Skip to main content

Näf earns first victory of the season ahead of Schurter and Flueckiger

Ralph Naef (BMC) celebrated a surprise win against world champion Nino Schurter (Scott Swisspower) at the finale of the BMC Racing Cup in Muttenz, Switzerland. Schurter took the overall victory ahead of Julien Absalon (BMC) and Lukas Flueckiger (BMC) who was third in Muttenz. In the women's competition Esther Suess (Wheeler iXS) secured the overall victory with a narrow win against Sabine Spitz (Sabine Spitz Haibike). Kathrin Stirnemann (Sabine Spitz Haibike) was third.


A lead group of four emerged in the Schaenzli bike arena in rainy conditions after the fourth of eight laps. A bit earlier, Marcel Wildhaber (Scott Swisspower) had had to say goodbye due to a mechanical, and then BMC rider Reto Indergand was not been able to hold the pace of the group on an uphill section. However, with seventh place overall, Indergand finally won the U23 competition.

At one point, Flueckiger had to pull himself back to the leaders, when after a running section, he had some problems getting into his clipless pedals. But last year's world championships runner-up had enough energy to catch up again.

Näf also succeeded in doing this. On the penultimate lap, he attacked in the singletrack before the descent, but he risked too much and crashed. Entering the final lap, he had closed the 15-second-gap again.

"At that time I didn't think that I could win the race. Nino always applied heavy pressure on us in the uphill sections, but he couldn’t shake me off," said Naef.

Whereas Florian Vogel (Scott Swisspower) faded a bit earlier, Naef still was in third position with 500 metres to go. He passed Flueckiger and Schurter and rode "a long, good sprint" which earned him his first victory of the season.

"Nino was catching up on the finishing straight again, so I had to fight him off again. It's fantastic to win the finale here in Muttenz, just seven days prior to the world championships," said Naef.

Schurter will also travel to the world championships in South Africa in a positive mood. "Ralph always managed to gain time in the slippery sections, where I had to catch up time and again. But I'm quite happy, I think I was the strongest guy on the climbs." The Scott-Swisspower rider won the BMC Racing Cup overall standings ahead of Absalon. In the struggle for positions at the entrance to the first singletrack, the Frenchman missed the boat and then rode a steady pace in pursuit. He was fifth, 53 seconds behind.

His BMC teammate Flueckiger was "not one hundred percent" happy. "I would have liked to win this race. Of course, I am glad for Ralph's sake, this is really important for him." Flueckiger, third overall in the Cup ranking, is happy about his fitness, and also said, "I felt very good on the climbs, that was great."

Jose Hermida (Multivan Merida), who was suffering from a sore throat, pulled out of the race on lap five.

The five-lap women's race was dominated by a three-member leading group that had established itself after Esther Suess and Sabine Spitz had managed to catch up to Kathrin Stirnemann on the third lap.

Somewhat involuntarily, eliminator World Cup winner Stirnemann found herself alone at the front in the first lap. "I was first in the downhill, and I had a gap at the bottom. Then I decided to keep a steady rhythm," said Stirnemann. She had a lead of almost 40 seconds, but they melted away quickly on the third lap. Since the course began to dry up, Stirnemann's rear tire no longer suited the conditions.

"I had no chance," said Stirnemann. Due to her superior skills in the descents, she was able to keep up with Spitz and Suess to the final lap. But then a flat tire took away all her chances to win.

Chain suck on one of the climbs decided the duel between Süss and Spitz. Spitz had to dismount and lost some seconds. Although she tried to claw her way back, the German could not catch-up again. In the end, the European marathon champion and the World Cup winner of Andorra were seven seconds apart.

"No doubt, Kathrin was the fastest on the downhills, but I wasn't really slow either," said Suess, grinning. She had not even noticed that behind her, Spitz had suffered chain suck. "Competing against these two Haibike girls I had to lead for much of the race. Of course. I had a gap before we reached the descent, and I said to myself: Now ride down safely but not too slowly. I had to fight to the finish, because Sabine was catching up again. Given today's conditions, it was also a question of motivation, but I've tried to think positively, and it worked. Now I'm ready to fly to the Worlds with good self-confidence," said Süss, who also won the overall ranking.

Spitz said that it was "unfortunate that the chain suck happened at this bad point in time." However, the 41-year-old was very happy about her form after having suffered from two infections. "Due to its special characteristics, you cannot compare this race course with the course at the Worlds. But it was good for me to do a race in the mud because that could happen in South Africa, too."

U23 rider Linda Indergand managed to keep up with Spitz and Suess up to the third lap and finished the competition on fourth place, ahead of local hero Katrin Leumann who was struggling with a neck issue. Leumann had been second until lap two. "I'm sure it will get better till next week," said Leumann.

Olympic and world champion Julie Bresset (BH-SR Suntour-KMC) had to throw in the towel quite early in the race. "I simply did not have the right kind of tires," said Bresset. She quit the race on lap three.

Full Results

Elite men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Ralph Näf (Swi) BMC Mountainbike Racing Team1:45:06
2Nino Schurter (Swi) Scott-Swisspower MTB Racing0:00:01
3Lukas Flückiger (Swi) BMC Mountainbike Racing Team0:00:06
4Florian Vogel (Swi) Scott-Swisspower MTB Racing0:00:37
5Julien Absalon (Fra) BMC Mountainbike Racing Team0:00:53
6Marek Konwa (Pol) National Team Poland0:01:09
7Reto Indergand* (Swi) BMC Mountainbike Racing Team0:02:15
8Marcel Wildhaber (Swi) Scott-Swisspower MTB Racing0:02:50
9Nicola Rohrbach (Swi) goldwurst-power/ Stöckli0:04:18
10Jürg Graf (Swi) bskGraf-ROLLMAT-KOBA MTB Team0:04:36
11Martin Fanger (Swi) BMC Mountainbike Racing Team0:05:04
12Fabian Giger (Swi) Giant Pro XC Team0:05:17
13Markus Bauer (Ger)0:05:17
14Daniel Eymann (Swi) Imboden Bike Lauterbrunnen0:05:37
15Stephen Ettinger (USA) BMC Mountainbike Racing Team0:06:06
16Lars Forster* (Swi) Tower Sports - VC Eschenbach0:06:55
17Andri Frischknecht* (Swi) Scott-Swisspower MTB Racing0:06:56
18Sepp Freiburghaus (Swi) Thömus Racing Team0:07:38
19Patrick Tresch (Swi) Strüby MTB Kader0:08:17
20Stefan Peter* (Swi) Strüby MTB Kader0:08:45
21Lucien Besançon (Swi) BH-Biketeam0:09:35
22Pascal Schmutz (Swi) goldwurst-power / Stöckli0:09:43
23Florian Chenaux* (Swi) Zimmermann-BMC-New Work0:09:56
24Dylan Page* (Swi) Dom cycle-Merida0:10:26
25Matthias Allenspach (Swi) Tower Sports - VC Eschenbach0:10:49
26Mariusz Kowal (Pol) Kocarz Polanica0:11:04
27Silvio Büsser (Swi) Wheeler-IXS Team0:11:24
28Jonas Baumann (Swi) Wheeler-IXS Team0:11:33
29Giancarlo Sax (Swi) BigFriends Racing Team0:11:35
30Sergio Mantecon Gutierrez (Spa) WildWolf-Trek Pro Racing0:12:03
31Severin Sägesser* (Swi) Crazy Velo Shop0:12:39
32Michael Wildhaber (Swi) Tower Sports - VC Eschenbach0:12:40
33Simon Stiebjahn (Ger) Team Bulls0:13:09
34Ramon Sagués Portabella (Spa) Blue Motors0:13:13
35Sandro Soncin (Swi) BH-Biketeam0:13:17
36Bryan Allemann* (Swi) Zimmermann-BMC-New Work0:14:58
-1lapAlexander Gehbauer (Aut) TX-Active Bianchi Team
-2lapsIvan Alvarez Gutierrez (Spa) Elettroveneta Corratec
-2lapsRick Reimann* (Swi) Orbea Suisse MTB Team
-2lapsSylvain Engelmann* (Swi) Prof Raiffeisen CCL
-2lapsMike Schuler* (Swi) Strüby MTB Kader
-2lapsClaude Koster* (Swi) Bergamont Swiss Team
-2lapsMatthias Stirnemann* (Swi) BMC Mountainbike Racing Team
-2lapsRoger Jenny* (Swi) Cycling Projekt Bike4Fun
-3lapsMichael Hutter (Swi) Pink Gili Swiss Racing Team
-3lapsMattia Setti* (Ita) CANOSSA MERIDA
-3lapsNick Albrecht* (Swi)
-4lapsPascal Meyer (Swi) JB Felt Team
-4lapsMichael Stünzi* (Swi) Orbea Suisse MTB Team
-4lapsJonas Loretz* (Swi) Thömus Racing Team
-4lapsJohannes Striller (Ger) Team Storck Bicycles/Rosbacher
DNFJosé Antonio Hermida (Spa) Multivan Merida Biking Team
DNFMaxime Marotte (Fra) BH SrSuntour KMC
DNFMartin Loo (Est) Merida Italia Team
DNFFabian Paumann* (Swi) Greenhope MTB Team - biking against cancer
DNFWawak Bartlomiej (Pol) National Team Poland
DNFCarlos Coloma-Nicolas (Spa) WildWolf-Trek Pro Racing
DNFFlorian Thie (Swi) Bergamont Swiss Team
DNFPatrik Gallati (Swi) Focus XC Team
DNFValentin Berset* (Swi) team dom cycle - merida
DNFSebastian Lehr (Ger) TU-Sports / Centurion
DNFSebastian Ostertag (Swi) Wädenswil
DNFShlomi Haimy (Isr) Focus MIG Team
DNFGerhard Kerschbaumer* (Ita) TX-Active Bianchi Team
DNFKohei Yamamoto (Jpn) Specialized Racing Team
DNFJose Alberto Gonzalez Merchan* (Ecu) Ecuador

Elite women
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Esther Süss (Swi) Wheeler-IXS Team1:20:41
2Sabine Spitz (Ger) Sabine Spitz Haibike Pro Team0:00:07
3Kathrin Stirnemann (Swi) Sabine Spitz Haibike Pro Team0:00:47
4Linda Indergand* (Swi) Strüby MTB Kader0:02:09
5Katrin Leumann (Swi) Ghost Factory Racing Team0:03:19
6Katarzyna Solus Miskowicz (Pol) National Team Poland0:03:52
7Monika Zur* (Pol) 4F Racing Team0:04:33
8Andrea Waldis* (Swi) Colnago Südtirol0:05:20
9Nathalie Schneitter (Swi) Colnago Südtirol0:06:00
10Elisabeth Sveum (Nor) Raufoss & Gjøvik SK0:07:10
11Corina Gantenbein (Swi) Fischer - BMC0:08:34
12Michelle Hediger* (Swi) Fischer - BMC0:10:00
13Anna Villar Argente (Spa) Tomàs Bellès Cannondale By Gaes0:11:42
14Sabrina Baumgartner (Swi) Raiffeisen Bikeshop Studer Raceteam0:11:50
15Janina Wüst* (Swi) Schmid-Velosport0:12:37
16Franziska Ebinger (Swi) Bergamont - Radsport Lafranchi Madiswil0:12:39
17Kerry Macphee (GBr) Rock and Road Cycles0:13:16
18Céline Farner (Swi) JB Felt Team0:14:53
19Mercè Pacios Pujadó (Spa) Blue Motors0:15:09
20Jennifer Kupferschmied* (Swi) Wheeler-IXS Team0:15:53
21Marine Groccia* (Swi) C.C.Moutier0:16:26
22Ramona Forchini* (Swi) Strüby MTB Kader0:19:23
23Romaine Wenger* (Swi) Thömus Racing Team0:19:26
-2lapsFranziska Brun (Swi) Bergamont Swiss Team
-2lapsAurélia Perry (Fra) Focus Rotor Coaching-system
-2lapsEliane Müggler* (Swi) Pink Gili Swiss Racing Team
-2lapsVanessa Kleih (Ger) Merida-Schulte
-2lapsTanja Starkermann* (Swi) BH-Biketeam / RCGränichen
DNFSabrina Maurer (Swi) Bskgraf-Rollmat-Koba MTB Team
DNFJulie Bresset (Fra) BH SrSuntour KMC
DNFMichèle Wittlin (Swi) Stöckli 29er Team / Bike Club Olten
DNFDeborah Inauen* (Swi) Pink Gili Swiss Racing Team

Junior men
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Dominic Grab (Swi) Team Grab-Credo / VC Maur1:11:44
2Manuel Fasnacht (Swi) Scott-Swisspower MTB Racing0:00:47
3Daniel Voitl (Ger) Bike Junior Team powered by milka0:00:50
4Léo L'homme (Swi) Adrisport0:01:30
5Jodok Salzmann (Aut) MTB Team Hohenems0:02:13
6Piotr Konwa (Pol) 4F Racing Team0:02:18
7Nicolas Fischer (Swi) Tropical Solothurn
8Mike Hermann (Swi) Thömus Racing Team / RSV Pizol0:02:37
9Robin Gemperle (Swi) Scott-Swisspower MTB Racing0:02:48
10Simon Vitzthum (Swi) bischibikes / kopierpapier.ch0:03:09
11Timothy Mazzuchelli (Swi) Greenhope MTB Team - biking against cancer0:03:31
12Raphael Koch (Swi) Greenhope MTB Team - biking against cancer0:04:12
13Gordian Banzer (Lie) kbike.ch0:04:25
14Alessandro Naspi (Ita) Merida Italia Team0:04:33
15Lars Hubacher (Swi) bskGraf-Rollmat-Koba MTB Team0:04:45
16Fabian Strittmatter (Swi) Specialized Racing0:04:56
17Timon Rüegg (Swi) Sortimo Fahrzeugeinrichtung / VC Steinmaur0:05:09
18Benjamin Inauen (Swi) Pink Gili Swiss Racing Team0:05:16
19Johannes Bläsi (Ger) LEXWARE-ROTHAUS-Team0:06:07
20Sandro Trevisani (Swi) Dom Cycle Merida0:06:08
21Rémy Dénervaud (Swi) Team Dom Cycle Merida0:06:37
22Noah Blöchlinger (Swi) bischibikes / kopierpapier.ch0:07:28
23Andreas Egger (Ger) VC Mindelheim, Cube Factory Pilot0:07:31
24Lionel Fasel (Swi) Vélo club Echallens0:07:55
25Johannes Frey (Ger) Wheeler-iXS-Team0:08:53
26Tim Streckenbach (Ger) TSV Dettingen / Radwerk Racing Team0:09:12
27Guillaume Conus (Swi) VC.Echallens0:09:49
28Jean Villermaulaz (Swi) Dupasquier sport stöckli0:09:58
29Nils Dillmann (Ger) Merida-Schulte0:10:27
30Fabio Franz (Swi) Fischer Junior MTB Team0:10:50
31Marco Thalhofer (Ger) MSC Wiesenbach0:12:42
32Johann Sansonnens (Swi) Zeta cycling Club0:12:49
33Lars Stillhart (Swi) / RV Buchs0:13:51
34Sammy Leumann (Swi) VC Maur0:14:52
35Maxime Schlotter (Ger) Chouet Bike Club Village0:17:53
36Bruno Silva (Por) biketeam.gr0:19:14
-1lapMarco Häner (Swi) Goldwurst-Power / Stöckli
-1lapCedric Gauch (Swi) Fischer Junior MTB Team
DNFAndrin Beeli (Swi) bskGraf-ROLLMAT-KOBA MTB Team
DNFValentin Kiser (Swi) JB Felt Team
DNFOliver Herzig (Ger) Tropical Solothurn
DNFGérard Steiblé (Fra) Chouet'bike club Village Neuf

Junior women
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Alessandra Keller (Swi) Strüby MTB Kader1:11:57
2Pierina Beeli (Swi) bskGraf-Rollmat-Koba MTB Team0:01:25
3Mallory Barth (Swi) JB Felt Team0:02:45
4Veronika Brüchle (Swi) Stevens- Schubert racing Team0:04:01
5Chantal Eheim (Swi) Tropical Solothurn0:04:02
6Chrystelle Baumann (Swi) Prof Raiffeisen CCL0:08:02
7Joana Schönthal (Swi) Velo-Shop Vonäsch Zollikon/VC Meilen0:10:28
8Milena Waldis (Swi) Focus X-Bionic TEAM / VC Gersau0:14:35
9Zina Barhoumi (Swi) RSC Aaretal Münsingen0:18:09
DNFRebecca Rudolf Von Rohr (Swi) Tropical Solothurn
DNFSabrina Sägesser (Swi) Fischer Junior MTB Team

Amateurs & masters
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Martin Frey* (Ger) Team Bulls1:10:50
2Marcel Guerrini* (Swi) Focus XC Eliteteam0:00:15
3Enea Vetsch* (Swi) bskGraf-Rollmat-Koba MTB Team0:00:57
4Patrick Lüthi* (Swi) Prof Raiffeisen CCL0:00:57
5Tobias Hollenstein (Swi) bischibikes / kopierpapier.ch0:01:02
6Philipp Hediger* (Swi) Fischer - BMC0:01:05
7Rico Von Burg* (Swi) Thömus Racing Team0:02:20
8Manuel Boog* (Swi) Tower Sports - VC Eschenbach0:02:27
9Joel Koller* (Swi) Tower Sports - VC Eschenbach0:02:51
10Michael Frei (Swi) BH Biketeam0:03:05
11Thomas Schmid (Swi) bsk-Graf Rollmat MTB Team0:03:23
12Romain Bannwart* (Swi) Prof Raiffeisen CCL0:03:32
13Roli Mischler (Swi) Fischli Bike Team0:03:52
14Joël Haubensak* (Swi) fehr-velos.ch0:03:54
15Oliver Laudenberg (Ger) Team Merida Schulte0:04:14
16Jan Gafner* (Swi) Prof Raiffeisen CCL0:04:47
17Joel Graf (Swi) Pink Gili Swiss Racing Team0:04:58
18Michael Wicki* (Swi) bischibikes / kopierpapier.ch0:05:11
19Lukas Bucher (Swi) Tropical Solothurn0:05:33
20Adrian Muri (Swi) vc sursee-creabeton0:05:36
21Matthias Lauk (Swi) FOCUS X-BIONIC TEAM0:05:49
22Jeremias Marti (Swi) Strüby MTB Kader0:05:53
23Ueli Schädler (Swi) FOCUS X-BIONIC TEAM0:06:12
24Thomas Weber (Swi) biketeam.gr0:06:17
25Pablo Egeda Maldonado (Spa) Tomàs Bellès Cannondale By Gaes0:06:28
26Elias Hagspiel (Aut) Radcult Bregenz0:06:41
27Simon Schilli* (Ger) Racextract. Werksteam0:06:58
28Silvan Kälin* (Swi) Strüby MTB Kader0:07:02
29Yves Ketterer* (Ger) Wheeler-IXS Team0:07:12
30Jack Humphreys* (GBr) Wheelbase Altura MGD0:07:20
31Severin Nowak (Swi) Bergamont Swiss Team0:08:42
32Nico Tambarikas* (Swi)0:08:52
33Benno Heussi (Swi) credo-bikes race team0:08:53
34Stefan Vögeli* (Swi) Ski+Velo-CenterRacingTeam/BC Spiez0:09:34
35Thomas Kunz* (Swi) Goldwurst-Power/Stöckli0:09:58
36Federer Ralph* (Swi) MTB-Team Frifag/Gaetzi0:10:02
37Jan Schär* (Swi) Thömus Racing Team0:10:02
38Tobias Schraner* (Swi) Fischer - BMC0:11:11
39Luca Formoso (Swi) dapp-putzi-team.ch0:11:36
40Sebastian Egger* (Swi) Orbea Suisse MTB Team0:11:38
41Kilian Oertli* (Swi) MTB Team Frifag-Gaetzi0:13:36
42Ulisse Fieschi* (Swi) JB Felt Team0:13:47
43Heiko Hog* (Ger) Lexware Rothaus Team0:16:00
44Tobias Sindlinger* (Ger) Gonso-Simplon-Racing-Team
45Fabian Bucher* (Swi) Merida Riders / VMC Bürglen0:17:45
-1lapKilian Badrutt* (Swi)
-1lapMarius Kottal (Ger) RSU Hochschwarzwald
DNFFlorian Meyer (Swi) Stöckli
DNFSilvan Casutt* (Swi)
DNFNiklas Grobert (Ger) Rothaus-Poison/Hochschwarzwald
DNFPirmin Kuss (Ger) Wheeler-iXS-Team
DNFSandro Kessler (Swi) Cycling Project Bike4Fun
DNFErich Kuster (Swi) Pink Gili Swiss Racing Team
DNFPascal Nay* (Swi) Thömus Bike Team GR
DNFBruno Vitali* (Swi) VTT Club Jura

Thank you for reading 5 articles in the past 30 days*

Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read any 5 articles for free in each 30-day period, this automatically resets

After your trial you will be billed £4.99 $7.99 €5.99 per month, cancel anytime. Or sign up for one year for just £49 $79 €59

Join now for unlimited access

Try your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1