Rossland mountain bikers made an impressive return to the BC Cup Downhill Championship circuit.
Over 160 competitors made the BC Cup stop in Big White on June 30, and Greater Trail racers Bodhi Kuhn finished in first place in U15 Men, Logan Merringer claimed second place in the UCI Jr. Expert Men, and Kip Shortreed took home a bronze in the Open Men (17-29) finishing just two seconds back of winner Karl Heldt (4:11.74) of Kelowna and Ben Porteous (4:11.98) of Nelson.
Kuhn destroyed the field in his first race in the BC Cup this year, hurtling down the slopes of Big White in 3:51.63, almost 20 seconds ahead of runner up Tegan Cruz. The next week Kuhn replicated his performance, topping the podium at Sun Peaks Resort near Kamloops.
Merringer finished in second spot behind Team Canada rider Patrick Laffey, who won the Junior Men’s Canada Cup Downhill at Mont. Tremblant, Que. in May. Tremblant was the first event in the four-stop Canada Cup downhill race series, the only DH event outside of B.C.
Merringer kicked off the season last month with a race on the Pro Mountain Bike Gravity Tour (GRT) circuit south of the border and finished in fifth place at Tamarack, Idaho.
He overtook teammate Keegan Fry to win the BC Cup Jr. Expert title last season, and also competed in the UCI World Cup last August, finishing in 19th against the world’s top riders in Mont Ste. Ann, Que. Logan hopes to qualify for the UCI World Championships in Mont Ste. Ann this fall.
Blaise Swain also competed and finished ninth in the U17 Sport Men.
The BC Premier Downhill Series prepares the best provincial athletes to compete on the national and international stage. Riders must complete three of six races to be eligible for an overall ranking. Five out of six races will count towards total series points, therefore, riders who compete in all six races will be able to “drop” their lowest results.
The BC Cup and the Canada Cup race in Vernon at Silver Star on July 14, Kicking Horse on July 21, and wraps up at Mt. Washington Resort Sept. 15.
The Canadian DH Mountain Bike Championship goes July 28 at Panorama Resort but is not part of the BC Cup.
The Rossland riders are supported by Teck, Sutco, Nelson Credit Union, and Revolution Cycles.