After last year’s successful XCO round at the Margaret River Wooditjup trails, this year’s weather really turned it on for the 150 racers who competed at the weekend. As part of the Down South MTB Festival, riders raced at the Meelup Trails near Dunsborough on Saturday before heading down to Margaret River early Sunday morning. The State Cross Country Series features events all over WA and is organised by the Perth Mountain Bike Club, with Chris Park from PMBC compering the event. “It’s always a pleasure to come to Margaret River and support the local MTB community,” Park said. “Leo Cerda and his group of Margaret River Off-Road Cycling Association supporters again this year provided a superb event for round six of the Auscycling WA cross country State series. “ Over 180 competitors turned out to race these fantastic trails in Wooditjup. “From the juniors right through to elite level racers, all had fantastic races on these pristine trails. This is why we keep coming back every year.” First away were the under-9s and under-13s who raced short courses featuring some of the new trails in the old Pines area. The youngest rider was just four years old and managed one lap, helped by his dad. Apparently they stopped for a snack halfway round. Next were the lower-grade riders on mainly blue trails with favourites Big Pine and Pugsley providing close racing and plenty of scope for testing skill levels. Finally, riders in the elite divisions set off to tackle a longer course which included black trails such as the daunting rocky sections of Paper Trail and Golden Carrot. Cross-country mountain bikes are built to be light and fast, so they are fast uphill. That also means they are a bit twitchier on rocky downhill sections. Tony Tucknott, legendary Australian cross country rider, once again enthused about the event and suggested that holding the State Championships in Margaret River might be considered at some stage. He went on to praise the layout of the course and organisation of the event, a credit to the volunteers at MRORCA and PMBC. The Wooditjup Trail Network featuring the Wooditjup Trails and the newly-constructed Pines Trails hosts thousands of riders each year and events such as the XCO Series, the Gravity Enduro, the Cape to Cape MTB Race and the Margaret River MTB Muster bring visitors from all over the State to the town. MRORCA maintains the trail network, entirely on a volunteer basis, working closely with Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions to provide locals and visitors with a premium riding experience, as well as encouraging young riders through coaching programs. Results A-grade men: 1 Cadel Adams 2 Cameron Schmid 3 Oliver James. A-grade women: 1 Tracey Chapman 2 Sarah Tucknott 3 Zoe Davidson. B-grade men: 1 Lewis Blackie 2 Jason Bennett 3 Bevan Spaull. B-grade women: 1 Sara Sarson 2 Larissa Roth 3 Neasa Jordan. C-grade men: 1 Brett Giblett 2 Darren Hunt 3 Lindsay Dove. C-grade women: 1 Maddy Rhodes 2 Carol Willcocks-Daniel 3 Olivia Vogel. D-grade men: 1 Colin McCrory 2 Ian Savage 3 Glenn Stubberfield. E-grade men: 1 Solomon Torrance 2 Chris O’Brien 3 Mark James. Under-19 men: 1 Bailey Christie 2 Tom Rubery 3 Finlay Walker. Under-17 men: 1 Aiden Wright 2 Darby Gaebler 3 Elliott Wardle. Under-17 women: 1 Hannah Elliot 2 Megan Smith. Under-15 men: 1 Connor Wright 2 Jordan Watkins 3 Ben Scott. Under-15 women: 1 Lily Lucas 2 Sienna Jordan.