Kerschbaumer takes Vallnord World Cup XCO win

Schurter second, van der Poel third

For only the second time in two years, world champion and World Cup leader Nino Schurter (Scott-SRAM) has been beaten in World Cup competition. Gerhard Kerschbaumer (Torpado Garbogas) took the first Elite World Cup victory of his career on Sunday at Round 5 in Vallnord, Andorra.

Andorra is a unique race, with the riders racing at 2000 metres of altitude and facing some of the steepest climbs of the season. More than one rider has gone out too fast in the early laps, only to pay for it later in the race.

As usual, Schurter went out hard on the opening lap of the eight lap race. Kerschbaumer was the only one to bridge up to the Swiss rider, late in the first lap, while a chase group of three formed behind - Mathieu van der Poel (Corendon-Circus), Henrique Avancini (Cannondale Factory) and Jordan Sarrou (KMC-Ekoi-SR Suntour). This set the top-5 for the rest of the race, as the front two steadily pulled away from the chasers.

Kerschbaumer was clearly the stronger on the steep climbs, but Schurter would close the gap with his superior descend skills every time until the sixth lap, when the gap opened to 11 seconds on the first climb, and Kerschbaumer was able to extend it on the second, main climb.

Schurter was clearly struggling with the altitude, and dropping back further at every time split, eventually finishing 1:13 behind the Italian champion. Van der Poel had attacked his chase companions on the fifth lap, and slowly eked out a small lead through the remainder of the race to finish third for the second consecutive weekend, followed by Avancini, fourth also for the second time in back-to-back weekends.

"This win means a lot," admitted Kerschbaumer. "One week ago I was second behind Nino and today ... it was amazing. The altitude I like a lot ... I spent two months at home at altitude and it worked. In the downhills, Nino was stronger than me, but in the long climbs I think I was a little bit better, and I attacked there."

The second place finish has no effect on Schurter's overall lead, and he now has a commanding 1405 points; 325 more than van der Poel. Schurter could wrap up the World Cup title at the next round in Mont-Ste-Anne, Canada, with another strong performance. Avancini, who is having a breakthrough season after winning the XCC short track on Friday, jumps from fifth to third in the standings at 861 points, displacing Cannondale team mate Maxime Marrotte.

Results

#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Gerhard Kerschbaumer (Ita)1:32:05 
2Nino Schurter (Swi)0:01:13 
3Mathieu Van Der Poel (Ned)0:02:06 
4Henrique Avancini (Bra)0:02:28 
5Jordan Sarrou (Fra)0:02:45 
6Luca Braidot (Ita)0:03:00 
7Florian Vogel (Swi)0:03:14 
8Carlos Coloma Nicolas (Spa)0:03:22 
9Ondrej Cink (Cze)0:03:32 
10David Valero Serrano (Spa)0:03:40 
11Sergio Mantecon Gutierrez (Spa)0:03:46 
12Thomas Litscher (Swi)0:04:06 
13Lars Forster (Swi)0:04:36 
14Nicholas Pettina' (Ita)0:04:49 
15Andri Frischknecht (Swi)0:04:57 
16Mathias Flueckiger (Swi)0:05:08 
17Jens Schuermans (Bel)0:05:15 
18Samuel Gaze (NZl)0:05:21 
19Howard Grotts (USA)0:05:23 
20Jan Škarnitzl (Cze)0:05:24 
21Nadir Colledani (Ita)  
22Anton Cooper (NZl)0:05:27 
23Hugo Drechou (Fra)0:05:41 
24Anton Sintsov (Rus)0:05:52 
25Maxime Marotte (Fra)0:05:56 
26Lukas Flueckiger (Swi)0:05:57 
27Daniel Mcconnell (Aus)0:05:58 
28Stephane Tempier (Fra)0:06:00 
29Fabian Giger (Swi)0:06:03 
30Victor Koretzky (Fra)0:06:15 
31Gregor Raggl (Aut)0:06:30 
32Daniele Braidot (Ita)0:06:35 
33Kevin Panhuyzen (Bel)0:06:50 
34Leandre Bouchard (Can)0:06:57 
35Bartlomiej Wawak (Pol)0:07:02 
36Gioele Bertolini (Ita)0:07:26 
37Ruben Scheire (Bel)0:07:30 
38Marco Aurelio Fontana (Ita)0:07:35 
39Reto Indergand (Swi)0:07:38 
40Thomas Griot (Fra)0:07:54 
41Keegan Swenson (USA)0:08:09 
42Ivan Diaz Buj (Spa)0:08:21 
43Peter Disera (Can)0:08:25 
44Karl Markt (Aut)  
45Marek Konwa (Pol)0:08:33 
46Kohei Yamamoto (Jpn)0:08:38 
47Nicola Rohrbach (Swi)0:09:04 
48Marcel Guerrini (Swi)0:09:07 
49Grant Ferguson (GBr)0:09:10 
50Michiel Van Der Heijden (Ned)0:09:23 
51Titouan Carod (Fra)0:09:37 
52Jan Vastl (Cze)0:09:45 
53Georg Egger (Ger)0:10:23 
54Arnold Jeannesson (Fra)0:11:58 
55Jhonatan Botero Villegas (Col)  
56Ismael Esteban Aguero (Spa)  
57Florian Trigo (Fra)  
58Raphael Gay (Fra)  
59Shlomi Haimy (Isr)  
60Christian Pfäffle (Ger)  
61Raphael Gagne (Can)  
62Simon Vitzthum (Swi)  
63Sebastian Fini Carstensen (Den)  
64Martin Loo (Est)  
65András Parti (Hun)  
66Catriel Soto (Arg)  
67Erno Jacob Mccrae (Bel)  
68Martin Gluth (Ger)  
69Andrew L'esperance (Can)  
70Mário Costa (Por)  
71Mario Sinues Mico (Spa)  
72Martin Fanger (Swi)  
73Guy Sessler (Isr)  
74Vincent Sibille (Fra)  
75Sakari Lehtinen (Fin)  
76Guy Diaz Grollier (And)  
77Maxime Loret (Fra)  
78Tom Bell (GBr)  
79Ricardo Marinheiro (Por)  
80Roberto Ferreira (Por)  
81Zdenek Vobecký (Cze)  
82Ever Alejandro Gomez Diaz (Bol)  
83Edoardo Bonetto (Ita)  
84Adelino Moll Mut (Spa)  
85Pierre Billaud (Fra)  
86Arthur Tropardy (Fra)  
87Manuel Sanchez Aldeguer (Spa)  
88Victor Selles Pardo (Spa)  
89Marcel Lehrian (Ger)  
90Alexandre Vialle (Can)  
91Pablo Garrido Satorre (Spa)  
92Robert Schwenk (Ger)  
93Frédéric Ischard (Fra)  
DNFMartins Blums (Lat)  
DNFPablo Rodriguez Guede (Spa)  
DNFFábio Ribeiro (Por)  
DNFLukas Baum (Ger)  
DNFMatthias Stirnemann (Swi)  
DNFManuel Fumic (Ger)  
DNFMarkus Schulte-Lünzum (Ger)  

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