Canadian Cyclist


September 19/21 15:46 pm - Blevins Takes First World Cup Win on Home Soil, Bouchard Top Canadian in 27th

Posted by Editoress on 09/19/21

Christopher Blevins (Trinity Racing) took a historic win at the final round of the XCO World Cup on Sunday, when, in front of an American home crowd, he became the first American man to win a World Cup in nearly three decades. At Snowshoe, West Virginia, Blevins became the first American man since Tinker Juarez in 1994 to win an Elite World Cup, his first World Cup victory. Vlad Dascalu (Trek-Pirelli) finished second and Ondrej Cink (Kross Orlen) was third. Mathias Flueckiger (Thomus RN Swiss Bike) took the overall title despite finishing well back in the field after flatting.



Christopher Blevins wins


Christopher Blevins, first US Elite Man to win a World Cup since 1994

Leandre Bouchard (Pivot-OTE) was the top Canadian for the day, finishing 27th, after riding consistently in the high 20s all race. Peter Disera (Norco Factory) finished two spots back, followed by Tyler Orschel in 32nd and then five Canadians in a row - Quinton Disera (Norco Factory), Marc Andre Fortier (Pivot-OTE), Raphael Auclair (Pivot-OTE), Felix Belhumeur (Pivot-OTE) and Malcolm Barton in 37th. Alexandre Vialle was a couple of spots further back in 39th and Andrew L'Esperance (Norco Factory) was 40th.



Leandre Bouchard



Peter Disera


Snowshoe, high in the Allegheny Mountains, was host to the World Cup Final in 2019, and riders knew that they would be facing rough, rooty tracks and a mixture of long gravel and short, steep climbs, with many riders suffering flats on the rough track. This is the end of a long Olympic season, impacted by ongoing COVID restrictions, and it has taken its toll, with only 49 riders starting the final XCO.

The race started more tentatively then many World Cups, with 17 riders still in the lead group on the second of seven laps. All the top contenders were there with the exception of Flueckiger, who had suffered a flat on the first lap, and Victor Koretzky (KMC-Orbea), who flatted on the second lap. Flueckiger had already mathematically won the title after Friday's Short Track, but Koretzky - sitting second in the overall standings - was in a battle with world champion Nino Schurter (Scott-SRAM) and Cink for second overall. Koretzky staged a remarkable comeback from near the back of the field to eventually finish eighth and hold onto his second place in the overall standings.




By Lap 3 the front group was down to five - Blevins, Schurter, Cink, Henrique Avancini (Cannondale Factory) and Luca Braidot (Santa Cruz FSA). A chase group rejoined the leaders on Lap 4, containing Dascalu, Jordan Sarrou (Specialized) and Luca Schwarzbauer (Lexware). Schurter attacked on the next lap, with Schwarzbauer and Sarrou dropped for good, leaving the remaining six to ride together until the final lap and a half.

Avancini was the next to flat, on the last lap after a crash late in Lap 6 forced him to chase hard to get back to the leaders. Then, Blevins attacked through a tight corner to take the lead from Schurter, just around the time the world champion suffered his own front tire flat. Blevins rode Dascalu off his wheel for the win, while Cink was able to overtake Schurter for third.





"This meant absolutely everything," said Blevins about his home crowd win. "I'd be lying if I said I expected this or even really dreamed of it. To do it with my family and all the USA fans here ... I'm really moved. I wanted it, but I didn't think it would be this year. It's so much bigger than me; there's so much work that has gone into mountain biking in the U.S."

"I just got off an eight day race on the road [the Tour of Britain] and you learn something about conserving energy in a road race like that. I tried to dodge the wind and hide a little bit, and when it was time to attack, I held absolutely nothing back. I was just waiting the whole race for that moment. When I attacked, I really went all the way in."

Flueckiger took his first World Cup title with 1573 points, finishing in the top-3 in every race but the final one. Koretzky's fierce battle back paid off, as he held off Cink by a single point to take second overall. Bouchard was the top Canadian in 28th, followed by Peter Disera in 32nd.

"I'm pretty proud," said Flueckiger about his overall title win. "This has been a fantastic season and I've never had any bad luck until today. If I had to choose for one day bad luck, it would have been today. So I'm sad for the race, but really happy for this [the overall title]. I've just been building from season to season and, step by step, getting better. Now I'm tired and need some rest, but I'm pretty motivated for next season already."



Results from the Elite Men's XC at Snowshoe Mountain, West Virginia, USA

Elite Men, 7 laps
1 Christopher Blevins (USA) Trinity Racing MTB 1:15:14
2 Vlad Dascalu (Rou) Trek - Pirelli at 0:09
3 Ondrej Cink (Cze) Kross Orlen Cycling Team 0:20
4 Nino Schurter (Sui) Scott-Sram MTB Racing Team 0:34
5 Luca Braidot (Ita) Santa Cruz FSA MTB Pro Team 0:39
6 Luca Schwarzbauer (Ger) Lexware Mountainbike Team 0:56
7 Milan Vader (Ned) Kmc - Orbea 1:09
8 Victor Koretzky (Fra) Kmc - Orbea 1:16
9 David Nordemann (Ned) Cst Postnl Bafang MTB Racing Team 1:24
10 Maxime Marotte (Fra) Santa Cruz FSA MTB Pro Team 1:34
11 Simon Andreassen (Den) Cannondale Factory Racing 1:45
12 Jordan Sarrou (Fra) Specialized Racing 1:47
13 Thomas Griot (Fra) Massi 2:01
14 Antoine Philipp (Fra) Giant Factory Off - Road Team 2:16
15 Henrique Avancini (Bra) Cannondale Factory Racing 2:31
16 Mathias Flueckiger (Sui) Thömus RN Swiss Bike Team 2:41
17 Pierre De Froidmont (Bel) Bh - Wallonie MTB Team 3:22
18 Bartlomiej Wawak (Pol) Kross Orlen Cycling Team 3:29
19 Reto Indergand (Sui) Giant Factory Off - Road Team 3:39
20 Andri Frischknecht (Sui) Scott-Sram MTB Racing Team 3:44
21 Nadir Colledani (Ita) MMR Factory Racing Team 3:48
22 Lars Forster (Sui) Scott-Sram MTB Racing Team 4:39
23 Maximilian Foidl (Aut) KTM Factory MTBTeam 5:00
24 Luke Vrouwenvelder (USA) 5:11
25 Alan Hatherly (RSA) Cannondale Factory Racing 5:22
26 Anton Cooper (NZl) Trek Factory Racing XC 5:33
27 Leandre Bouchard (Can) Pivot Cycles - OTE 5:53
28 Stephane Tempier (Fra) Trek Factory Racing XC 6:17
29 Peter Disera (Can) Norco Factory Team XC 6:40
30 Bruno Vitali (Sui) 6:56
31 Vital Albin (Sui) Thömus RN Swiss Bike Team 7:02
32 Tyler Orschel (Can) 7:12
33 Quinton Disera (Can) Norco Factory Team XC 8:21
34 Marc Andre Fortier (Can) Pivot Cycles - OTE 8:34
35 Raphael Auclair (Can) Pivot Cycles - OTE 9:13
36 Felix Belhumeur (Can) Pivot Cycles - OTE -1 lap
37 Malcolm Barton (Can) -1 lap
38 Georwill Perez Roman (Pur) -1 lap
39 Alexandre Vialle (Can) -1 lap
40 Andrew L'Esperance (Can) Norco Factory Team XC -1 lap
41 Ryan Standish (USA) -1 lap
42 Carson Beckett (USA) -2 laps
43 Stephan Davoust (USA) -2 laps
44 Edward Anderson (USA) -2 laps
45 Brian Matter (USA) -2 laps
46 Cristobal Gonzalez Cornejo (Chi) -3 laps
47 Kenneth Hall (USA) -4 laps
48 Sandy Floren (USA) -4 laps
DNF Filippo Colombo (Sui) Absolute-Absalon - BMC



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