be interesting to see how many Spanish fans show up at Casa de Campo, a

Chausson, Kovarik tops in Snow Summit downhill

Anne-Caroline Chausson added yet another accomplishment to her amazing resume Sunday, becoming just the fifth woman to sweep the gravity events at a NORBA national. A day after the Frenchwoman won the dual slalom at Snow Summit Resort in Big Bear Lake, California, Chausson captured the season opening downhill, besting second-place finisher Sabrina Jonnier by more than six seconds. In the men’s race it was Aussie Chris Kovarik taking the day. The Intense rider backed up his No. 1 qualifying run, outgunning Maxxis’ John Kirkcaldie by more than two seconds in the final. Chausson

Dunlap, Hesjedal take sizzling short track

The joke floating around Snow Summit Resort on Saturday was that the revamped short track course put the short in short track. Minus last year’s brief trip into woods, the 2002 circuit sent riders straight up a quick climb, into a brief chicane, then back into the village via the twisty sidewalk around the resort’s base area. The result was lap times that barely exceeded a minute for both the men and women, and a relentless pace that saw the majority of each field get pulled long before the race was over. Among those who did survive were Alison Dunlap and Ryder Hesjedal, who both took wins

Bootes and Chausson take first and last slalom of 2002

After nine seasons plus one race, the run of the dual slalom came to an end on the sun-soaked slopes of Snow Summit Resort in Big Bear Lake, California. And unlike the early years when Americans dominated the side-by-side gated event, Saturday’s NORBA NCS No. 1 wins went to Aussie Wade Bootes and Frenchwoman Anne-Caroline Chausson. In the men’s bracket Bootes (Trek-Volkswagen) took down Mike King, Chris Kovarik (Intense), and Kirt Voreis (Haro-Lee Dungarees), earning the third dual slalom win of his career. In the final against Voreis, Bootes dropped the opening heat, but managed to make up

Florit, Green on top at Snow Summit

For one it was a breakthrough performance. For the other it was just more of the same. But after a long day of racing at NORBA NCS No. 1 at Snow Summit Resort in Big Bear Lake California, Jimena Florit and Roland Green both had impressive cross-country wins to their credit. Friday’s racing opened with the women taking on three laps of the revamped 7.25-mile circuit, and right from the gun Florit (RLX-Polo Sport) looked to have the strongest legs. The Argentinean national who calls San Diego home pulled away from the pack on the first lap, growing her advantage to 58 seconds by the time she

Once again it’s NORBA time at Snow Summit

For the sixth year in a row, and ninth time in 14 years, the NORBA National Championship Series kicks off Friday on the wooded slopes of Snow Summit Resort in Big Bear Lake, California. Day one will feature the men’s and women’s cross country races, with the ladies set to go at 11 a.m., followed by the men at 2 p.m. All the pros will face a revamped 7.25-mile circuit that includes two new hike-a-bike sections and more single track than in years past. The course remains one of the five-race series’ biggest lung-busters. With a starting altitude of 6951 feet above the nearby Pacific Ocean, a

Lopes, Chausson repeat in Sea Otter mountain cross

Brian Lopes and Anne-Caroline Chausson reprised their 2001 triumphs on March 24 as mountain-cross paid a return visit to the Sea Otter Classic in Monterey, California. Chausson went three for three at Laguna Seca, adding a win in the four-up gravity grand prix to her downhill and dual-slalom victories. Fastest in qualifying on Friday, and never challenged in the early rounds on Sunday, the Volvo-Cannondale star suddenly found herself chasing Katrina Miller (Jamis) in the final after Miller stole the hole shot and dove down the course first. But the Frenchwoman poured it on and rocketed

Chausson, Gracia give Volvo-Cannondale Sea Otter sweep

In the offseason they shared an apartment in Spain. On Saturday Cedric Gracia and Anne-Caroline Chausson shared the spotlight, too, as the pair of French Volvo-Cannondale riders each earned wins at the Sea Otter Classic dual slalom. For Chausson it was a repeat of her 2001 victory at the race in Monterey, California. And like last year, the reigning dual world champion had little trouble marching through the 16-rider field. After advancing to the round of four, Chausson took down Marla Streb (Luna Chix) in the semis, before besting Katrina Miller (Jamis) in the final. "It’s a good start to

Canadian rules: Sydor, Hesjedal take Sea Otter short track

A pair of North Shore residents ruled the third day of the Sea Otter Classic mountain-bike stage race Saturday, as Ryder Hesjedal (Subaru-Gary Fisher) and Alison Sydor (Trek-Volkswagen) picked up short track wins. Hesjedal’s victory came after hooking up with a three-rider break that formed four laps into the 7-lap race. Right there with the young Canadian were overall leader Bart Brentjens (Giant) and Roland Green (Trek-Volkswagen). Once together the trio steadily pulled away from the pack, with only Seamus McGrath (Haro-Lee Dungarees) and Filip Meirhaeghe (Specialized) able to stay in