With Peter Disera and Haley Smith adding matching sixth place finishes on Sunday, it was an excellent weekend for Canada’s cross country athletes at Les Gets World Cup round.
Peter Disera (Norco Factory Team) has been quickly working his way further up the results sheet every race weekend this season. This weekend, the two time Canadian elite XCO national champion once again had a career best finish, just 1:08 behind race winner Nino Schurter.
— Cycling Canada (@CyclingCanada) July 14, 2019
Matching his result was fellow Norco Factory Team rider Haley Smith. After her breakout World Cup podium in Nove Mesto earlier this season, Smith worked back from an injury to finish sixth in Les Gets. Not far behind, Catharine Pendrel (Clif Pro Team) crossed the line 12th, making for two Canadians in the top 15 in France.
Smith and Disera matched in one other way. They both leave Les Gets ranked 10th overall in the World Cup standings.
Emily Batty Trek Factory Racing) moved up the ranks as well, finishing 23rd in France. After a sensational season in 2018, the Ontario rider has started slower this year but is showing signs that last years form might be returning. Sandra Walter (Liv International), 42nd in Les Gets, Jennifer Jackson (AWI Racing), 45th and Cindy Montambault 46th rounded out the Canadian women in France.
Thank you #LesGets! What a wild ride! So stoked on 6th – next we go for podium!
— Pete D (@Petey__D) July 14, 2019
Behind Disera’s top-10, his Norco Factory Team teammate Andrew L’Esperance was the next fastest Canadian elite man, finishing 60th. Marc Andre Fortier (Pivot Cycles-OTE) battled through heavy dust to 77th, Raphaël Gagné 91st, and Léandre Bouchard 106th
Elite women fly off the start in Les Gets. Photo: Bartek Wolinski / Red Bull Content Pool
Emily Batty continues to improve through 2019. Photo: Bartek Wolinski / Red Bull Content Pool
Pauline Ferrand-Prevot was hunting for the win on home soil. Photo: Bartek Wolinski / Red Bull Content Pool
Kate Courtney has been hard to beat in 2019. Photo: Bartek Wolinski / Red Bull Content Pool
Kate Courtney celebrates another World Cup win, her second of the weekend, in Les Gets, France. Photo: Bartek Wolinski / Red Bull Content Pool
Elite women's podium celebrations. Photo: Bartek Wolinski / Red Bull Content Pool
Elite Women’s World Cup XCO – Les Gets France
In the elite women’s race, Kate Courtney (Scott-SRAM) earned her second World Cup win of the weekend. After going solo with two laps to go in Friday’s XCC, the American world champion was alone across the line again in Sunday’s XCO. Courtney is proving hard to beat this year, and extends her lead in the series overall.
Behind Courtney was her closest rival in the World Cup standings, Jolanda Neff (Trek Factory Racing). Neff held off Elisabeth Brandau (Germany) and Sina Frei (Ghost Factory Racing) to take second. Pauline Ferrand-Prevot, France’s multi-discipline world champion, was fifth in front of a loud and supportive crowd on home soil.
2016 Olympic champion Jenny Rissveds (Team 31) was ninth, continuing her successful return to international racing.
Les Gets was high paced and dusy. Photo: Bartek Wolinski / Red Bull Content Pool
Nino Schurter and Henrique Avancini roll big berms on the dual course. Photo: Bartek Wolinski / Red Bull Content Pool
Gerhard Kerschbaumer leading Nino Schurter Photo: Bartek Wolinski / Red Bull Content Pool
Henrique Avancini continues to search for his first XCO World Cup win. Photo: Bartek Wolinski / Red Bull Content Pool
Mathieu van der Poel was flying high, but didn't have the legs to back up Friday's XCC win on Sunday. Photo: Bartek Wolinski / Red Bull Content Pool
2019 elite men's podium, Les Gets World Cup XCO: Stephane Tempier, Gerhard Kerschbaumer, Nino Schurter, Henrique Avancini, Ondrej Cink. Photo: Bartek Wolinski / Red Bull Content Pool
Elite Men’s World Cup XCO – Les Gets France
In the elite men’s race, all eyes were on Mathieu van der Poel (Corendon-Circus). The multi-talented Dutch rider returned from a brief break in his racing calendar to win Friday’s Short Track XC race in a wild finish against Henrique Avancini (Cannondale Factory Racing). Van der Poel had also won in his last XCO appearance, finally defeating Nino Schurter and claiming his first World Cup XCO win after two years of effort.
On Sunday, however, it was the rainbow stripes of the reigning world champion that were on the front once again. Nino Schurter battled with Gerhard Kerschbaumer (Torpado Ursus) and Henrique Avancini. What the French venue lacked in technical difficulty, it made up for in raw speed. Heavy dust added another tactical element, as anyone off the lead group was riding through a hanging cloud of fine dirt hanging in the air around the course.
Avancini held with the lead group for much of the race, but it was Kerschbaumer who was closest to Schurter on the line. The Italian was within four seconds, but couldn’t unseat Schurter.
Third went to Avancini. Racing at home in France, Stephane Tempier (Bianchi Countervail) was fourth with Ondrej Cink (Kross Racing) claiming the final podium spot.
Van der Poel faded off the pace, finishing 16th.
Schurter’s win pushes him further ahead in the World Cup overall standings. With two podium finishes in Les Gets, Avancini leaves France in second, while van der Poel is now third in points.
— UCI MTB (@UCI_MTB) July 14, 2019