UCI MTB World Cup Petropolis: McConnell secures first victory and leader’s jersey

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Rebecca McConnell performs at UCI XCO World Cup in Petropolis, Brazil on April 10, 2022 // Bartek Wolinski / Red Bull Content Pool // SI202204110126 // Usage for editorial use only //

Rebecca McConnell (Primaflora Mondraker Genuins) at UCI XCO World Cup in Petropolis, Brazil (Image credit: Red Bull Content Pool)
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Start of womens race

Start of womens race (Image credit: Rob Jones)
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Anne Terpstra (Ghost Factory Racing) leads Loana Lecomte (Canyon Cllctv) and Rebecca McConnell (Primaflor Mondraker Genuins)

Anne Terpstra (Ghost Factory Racing) leads Loana Lecomte (Canyon Cllctv) and Rebecca McConnell (Primaflor Mondraker Genuins) (Image credit: Rob Jones)
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Rebecca McConnell (Primaflor Mondraker Genuins)

Rebecca McConnell (Primaflor Mondraker Genuins) (Image credit: Rob Jones)
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Rebecca McConnell (Primaflor Mondraker Genuins)

Rebecca McConnell (Primaflor Mondraker Genuins) (Image credit: Rob Jones)
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Rebecca McConnell performs at UCI XCO World Cup in Petropolis, Brazil on April 10, 2022 // Bartek Wolinski / Red Bull Content Pool // SI202204110116 // Usage for editorial use only //

Rebecca McConnell (Primaflora Mondraker Genuins) (Image credit: Red Bull Content Pool)
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Rebecca McConnell performs at UCI XCO World Cup in Petropolis, Brazil on April 10, 2022 // Bartek Wolinski / Red Bull Content Pool // SI202204110107 // Usage for editorial use only //

Rebecca McConnell (Primaflora Mondraker Genuins) (Image credit: Red Bull Content Pool)
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Rebecca McConnell (Primaflor Mondraker Genuins) wins her first career World Cup

Rebecca McConnell (Primaflor Mondraker Genuins) celebrates her first career World Cup (Image credit: Rob Jones)
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Rebecca McConnell performs at UCI XCO World Cup in Petropolis, Brazil on April 10, 2022 // Bartek Wolinski / Red Bull Content Pool // SI202204110106 // Usage for editorial use only //

Rebecca McConnell (Primaflora Mondraker Genuins) (Image credit: Red Bull Content Pool)
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L to r - Laura Stigger, Anne Terpstra, Rebecca McConnell, Loana Lecomte, Mona Mitterwallner

L to r – Laura Stigger, Anne Terpstra, Rebecca McConnell, Loana Lecomte, Mona Mitterwallner (Image credit: Rob Jones)

The 2022 Mountain Bike World Cup XCO series opened on Sunday with a new location, in the rainforests of Petropolis, Brazil, and a new winner.

Australian champion Rebecca McConnell (Primaflora Mondraker Genuins) took her first-ever elite women’s World Cup XCO victory, the first by an Australian woman in more than 20 years. Anne Terpstra (Ghost Factory) was second and defending World Cup champion Loana Lecomte (Canyon CLLCTV) third. McConnell also dons the World Cup leader’s jersey with her win in the opening round.

Heavy rain overnight drenched the technical course and, while much of it dried quickly, there were still sections of the clay track deep in the forest that were wet and slippery.

The race began missing two of the favourites, Trek Factory team mates Jolanda Neff, the Olympic champion, and reigning world champion Evie Richards. Both are suffering from gastrointestinal problems, and World Cup short track leader Pauline Ferrand Prevot (BMC MTB Racing) also pulled out halfway through the race with similar issues.

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