All hail the weather gods once more. Not a drop of rain, a puddle or a pair of gloves in sight. Day 2 kicked off with riders and spectators began to get shuttled up the hill for the inaugural 2018 Crankwox Rotorua Redwoods Downhill. Hosted in the Whakarewarewa Forest and on the infamous Taniwha National Downhill course, this event is the first time in a long time an international field has set foot on these soils for an event other than an EWS.
For the strong international field, the course up in the Redwoods provided a track unlike anything else on the circuit. The loamy, loose dirt and a trail littered with exposed roots kept many on their toes. Thanks to trail builder Dave Hamilton, plenty of new features had been built and new lines created to keep the locals familiar with the forest challenged.
The biggest talking point of the day was how the out of town riders would fare against the local boys and girls. Both Brook and Keegan have spent many hours on this track and both won here before, but for guys like Mick Hannah, this mornings practice was the first time they had ridden it. The different running schedule of this event unsettled a number of visiting racers - 5 hours of practice then straight into 1 timed run doesn't make things easy.
1st - Sam Blenkinsop ( 2:53:44 )
2nd - Brook MacDonald ( 2:56:26 )
3rd - Mick Hannah ( 2:58:28 )
1st - Vaea Verbeeck ( 3:32:19 )
2nd - Casey Brown ( 3:32:42 )
3rd - Jill Kintner ( 3:39:67 )
Mentions: @cameronmackenzie @officialcrankworx