Ruaridh Cunningham had to take the pressure as our only downhill rider in Cairns, but on this crazy track through the tropical forest that was the last thing on his mind. No snake or spider attack happened on the track walk, so he only had to worry how to get to the finish as fast as possible. He was very fast on top part, know for it's super difficult Rock Garden and tricky Alien Tree, however he struggled to find the right flow in the middle and especially bottom part – the »flat« part of the race.
This is what Ruaridh had to say after taking 25th in Cairns: “Race was OK. I’m not super happy with the result, at the same time I’m not disappointed, it’s OK. I’ve been getting the top section good all week, but I’ve never found my groove in the middle and bottom woods. Not a disaster, but I feel I could do better and there are definitely some things to work on before the next one.
Bottom part was very flat, with a lot of turns that you couldn’t really lean in to. I just found it very tricky. Because it was flat it was very easy to loose momentum and slightest slip or mistake and you lost a second. I’ve been battling it all week, did couple of mistakes there and I think ultimately this is where I lost time.”
He also adds: “25th on an average day is OK, but I want more.” We know he can do much more, and we all look forward to next race that will take place on the home soil in Fort William.
Ruaridh is now 22nd in the UCI MTB World Cup standings.
World Champions Rachel Atherton and Loic Bruni were the fastest in Cairns. Racing continues on Sunday with the cross-country event.
Results on the UCI website
Offical website of the event
UTT on Facebook
Photos by Grega Stopar & Urban Ferenčak
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