Wooragee mountain bike specialist Dean Lucas has produced the best result of his young career at the Canadian round of the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup over the weekend.
Albeit with a slice of good fortune.
Lucas made his way through the tricky Mont-Saint-Anne course in a time of 4:19.484 to take the provisional lead.
However, as soon as he finished his run, a massive downpour followed, making his time near impossible to catch.
He was then left to sweat as the rest of the field failed to eclipse the mark until American Aaron Gwin edged him out with the final run of the day in a time of 4:18.426.
“It’s normally pretty good if you come down a bit later because you’ve got a rough idea of where you’re at,” Lucas said.
“When the rain came, I had no idea, but I knew the track would be a bit slower in the rain.
“I was more nervous at the start because I did have a chance of winning it, but once some guys started to get close, there was a bit more of a race on my hands, which kind of made me feel a bit better.”
Lucas admitted his effort was definitely a top 15 run, maybe a top 10 at best.
“I didn’t really think it was the second place run if everyone had the same conditions, but top 10 was my goal, so I was happy with that and to come away with second was a bonus,” he said.
“I’ve got a third at another World Cup a couple of years ago, but this is the top.”
The result rockets him from 40th to 12th in the world rankings and the 22-year-old now has his sights on returning to the top 10 after a horror run with injuries.
“After the last two seasons, I’d come off a good year and broke my heel, broke my wrist and it just seemed like everything kept stacking up,” Lucas said.
“Myself and teammate Jack (Moir) have both had pretty tough luck with injury, but he got a second this year and I got a second, so it seems like we’ve kind of bounced back a bit which is good.
“If you end up in the top 10 your sponsorship is a lot better and all the top guys get live streamed for the whole year, which makes it a lot better for sponsors because you get your name and brand out there.”
Lucas is back for the next 10 days before flying out again to compete in the final World Cup event of the year in Val di Sole, Italy, on August 26 and 27, followed by a return home for the World Championships in Cairns from September 5-10.