Due to weather conditions, competitors had to adjust on the fly during the women’s cross country mountain bike race at the Tokyo Olympics.
It perhaps proved to be a tough adjustment for Colorado native Erin Huck.
Appearing in her first Olympics, the University of Colorado graduate and Estes Park native finished 31st after organizers slightly altered the 20.55-kilometer course due to rainy pre-race weather.
Haley Batten paced Team USA, finishing ninth with a time of 1 hour, 20 minutes, 13 seconds. Teammate Kate Courtney finished in 1:22:19 to place 15th.
“This was my first Olympic experience,” Huck said in a release from USA Cycling. “It lived up to the hype of an Olympic course, with a pretty amazing field of competitors. It was awesome to be here.”
Three athletes from Switzerland swept the medal podium, with Jolanda Neff taking the top spot with a time of 1:15:46, outpacing her runner-up teammate Sina Frei by 71 seconds. The conditions proved challenging, as the course altered from very slick to completely dry throughout the race.
“It’s tough to understand how much (the course) changed,” Courtney said. “They were making changes to the course up until the moment we started. I really respect the riders, Jolanda [Neff] is one of the best technical riders in the field. She’s someone who probably benefited from the conditions and is really able to be adaptable and manage those.”