Press Release: New Zealand team named for World Championships

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karen hanlen London Olympian Karen Hanlen and junior World Champion Anton Cooper will lead a 29-strong New Zealand team in South Africa in August.

The team is dominated by downhill riders led by New Zealand’s professional quartet of world number four ranked Brook MacDonald (Trek World Racing), 13th ranked George Brannigan (Trek World Racing), 15th ranked Sam Blenkinsop (Lapierre International) and 19th ranked Cameron Cole (Yeti Fox Shox).

The championships will be staged in Pietermaritzburg, 80kms from Durban, with the cross-country juniors on 29 August, cross-country under-23 and downhill juniors on Friday 30 August, cross-country elites on Saturday 31 August and downhill elite on Sunday 1 September.

The New Zealand team is:

Downhill, elite men: Brook MacDonald (Napier), Sam Blenkinsop (Wanganui), Cam Cole (Christchurch), George Brannigan (Havelock North), Matt Walker (Kawerau), Louis Hamilton (Rotorua), Wyn Masters (New Plymouth).

Elite women: Alanna Columb (Queenstown), Amy Laird (Christchurch), Sophie Tyas (Christchurch), Veronique Sandler (Nelson).

Under-19: Joshua McCombie (Dunedin), Lawrence Cawte (Rotorua), Connor Harvey (Invercargill), Jamahl Stringer (Wellington), Kyle Lockwood (Papakura), Michael Melles (Wellington), Raphael Kammlein-Cutler (Dunedin).

Cross-country, elite men: Carl Jones (Rotorua).

Elite women: Karen Hanlen (Whakatane), Kate Fluker (Queenstown), Samara Sheppard (Wellington).

Under-23 men: Anton Cooper (North Canterbury), Sam Shaw (Rotorua), Dirk Peters (Rotorua).

Under-19 men: Ben Oliver (North Canterbury), Sam Gaze (Te Awamutu), Craig Oliver (North Canterbury).

Under-19 women: Amber Johnston (Rotorua).