Guest blog by Ben Oliver
After a few days training and riding the track, I felt good and was really looking forward to the first World Cup of the year. The heat and humidity of Cairns made conditions difficult, but the track is awesome with technical climbs and downhills. This race also acts as a dummy run for the 2017 World Champs in Cairns.
I had a good start and was fairly comfortable in the third bunch. Happy with how things were going, pacing myself and taking on plenty of fluids, I was circulating in the top ten very well. On the 6th and final lap, near the top of the climb, my gears were not working great so I had to stop to take a piece of vine out of my cassette. The 2 riders I was riding with gapped me by 150 metres before I was underway again. I chased hard to get back up to them but was unable to bridge the gap. I finished 1 second off 8th, but very happy to place 9th. It was a great result and my best to date finishing only 2 minutes off the pace.
The European races are another step up but I am excited for the challenge. Here's my schedule.
- 14-15 May - Cat 1 Czech MTB CUP - Kutna Hora, Czech Republic
- 21-22 May - UCI MTB World Cup - XCO Albstadt, Germany
- 28-29 May - UCI MTB World Cup - XCO La Bresse, France
- 18-19 June - Hors Cat German Bundesliga CUP Heubach, Germany
- 28 June to 3 July - UCI MTB World Championships - XCO/XCE Nove Mesto na Morave, Czech Republic
- 9-10 July - UCI MTB World Cup - XCO Lenzerheidem, Switzerland
Follow Ben on Instagram @beno_oliver