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Petch and Smith make quarterfinals in Paris

The Waikato pair of Rebecca Petch and Jessie Smith have secured a solid result in round five of the UCI BMX Supercross World Cup in Paris.

The pair has both made it to the quarterfinals at the track in Saint-Quentin-En-Yvelines to continue their progress in their first full Supercross World Cup season.

Petch, from the Te Awamutu club, was fourth in her first-round race in a photo finish with four other riders, getting her through to the next round. She improved to be third behind open round winner Judy Baau and Merel Smulders to progress to the quarterfinal where she could not quite match the speed in a stacked heat.

Smith, who is still a junior, was fifth in her first round which put her to the repechage which she won impressively. The Hamilton club rider placed fourth in the next round to also secure a spot in the quarterfinal where she was sixth and did not progress.

Papakura’s Maynard Peel, the former junior world champion, was the sole Kiwi male competing, placing an impressive third in his opening heat to qualify for the second round. He did not get the best gate and while Peel fought hard in a highly competitive moto, he finished sixth with the top four progressing.

Dutch world champion Niek Kimmann and Laura Smulders took out the top honours with a further round on Monday (NZT).

Meanwhile in Austria, only Kiwi gravity riders qualified for Monday’s downhill race in the Mercedes Benz UCI World Cup in Leogang.

Ed Masters (Pivot Factory) led the way for the Kiwis in 12th fastest, with Brook MacDonald (MS Mondraker) 20th, Wyn Masters (GT Factory) 43rd and George Brannigan (GT Factory) 49th.

National champion Kate Weatherly was seventh fastest in the elite women and Subway Performance Hub rider Blake Ross was 20th in the junior men.

CAPTION: Nils Heininger in action during qualifying at Leongang. (Photo Cullen Browne)

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