Anton Makes Strong Start to World Cup Season
Former Junior World Champion Anton Cooper made a strong start to his international mountain bike season, finishing 5th in the opening round of the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup in South Africa at the weekend.
The 19 year old made a competitive start to the race as Frenchman Jordan Sarrou pushed clear of the field from the start in the tough five-lap race on a revamped circuit at Pietermaritzburg. Anton was in a battle with South Africa’s James Reid and Brit Grant Ferguson for the final spot on the podium but had to settle for 5th.
“It was a tough race today in the South African sun,” Cooper said. “It was nothing special but a solid start to the season. I have to be satisfied considering the heat and what has been a tough past few weeks.”
Tough for Anton who has raced in 3 continents over 3 weeks at the Oceania Championships in New Zealand, then in the USA for his team and last weekend the latest round in the Italian Championships where he won the under 23 category. .
The World Cup now moves to Cairns, Australia, in 2 weeks time which is the final chance for New Zealand riders to press their claims for Commonwealth Games selection, which will be held in Glasgow later this year.
PHOTO CAPTION: Anton Cooper in action on his way to winning the recent round of the Italian Championships in Montichiari.
Credit: Cannondale Factory Racing.