Local riders top provincial mountain bike championships 

You’d never know Whistler’s mountain bike season got off to a late start with a heavy snowpack this year, as no fewer than eight local riders found themselves on the podium at the XC Provincial Championships at Bear Mountain this past weekend. There was also an unsanctioned downhill event.

Starting with the youngest racers, Kerry-Anne Hamilton of Whistler and Jenna Wilkins of Pemberton were first and second in the Under 13 Women’s category with times of 13 minutes and 37 seconds and 14:26 respectively.

In Under 15 Men, Max Horner was the top racer in 29:53 while Nick Geddes picked up the bronze medal in 30:08. Lauren Rosser of Squamish was the top Under 15 female.

In Under 17 Women, Lauren Hughes and Eden Imbeau of Team Squamish were second and third.

Whistler’s Tyler Allison cleaned up in Under 17 Men, posting a time of 1:28:09, 3:43 faster than Sebastian Sleep of Gibsons. One of Allison’s lap times would have been the second fastest of the day in the elite category, but he did lose some ground when he flatted and had to race the last 10 minutes with no air in his back tire.

Whistler’s Jesse Melamed was fourth in the race, behind Zac Gartside of Squamish. Jacob Melville and Hyaden Drygas of Squamish were fifth and sixth, followed by Colten Mahood of Brackendale.

In the 40 to 49 age category, Bob Allison finished first with a lead of close to two and a half minutes. Allison has won every race he’s entered this year for his age category, including the Test of Metal.

“It was definitely a goal to win the B.C. Championships and I still have my sights set on the Canadian Championships as well,” he said. “This was a good test because it was a bigger age group. Usually I’d be in 45 to 49, but for this race they combined two categories into 40 to 49 which is the way I’d rather have it.”

The course at Bear Mountain had less climbing than other years, but was more technical with the addition of more singletrack.

“It’s definitely full-on riding, some of the sections were new and there was some great stuff on it. When you weren’t climbing roads you were riding technical trails,” said Allison.

Both Allisons, Bob and Tyler, have been squeezing in some workouts with Whistler trainer Val Burke, and Bob says he has been training harder this year.

Trevor Hopkins was first in Master 30 to 39 men by close to 50 seconds.

In Master 40-Plus Women, Cathy Jewett took the win by more than three minutes.

In Pro Elite, North Vancouver’s Alison Sydor took the win by more than nine minutes over Squamish rider Meghan Kindree. Whistler’s Joanna Harrington was fourth.

Ricky Federau of Abbotsford won the men’s Pro Elite race, followed by Squamish’s Neal Kindree in second place. Ryan Edwards of Squamish was fifth, and Dustin Gordon of Pemberton ninth.

Philip Cairns of Team Squamish was second in Junior Men 17-18.

In the downhill races, Max Horner won the Under 15 Men’s race in 3:59, followed by Nick Geddes in 4:08.

Kerry-Anne Hamilton was second in Under 15 Women in 6:20.

In Under 17 Men, Ian Morrison was second in 3:50, and Simon D’Artois fifth in 3:58. Tyler Allison was ranked sixth overall out of more than 40 racers in the category, but there was an error with timing and it’s likely that he actually won the race.

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