PHOTOS: Elite England show Hallmarks of a champion
MOUNTAIN BIKES: Gladstone Mountain Bike Club pair Mick England and Sean Hall had outstanding Croc Trophy campaigns in Far North Queensland.
England finished second overall in Elite Men and Hall third overall in the Amateur 2 Men category.
"Just to finish it was the aim, but to finish second was way beyond what I expected," England said.
He completed the gruelling 691km journey from Cairns to Port Douglas on Saturday in 29 hours 28 minutes and 28 seconds behind South African Alan Gordon (29:15:11).
Hall did it in 34:57:05.
England said it was a challenge given the year he has had with injury setbacks.
"Towards the end of the race, the third and fourth-placed riders were within striking distance and so my aim was to defend my position."
Riders had to endure two days of temperatures of over 40C.
"Climbing the mountains was just insane and there was a day of more than five hours in the saddle for me," England said.
"Nutrition was so important and you basically had to eat for the next day and you couldn't make a mistake," England said.
"In between days, you are always drinking and having electrolytes and to have enough fuel for the next day."
England and Hall enjoyed some 'normal food' on Saturday night along with a couple of ales, reflecting on their achievements.
"I have been training with Mick for this event for almost a year and it was good to relax afterwards," Hall said.
"I'm not too sure what's next because the focus had been on the Croc Trophy."