The Official UCI Event Press Releases
Le Corguillé (FRA) and Willoughby (AUS) win ‘the double’ in BMX Supercross
Fréjus, 10 October 2009 –Laëtitia Le Corguillé from France won the UCI BMX Supercross World Cup in Fréjus in one of this year’s most exciting Elite women finals. With this victory in the ultimate leg of this year’s BMX Supercross World Cup the determined French rider also secured the overall 2009 World Cup win for Elite women.
Just as impressive was Sam Willoughby’s victory in France in the Elite men. The 2009 Junior World Champion claimed his second win in a World Cup event this year and with that the talented young Australian from Adelaide was also awarded 2009 overall winner.
Willoughby was not the favourite going in to the quarter finals. He finished only 17th in the time trials on Friday and he had a rough start in the 1/8 finals on Saturday. He barely qualified for the quarter finales with one point to spare. But from that moment on the young Australian was on fire winning all following heats including the main event.
Le Corguillé was only second fastest going in to the women’s finals. Mariana Pajon (COL) had the honours of picking the inside lane as best qualifier. Pajon was also leading the eight finalists until the last straight in the main event. But with the finish in sight Pajon had to give way to a determined Le Corguillé. The experienced French rider, who also won the silver medal at the Beijing Olympics, beat the Junior World Champion on the line in a crazy and extremely close final.
In the men’s final Willoughby was also up against some fierce competition. With Maris Strombergs from Latvia in lane four. Strombergs is the current Olympic Champion and winner of the previous World Cup event in Chula Vista. The Latvian was keen on winning. But there was also the current Elite men World Champion Donny Robinson from the USA. Robinson looked in good shape winning all his motos in the three heats of the 1/8 finals.
But Willoughby outperformed all. He charged out of the gate in the final leading from start to finish. Willoughby battled it out with Strombergs on the first straight and was leading going into the first turn. Then he managed to keep of Donny Robinson to claim double victory.
Sam Willoughby (AUS) said: “I had a real rough start of the day. The pressure was on. But I managed to pull my head back in and refocus on the job at hand. I learnt a lot today! Our approach for this year was to focus on the World Cup events and the World Championships. That worked out really good.”
“For the final I wanted the inside lane and used that to my advantage, Maris and I fought it out on the first straight and it was a drag race to the finish. It is a privilege to race against such formidable competition. Great to win here and to be the 2009 overall season winner.”
Laëtitia Le Corguillé (FRA) said: “Right now, I’m delighted, very happy! The fact that there are more and more people gaining an interest in BMX is something I’m really pleased to see. The Roc d’Azur brings me luck. It’s the third year running that the last event has been staged here and it’s the third time that I’ve won this world cup!”
This season, the French rider crashed several times and had serious injuries. “Her season has been really complicated,” said Fabrice Vettoretti, national technical director of the French BMX team. “In winning this world cup she proved that she is a great champion. There was a really big fight during this crazy final. Laetitia had to dig really deep to hunt down this victory!”
Donny Robinson (USA) said: “I was not too happy with the way I was riding and Maris, Sam and Khalen were all incredibly fast. I did not have second place speed today. So l am happy with my result thanks to some good positioning and smart riding.”
Ariel Martin (USA) said: “I am very happy with third place. I was injured not too long ago, actually my hand is still broken. So I did not get a lot of training done lately. Only the last few weeks I was back on the bike.”