Thiago Lessa won Newton's today in a final where only 0.37 seconds separated first from fourth. Forest Elbow confirmed its reputation as the most dangerous corner on the world circuit, claiming a series of victims. Daniel Engel never recovered from his crash there in qualifying, Kyle Wester went out there in the second round, and Emily Pross and Carlos Paixão succumbed there in the quarters.
Thiago's strategy was conservative; he slid before Forest Elbow where most aimed to 100% grip it. Sliding at Forest Elbow has never been a successful strategy in the past, but now that riders are attacking Forest Elbow in tighter packs, the ability to modulate speed and line is key.