BASIN View mountain bike rider Tristan Ward has had a whirlwind end to the National Mountain Bike Championships.
Ward finished the national series last weekend with an under 19s third placing.
He went into the final round in Bright in first position.
But there were only a few points separating first from third, so the series was decided by whoever performed best in the final round.
Ward started the round well on Friday, March 15 by wining the fast and technical XCE sprint eliminator in the U19 age division. He also gained a fifth place in elite level, which was a higher division.
The next day, Saturday, did not go so well for Ward, with his back giving out on the first lap.
“This led to a very painful and slow four laps. I finished well down the order and pretty much ended my series,” said Ward.
Sunday was the XCP point to point event and Ward finished sixth.
“I knew my back was not good so I just started slow over the 30 kilometre race, which had massive climbs throughout,” he said.
“It was disappointing to not be able to fight for the win in the series, but I was happy to finish my first national series in third place.”
“I just want to extend a massive thankyou to my coach Mark Fenner, Torq Performance Nutrition, FTP Training, Monza Imports, SRAM,Bikes at the Basin and my family, without which none of this would be possible.”
Ward heads to Canberra this weekend to compete in the Mont 24 Hour Mountain Bike Race as a part of a six man junior team.
On the weekend of March 30 and 31, Ward will represent Australia in Tasmania at the Oceanic Games in the cross country Olympic event.
This is the first time Ward will compete for Australia.
“It is not going to be easy against the New Zealand riders. We will have our work cut out for us,” he admitted.
“But it all depends on my back. Before I hurt my back my goal was to win it, but we will have to see how I go. I am still going in there to win it,” he said.
“The two boys I ride against in the series I will be riding against again, but this time we will be working together more to get as many Aussies on the podium as possible.”