Canada’s cross country team put on an impressive display of our country’s strength in Women’s cross country at 2018 UCI mountain bike world championships on Saturday.

 

Emily Batty led the team, battling with American Kate Courtney and Denmarks Annika Langvad to claim the Bronze medal. Her third in Lenzerheide is the Brooklyn, Ont. rider’s second world championship bronze. The incredible medal performance caps off a stellar season for Batty, who was on the podium at each of the last five World Cup rounds in 2018. Batty won the same medal at 2016 World Championships in Nove Mesto, Czech Republic.

Kate Courtney eventually escaped from Batty to make a late race pass on Langvad and take the Gold medal. Courtney’s world championship title makes her the first American Woman to win at worlds in 17 years. The two North American podium finishers looked relaxed on the start line. Batty and Courtney even shared what proved to be a prophetic pre-race high five:

Haley Smith capitalized on a seasons worth of steady improvement, scoring sixth place in Switzerland. Smith’s result made for two Canadian’s in the top 10, the only country to manage that feat in the Women’s race. It is Smith’s best world championship result to date. It builds on her eighth place at World Cup Mont-Sainte-Anne earlier this season and Commonwealth Games Bronze medal.

While two Canadian’s in the top 10 is a fantastic showing for the country, it was almost three. Olympic medallist Catharine Pendrel was riding with Smith, 8th and 9th on course with 1.5 laps to go, when Pendrel suffered a flat tire. The veteran Canadian held on for 14th at the finish. Pendrel’s pre-flat position – and final result – is especially impressive considering the Kamloops rider missed the middle part of the season with a broken arm.

Sandra Walter added to her great international racing season with a 21st finish in Lenzerheide. Cindy Montambault was the next across the line for Canada in 31st. Elyse Nieuwold was 38th in her first Elite world championship appearance, followed by Catharine Fleury in 42nd.

Léandre Bouchard was the top Canadian finisher in the Elite Men’s race in 26th. Raphël Gagné and Peter Disera crossed the finish line together in 48th and 49th, respectively. Andrew L’Esperance rounded out the Canadian squad in 60th out of 90 Elite Men starters.

Full results from Men’s and Women’s Elite cross country races at 2018 UCI mountain bike world championships in Lenzerheide, Switzerland are below.

Elite Women’s XCO – Lenzerheide, Switzerland

Elite Women’s XCO : 2018 UCI Mountain Bike World Championships – Lenzerheide, Switzerland by Matthew Pioro on Scribd

Elite Men’s XCO – Lenzerheide, Switzerland

Elite Men’s XCO : 2018 UCI Mountain Bike World Championships – Lenzerheide, Switzerland by Matthew Pioro on Scribd

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