Rybarik wins the 2012 Crocodile Trophy

Ivan Rybarik and Kate Major won the men’s and women’s 2012 Crocodile Trophy titles in Cooktown after Josef Benetseder claimed the final stage of the mountain bike endurance event.

Rybarik was easily the best rider of the event after putting in an impressive performance which included four stage wins over 900km and 16,000metres of climbing.

“I just had such a good time racing the Crocodile Trophy this year,” said Rybarik. “Our team camp the atmosphere was always positive, we were chatting and talking about biking all the time. It was really the best environment for me to do well this year.”

Major took a massive lead early in the elite women’s race and was untroubled as she extended it all the way to Cooktown.

Benetseder (AUT) finished ahead of Mike Mulkens (BEL) and Australian Luke Haines to take the final stage while Ondrej Fojtik and Wolfgang Krenn finished second and third behind Rybarik on the general classification.

The field was started in staggered starts with the leaders riding out of Laura last. The majority of the riders arrived together to celebrate their achievements of the past nine days.

“Last year I got second three times, so I came back to win a stage”, said Benetseder. “It was much harder this year and those technical mountain bike stages were challenging, but today I knew it was a stage for me.”

Race organiser Gerhard Schonbacher was happy with the outcome of the race and inclusion of several new initiatives.

“This year we implemented a lot of new elements in the Crocodile Trophy,” said Schönbacher. “More mountain biking tracks, new stage destinations and even though the increased participant number meant a much greater logistical challenge in the Australian Outback, it definitely encourages us to keep improving our event.”

Stage 9: 140km, Laura to Cooktown
Elite Men
1. Ivan Rybarik (CZE), Rubena Rocky Trail Racing CZE, 34hr 08min 59sec
2. Ondrej Fojtik (CZE) 0:17:55
3. Wolfgang Krenn (AUT) 0:49:18
4. Cory Wallace (CAN) 01:11:06
5. Ondrej Slezak (CZE) Rubena Rocky Trail Racing CZE, 01:28:25
Elite Women
1. Kate Major (AUS), 42hr 23min 17sec
2. Alice Pirard (BEL), O2 Bikers/WMTB.be/Schwalbe, 45:38:29
3. Tinneke Van de Voorde (BEL) 53:13:44
4. Annie van der Linde (NED), 59:24:33
5. Jade Forsyth (AUS), 60:09:23

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