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Maja Wloszczowska (Pol)
Poland's Skandia MTB Marathon will include six races this year with the first one beginning on April...
Poland's Skandia MTB Marathon will include six races this year with the first one beginning on April 27 in Chodziez. Additional rounds will happen in Szczawno Zdroj on May 3, Bielawa on May 1, Naleczow on June 1 and Jelenia Gora on August 17 with finals at Gdansk on October 5. This season, top riders will be fighting not only for wins, but also for a spot on the Polish Olympic Team.
Only one Olympic spot is available for the men and Marek Galinski, the overall winner of last year's series, is the most likely candidate. It's the women who have earned two spots and Maja Wloszczowska and Ania Szafraniec are looking like the favorites. The pair has been ruling domestic competition for several years. Wloszczowska will be defending her win in last year's Grand Prix MTB and she is both the reigning Polish mountain bike and road national champion. She also boasts world and European championship medals in her collection. Szafraniec has won silver at the World Championships, has been the Polish national champion and the Grand Prix MTB champion as well as a Junior World Champion.
Along with the cross country events will be several night-time four cross competitions in Szczawno Zdroj on May 4, Bielawa on May 17, Naleczow on May 31 and Jelenia Gora on August 16. The final event in Jelenia Gora will be held in conjunction with the 900th anniversary of the city of Jelenia Gora.