WTB's PR representative, Daniel Carruthers won the International Exchange Race in Nanning China. It was quite a convincing win over second place by 10 minutes and quite impressive considering the race was short, three laps of 3kms each. But super hilly and technical single-track.
"It was a thrilling track," says Carruthers, "It was a refreshing to turn up to a race here in China and race 99% on good old twisting single track that requires your 100% concentration at all times. The International Exchange Race only had about 20 competitors and it was an easy win for me - more like a warm up for the main elite event of the day."
Mountain bike racing is very popular in China, however most events are run on the road and this is not very conducive to the spirit of mountain biking. Despite this trend of running mountain bike road races, there is a definite shift towards holding real off-road mountain biking. The Nanning Sports Association together with the Local Cycling Federation are part of this new shift and were successful in putting together a high quality track that would satisfy any discerning mountain biker. The event also served to promote mountain biking as a sport to the locals and many riders from all over China participated.
The main event of the day, the Elite Category, was hotly contested by some of China's best mountain bikers and Feng Kuanjie (TRIACE Team) emerged as the victor, with a winning margin of nearly three minutes. WTB's Daniel Carruthers, who took part in the earlier race, despite crashing early on still posted a commendable result to finish in the top 20 from 72 riders.
2012 is looking like to be a big year for WTB in China as we seek to increase our presence at the grassroots levels in the Chinese mountain biking community. WTB will be at the forefront of the new 'real' mountain biking movement with longer and more challenging races on offer.