September 14, 2013 (Hafjell, Norway) – Conditions are cool but dry in Norway for the Elite Men’s final round of the UCI MTB World Cup with 81 men on the start line. Nino Schurter (Sui) Scott Swisspower has already sealed the overall title. His main rival Julien Absalon (Fra) BMC is not starting (still injured from Worlds) but Jaroslav Kulhavy (Cze) Specialized, Jose Antonio Hermida (Esp) Merida, and Daniel McConnell (Aus) Trek are here to contend – no Canadians are on the start line. The men will complete 8 laps (3.8km) w/no start loop.
Schurter takes the holeshot with McConnell and Kulhavy up there as well.
Up the big climb at the start it’s Schurter followed by Kulhavy now as Fontana passes McConnell to take over 3rd.
Hermida takes over 4th… no it’s Andrej Cink in 4th
Fumic is 5th and Hermida is 6th – McConnell is now in 9th
A fast lap in 11:37 as Schurter crosses the line… Kulhavy is 2nd w/Fontana 3rd as Cink joins them.
Kulhavy takes over the lead from Schurter…
Cink now passes Fontana for 3rd spot… the top three are on FS bikes but Fontana is on a hartail.
Fumic is 5th at 15s, M. Fluckiger is 6th, Hermida is 7th, Vogel is 8th, McConnell is 9th and Giger is 10th at 34s.
Schurter is back in front as Fontana retakes 3rd from Cink
Schurter crosses in 23:18 followed by Kulhavy in 2nd…Fontana is 3rd at 2s w/Cink at 6s.
Cink is now back in 3rd as the 4 leaders surge ahead.
Hermida is now 5th at 19s with M. Fluckiger is 6th at 20s
The lap is almost over with Schurter looking smooth…
The time is 35:49 as Schurter begins lap 4 of 8… the four leaders are unchanged.
But behind it’s M. Fluckiger in 5th followed by Fumic in 6th as Hermida drops back to 7th.
Kulhavy takes over the lead…
Schurter says now it’s my turn… but Cink attacks on the climb and takes the lead
Now Schurter takes back the lead – still four leaders
Cink moves back into the lead at 48:04… then it’s Schurter, Kulhavy, Fontana w/M. Fluckiger just behind in 5th.
Fumic is 6th at 12s… Fluckiger attacks and takes over the lead.
Fluckiger and Schurter have opened up a gap
On the climb they’re back together… but not for long as Schurter attacks.
Schurter is on a Full Suspension bike for the first time in 3 years…
Kulhavy responds and he and Schurter are pulling away.
Schurter and Kulhavy are together at 1:00:13 – but Fluckiger and Fontana are right there.
Fumic is 5th at 20s w/Cink in 6th at 23s
Fluckiger takes back the lead with Kulhavy in 2nd and Schurter 3rd.
Fontana is trying to catch back on w/Fumic not far behind
Kulhavy attacks and passes Schurter at the 1/2 way point.
Martinez is 7th and Wengelin is 8th at 1:04
Now Schurter attacks and Kulhavy goes with him… they drop Fluckiger
It’s Schurter and Kulhavy together at 1:12:25 – now Fontana is 3rd w/Fluckiger in 4th at 15s.
Fumic is 5th at 25s.
Schurter jumps past Kulhavy on the penultimate lap – the rain is holding off.
Fumic has taken over 3rd…
Up the switchback climb it’s Schurter and Kulhavy pulling away as Fumic and Fluckiger are together at 37s w/Fontana behind.
Lap 8 FINAL
They’re starting the bell lap…
1. Kulhavy 1:24:37
3. Fumic 0:44
4. M.Fluckiger 0:46
5. Fontana 1:04
Kulhavy tries to pass Schurter but the Swiss rider says no way…
Now Kulhavy attacks in the feed zone and takes the lead.
Just before they hit the long switchback climb Nino takes back the lead.
But Kulhavy attacks again… he has a big gap.
1. Jaroslav Kulhavy (Cze) Specialized 1:36:19
2. Nino Schurter (Sui) Scott Swisspower 0:07
3. Manuel Fumic (Ger) Cannondale 1:34
4. Mathias Fluckiger (Sui) Stockli 1:46
5. Marco Aurelio Fontana (Ita) Cannondale 2:07
Full results here.
1. Nino Schurter (Sui) Scott Swisspower 1180
2. Daniel McConnell (Aus) Trek 800
3. Julien Absalon (Fra) BMC 760
4. Jaroslav Kulhavy (Cze) Specialized 736
5. Andrej Cink (Cze) Merida 705
17. Max Plaxton (Can) Team Sho-Air/Cannondale 360
Full standings here.