The World Mountain Bike Orienteering Championships kicked-off with a Sprint race on Sunday in Viborg, Denmark.
Viborg town center with many narrow streets, passages and fences made this race exceptionally tricky and challenging for the riders.
The fist race of this WMTBOC2019 turned into a big success for Great Britain and Russia. Both nations won 2 medals in each senior class.
In the women’s field, Emily Benham Kvåle had a perfect race and finished with a comfortable margin of 39 seconds ahead of Czech Veronika Kubinova. British Clare Dallimore finished third, 43 seconds behind Benham Kvale. Never before two British athletes won medals in a same WMTBOC race.
In the men’s class, the first two places were occupied by the Russian athletes. 2017 World Sprint champion and silver medalist from the last season Grigory Medvedev regained his title in a tight battle with compatriot Anton Foliforov. Last year Sprint champion Foliforov lost his crown, finished only 1 second behind Grigoriev. French Yoann Courtois lost 11 seconds to Grigoriev, but won perhaps unexpected, but well-deserved medal.
Interview with Benham Kvåle and Grigoriev:
1. Emily Benham Kvåle (GBR) 22:08
2. Veronika Kubinova (CZE) 22:47
3. Clare Dallimore (GBR) 22:51
4. Marika Hara (FIN) 23:46
5. Henna Saarinen (FIN) 23:51
6. Nadia Larsson (SWE) 23:57
1. Grigory Medvedev (RUS) 22:27
2. Anton Foliforov (RUS) 22:28
3. Yoann Courtois (FRA) 22:38
4. Jussi Laurila (FIN) 22:40
5. Fabiano Bettega (ITA) 22:46
6. Simon Braendli (SUI) 22:57
Thomas Steinthal, Denmark and Lilou Pauly, France were fastest in juniors.
1. Thomas Steinthal (DEN) 17:34
2. Jan Hasek (CZE) 17:38
3. Danil Buzovkin (RUS) 18:48
4. Pavel Radyvanyuk (RUS) 19:07
5. Jason Bedry (FRA) 19:11
6. Miika Nurmi (FIN) 19:16
1. Lilou Pauly (FRA) 14:29
2. Nikoline Splittorff (DEN) 15:00
3. Kaarina Nurminen (FIN) 15:19
4. Saara Yli Hietanen (FIN) 15:33
5. Georgia Skelton (NZL) 15:40
6. Lucie Rudkiewicz (FRA) 15:51
Monday is a rest day, and competition resumes on Tuesday with the Middle.