Downhill wins for Gwin and Kintner at Sea Otter

Aaron Gwin and Jill Kintner show strong early season form at the annual US MTB meet.

Go fourth and conquer© Sven Martin 2012

The international downhill season kicked into gear on Sunday with many of the world’s men and women competing at the Sea Otter Classic in Monterry, California.

Aaron Gwin, racing on a 29er, made the perfect competitive start to his career with the Specialized Racing team by winning the men’s race.

He just edged out Australia’s Mick Hannah for the title. World Champion Greg Minnaar finished 5th with Steve Smith in 6th. Gee Atherton finished down in 12th place.

In the women’s race, the US's Jill Kintner took the win ahead of Britain's Tracy Moseley. Jill also won the dual slalom title on the weekend after beating Rachel Atherton in the final.

Steve Peat and Australia’s Jared Graves contested the men’s dual slalom final with Graves edging out the veteran British rider for the title.