Cycling New Zealand has named a 14-strong junior team to contest the UCI Mountain Bike World Championships. The Championships will be held in Lenzerheide, Switzerland from 5 to 9 September this year.
The cross-country group is headed by national under-19 champions Cameron Jones from Nelson and Sammy Maxwell from Taupo while the male downhill team includes former BMX champion Tuhoto-Ariki Pene from Maketu, who won the under-19 New Zealand honours in his first full season in mountain bike.
Additionally, a long list squad has been selected for elite and under-23 cross-country to be considered for selection for the world championships.
The team is:
Under-19, Male: Cameron Jones (Nelson, 4Ever Racing NZ), Max Taylor (Palmerston North, National Mtb Performance Hub), Caleb Bottcher (Palmerston North, National Mtb Performance Hub), Joshua Burnett (Invercargill), Connor Johnston (Rotorua), Maxwell Wickens (Wellington).
Female: Sammie Maxwell (Taupo, National Mtb Performance Hub)
Under-19, Male: Nico Fernandez (Queenstown, National Mtb Performance Hub), Sam Robbie (Queenstown), Charlie Makea (Napier, National Mtb Performance Hub), Hamish McLeod (Queenstown, National Mtb Performance Hub), Josh Oxenham (Auckland, National Mtb Performance Hub), Tuhoto-Ariki Pene (Maketu), Sam Gale (Nelson, National Mtb Performance Hub).
Reserve: Boaz Hebblethwaite (Christchurch).
The long list is:
Cross-Country, Male, Elite: Sam Gaze (Cambridge, Specialized Pro Racing), Anton Cooper (North Canterbury, Trek Factory Racing).
Under-23: Ben Oliver (North Canterbury, MTB National Performance Hub), Henry Jaine (Nelson), Jack Compton (Wellington, Elios-Srsuntour Pro Team), Taylor Johnston (Rotorua), Paul Wright (Wanaka,4Ever racing NZ), Eden Cruise (Wellington, MTB National Performance Hub).
Female, Elite: Kate Fluker (Queenstown, 4Ever racing NZ), Samara Sheppard (Wellington).
Under-23: Charlotte Rayner (Auckland, 4Ever racing NZ).