Swiss Cycling announced its roster for the European Downhill Championships in Hafjell, Norway, this weekend, August 4 - 7. Five elite men, one elite woman, three junior men and one junior woman will represent Switzerland. A complete roster is below.
The riders will be under the guidance of national coach Albert Iten.
The Swiss dominated the European Cross Country Championships in early July in Israel, but the nation is not as well known for its gravity racing talent.
Swiss National Team for 2010 European Downhill Championships Elite men Marcel Beer (Verein IG Bergvelo) Nick Beer (Verein IG Bergvelo) Martin Frei (VC Leibstadt) Thomas Jeandin (Bicross Club Genève) Dominik Gspan (VC Rieden-Wallisellen)
Elite women Emilie Siegenthaler (Biel Bikers)
Junior men Fredy Hunziker (RC Steffisburg) Marius Paccolat (Cyclophile Sédunois) Basil Weber (VC Rieden-Wallisellen)
Swiss rider has unbeatable lead with one round remaining
With his fourth place overall in the elite men's cross country race at the Val di Sole World Cup in Italy this weekend, Mathias Flückiger (Trek World Racing) secured the overall title of the Under 23 World Cup.
"It was perfect. I caught a good start and put up a very good fight. I found my rhythm very quickly, and I'm so happy with the weekend. Now I feel strong and I look forward to the next World Cup and the World Championships," said Flückiger after his race in Val di Sole.
Although there is one round remaining in Windham, New York, Flückiger now has an unassailable lead in the Under 23 series no matter what happens in the final round.
He is also ranked fifth overall in the men's elite World Cup category, which could mean a second crystal trophy for the trophy case if he can remain in the top five.
Mathias is the younger of the two Flückiger brothers. Older brother Lukas is racing in the elite category and is currently ranked 13th.
Yesterday, over three dozen racers embarked on one of the hardest multi-day mountain bike races in the world, the Colorado Trail Race. With roughly 470 miles to cover and over 60,000 feet of climbing, this event is taking racers from Denver to Durango through some of the most rugged and remote terrain that Colorado has to offer.
With no entry fee, no prizes, and no support, riders are required to complete the course totally self-supported. They can resupply only in a few towns along the way, like Leadville, Buena Vista, and Silverton. It's a similar sort of format to the Tour Divide Race along the Continental Divide from Canada to Mexico, but of course, going through only one state, it is much shorter overall.
Topeak Ergon's Jeff Kerkove was one racer looking forward to the challenge. "My entire season has revolved around training for this event. Ever since November of 2009, I have been training specifically for this event and testing equipment. This event will be the hardest thing I have ever done on a mountain bike. It will be a true test of mind, body, and equipment."
The Colorado Trail Race is a non-stop event. Riders are expected to take four to nine days to complete the course.
"My goal is to make it to Durango in between four and five days (the course record is four days, three hours - Ed.)," said Kerkove. "That is a solid pace, but weather and luck will play a huge role."
Riders will wear SPOT tracking devices just as they do in the Tour Divide.
Penultimate round of gravity series held in Winter Park
The Crankworx Colorado event at Trestle Bike Park in Winter Park, Colorado, served as the penultimate race in the 2010 USA Cycling US Pro GRT series this past weekend. With her win in the women's downhill race, US National Champion Jill Kintner extended her lead in the series while her Transitions teammate Bryn Atkinson is the leader of the men's series.
Kintner's victory was her second consecutive in the US Pro GRT. She leads the standings with 275 points, ahead of Melissa Buhl (KHS) with 180 points and Tracy Mosely (Trek World Racing) with 165.
Atkinson is atop the men's standings with 205 points. Andrew Neethling (Trek World Racing) sits in second with 130 points, and Justin Leov is in third with 120 points.
The Pro GRT will wrap-up September 10-12 at Whiteface Mountain Bike Park in Lake Placid, New York.
National Ultra Endurance (NUE) series heads to Oregon
A full field of 200 mountain bikers is ready to hit the trails for 80+ miles of singletrack at this year's High Cascades 100, which is stop number five in the National Ultra Endurance (NUE) series on Saturday, August 7.
Last year's winner, Oregonian Chris Sheppard (Rocky Mountain Bikes), will return to defend his title. Fresh off a win at the BC Bike Race, Sheppard will be racing with extra motivation after the birth of his son although he will have his work cut out with contenders like Josh Tostado (Bach Builders / Santa Cruz), who won the Breckenridge 100 last month.
In the women's race, favorite Sue Butler (Rivercity Bicycles) will test her cross country and road legs against some 20 other women to decide the title, which was won last year by Angela Sucich.
NUE Series regular and 2009 NUE singlespeed champion Gerry Pflug (Salsa/SPK/Pro Bikes) will be there ready to take on a field of brave singlespeeders trying to find the perfect gear.
Last year's fastest overall time of 8:37 will be tough to beat. Racers will encounter tough lava sections around Mount Bachelor as well as smooth and flowing singletrack at 7,000 ft as they cross over towards the town of Sisters, Oregon. Hundreds of little climbs will add up to a day's total of 11,000 feet in elevation gain.
This year's event will raise $5,000 for local trails Central Oregon Trail Alliance (COTA).
Stay tuned to Cyclingnews for full coverage of the High Cascades 100.