Crankworx Whistler opened the action today with the Fat Tire Crit in Whistler Olympic Plaza. The event was brought back last year in 2011 after an eight year hiatus. This year’s event drew a bigger and even more elite field than last year, and had riders looping around the packed plaza.Video by: Harrison Mendel and Scott Secco
American Carl Decker, XC specialist and two-time All Mountain World Champion, took an impressive lead early on in the race and held it with ease for the duration of the 20 minute sprint. Meanwhile Olympian and five-time time Australian National Mountain Bike Champion Sid Taberlay won the crowd over with a hard won comeback after skidding out in a corner. He couldn’t catch up to second fastest rider Canadian Cody Canning, but he did manage to make up his loss in the last five minutes and overtake two other riders to take third place.
| Mical Dyck, really wanted that $1500 pay day and led from the gun. |
| Kellu Emmett of Giant Factory Racing has loads of short track racing in her legs and was playing it cool, sitting in the top five, but not wearing herself out. |
| Jean Ann Berkenpas going on a flier off the front near the end of the race, hoping to get enough real estate from a fractured field of pursuers to get away. |
| Unlike Squamish local Brandi Heisterman-Houlding who maybe went a bit too hard early and who was the last rider to get pulled from the women's field before the final three laps of the crit, when the moto culled the field down to a final five racers. |
| Berkenpas got away, but only really from Dyck, who got spit off the back near the end and was unable to get back on. |
| However, all that NORBA short track racing worked well for Emmett, as she stayed poised and pinned it in the final lap, taking the top spot and the fat paycheck.|
| Lopes won last year and wasa the favorite heading into this year's fat tire crit. Although XC bandit Sid Taberlay is another wiley short track vet and was quick to grab Lopes' wheel. |
| Kona boy Spencer Paxson took over the front as the race passed the mid point, leading for a few laps and keeping an eye on the competition. |
| But then Giant Factory Racing's Carl Decker took over and started putting the screws to the field. |
| Decker took another $100 Prime, signaled by this bell, and then never looked back. |
| Decker opened up a huge gap when he attacked after taking the Prime. Lopes may have been able to get the rest of the field organized to chase, but he had dropped out--not sure why at this point--and with no cohesion amongst the chasers, it was Decker's race to lose. |
| Full gas from Decker. |
| Corning and Taberlay led the pursuit, but Decker had too large of a gap.|
| Show me the money...$2500 worth. Drinks were on the "Deckerator" last night...unless he's salting that away to build up a new rally car. With Decker, you never know. |
Decker’s Giant Bicycle teammate Kelli Emmett is also a XC rider and All Mountain World Champion, and her skills took her to first place. Second went to New Zealand XC champ Rosara Joseph and Canadian Jean Ann Berkenpas came in third.
While Criteriums are generally raced on road bikes and held on closed-off city centre streets, Crankworx Whistler’s event featured mountain bikes only. The 800m loop around Whistler Olympic Plaza had multiple corners, a chicane, and a straightaway for sprinting on each lap.
The entire course was lined with people and the plaza rang with cowbells as the crowd encouraged riders to sprint harder for “Prime Laps”, worth $100 for the first rider over the line. Of the top three women, Emmett took home $100 and Jean Ann Berkenpas $200. On the men’s side Decker came away with $200 and Canning snagged $100.Online Results
| Photo Credit: Blake Jorgenson|
When the Crit ended, the high-energy rock band Young Empires took the stage at Whistler Olympic Plaza to kick off the Bud Light Crankworx Concerts, partially funded by the Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW) through the Province of British Columbia’s Resort Municipality Initiative grant. Headliners Arkells took the stage after and showed why they are one of Canada’s most acclaimed rock groups.
Tomorrow Crankworx has a full day of sport and music planned with the Canadian Open Enduro starting at 10am and taking racers on a four stage race combining DH and XC riding. The event will conclude with a live webcast of the final stage from 3-5pm here on Pinkbike.com.
Next up is the Whistler debut of the Dual Speed & Style presented by Avid. Racers from all disciplines will flow head-to-head for time through a dual course where they can earn one second deductions for the most stylish tricks pulled on the mid-course booters. Kyle Strait qualified first today and tomorrow will reveal whether he can keep the lead or if Cam Zink, winner of the SRAM Dual Speed & Style at Crankworx Les 2 Alpes last July, will step up.
The Bud Light Zone will be open once again in Whistler Olympic Plaza from 7-10pm with refreshments for the +19 set. The big screens at Whistler Olympic Plaza will simulcast the Dual Speed & Style presented by Avid starting at 6pm. Then that night the concert line-up features ambient rock and power-pop starting with Jets Overhead at 7:45pm and Said The Whale at 8:45pm.
Live Streaming Webcast Schedule for Crankworx Whistler 2012
The webcasts, powered by Red Bull Media House, are live streamed at www.crankworx.com, www.redbull.com/bike and by online media partner www.pinkbike.com.
Saturday August 11
• Canadian Open Enduro (final stage) - 3:00pm-5:00pm -
• Dual Speed & Style presented by AVID - 6:00pm-7:30pm
Sunday August 12
• Garbanzo DH - 4:30pm-7:00pm
Wednesday August 15
• Air DH - 3:30pm–5:30pm
Thursday August 16
• Teva Best Trick - 4:00pm-6:00pm
• Ultimate Pump Track Challenge presented by Rock Shox - 8:00pm-9:00pm
Friday August 17
• Red Bull Joyride Qualifiers - 1:30pm-3:00pm
• GIANT Dual Slalom Amateur - 3:30pm-5:30pm
• GIANT Dual Slalom Pro - 6:00pm-8:00pm
Saturday August 18
• Red Bull Joyride Finals - 5:30pm-7:30pm
Sunday August 19
• Jeep Canadian Open DH - 3:00pm-5:00pm
The ninth annual Crankworx Whistler is presented by Whistler Blackcomb and the Whistler Mountain Bike Park. Crankworx Whistler is the biggest annual event held in Whistler and is also the largest freeride mountain bike festival in the world. Crankworx Les 2 Alpes took place for the first time July 9-15, 2012 and was the first Crankworx event to take place outside of North America. This new event will build on Crankworx’s legendary legacy in the arena of freeride mountain biking.