Whistler racers top Mt. Washington 

Beatty top downhiller, Allison takes XC, DH titles

Mount Washington Alpine Resort played host to one of the last Cycling B.C.-sanctioned mountain bike events this past weekend, the Island Throwdown, with points from cross country and downhill results going towards overall standings.

Although there is one Island Cup race left, and athletes can earn points at the Sept. 23 Cheakamus Challenge, most age categories are already decided.

There was a small field in the Mt. Washington cross-country race, which took place on the same course as previous B.C. Cup events in the area.

Whistler’s Tyler Allison placed first in the Under 15 category with a time of 48 minutes and 45 seconds, almost three minutes ahead of Sebastian Sleep of the Sunshine Coast.

Nick Geddes, who spends his summers in Whistler, placed third in 57:15.

"It was the same guys I race against in all the competitions, and it was a fun course," said Allison. "It was dry this year and there were some good climbs and singletrack, and I felt pretty good from the start."

Allison’s cross-country race season is winding down after starting up this past April. He now has a lock on the overall provincial title, and placed a close second in the nationals. All that’s left in terms of races are the West Side Wheel Up and Cheakamus Challenge, where he hopes to cut between 20 and 30 minutes off his time from the previous year.

Several members of Team Whistler took part in the race. Kerry-Anne Hamilton, who is racing for Epic Ride and Team Whistler, raced unopposed in the women’s Under 13 competition while her father Craig was first in the Master Sport 40-Plus category. Trevor Hopkins placed first in the Master Expert 30 to 39 category by close to two minutes. Dustin Gordon, riding for Team Whistler/Nature’s Path, placed fourth in the senior elite category.

Bob Allison, Tyler’s father, was first in the Master Expert 40 to 49 race, while Epic Rider Mason Protter ran unopposed in the boys Under 13.

Team Squamish riders in the pack include Jacclynclaire McClements, second in Junior 17-18; Alison McClements, second in Under 17; Kyle Salter, third in Junior Expert 17-18; and Philip Cairns, second in Junior Expert 15-16.

Sunday’s downhill event was a little better attended, but still lacked the numbers of past events.

Whistler’s Jeff Beatty, who is still recovering from a serious crash in the national downhill championships back in July, didn’t head to the Island to race but made a last minute decision to enter the competition.

He’s glad he did. Beatty finished the course in 3:42.27, better than 10 seconds faster than the next closest competitor. More importantly, he has his confidence back.

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