CX80 EMTBOC Middle Distance: double triumph for Finland

Finns Ruska Saarela and André Haga were the stars of the show in the Middle race, both adding a gold medal to a bronze won earlier in the championships. It was a good day too for Lithuania with two silver medals.

The course was the most technical of the championships so far, with short and long leg route choices and a variety of potential short cuts. One long leg had clear choices both well to the left and well to the right of the straight line, as well as a tricky and slower, but shorter, more direct one. Short cuts were seen, from the TV pictures and GPS tracking, to be well used in places today – but not all were easy going, with fallen trees in the way in places.

Short-cuts were sometimes not easy! Photos: Jakub Kijak / MoonLine Media

In the women’s race it was a close finish for Saarela, with Gabriele Andrasiuniene, Lithuania only 7 seconds down at the end. Eventual bronze medallist Martina Tichovska, Czechia was leading by a significant margin, 47 seconds, at the mid-point but made an error in the second part to finish 20 seconds down. Sixth place was less than 2 minutes down on the winning time. Double gold medallist Nikoline Splittorff, Denmark finished fourth.

Haga won the men’s race by the bigger margin of 88 seconds, with Lithuanian Ignas Ambrazas taking his second silver medal of the week. Third was Long distance winner Vojtech Ludvik, Czechia, 0.97 down. The Czech team rode well, taking 3 of the top 6 places. As in Saarela’s case, Haga was second-fastest at the mid-point, 14 seconds slower than Jonas Maiselis, Lithuania, but the latter lost almost 3 minutes in the later part of the course and finished 14th.

Men’s flower ceremony

In the Junior EMTBO championships, athletes won all three individual medals in both classes: Iris Aurora Pecorari, Italy and Hannes Hnilica, Austria.

The races were held on a warm and sunny day – good riding conditions throughout. The final event of the championships is the Mixed Relay for teams of 3 with at least 1 woman. Follow it on IOF LIVE – the mass start is at 09:00 CEST.

Leading results, Middle Distance

Women

  1. Ruska Saarela FIN 41:14
  2. Gabriele Andrasiuniene LTU 41:21
  3. Martina Tichovska CZE 41:34
  4. Nikoline Splittorff DEN 41:50
  5. Marika Hara FIN 42:36
  6. Constance Devillers FRA 43:02

Men

  1. André Haga FIN 43:44
  2. Ignas Ambrazas LTU 44:32
  3. Vojtech Ludvik CZE 44:41
  4. Andreas Waldmann AUT 44:47
  5. Vojtech Stransky CZE44:50
  6. Martin Kanta CZE 45:39

Junior European MTBO Championships gold medallists

W20: Iris Aurora Pecorari ITA by 2:17

M20: Hannes Hnilica AUT by 1:33

European Youth Championships

W17: Adela Ryglova CZE by 0:09

M17: Jildas Lauret FRA by 0:36