Great Britain’s Reece Wilson was crowned as the elite men’s downhill world champion on the final day of the UCI Mountain Bike World Championships in Leogang, Austria, finishing off a successful day for the British downhill mountain bikers.
Wilson’s smooth, stylish ride saw him post a time of 3:51.243 and take to the hot seat early on in the competition, where he had a tense wait to see whether any of the 31 remaining competitors could beat his time. When the final rider, defending champion Loic Bruni, crashed on his run, the victory was sealed for Reece and the Scottish rider took the rainbow jersey.
Upon learning of his victory, an emotional Reece said: “I don’t know what went right this weekend, I was ready for it to be wet or dry… I just believed in myself. I needed a year off, I used it productively and I came here and I believed I could be the guy who could win. And now that I’m here, I can’t believe it! I’ve worked really hard, and yeh – here we are.”
In silver medal position was Austria’s David Trummer, who crossed the line 3.197 seconds slower than Wilson, while France’s Remi Thirion won bronze.
Great Britain’s Bernard Kerr and Greg Williamson also finished in the top ten, finishing in fifth and seventh place respectively, while Danny Hart was 13th, Matt Walker was 16th, Charlie Hatton was 23rd and Laurie Greenland was 37th.
It was a remarkable day for the Great Britain Cycling Team’s junior men’s downhill riders earlier on, with six British riders all finishing within the top eleven places.
Dan Slack won the silver medal, just 2.141 seconds behind the victor Oisin O’Collaghan from Ireland, while James Elliott finished in third to take the bronze medal. Fellow GB riders Dennis Luffman, Luke Mumford and Luke Williamson finished in fourth, fifth and seventh place respectively while Ethan Craik finished just outside the top ten, in 11th place. Connor Smith finished in 46th place overall.
In the women’s race, Mikayla Parton was Great Britain’s highest placed finisher in an impressive fifth place, 23.164 seconds behind the victorious Camille Balanche from Switzerland. Tahnee Seagrave was unfortunate to crash during her run, finishing in 11th overall while Stacey Fisher finished in 13th place. Myriam Nicole from France and Monika Hrastnik from Slovenia completed the podium, winning the silver and bronze medals.