Casey Brown riding Trek at SilverStar Mountain Resort during CLIF Crankworx Tuesday, July 28. (Clint Trahan photo)

B.C.’s best bikers crank out top spots at Crankworx

Finn Iles and Casey Brown No. 1 in first day of CLIF Crankworx mountain biking at SilverStar

Racing is officially back, and the first victors of the CLIF Crankworx Summer Series have been crowned. Under a punishing mid-summer sun that pushed temps into the mid-30s, 24 of the world’s best riders came together to see how they stacked up against their peers from across disciplines in the SilverStar Enduro.

Coming out on top after four stages were Whistler’s Finn Iles and Vernon-local Casey Brown.

“So much drama,” said a breathless Brown after charging across the finish line. “I got to the top and only had a few minutes before dropping in…the timing was tight. I forgot to take my shock out of lock mode, so I dropped in locked in and as soon as I dropped in over those rough rocks I could tell right away. I was like ‘Oh Jesus, this is going to be a rough one.’ And then halfway down the rocks I heard the ‘sssssss’ and it slowly went down. Luckily I had enough air in it for the first big rock roll. I just tried to hold on and pedal as much as I could and not let the back end fly off the trail. It was sketchy.”

Coming in hot behind her was Vaea Verbeeck. Sporting her Queen of Crankworx number plate, Verbeeck took the wins on the second and third stages (after Brown took the first), but ultimately finished 1.6 seconds behind her.

“I’m super stoked to be here racing my friends,” said Verbeeck, who calls nearby Coldstream home. “We have such a stacked field of athletes. It doesn’t feel any less hard compared to the World Tour, at all, especially since everyone here is a professional in their own discipline.”

Squamish’s Miranda Miller took the final podium spot after a consistent day with two second and two third place stage results.

On the men’s side, a commanding start for an early overall favourite. Finn Iles put his downhill mettle to the test and came out on top.

“I had so much fun today,” said Iles. “It was like riding with my friends. Every time I got on track I was just riding fast and flowy. The tracks were really fun and kind of suited my riding style. It was a sick day.”

On top of the win, the 20-year-old said the thrill of getting back in between the tape added a great feeling to the day.

“I haven’t put a race plate on my bike in, I would say, 10 months now. Since September at World Championships…as soon as I put it on there and as soon as I dropped in on the first stage I was like ‘Ohh, this is sick. I miss this feeling.’ That exhilaration and that intensity that you don’t really get anywhere else. I had a lot of fun today.”

Sharing the podium with Iles, Kasper Woolley took second, and Rhys Verner third. The two Squamish enduro riders each took a stage win, with half a second separating the two in the end.

Crankworx is bringing the action from the mountains live until Aug. 14 between SilverStar, Kickin Horse and Sun Peaks, available on crankworx.com, pinkbike.com and EDGEsport (available to view through TV, online and digital services).

READ MORE: SilverStar cranks out mountain biking race

READ MORE: Gnomes smashed, stolen from SilverStar


@VernonNews
jennifer@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Mountain bikingpro sport

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Just Posted

B.C. Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau outlines her party's climate action platform at Nanaimo's Vancouver Island Conference Centre earlier this month. (News Bulletin file photo)
Green leader Furstenau declared victor in her home riding on Vancouver Island

Cowichan Valley voters elect freshly minted party leader for her second term

John Horgan has been re-elected the MLA for Langford-Juan de Fuca. (File-Black Press)
Horgan trounces challengers to be re-elected in his Vancouver Island riding

MLA has represented constituency of Langford-Juan de Fuca and its predecessors since 2005

Efforts to replace the aging Rutland Middle School have been put off by another year by the ministry of education. (File photo)
Education ministry won’t replace Rutland Middle School anytime soon

New Westside Secondary top priority for ministry of education

West Kelowna Warriors goaltender Roman Basran stood tall in a 4-3 shootout victory over the Vernon Vipers Friday, Oct. 23, 2020. (Lisa Mazurek Photography)
Vernon Vipers fall to West Kelowna Warriors in shootout

Kelowna Rockets goalie Roman Basran helped the warriors to a 4-3 SO win Friday night.

Thanks to efforts by a Kelowna shelter and Elections BC, anyone who wishes to can vote in the 2020 BC Provincial Election, even if they don’t have a fixed address. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)
Kelowna group ensures people experiencing homelessness can vote

Shelter supervisor says voting ‘a fundamental right’ even for those without a fixed address

(Image by Ulrike Leone from Pixabay)
QUIZ: A celebration of colour

Fall in British Columbia is a time to enjoy a spectrum of vivid colours

Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam responds to a question during a news conference Friday October 23, 2020 in Ottawa. Canada’s top physician says she fears the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths may increase in the coming weeks as the second wave continues to drive the death toll toward 10,000. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s top doctor warns severe illness likely to rise, trailing spike in COVID-19 cases

Average daily deaths from virus reached 23 over the past seven days, up from six deaths six weeks ago

Cole Collingwood casts his mock ballot at Vernon’s Mission Hill Elementary School ahead of the provincial election Oct. 24, 2020. (Brendan Shykora - Morning Star)
PHOTOS: Okanagan students cast mock election ballots

At Mission Hill Elementary, the election is a chance to learn about the democratic process

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

The deer were allegedly shot within Princeton town limits, late at night. Black Press File Photo.
Armed man, in full camouflage, allegedly shoots deer in downtown Princeton

‘The list of charges goes on and on,’ said RCMP Sgt. Rob Hughes

Andrew Allen performed for two intimate crowds of 50 at the Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre Oct. 17. (Camillia Courts Photography)
Live events continue on North Okanagan stage

First Andrew Allen plays two sold-out shows, next up have a laugh with comedian Mike Delamont

100 Mile Conservation officer Joel Kline gingerly holds an injured but very much alive bald eagle after extracting him from a motorist’s minivan. (Photo submitted)
B.C. driver thought he retrieved a dead bald eagle – until it came to life in his backseat

The driver believed the bird to be dead and not unconscious as it turned out to be

Most Read