For Wright, the Oceania Championship marked one of his main objectives for the year. “It’s the next level up from our Australian National Championship as it brings together athletes from all the oceanic countries to race for the Oceania title,” he said. “Due to recent floods in Brisbane, the original course at Mt. Crosby, only 20 minutes from where I live, was deemed too damaged to repair and they switched the venue last minute to Nerang on the Gold Coast. This didn’t phase me as I remembered Nerang from the 2018 Commonwealth Games, and the track really suited my riding style.”
Racing on the new Anthem Advanced Pro 29, Wright had a fast start in Nerang, and once he made his winning move, he stayed off the front to take the win.
“I had a good start and positioned myself near the front, working with the other competitors and consolidating my energy until I made an attack on the last lap,” said Wright, who wore his Giant Rev Pro helmet and Charge Pro shoes to take the win. “I’ve been really connecting with my new Anthem Advanced Pro 29, and it felt good to pull away and hold my gap until the finish line. I’m super stoked on my performance thus far this season, and it’s only March.”
WORLD CUP WARM-UP
Meanwhile, Giant’s top two World Cup XC racers, Philipp and Indergand, were in Switzerland, facing warm conditions and a technical track at Monte Tamaro. Philipp led the way for the team, snatching fifth place to earn a spot on the podium in a key preparation race for the early April XC World Cup opener in Brazil. His teammate Indergand finished 10th.
“I started in the second row next to my teammate Reto Indergand,” said the 24-year-old Philipp, who also rode the new Anthem Advanced Pro 29. “All eyes were on us in our new fresh and sparkling Cuore of Switzerland kits. I got off to a good start and made it to the first descent in fifth position.”
From there, the Frenchman defended his position, holding his top-five placing to the finish. “It was a great weekend with the team,” he said. “Now eyes are on Brazil for the first World Cup of the season.”