Canadian Cyclist


May 2/10 8:26 am - World Cup Houffalize: Men's XC UPDATES

Posted by Editoress on 05/2/10

Good morning and welcome to our live lap by lap coverage of the men's XC in Houffalize Belgium.


The men's race has been reduced to 5 laps from the original 6 due to the course conditions caused by the heavy downpour of rain ~ 45 min ago


3 min to the start


A large field of 211, will make it hard for any of those starting in the back half to make up any time


Start loop

At the gun Jaroslav Kulhavy (Cze) Rubena - Birell - Specialized Cycling Team crashes and holds up a number of riders


As they head out the pace is being set by Manuel Fumic (Ger) Cannondale Factory Racing, followed by Nino Schurter (Sui) Scott-Swisspower Mtb-Racing, Ivan Alvarez Gutierrez (Esp) Giant Italia Team up the tough climb on the pavement


8:37 am


Down the first descent and there is a lot of slipping and sliding out.  Bottlenecks forming when riders crash




Manuel Fumic has opened a large lead with Tempier 2nd, leading Absalon and 4 others


8:43 am


Fumic now a good gap followed by Wolfram Kurschat (Ger) Topeak Ergon Racing Team at 10-15 sec,  another gap (5 sec) and its Absalon, Stéphane Tempier (Tx Active Bianchi),  Lukas Flückiger (Trek World Racing),


Lap 1


Heading out onto the first full lap:  Fumic has a gap of 24 seconds on Kurschat and Absalon.  Mathias Flückiger (Trek World Racing) 4 th at 32 sec, Sergio Mantecon Gutierrez (Trek-Lorca Taller Del Tiempo) 5th at 44, Rudi Van Houts (Multivan Merida Biking Team) 6th at 52 sec


Geoff Kabush 21st at 1:15 back


8:52 am

Fumic is extending his lead up the climb, with Kurschat alone chasing having dropped Absalon


9 am

Now in the final 1/2 of the course and Fumic's lead is holding.  Kurschat still 2nd, with Mathias Flückiger in 3rd.  Absalon 4th and running up the final climb.   He has a flat, with 1 km to go and Tech support after the line.



Lap 2


Fumic crosses the line to start the 2nd lap with Mathias Flückiger (Trek World Racing) at 27 sec.  Kurschat at 33 sec is 3rd across.  Alexis Vuillermoz (Lapierre International) 4th at 58 sec, Lukas Flückiger (Trek World Racing) 5th, Rudi Van Houts (Multivan Merida Biking Team) 6th, José Antonio Hermida Ramos (Multivan Merida Biking Team) 7th, Sergio Mantecon Gutierrez (Trek-Lorca Taller Del Tiempo) 8th, Julien Absalon (Orbea) 9th, Inaki Lejarreta Errasti (Orbea) 10th at 1:30


Kabush 25th at 2:16 back, Wells 39th at 3:19, Derek Zandstra 69th, Raph Gagne 84th


9:07 am

It is starting to rain again out on the course.  The crowds have sweeled considerably since the women's race this morning


9:13 am

Elapsed time 39 min and Fumic is ~ 1/2 way around the 2nd lap


2 chasers are 35 sec+ back 


9:15 am

Inaki Lejarreta Errasti (Orbea) whao had been riding 10th has crashed coming off the bridge and appears injured and is out of the race



Lap 3


Strting lap 3 Fumic gap to Kurschat is 32 sec, Mathias Flückiger at 35 sec, José Hermida  (Multivan Merida Biking Team) has moved into the 4th spot at 1:01 back. Alexis Vuillermoz 5th at 1:08. Lukas Flückiger  6th at 1:20


Absalon has dropped back to 13th  2:16 back.  WElls 31st, Kabush 37th apears to have hit the wall and is now almost 5 min back, Samuel Schultz (Subaru-Gary Fisher) 53rd


9:33 am

Fumic still leading with the 2 chasers at 43 seconds


9:38 am


As they head to finish the lap, Fumic has now 3 chasers all together:  Hermida, Fluckiger and Kurschat at 45 sec.


Lap 4


Fumic hits the line to start lap 4 with a time of 1:07:30 for a just a bit over 18 min for the lap


2nd is Hermida and he has closed up the gap a bit to 34 sec.  3rd Mathias Flückiger at 42 sec, 4th Kurschat at 59 sec, 5th Vuillermoz 6th at 1:28, 6th Lukas Flückiger at 1:33, 7th Jaroslav Kulhavy (Rubena - Birell - Specialized Cycling Team) at s.t., 8th Ralph Naef (Multivan Merida Biking Team) at 2:01. 9th Sergio Mantecon Gutierrez (Trek-Lorca Taller Del Tiempo) at 2:12 and 10th Christoph Sauser (Specialized Factory Racing) at 2:22


Wells 29th, Kabush 34th


9:51 am


Hermida is on the hunt.  A bit more than half way through the lap and he has closed the gap to 22 seconds on Fumic who appears to be tiring


9:54 am


2 km to go to the end of the lap and Hermida's gap is holding


9:56 am


Les than a km to go and Hermida has Fumic in his sights.  < 5 sec is the gap


Last Lap


Fumic goes through still leading but Hermida is at 1 second,  3rd M Flückiger at 1:05,  4th  Kurchat at 1:06, 5th Kulhavy at 1:07

Wells 27th, kabush 23rd, Schults 40th, Jeremy Horgan-Kobelski (Subaru-Gary Fisher) 66th, Zandstra 69th, Gagne 83rd


10:02 am

Up the climb and Hermida has taken over the lead.  3 chasers all together up the climb


10:04 am


Now Hermida has a small gap on the first descent and heading to climb #2


10:06 am


Hermida has quickly opened up a 15 seconds gap on Fumic.  Kurchat and Kuhavy have dropped M Flückiger to take over the competition for 3rd spot



10:13 am


Hermida continues to open the gap on Fumic, now approaching 30 sec


10:15 am


2 km to the end of the race and Hermida has 33 seconds on Fumic


Kurschat has grip on 3rd with Kulhavy struggling a bit in 4th and is gapped.  M Flückiger is 5th, but Naef is closing




Hermida wins it, taking his 6th career World Cup win







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