Twins first and second in enduro
Twin Swiss mountainbikers Anita and Carolin Gehrig finished racing within one second of each other in the Queenstown Bike Festival enduro last week.
The sisters, 27, who are making waves on the world enduro world series, were competing in the Queenstown enduro before they head to Rotorua for Crankworx.
Their sibling rivalry was evident when Anita won the women’s enduro open in 34:08s, one second ahead of her twin. Both riders will head to Rotorua to compete in Crankworx. In third place was Queenstown rider Erin Greene.
Anita is currently the 6th highest ranked competitor in the enduro world series while Carolin is ranked 11 after successful races in Chile, Scotland, France and Italy.
Carolin said the racing season has just started in the northern hemisphere, the trails around Queenstown were top-notch and they were given welcome technical assistance by the resort’s mountainbiking community. ‘‘It’s really cool. The trails are all well built.’’ The twins started riding together at a young age and, as far as they are aware, they are the only set of twin sisters in the world mountainbiking enduro circuit.
Anita said the elevation of some of the trails was more extreme than Switzerland and her aim was to keep up with the locals in Queenstown.
‘‘The uphills are really steep, way more than Switzerland. There’s quite a diversity of trails, you can choose whatever you want to ride. There’s a real good community of riders.’’
The event attracted 50 bikers to the 13 kilometre, five-stage race starting at the Coronet Peak base building and finishing on the valley floor.
Belgian rider Martin Maes won the men’s open category followed by Dan Atherton, of England, and Scotland’s Mark Scott. Scott Rob, 17, of Queenstown, won the junior men’s and Jason Blackmore, also from Queenstown, won the master men’s crown.
Bike buddies: Swiss twins Carolin, left, and Anita Gehrig in Queenstown for the Coronet Peak enduro.