Sam Blenkinsop & Claire Buchar Win Garbanzo DH July 19

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New Zealand’s Sam Blenkinsop Wins Garbanzo Downhill at Kokanee Crankworx
Whistler Local Claire Buchar Wins Pro Women Category

Whistler, BC July 19, 2011 – With only one run to make his mark, Sam Blenkinsop (NZL) made an incredible recovery after hitting a tree to take the Pro Men win in the Garbanzo Downhill with a time of 13:44.52.

“That was hard. I hit a tree and it knocked all the wind out of me,” said an out of breath Blenkinsop at the bottom of the course. “It took me awhile to breath again after I got back on my bike. Compared to this race, the World Cup Downhills feel pretty easy. This is much longer than usual DH races, you can’t ride it 100 per cent all the way down.”

Another racer putting on the power, and linking together a good run, was Whistler local Claire Buchar who won the Pro Women’s category with a time of 16:06.68.

The Garbanzo DH is an epic course when the conditions are ideal so the variable conditions the racers had to deal with today made the course extra challenging. Cold and wet conditions up top transitioned to extremely slippery roots and rocks on the mid-mountain and then merged with dry conditions on the bottom. The racers had to constantly adapt to the ever-changing conditions but the weather stayed consistent for the entire race, giving the athletes a level playing field from the first to the last rider.

In the Pro Men category 1st Sam Blenkinsop13:44.52; 2nd Marcelo Gutierrez Villega 13:57.23; 3rd Jack Reading 13:58.44. In the Pro Women category 1st Claire Buchar 16:06.68; 2nd Manon Carpenter 16:13.82; 3rd Miranda Miller 16:55.00.

Full event results at this link: http://www.crankworx.com/index.php/results/kokanee-crankworx/2011-results/47-2011-results

The Garbanzo Downhill is a 3,400’ arm-pumping, finger-cramping, unrelenting descent from the top of the Whistler Mountain Bike Park to the valley bottom. The course snakes through some of the most challenging and aggressive terrain available in Whistler.

Course Route
The same course as 2010 was used – Riders start behind the Garbanzo lift hut -> Original Sin (including the uphill section) -> exit Original Sin at the step down/step up tree island on the Dave Murray flats -> proceed down Blue Velvet -> traverse and proceed into In Deep -> after rock face turn left towards Container (FatCrobbat would require a right turn at this point) -> from Container into No Joke/ Duffman -> remain on Duffman until merges with Golden Triangle -> continue on World Cup Singletrack -> Ho Chi Min -> Longhorn -> Monkey Hands -> GLC drops to finish.

Tomorrow the action takes air with the legendary Jeep® Air Downhill taking place for the Ams starting at 11:30-3:30pm and the Pros hitting the course 3:30-5:30pm with a live webcast. The village-wide expo and demo zone will be hopping and the sold out Deep Summer Photo Challenge will take place at the Fairmont Chateau Whistler. Download the Official Kokanee Crankworx App to stay in the know as all the action goes down.

Daily on-demand video highlights from www.pinkbike.com ensures everyone stays up to date with all the happenings at the biggest freeride mountain bike festival in the world. All of the action lives on www.crankworx.com.

The next live webcast powered by Freecaster.tv will be the Jeep® Air DH from 3:30pm-6pm PDT here: http://www.crankworx.com/index.php/schedule/kokanee-crankworx/live-webcasts. Keep up to date on all things Kokanee Crankworx through crankworx.com, Facebook.com/crankworx and make to follow @crankworx on Twitter.

The eighth annual Kokanee Crankworx is presented by Whistler Blackcomb and the Whistler Mountain Bike Park. Kokanee Crankworx is the biggest annual event held in Whistler and is also the largest freeride mountain bike festival in the world. Each year the best amateur and professional freeride, downhill and slopestyle mountain bike athletes gather for a ten-day, non-stop barrage of competition and celebration. Whistler has the world’s most diverse offering of mountain biking terrain, including 150 miles of single-track trails, 5,000 vertical feet of lift-accessed downhill runs in the Whistler Mountain Bike Park, jump parks and 20+ miles of paved Valley Trail.

Source: Michelle Leroux

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