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Canadian juniors storm the podium in Vallnord World Cup downhill

Cruz and Laffey on the podium with Sherlock well inside the top-10

Lucas Cruz

Canada’s junior men added two more podiums to their impressive 2019 World Cup season today in Andorra.

Lucas Cruz (SRAM TLD Racing) stormed through the deep dust of Vallnord into second place. Patrick Laffey (Devinci) joined him on the podium in third, just four tenths of a second slower.

Matteo Iniguez of France was the fastest junior man in Andorra, which saw a significant shake-up among the favourites.

Valentina Höll (SRAM-TLD racing) showed no signs of cracking in the heat, winning her third junior women’s World Cup in four races.

Junior Men – 2019 DH World Cup, Vallnord, Andorra

Record setting heat and dry weather had turned the steep Vallnord treacherous by Saturday’s racing, with a fist deep layer of dust covering some sections of track. After setting the fastest time through two splits, Commencal-Vallnord’s dominant junior Thibaut Daprela could deal with the lose dirt and crossed the line 18th.

Fellow French rider Matteo Iniguez stepped into Daprela’s shoes, winning the Andorra World Cup round by 2.714 seconds.


Surrounding Iniguez on the podium were two young Canadians. Pemberton, B.C.’s Lucas Cruz added to an already successful season, taking second place in Vallnord. Patrick Laffey followed in third.

Seth Sherlock squeezed into the top ten with Cruz and Laffey, finishing sixth. Elliot Jamieson (Norco Factory Racing) narrowly missed the top ten, placing 11th in Andorra.

Cruz’s big result moves him into second overall in the junior men’s standings, with Laffey close behind in fifth. Thibaut Daprela still has a commanding lead in the series, with 180 points to Cruz’s 99.

Ethan Shandro (Trek Factory Racing) sat out the Vallnord World Cup with an injury.

2019 Vallnord Andorra WOrld Cup Downhill Valentina Holl
Valentina Holl drops down the Andorran steeps. Photo: Bartek Wolinski/Red Bull Content Pool
Junior Women – 2019 DH World Cup, Vallnord, Andorra

Valentina Höll (Sram TLD Racing) showed she’s right back into her dominant form. The young Austrian won the junior women’s race with a time of 5:09.166. The time was fast enough to beat American Anna Newkirk (SRAM Young Guns) by 12 seconds. It also would have been fast enough to put her fourth overall in the elite women’s race.

Norwegian junior Mille Johnset (Atherton Racing) was third.

With her win in Andorra, Höll puts more distance between herself and Newkirk in the  junior overall points race.

2019 Vallnord Andorra WOrld Cup Downhill
Anna Newkirk (2nd), Valentina Holl (1st) and Mille Johnset (3rd) stand on the junior women’s podium at UCI DH World Cup in Vallnord, Andorra. Photo: Bartek Wolinski/Red Bull Content Pool