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Kulhavy opens season with uphill sprint victory

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Langvad overcomes flat tire for win

Jaroslav Kulhavy (Specialized Factory Team) wins the first round of the Cyprus Sunshine Cup

Jaroslav Kulhavy (Specialized Factory Team) wins the first round of the Cyprus Sunshine Cup

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Cross country world champion Jaroslav Kulhavy (Specialized Factory Racing) and marathon world champion Annika Langvad (Team Fujibikes Rockets) won the first round of the Cyprus Sunshine Cup in Voroklini on Sunday. Kulhavy grabbed his first-ever win in Voroklini in a tight finish against Fabian Giger (Rabobank-Giant) and Liam Killeen (Giant Factory Racing). Langvad won for her third time in a row in front of Sabine Spitz and Tereza Hurikova (both Sabine Spitz-Haibike Pro Team).


Under a sunny sky, the men raced five laps. On the third lap, seven men escaped to form a lead group. At first, Manuel Fumic (Cannondale), Fabian Giger and Wolfram Kurschat (Topeak-Ergon) were active in keeping the leaders' pace high.

Then Fumic had a crash and lost contact. Giger and Kurschat got away, but were caught again by the remains of the lead group.

When the race came into the final lap, Emil Lindgren (Rabobank-Giant) and Jan Skarnitzl (Rubena Birell Specialized) lost contact as did Kurschat. He couldn't get around a female rider on course, while Giger, Killeen and Kulhavy made the pass ok.

Immediately before the last downhill, Kulhavy overtook Giger for the lead, gained some seconds and then went full gas into the short, final climb. The move proved decisive as Kulhavy crossed the finish line as the winner in 1:23:36, two seconds ahead of Giger, who was just one second ahead of Killeen.

"It was a crazy race," said Kulhavy. "After the start, I had bad legs. During the race, they became better and better. I managed to get into the lead before the downhill and then sprinted up the last climb."

Kulhavy was still dialling in his new gear for the 2012 season. "I have new shoes, a new bike and everything has to be set up again. I think I have to change my position on the bike a bit. Next weekend it should be better."

Giger seemed pleased with second. "The most important thing was that I felt good. I could go at a high speed from the beginning to the end. Kurschat was strong in the uphill and two times, we escaped. At the end, maybe I had too much respect for the world champion, because I let him pass in a corner. Anyway, it's not too bad, to be second behind the world champion."

Third place finisher Killeen said, "I felt comfortable in the lead group. It's good to be back in the front. It was a hard and fast race, maybe one lap too short. I hope to improve more and more."

Kurschat mistakenly thought he had to do one more lap, and Fumic closed the gap and easily took fourth spot, 31 seconds after Kulhavy. Three seconds after Fumic, Kurschat rounded out the podium in fifth. Skarnitz was behind him.


Mechanical troubles influenced the women's race, which drew 40 starters. Sabine Spitz and Tereza Hurikova and Annika Langvad took the initiative and formed a three-woman group on lap two of four. Blaza Klemencic (Felt Oetztal X-Bionic) held on at first, but then fell back.

On lap two, Langvad accelerated while Hurikova had a mechanical problem with her chain. Then Langvad flatted and Spitz and Hurikova came back.

Hurikova's mechanical problems weren't over, and Langvad got away while Spitz sat in third place. However, the German Olympic champion closed the gap to Hurikova as Langvad rode away solo to the win in a time of 1:20:09.

"Last year, I gave everything in the first race, but this time, I tried to keep something," said Langvad. "It's always exciting to compare the first time with the other girls. I had a pretty good feeling and it's great to start with a win."

Runner-up Spitz, who finished in 1:21:51, said, "I felt good, I recognize the impact of the training camps I did (in South Africa, Engadin and Gran Canaria). What I still miss is the ability to change my rhythm. There were some parts where I lost time. But at the end, I'm very satisfied about my performance. It's a pity for Tereza, she was really strong today."

On the fourth and final lap, Hurikova's troublesome chain finally broke. Fortunately, she was not too far away from the tech zone, so she was able to save her third place on the podium, crossing the line in 1:23:09.

"I'm a bit sad," said Hurikova. "After such a long time not competing for a victory, it is bad to be stopped by a mechanical. Today my body worked pretty well. At least I'm happy that I could save third place because I was not too far to the tech zone."

Only three seconds behind Hurikova, Klemencic entered the finish in fourth while former European champion Katrin Leumann (Ghost Factory Racing) came in fifth (1:24:07).

Full Results

Elite men
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Jaroslav Kulhavy (Cze) Specialized Factory Team 1:23:37  
2 Fabian Giger (Swi) Rabobank Giant Offroad Team 0:00:02  
3 Liam Killeen (GBr) Giant Factory Racing 0:00:03  
4 Manuel Fumic (Ger) Cannondale Factory Racing 0:00:30  
5 Wolfram Kurschat (Ger) Topeak Ergon Racing Team 0:00:34  
6 Jan Skarnitzl (Cze) 0:00:35  
7 Emil Lindgren (Swe) Rabobank Giant Offroad Team 0:01:05  
8 Lukas Fluckiger (Swi) Trek World Racing 0:01:48  
9 Karl Markt (Aut) Felt Otzal X-Bionic 0:01:50  
10 Thomas Litscher (Swi) Felt Otzal X-Bionic 0:01:52  
11 Nicola Rohrbach (Swi) Goldwurst-Power/ Trek 0:02:18  
12 Milan Spesny (Cze) 0:02:21  
13 Jiri Novak (Cze) Remerx-Merida Team Kolin 0:02:25  
14 Jiri Friedl (Cze) 0:02:47  
15 Kevin Van Hoovels (Bel) Belgian Cycling Team 0:03:04  
16 Henk Jaap Moorlag (Ned) Rabobank Giant Offroad Team 0:03:17  
17 Mathias Fluckiger (Swi) Trek World Racing 0:03:18  
18 Ondrej Cink (Cze) Merida Biking Team 0:03:25  
19 Marek Rauchfuss (Cze) S&H Superior MTB Team 0:03:40  
20 Scheib Julian (Ger) Lexwave Racing Team 0:04:28  
21 Magnus Darvell (Swe) Team Herbalife 24 Raumerrittet 0:04:31  
22 Alban Lakata (Aut) Topeak Ergon Racing Team 0:04:41  
23 Alexey Medvedev (Rus) Russian National Team 0:04:44  
24 Jeff Luyten (Bel) Belgian Cycling Team 0:04:50  
25 Christoph Soukup (Aut) Hitec Team 0:04:58  
26 Alexandre Moos (Swi) BMC Mountainbike Racing Team 0:04:59  
27 Sebastien Carabin (Bel) Belgian Cycling Team 0:04:59  
28 Maxim Gogolev (Rus) Samara-Shvsm-Roma 0:06:16  
29 Ivan Smirnov (Rus) Protek 0:06:25  
30 Ivan Alvarez Gutierrez (Spa) Elettroveneta Corratec 0:06:36  
31 Lee Williams (GBr) Team Wales 0:06:58  
32 Matous Ulman (Cze) 0:07:12  
33 Shlomi Haimy (Isr) Focus-MIG 0:07:17  
34 Ivan Seledkov (Rus) Dinamo-Nagornaya 0:07:25  
35 Urruty Maxime (Fra) Team Scott 0:07:37  
36 Dmytro Titarenko (Ukr) ISD MTB Team 0:07:37  
37 Anton Gogolev (Rus) Izhevsk-Impul's 0:08:11  
38 Robert Mennen (Ger) Topeak Ergon Racing Team 0:08:35  
39 Sergij Nikolaev (Rus) Samara-Shvsm 0:08:43  
40 Ola Kjoren (Nor) Team Herbalife 24 Raumerrittet 0:08:51  
41 Frank Schotman (Ned) MPL Specialized 0:09:05  
42 Axel Lindh (Swe) Harnosands CK 0:09:50  
43 Marios Athanasiadis (Cyp) Omonoia 0:10:07  
44 Daniel Geismayr (Aut) Centurion Vaude 0:10:47  
45 Timofey Ivanov (Rus) Team Primorskiy District 0:11:06  
46 Kuyan Mark (Rus) Team Primorskiy District 0:11:06  
47 Alexey Leontyer (Rus) CC Roma 0:11:44  
48 Vasilis Adamou (Cyp) Omonoia 0:12:03  
49 Marc Metzler (Swi) Pink Gilis Swiss Team 0:12:16  
50 Simon Hupperetz (Bel) Merida Wallonie MTB Team 0:12:34  
51 Sergii Rysenko (Ukr) ISD MTB Team 0:12:40  
52 Brice Scholtes (Bel) National Team Belgium 0:12:45  
53 Bojan Djurdjic (Srb) Salcano Factory Team 0:12:54  
54 Anton Liubyl (Ukr) 0:12:54  
55 Bilal Akgul (Tur) Turkish National Team 0:13:26  
56 Giorgos Fattas (Cyp) Ch. Pettemerides 0:13:59  
57 Gavrilov Anatoly (Rus) Dinamo-Nagornaya 0:15:01  
58 Rien Terpstra (Ned) MPL Specialized 0:15:25  
59 Quentin Winandy (Bel) Merida Wallonie MTB Team 0:15:48  
60 Abdulkadir Kelleci (Tur) Turkish National Team 0:15:54  
61 Fabrice Mels (Bel) Salcano Factory Team 0:16:12  
62 Pieter Geluykens (Bel) Merida Wallonie MTB Team 0:17:30  
63 Tobias Reiser (Ger) 0:17:45  
64 Aleksa Maric (Srb) Salcano Factory Team 0:19:08  
65 Vittorio Oliva (Ita) Bi&Esse-Infotre Protek 0:19:38  
66 Christopher Platt (Ger) National Team 0:20:00  
-1lap Michalis Karatzis (Cyp) Pol    
-1lap Krylov Alexey (Rus) Team Primorskiy District    
-2laps Stefan Hermens (Ned) Thijs Hendriks Mountainbike Team    
-2laps Timotheos Skettos (Cyp) Limassol Sporting Club    
-2laps Pantelis Christoforou (Cyp) Agios Mnason    
-3laps Tim Lemmers (Ned) Feenstra Stevens Biketeam    
-3laps Koutsiou Irinaios (Cyp) Hraklitos    
-3laps Loukas Theodorou (Cyp) Hraklitos    
DNF Pavel Pryadein (Rus) Dinamo-Nagornaya    
DNF Geert Van Der Horst (Ned) Feenstra Stevens Biketeam    
DNF Ole Christian Fagerli (Nor) Team Herbalife 24 Raumerrittet    
DNF Pascal Hossay (Bel) Merida Wallonie MTB Team    
DNF Erwin Kuunders (Ned) Thijs Hendriks Mountainbike Team    
DNF Jens Schuermans (Bel) Belgian Cycling Team    
DNF Leontios Katsouris (Cyp) Pol    
DNF Anton Sintsov (Rus) Titicy Lgl Pro Team    
DNF John Carlsson (Swe) Mjolby CK    
DNS Rudi Van Houts (Ned) Multivan-Merida Biking Team    
Eltie women
# Rider Name (Country) Team Result
1 Annika Langvad (Den) Team Fujibikes Rockets 1:20:09  
2 Sabine Spitz (Ger) Sabine Spitz Haibike Pro Team 0:01:42  
3 Tereza Hurikova (Cze) Sabine Spitz Haibike Pro Team 0:03:01  
4 Blaza Klemencic (Slo) Felt Otzal X-Bionic 0:03:03  
5 Katrin Leumann (Swi) Ghost Factory Racing Team 0:03:11  
6 Marielle Saner-Guinchard (Swi) Team Scott 0:03:14  
7 Elisabeth Brandau (Ger) National Team 0:03:58  
8 Irina Kalentieva (Rus) Topeak Ergon Racing Team 0:03:59  
9 Vera Andreeva (Rus) Dinamo.cheboksary 0:04:24  
10 Zakelj Tanja (Slo) Salcano Factory Team 0:05:17  
11 Katrin Stirnemann (Swi) Sabine Spitz Haibike Pro Team 0:05:38  
12 Janka Stevkova (Svk) CK Epic Dohnany 0:06:09  
13 Anne Terpstra (Ned) MPL Specialized 0:06:31  
14 Ann Berglund (Swe) 0:06:54  
15 Mona Eiberweiser (Ger) Ghost Factory Racing Team 0:06:54  
16 Elisabeth Sveum (Nor) Team Crampfix Nakamura 0:07:36  
17 Ekaterina Anoshina (Rus) Protek 0:07:45  
18 Yana Belomoyna (Ukr) Bi&Esse- Infotre 0:08:50  
19 Laura Turpijn (Ned) MPL Specialized 0:09:08  
20 Krista Park (USA) 0:09:42  
21 Nicoletta De Jager (Ned) MPL Specialized 0:10:10  
22 Josefine Ahlstrom (Swe) 0:10:34  
23 Nataliya Krompets (Ukr) 0:12:21  
24 Elena Gogoleva (Rus) Samara-Shvsm-Roma 0:12:41  
25 Oksana Rybakova (Rus) 0:12:41  
26 Antri Christoforou (Cyp) Omonoia 0:13:37  
27 Helen Grobert (Ger) German National Team 0:14:19  
28 Angelica Edvardsson (Swe) Cykloteket Racing Team 0:14:45  
29 Lisa Mitterbauer (Aut) Team Scott 0:14:58  
30 Crnogorac Jovana (Srb) Salcano Factory Team 0:16:35  
31 Kseniya Kirillova (Rus) Suvary.cheboksury 0:17:13  
32 Marta Tereshchuk (Ukr) Bi&Esse- Infotre 0:17:47  
33 Esra Kurkcu (Tur) Turkish National Team 0:18:37  
34 Michaela Malarikova (Svk) CK Skiklub Sportmed Bratislava 0:21:12  
35 Virginie Pointet (Swi) JB Felt Team 0:23:01  
36 Ksenia Chernykh (Rus) Giant-Russia 0:27:15  
DNF Stephania Magri (Mta) GB Cycles    
DNF Semra Yetis (Tur) Turkish National Team    
DNF Alexandra Engen (Swe) Ghost Factory Racing Team    
DNF Homovec Nina (Slo) Salcano Factory Team