New European champion Näf to head the field in Plaffeien

Winner Ralph Naf of Switzerland

Winner Ralph Naf of Switzerland (Image credit: Joris Beverloo)

Newly crowned European cross country champion Ralph Näf will lead the field at round seven of the Racer Bikes Cup in Plaffeien this weekend. On a weekend when many nearby nations will be contesting their national cross country championships, the Racer Bikes Cup should attract many Swiss riders. Switzerland ran its championship two weekends ago.

More than 500 racers are already signed up for their turn on the 5.5km course with singletrack, gravel roads, steep climbs and technical sections

After his win last weekend, Näf is the favorite, but he'll face challenges from Lukas Flückiger, Rudolf Biedermann, Joris Boillat, Jérémy Huguenin and Martin Fanger.

In the women's race, Swiss national champion Kathrin Leumann is a favorite along with Nathalie Schneitter and Eva Lechner. But Marielle Saner-Guinchard and Karin Rappo will give everything to make the top step of the podium, too.

European championship runner-up Michelle Hediger and winner of six rounds, Matthias Rupp, are the ones to watch in the junior women's and amateurs categories respectively.

Among the junior men, the winner will likely come from the quartet of Swiss champion Matthias Stirnemann, Lukas Loretz, Reto Indergand and Roger Walder.

Elites, juniors and amateurs will race on Sunday.

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