Angel Fire, N.M. - Kate Weisenfluh recorded the first podium finish for the Tornados at the USA Cycling 2011 Collegiate Mountain Bike National Championships, taking the silver medal in the women’s downhill, while Lewis Gaffney recorded the top finish for Brevard in the short track, taking eighth overall as the Tornados completed the second day at the Angel Fire Bike Park.
The women took the field first in the Short Track event, taking on the technically challenging, spectator friendly course at 10 a.m. Morgan Sykes led the Tornados women on the course, finishing 17th overall among the riders, three laps behind the leaders.
Lewis Gaffney led the men through the urban course, recording the men’s first top 10 finish of the weekend, placing eighth overall on the course. The Angel Fire, N.M. native led three BC riders in the event as Keith Marek crossed the line 24th overall, while Koday Adams placed 36th in the event.
The afternoon brought the Downhill finals and the women were again first on the course, taking on the 2.8 mile challenge which featured 1,700 of elevation loss throughout the event, starting 10,500 feet above sea level.
Weisenfluh turned in the top time for the Brevard women, crossing the line at the 11:24.60 mark, finishing behind Coleen Pacurariu of the US Air Force Academy to give the Tornados their first podium finish and first medal of the championships.
On the men’s side, Mac Banner led five Brevard riders and Trey Cassell joined him in the top 20 as the duo finished 18th and 20th respectively. Thomas Bagnal was also in the top 25, while Asher Blackmore crossed the line 27th overall.
The Tornados close out the weekend tomorrow morning on the Dual Slalom course as the riders take the course at the Angel Fire Bike Park at 9:15 a.m.