2018 #OceaniaMTB Championships: Downhill Preview
Downhill competition for elite and under 19 wraps up competition in Dunedin with another four titles up for grabs on Sunday. Danielle Beecroft (Australia) lines up looking to defend her title in the elite women’s with Shania Rawson (New Zealand) the 2017 winner in the under 19 women’s stepping up to elite. New champions will be crowned in the men’s though Bryn Dickerson and Samuel Blenkinsop will be hoping to find the top step again having won in 2016 and 2014 respectively.
Men: Joshua Button (Australia)
Women: Danielle Beecroft (Australia)
Last year Danielle Beecroft (Australia) added the elite crown to her 2013 under 19 title and she is back looking to defend this year. With a first and second at the opening two rounds of the Australian National Series Beecroft comes in with form. Competition will come from Shania Rawson (New Zealand) who claimed the under 19 title a year ago and will be looking to make her mark in the elite ranks.
With two former champions in Bryn Dickerson (New Zealand-2016) and Samuel Blenkinsop (New Zealand-2014) on the start ramp expect an exciting battle as they look to reclaim their crown. Don’t expect them to have it all their own way with Wyn Masters (New Zealand) looking to turn multiple podium finishes in to gold and Rupert Chapman (New Zealand) will be hoping to turn at top 10 at the World Championships in to Oceania gold.
Men: Joshua Clark (Australia)
Women: Shania Rawson (New Zealand)
2017 bronze medallist Josh Oxenham (New Zealand) is the name to watch as he looks for the top step on the podium on home soil. Leading the Australian charge is Patrick Butler and Matt Carter who have recently claimed wins in the Australian Downhill National Series. On form New Zealander’s Charlie Makea and Nico Fernandez will also be named to watch closely. As is 2016 under 19 champion Simon Read (New Zealand) as he looks to develop in the elite ranks.