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Giger and Neff win BMC Cup in Graenichen

Cycling News

Mathias Flueckiger and Neff lead standings

Fabian Giger, silver medalist at the European Cross Country Championships, won the fourth round of the BMC Racing Cup 2014 in Graenichen. Giger beated new overall leader Mathias Flueckiger and Mathias' brother, Lukas Flueckiger. Jolanda Neff smashed the women's field, winning the HC-category race by a large margin and in front of a great crowd of spectators. She also regained the lead in the overall standings.


Switzerland's top racers almost had the race to themselves in Graenichen, particularly since two-time Olympic champion Julien Absalon (BMC Racing) from France had crashed and hurt himself during training on the course on Saturday. Absalon then had to undergo a small knee surgery at the hospital.

The men's race saw Fabian Giger (Giant Pro XC) fighting in the lead group right from beginning. Mathias Flueckiger (Stoeckli Pro) had also moved up to the front positions immedately. BMC's Lukas Flueckiger, however, had suffered a poor start and had to do some chasing.

After having overtaken Florian Vogel, Lukas Flueckiger finally caught up with the leading duo of Fabian Giger and Mathias Flueckiger, and the race had a new beginning after seven out of nine laps.

Before, Mathias Flueckiger had tried to escape in lap six, but his gap had not been big enough. This offered the chance for Fabian Giger to launch a counter-attack on the long paved climb at the beginning of the last lap.

"I like this climb," said Giger after he had won the race. "I managed to get a small gap, and I have learned in recent weeks that it will be very hard for my competitors to close a gap like that when I go full power." Quite noticably, fourth place at the World Cup in Albstadt and the silver medal at the European Championships in St. Wendel have boosted his self-esteem considerably.

"I am happy. It's always great to win, and winning in Graenichen even more so," said Giger who was able to celebrate his second victory this season after 29.4 kilometers in 1:28:55, 17 seconds ahead of Mathias Flueckiger.

Mathias Flueckiger does not yet feel "one hundred per cent" fit, but he was "delighted" concerning his performance. "I'm very glad that I did really well despite my training deficit. I already had pretty good power and it's a nice feeling to be able to fight for the win again," said the 2012 World Championship bronze medalist, who has taken over the lead in the overall standings from German BMC rider Moritz Milatz who was absent due to illness.

Last year's winner Lukas Flueckiger also delivered a positive summary. "In the first two laps I was not able to hold the pace. Therefore I had to spend much energy to get to the front. I assume that's the reason why I was running out of power in the end," said Lukas Flueckiger. He has had to cope with some disappointing results recently.

Florian Vogel (Scott-Odlo) and Martin Gujan (Orange Monkey) completed the men's podium.


Jolanda Neff was in a league of her own in Graenichen. The under 23 Swiss rider, who leads the overall ranking of the World Cup elite category, outclassed her competitors by clocking fastest lap time every single lap. She celebrated her uncontested victory after 25.2 kilometres in a winning time of 1:26:20, a whopping 3:30 ahead of her Polish Liv-Pro teammate Maja Wloszczowska, who was third in the European championships.

Tongue in cheek, Neff hinted at U23 race in St. Wendel eight days ago, when she said, "Apparently, the U23 European Championship race was the ideal preparation. Today's race was really cool, the spectators were great, and I was feeling great as well." As soon as she was up front she just monitored her own pace and did not pay attention to anything else.

Wloszczowska took the liberty of having - in her own words - "a silly crash" in the first lap. "I did a three-meter-dive into the bushes," she said, laughing about her misadventure after the race. From ninth position, she soon had caught up with Neffs pursuers, and beginning with lap four out of six she rode all alone in second position.

Nevertheless she had to be careful to keep Kathrin Stirnemann, a persistent persuer, at bay. "I'd never have thought that I would have to fight so hard for second place against Kathrin," admitted Wloszczowska.

Stirnemann came in third, 12 seconds behind the former world champion, and was quite happy about her podium position. She had been able to drop her RC Graenichen sports club mate and world bronze medalist Esther Suess in the thrid lap.

Stirnemann said, "In the first lap I had problems due to pollen levels, my lungs didn't work properly. But after some time things were suddenly getting better, and I was beginning to have fun. And I was able to use my home advantage, because I know all the lines. It was great to ride in front of such a crowd. However, Maja was just too strong for me. I couldn't attack her again."

Esther Suess in fourth and Irina Kalentyevafrom Russia in fifth rounded out the top five on the podium.


Elite men
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Fabian Giger (Swi) Giant Pro XC Team 1:28:55  
2 Mathias Flückiger (Swi) Stöckli Pro Team 0:00:18  
3 Lukas Flückiger (Swi) BMC Mountainbike Racing Team 0:00:28  
4 Florian Vogel (Swi) Scott-Odlo MTB Racing Team 0:01:47  
5 Martin Gujan (Swi) Orange Monkey Pro Team 0:02:47  
6 Reto Indergand (Swi) BMC Mountainbike Racing Team 0:02:57  
7 Frank Beemer (Ned) MPL-Specialized 0:03:12  
8 Marcel Wildhaber (Swi) Scott-Odlo MTB Racing Team 0:03:25  
9 Emil Lindgren (Swe) Giant Pro XC Team 0:03:35  
10 Michiel Van Der Heijden (Ned) Giant Pro XC Team 0:04:10  
11 Kohei Yamamoto (Jpn) Specialized Racing 0:04:37  
12 Marc Stutzmann (Swi) Giant-Swiss-Team 0:04:56  
13 Matthias Stirnemann (Swi) Stöckli Pro Team 0:05:07  
14 Daniel Eymann (Swi) Giant-Swiss-Team 0:05:53  
15 Christan Helmig (Lux) CCI Differdange pb Trisport 0:06:37  
16 Michael Hutter (Swi) Signer Merida RVA 0:06:56  
17 Andreas Moser (Swi) Zaunteam Mittelland 0:07:27  
18 Patrik Gallati (Swi) Fischli Bike Team 0:08:10  
19 Jonas Baumann (Swi) Wheeler – iXS Team 0:09:28  
20 Philipp Hediger (Swi) Fischer - BMC 0:09:41  
21 Matthias Allenspach (Swi) Tower Sports - VC Eschenbach 0:10:27  
22 Florian Thie (Swi) Bergamont Swiss Team 0:13:01  
23 Michael Wildhaber (Swi) Tower Sports - VC Eschenbach 0:14:00  
24 Christophe Geiser (Swi) PROF Raiffeisen CCL 0:14:19  
25 Lucien Besançon (Swi) Wheeler – iXS Team 0:15:09  
-2laps Heiko Redecker (Nam)    
-2laps Oliver Schär (Swi) Röbis Velo-Shop    
-2laps Kirill Kazantsev (Kaz) National team Kazakhstan    
DNF Giancarlo Sax (Swi) BigFriends Racing Team    
DNF Michael Wanski (Ger) Team Lombardo Corsa Germany    
DNF Pascal Meyer (Swi) Bergamont Swiss Team    
Elite women
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Jolanda Neff (Swi) Liv Pro XC Team 1:26:20  
2 Maja Wloszczowska (Pol) Liv Pro XC Team 0:03:30  
3 Kathrin Stirnemann (Swi) Sabine Spitz HAIBIKE Pro Team 0:03:43  
4 Esther Süss (Swi) Wheeler – iXS Team 0:05:29  
5 Irina Kalentyeva (Rus) RusVelo / Möbel Märki 0:06:05  
6 Adelheid Morath (Ger) Sabine Spitz HAIBIKE Pro Team 0:06:36  
7 Corina Gantenbein (Swi) Fischer - BMC 0:07:11  
8 Nina Wrobel (Ger) Merida-Schulte 0:07:30  
9 Linda Indergand (Swi) Strüby-Bixs Team 0:08:17  
10 Lene Byberg (Nor) Bryne ck 0:08:55  
11 Ramona Forchini (Swi) Strüby-Bixs Team 0:10:10  
12 Katrin Leumann (Swi) GHOST Factory Racing 0:10:34  
13 Andrea Waldis (Swi) Colnago Südtirol MTB Team 0:12:49  
14 Hielke Elferink (Ned) WHEELER-iXS-Team 0:13:44  
15 Raiza Henrique Goulão (Bra) Soul Riders 0:14:25  
16 Marine Groccia (Swi) Team / CCM 0:15:25  
17 Florence Darbellay (Swi) Club Cycliste du Littoral 0:16:01  
18 Aurélia Perry (Fra) 0:16:14  
19 Britt Van Den Boogert (Ned) SBJ Bike Team 0:17:38  
20 Franziska Ebinger (Swi) Bergamont-Radsport Lafranchi Madiswil 0:17:50  
-1lap Cherie Vale (Rsa)    
-1lap Céline Farner (Swi) Bike Team Mellingen    
-2laps Romaine Wenger (Swi) Thömus Racing Team    
-2laps Sarah Koba (Swi) ASSOS Werksmannschaft    
-2laps Jennifer Kupferschmied (Swi) WHEELER – iXS Team    
-2laps Mallory Barth (Swi) jb Felt Team    
-2laps Sabrina Baumgartner (Swi) Strüby-BiXS Team    
-2laps Franziska Hagen (Aut) RV Dornbirn    
-3laps Katja Montani (Swi) Greenhillbikers    
DNF Franziska Brun (Swi) Strüby-Bixs Team    
DNF Chrystelle Baumann (Swi) Prof Raiffeisen CCL    
DNF Fabienne Schaus (Lux) LC Tétange    
Junior men
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Filippo Colombo (Swi) Velo Club Monte Tamaro - BMC 1:09:03  
2 Robin Gemperle (Swi) Scott-Odlo MTB Racing Team 0:00:40  
3 Lars Koch (Ger) LEXWARE 0:00:44  
4 Johan Jacobs (Swi) arta building/vc steinmaur 0:01:08  
5 Ramon Lauener (Swi) jb Felt Team 0:01:11  
6 Sandro Trevisani (Swi) Dom Cycle Merida 0:01:18  
7 Tobias Neuhaus (Swi) Fischer Junior MTB Team 0:01:31  
8 Dario Thoma (Swi) bskGraf-ROLLMAT-KOBA MTB Team 0:01:49  
9 Mike Hermann (Swi) Giant-Swiss-Team 0:02:19  
10 Arnaud Hertling (Swi) Team VTT BMC Fribourg 0:02:35  
11 Léo L'homme (Swi) Team VTT BMC Fribourg 0:03:16  
12 Niklas Sell (Ger) TuS Obermünstertal 0:03:19  
13 Casey South (Swi) Team GREENHOPE - biking against cancer 0:03:29  
14 Timon Rüegg (Swi) Walter Meier Orbea Factory Team 0:03:42  
15 Joël Grab (Swi) GRAB Offroad Cycling Team    
16 Jeremias Bürgin (Swi) 4cycle / Velo + Sport Rast 0:04:01  
17 Rocco Ferretti (Swi) Velo Club Monte Tamaro - BMC 0:04:04  
18 Edouard Planet (Fra) REMIREMONT VTT 0:04:15  
19 Raphael Krähemann (Swi) Team Gadola Wetzikon 0:04:24  
20 Jean Villermaulaz (Swi) VTT BMC Fribourg 0:04:39  
21 Rémy Dénervaud (Swi) Team VTT BMC Fribourg 0:04:55  
22 Joris Ryf (Swi) Thömus Racing Team 0:04:59  
23 Benjamin Inauen (Swi) Pink Gili Swiss Racingteam 0:05:03  
24 Lionel Fasel (Swi) VC Echallens 0:05:15  
25 Noah Troxler (Swi) Fischer Junior MTB Team 0:05:17  
26 Alexandre Dick (Swi) VTT Balcon du Jura 0:05:33  
27 Caryl Simonet (Swi) Team Giant Neuchâtel / Zeta Cycling Club 0:06:06  
28 Manuel Zobrist (Swi) Fischer - BMC 0:06:11  
29 Claudio Söldi (Swi) bsk Graf Rollmat MTB Team / RV Altenrhein 0:06:37  
30 Lars Reiniger (Ger) SG Rheinfelden 0:06:41  
31 Romain Bard (Swi) Team VTT BMC Fribourg 0:06:58  
32 Luca Langenegger (Swi) Danis Bike Team RMC Appenzell 0:07:13  
33 Robin Juillerat (Swi) Prof Raiffeisen CCL 0:07:47  
34 Jan Eichenberger (Swi) Team GREENHOPE - biking against cancer 0:07:50  
35 Gilles Mottiez (Swi) Team Bike'n Joy Giant 0:08:16  
36 Michael Habegger (Swi) Alouette / C.C.M 0:08:55  
37 Niklas Löffler (Ger) WHEELER-iXS-Team/ SC Furtwangen 0:08:56  
38 Julien Mossier (Swi) Velo Club Monte Tamaro - BMC 0:08:57  
39 Patrick Zumstein (Swi) Tower Sports VC Eschenbach 0:09:00  
40 Lukas Düring (Swi) Tower Sports - VC Eschenbach 0:09:03  
41 Simon Scyboz (Swi) Team VTT BMC Fribourg 0:09:25  
42 Stephan Hediger (Swi) Fischer Junior MTB Team 0:09:39  
43 Lukas Kornberger (Ger) VBC Waldshut-Tiengen 0:09:44  
44 Remo Müggler (Swi) bischibikes / / RV Altenrhein 0:09:50  
45 Valentin Kiser (Swi) jb Felt Team 0:10:36  
46 Patrick Käss (Swi) 0:10:41  
47 Zachary Ducret (Swi) Vélo club Payerne Pro cycles 0:11:16  
48 Mike Woland (Ger) RSV Niederhof 0:11:18  
49 Fabian Bonderer (Swi) Cycling Project Bike4Fun / VBC Landquart 0:11:36  
50 Henry Reiniger (Ger) SG Rheinfelden 0:11:59  
51 Lars Stillhart (Swi) K-Bike/Koba 0:12:33  
52 Remo Franco Schori (Swi) Ski+Velo-CenterRacingTeam/BC Spiez 0:13:06  
53 Daniele Palà (Swi) Velo Club Monte Tamaro - BMC 0:14:12  
54 Maximilian Saier (Ger) LEXWARE TEAM 0:14:38  
55 Konstantin Müldner (Ger) RSV Hochschwarzwald 0:14:45  
56 Cedric Gauch (Swi) Fischer Junior MTB Team 0:15:36  
57 Roger Aeberli (Swi) velo-reichmuth / RRC Amt 0:16:21  
58 Joël Monney (Swi) Stöckli / BSO 0:16:58  
59 Loïc Blanc (Swi) GIANT-Jurassic’bikes-Co Factory 0:17:54  
-1lap Renato Bucher (Swi) Merida-Biketeam12 / VMC Bürglen    
-1lap Nico Keller (Swi) RV Arbon    
-1lap Timo Läderach (Swi) Sputnik Bikeshop Zweisimmen / RV Ersigen    
-1lap Gilles Guisolan (Swi) Walter Meier Orbea Factory Team    
-1lap Sven Olivetti (Swi) FOCUS X-BIONIC TEAM    
-1lap Kim Gull (Swi) Merida Riders Club/ VC Volketswil    
DNF Adrian Bernet (Swi) RMV Cham-Hagendorn    
DNF Nikolas Schmieder (Ger) LEXWARE    
DNF Noah Blöchlinger (Swi) bischibikes /    
DNF Oscar Vairetti (Ita) Velo Club Monte Tamaro - BMC    
DNF Cla Riet Derungs (Swi) Raiffeisen Bikeshop Studer Raceteam    
Junior women
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Nicole Koller (Swi) Tower Sports - VC Eschenbach 1:00:37  
2 Sina Frei (Swi) jb Felt Team 0:02:04  
3 Alessandra Keller (Swi) Strüby-Bixs Team 0:02:38  
4 Aline Seitz (Swi) Specialized Racing 0:05:02  
5 Pierina Beeli (Swi) bskGraf-Rollmat-Koba MTB Team 0:05:53  
6 Rebecca Rudolf Von Rohr (Swi) Tropical Solothurn 0:07:09  
7 Kim Riesterer (Ger) LEXWARE Junior Team 0:08:02  
8 Michelle Andres (Swi) jb Felt Team 0:08:47  
9 Joana Schönthal (Swi) Velo-Shop Vonäsch Zollikon/ VC Meilen 0:09:53  
10 Marlo Koevoet (Ned) Apex racing team 0:10:37  
11 Sonja Guerrini (Swi) Strüby-Bixs Team 0:13:07  
12 Miriam Oeschger (Ger) RSV Niederhof 0:13:42  
13 Clivia Gobat (Swi) Zimmermann-BMC-Mathieu SA 0:15:55  
14 Lara Brun (Swi) Ski+Velo-CenterRacingTeam/BC Spiez 0:16:26  
15 Zina Barhoumi (Swi) rsc aaretal münsingen 0:18:06  
-1lap Malika Sansonnens (Swi) Zeta Cycling Club    
-1lap Flurina Glaus (Swi) Thömus Racing Team