One, Two, Three, Say “Lederhosen”
Caroline Buchanan clearly wanted the win more than anyone else. She’d already won the Crankworx Rotorua Pump Track Challenge, and taken a 2nd place at Crankworx Les Gets. This past Friday night in Innsbruck, at the Raiffeisen Club Pump Track Challenge presented by RockShox, the former Olympian and reigning UCI 4x World Champion pulled out all the stops to take the gold.
The women’s final was so close that Buchanan and 2nd place finisher Jill Kintner were originally declared dead even after the first heat — Buchanan was actually down .006 of a second. Her final margin of victory was just .03.
Caroline’s Airborne was equipped with a RockShox Pike DJ fork, SRAM Level Ultimate brakes and an X01 crankset with the direct mount chainring removed. Per Crankworx Pump Track rules, chains are not allowed, and the removal of her chainring cleaned up the look of her chainless bike.
Though Mitch Ropelato wasn’t able to pull off the Crankworx Innsbruck win, his outfit of lederhosen with the traditional suspenders and a red-and-white-checkered shirt made him a clear crowd favorite. Ropelato, who declared himself to still be “a little bit off” following his huge Speed and Style crash at Crankworx Les Gets, was set to wear the lederhosen during practice and even through qualifying, but was planning to swop them for his proper Troy Lee Designs kit for racing. As it turns out, the lederhosen started to break in, and qualifying went well enough [4th], so Mitch opted to stick with the traditional gear. Save for a little bobble in the second heat of the final round, the American in lederhosen might’ve won.
In the small final it was ‘bama-born Barry Nobles against Crankworx Les Gets Pump Track Challenge winner Adrian Loron — and Nobles had all the motivation. He used every cell in his body to attack the Innsbruck track and ride away with 3rd.