Launceston riders dominate Australian Schools Mountain Bike Championships

Fox on a run: Launceston's Sam Fox celebrates his national titles on the Gold Coast. Picture: Facebook
Fox on a run: Launceston's Sam Fox celebrates his national titles on the Gold Coast. Picture: Facebook

Launceston’s Sam Fox cemented his world championship selection by claiming two national titles.

Fox led the way at an event where five of the six cross-country podiums featured Launceston riders.

On the day that Mountain Bike Australia confirmed a team including Launceston Mountain Bike Club members Fox and Alex Lack, the Launceston College student was celebrating double success.

Fox, who turns 18 this month, won both the cross-country and eliminator year 11-12 titles at the Australian Schools Championships at the Nerang State Forest on the Gold Coast.

“It is going to be a rude shock returning to Tasmania again,” Fox said on Facebook. “It’s been a successful campaign here, with a win in both XCE and XCO, and a wonderful showing with around 260 kids.”

Watched by his grandparents, Fox continued his excellent comeback form before he heads to Switzerland later this month.

The former junior Oceania champion also won the Tasmanian school title in May having finished third at nationals and Oceanias in February.

Fox was among several Tasmanians celebrating success at the same venue used for the Commonwealth Games in April, with members of the Launceston-based Van Diemen Cycling Team performing well.

Hamish Mckenzie and Conor Dobson finished first and third respectively in the year 7-8 boys’ race and their fellow St Patrick’s College students Taylah Sherriff and Naomie Harris mirrored the feat in the girls’. 

Fenella Harris (St Pat’s) and Liam Johnston (Launceston Christian School) both placed second in their year 9-10 races and Riley Cowling (St Pat’s) was eighth.

In the elimination events, McKenzie and Dobson again finished first and third and Sherriff added another win.

In a further example of Tasmanian dominance, McKenzie, Sherriff, Cowling and Fox topped their time trials with Naomie Harris fourth and Johnston 10th. 

Fenella Harris (St Patrick's College) and Jessica Callander (Launceston College) finished together in ninth and 10th.

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