Sunday’s French Cup XCO in Lons le Saunier had a very Canadian look to it. Six Canucks found their way into the top ten in the elite races at the HC-ranked event leading into this weekend’s nearby Les Gets World Cup.
Catharine Pendrel shows she’s still getting faster every race, finishing sixth in the elite women’s race. Carter Woods put on a big show to finish 7th in elite men, racing up from the under-23 category.
With French women dominating much of this year’s racing, the French Cup podium looked quite like a World Cup one. Loana Lecomte, winner of all three 2021 World Cups, again stood on the top step. World champion Pauline Ferrand-Prevot finished second and young Austrian Mona Mitterwallner was third.
Catharind Pendrel led a trio of Canadians, in sixth. Jenn Jackson continues her impressive rise through the elite ranks in 9th, adding another top-10 to her HC podium last week in Switzerland. Sandra Walter was close behind her friends and training partners in 10th.
Haley Smith placed 17th. Juliette Larose Gingras in 41st and her sister Mireille in 50th, both racing up from u23.
Like the women’s race, a stcked field contested the men’s French Cup event. Victor Koretzky led world champion Jordan Sarrou and French rider Antoine Philipp.
Carter Woods was the fastest of the Canadian men in 7th. It’s another excellent result for the Cumberland, B.C. rider who already has two u23 World Cup wins to his name this year. Peter and Quinton Disera, brothers and Woods teammates on Norco Factory Racing, also squeezed into the top-10, finishing 9th and 10th, respectively.
From Lons le Saunier, the Canadian contingent will head to Les Gets, France for the fourth World Cup XCO round of 2021. Its a venue where both Haley Smith and Peter Disera had much success last time a race was held there, in 2019.