Brook MacDonald scored his first top-10 of the UCI World Cup Mountain Bike season at Leogang in Austria. The MS Mondraker downhill rider was the best of the New Zealand riders, finishing ninth in the third round of the World Cup, won by Frenchman Amaury Pierron.
Macdonald was in brilliant form to be second fastest in qualifying and while he lowered that time in his final run, he had to settle for ninth. He clocked 3:14.481 to be just over three seconds behind the winner.
Oceania champion Sam Blenkinsop (NORCO Factory) was 16th and remains inside the top-10 in seventh placing on the World Cup rankings.
The other leading Kiwi elites included Matt Walker (Cube Global) in 24th and Ed Masters (Pivot Factory) in 32nd.
Subway National Performance Hub rider Charles Makea was best of the New Zealand junior riders, finishing in 12th place with Tuhoto-Ariki Pene in 15th.
The next World Cup is combined with cross-country at Val di Sole in Italy in four weeks.
Results, Leogang World Cup:
Elite men: Amaury Pierron (FRA) 3:10:991, 1; Aaron Gwin (USA) 3:11.499, 2; Laurie Greenland (GBR) 3:12.146, 3. Also New Zealanders: Brook MacDonald (MS Mondraker) 3:14.481, 9; Sam Blenkinsop (NORCO Factory) 3:16.571, 16; Matt Walker (Cube Global) 3:18.044, 24; Ed Masters (Pivot Factory) 3:18.668, 32;
Junior men: Kye Ahern (AUS) 3:19.207, 1; Thibaut Daprela (FRA) 3:19.257, 2; Henry Kerr (GBR) 3:21.860, 3. Also NZers: Charles Makea (Subway Performance Hub) 3:30.818, 12; Tuhoto-Ariki Pene 3:32.866, 15.