Absalon triumphs at Bike the Rock in Heubach

Julian Absalon (BMC) and Annika Langvad (Specialized) took the victory at Bike the Rock in Heubach, Germany, this weekend. The Frenchman won the HC-category race in front of teammate Moritz Milatz and Fabian Giger (Giant), while Langvad got the best of of Adelheid Morath and Jolanda Neff (Giant).

Men's cross country

There was no question that Julian Absalon was riding in Heubach more or less in his own class. The first two out of seven laps, Fabian Giger was together with the two-time Olympic champ, including up the 2.5km climb. Then Absalon left Giger behind and soloed to his second victory in Heubach following his first in 2010. He took a safe approach to the final lap, but still won by 28 seconds over Milatz.

"This race is always hard because you have to ride this uphill seven times. But I like the downhill. My shape is pretty good and I am confident for the upcoming World Cup races," said Absalon.

"I like this event. It's always a nice atmosphere with a lot of spectators," the Frenchman said.

The fight for second place was much more exciting. In the penultimate lap, Milatz caught a group of three behind Absalon, containing Giger, José Hermida (Multivan-Merida) and Stephane Tempier (BH Sr Suntour-KMC). The German champion put in a strong finish and together with Giger, he was able to leave Hermida and Tempier behind.

Not far away from the top of the climb, he accelerated and left Giger some seconds behind. Milatz kept his gap until the downhill and then secured the second place finish.

"My plan was not to over do it, but to do a fast last lap. Everything worked out well," said Milatz.

Giger said, "Moritz was a bit stronger than me, but I am really happy with one of my better races this year. I think my form is coming. It's a cool event every year, I like it."

Hermida took fourth and Tempier finished fifth.

Women's cross country

The special topography of the Bike the Rock cross country course creates two races of sorts. The uphill and the downhill are different specialties and so the way the race seems at the top of the climb is always different than it seems at the bottom.

Crossing the finish line for the first three laps, it was always World Cup leader Jolanda Neff (Liv Pro XC), who had about 10 seconds on Annika Langvad (Specialized). Adelheid Morath came by 20 to 30 seconds back.

But on the uphill, Morath always closed the gap and at the top, they were together.

Neff started to suffer in lap four. "I was a bit sick this week. So I knew I am not one hundred percent. I had to control my speed then," said Neff.

This led to a duel between Morath and Langvad, and right before the last downhill they were sprinting for the first position. The two-time marathon world champion Langvad won and took advantage in the downhill to the finish.

"These days, I feel very well and I hoped for a win, like four years ago. It was a great fight with Adelheid and Jolanda," said Langvad.

The same words were used Morath. "Great fight, really. I was not able to go to my limit, but could hold my rhythm. I am happy with my day, looking forward to the upcoming World Cups."

Olympic Gold medallist Julie Bresset (BH Sr Suntour-KMC), after her crash in Cairns, was not quite ready to fight for the podium. "It's not a course I like and after one week off, my form is not there. But I hope to be better in Nove Mesto," she said after finishing eighth.

Eliminator: Engen wins as usual while Gutmann surprises

Saturday's dliminator race saw Swede Alexandra Engen and German Heiko Gutmann (Lexware Mountainbike Team) on the top step of the podium

Engen was doing her job as always. Even a poor start didn't put her in serious danger. The two-time eliminator world champion jumped from fourth to first and defended her lead to win in front of former German champion Veronika Brüchle (Stevens) and Rebecca Henderson (Trek Factory Racing). Nadine Rieder (AMG-Rotwild) got fourth place.

"At the start, it was a bit dangerous for a moment, I decided to hold back. But afterwards I did well, I think," Engen said with a smile.

In the men's race, Heiko Gutmann was the surprise of the day. In a competition with three from the final of the Cairns World Cup, the 27-year-old from the southeast part of Germany gave a brave performance. With coolness, he took advantage of small mistakes by his competitors.

Paul van der Ploeg was in front in the final, but then slipped a bit in a corner, and Gutmann passed him. "For a moment I was afraid, that Paul would close the door, when I was already by his side, but I could make it," said Gutmann. "I am very happy. This victory is much more worth than others I took in the Bundesliga before."

"I should have won, but I made too many mistakes," said Paul van der Ploeg (Giant Australia).

Emil Lindgren (Giant Pro XC) defeated German national champion Simon Stiebjahn in the fight for the third spot on the podium.

"I was missing the power at the start. But it was fun, the eliminator is a cool format and we had a nice crowd here," said Lindgren.

Results

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Elite men cross country
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Julien Absalon (Fra)1:34:44
2Moritz Milatz (Ger)0:00:28
3Fabian Giger (Swi)0:00:39
4José Antonio Hermida Ramos (Spa)0:01:10
5Stéphane Tempier (Fra)0:01:27
6Alexander Gehbauer (Aut)0:03:38
7Michiel Van Der Heijden (Ned)0:03:39
8Maxime Marotte (Fra)0:04:30
9Rudi Van Houts (Ned)0:04:46
10Sergio Mantecon Gutierrez (Spa)0:04:53
11Uwe Hochenwarter (Aut)0:05:03
12Markus Schulte-Luenzum (Ger)0:05:41
13Markus Bauer (Ger)0:05:42
14David Valero (Spa)0:06:10
15Christian Helmig (Lux)0:06:33
16Kevin Van Hoovels (Bel)0:07:06
17Frank Beemer (Ned)0:07:23
18Daniel Mcconnell (Aus)0:08:08
19Hans Becking (Ned)0:08:45
20Michael Hutter (Swi)0:09:06
21Gerrit Rosenkranz (Ger)0:09:57
22Jorgen Flion (Bel)0:10:26
23Lysander Kiesel (Ger)0:11:06
24Rick Reimann (Swi)0:11:59
25Emil Lindgren (Swe)0:12:20
26Kerry Werner (USA)0:12:29
27Cristobal Silva Ibaceta (Chi)0:13:07
28Christopher Maletz (Ger)Row 27 - Cell 2
29Evgenii Pechenin (Rus)Row 28 - Cell 2
30Steffen Greger (Ger)Row 29 - Cell 2
31Jeffrey Andris (Ger)Row 30 - Cell 2
32Benjamin Oesterle (Ger)Row 31 - Cell 2
33Mario Espinoza (Chi)Row 32 - Cell 2
34Severin Schweisguth (Ger)Row 33 - Cell 2
35Alexey Belokrylov (Rus)Row 34 - Cell 2
36Simon Grün (Ger)Row 35 - Cell 2
37Gusty Bausch (Lux)Row 36 - Cell 2
38Vitus Wagenbauer (Ger)Row 37 - Cell 2
39Simon Staufner (Ger)Row 38 - Cell 2
40Samuel Maryns (Bel)Row 39 - Cell 2
41Christian Ludewig (Ger)Row 40 - Cell 2
42Daniel Ullmann (Ger)Row 41 - Cell 2
Swipe to scroll horizontally
Elite women cross country
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Annika Langvad (Den)1:35:12
2Adelheid Morath (Ger)0:00:20
3Jolanda Neff (Swi)0:01:25
4Lisi Osl (Aut)0:02:04
5Maja Wloszczowska (Pol)0:04:51
6Nina Wrobel (Ger)0:06:17
7Alexandra Engen (Swe)0:07:30
8Julie Bresset (Fra)0:07:31
9Peta Mullens (Aus)0:09:56
10Anne Terpstra (Ned)0:12:56
11Ramona Forchini (Swi)0:14:46
12Lucia Vazquez Crespo (Spa)0:16:29
13Britt Van Den Boogert (Ned)0:17:13
14Anna Konovalova (Rus)0:17:56
15Isabelle Klein (Lux)0:19:20
16Theresa Wolfrum (Ger)Row 15 - Cell 2
17Majlen Müller (Ger)Row 16 - Cell 2
18Jessica Benz (Ger)Row 17 - Cell 2
19Tina Kindlhofer (Aut)Row 18 - Cell 2
20Vanessa Kleih (Ger)Row 19 - Cell 2
21Chiara Eberle (Ger)Row 20 - Cell 2
22Cemile Trommer (Ger)Row 21 - Cell 2
23Nina Krauss (Ger)Row 22 - Cell 2
24Fabienne Schauss (Lux)Row 23 - Cell 2
25Hannah Traupe (Ger)Row 24 - Cell 2
26Theresia Schwenk (Ger)Row 25 - Cell 2
27Amelie Etzel (Ger)Row 26 - Cell 2
Swipe to scroll horizontally
U23 men cross country
#Rider Name (Country) TeamResult
1Grant Ferguson (GBr)1:23:07
2Bart De Vocht (Bel)0:01:01
3Keegan Swenson (USA)0:01:55
4Jordan Sarrou (Fra)0:02:11
5Didier Bats (Bel)0:02:13
6Robbert De Nijs (Ned)0:03:38
7Samuel Gaze (NZl)0:04:17
8Aaron Beck (Ger)0:05:03
9Maximilian Maier (Ger)0:05:26
10Sepp Kuss (USA)0:05:48
11Philipp Bertsch (Ger)0:06:41
12Marian Pablo Burkhardt (Ger)0:06:55
13Kjell Van Den Boogert (Ned)0:07:15
14Craig Oliver (NZl)0:07:24
15Marcel Lehrian (Ger)0:07:49
16Michael Crosbie (Aus)0:08:30
17Scott Bowden (Aus)0:08:32
18Sven Strähle (Ger)0:08:34
19Christopher Platt (Ger)0:09:19
20Guy Niv (Isr)0:09:20
21Michael Thompson (GBr)0:09:21
22Johannes Bläsi (Ger)0:09:32
23Jannik Lambert (Ger)0:09:49
24Florian Kortüm (Ger)0:10:54
25Heiko Hog (Ger)0:11:02
26Jakob Hartmann (Ger)0:11:10
27Simon Schilli (Ger)0:11:47
28Tim Streckenbach (Ger)0:12:51
29Simon Gessler (Ger)0:14:23
30Marco Faßbender (Ger)0:15:11
31Markus Siebert (Ger)0:16:32
32Alexander Gläser (Ger)Row 31 - Cell 2
33Quentin Winandy (Bel)Row 32 - Cell 2
34Isak Unal (Tur)Row 33 - Cell 2
35Tobias Rotermund (Ger)Row 34 - Cell 2
36Sam Weber (Ger)Row 35 - Cell 2
37Lucas Arnhold (Ger)Row 36 - Cell 2
38Matthias Baldauf (Ger)Row 37 - Cell 2
39Vladislav Maksimov (Rus)Row 38 - Cell 2
40Arndt Puls (Ger)Row 39 - Cell 2
41Kyle Ward (Aus)Row 40 - Cell 2
42Yves Ketterer (Ger)Row 41 - Cell 2
43Koen Van De Ven (Ned)Row 42 - Cell 2
44Felix Legler (Ger)Row 43 - Cell 2
45Pirmin Eisenbarth (Ger)Row 44 - Cell 2
46Tim Rosenkranz (Ger)Row 45 - Cell 2
47Loic Maryns (Bel)Row 46 - Cell 2
48Sebastian Jayne (Aus)Row 47 - Cell 2
49Tobias Sindlinger (Ger)Row 48 - Cell 2
50Manuel Schreier (Ger)Row 49 - Cell 2
51Nils Dillmann (Ger)Row 50 - Cell 2
52Patrick Pfeifer (Ger)Row 51 - Cell 2
53Stefan Schreier (Ger)Row 52 - Cell 2
54Luis Haußmann (Ger)Row 53 - Cell 2
55Alessandro Sepp (Ger)Row 54 - Cell 2
56Nick Wichmann (Ger)Row 55 - Cell 2
57Raven Hilderts (Ger)Row 56 - Cell 2
58Dominik Voss (Ger)Row 57 - Cell 2
Swipe to scroll horizontally
Elite men eliminator
#Rider Name (Country) Team
1Heiko Gutmann (Ger)
2Paul Van Der Ploeg (Aus)
3Emil Lindgren (Swe)
4Simon Stiebjahn (Ger)
5Marco Schätzing (Ger)
6Samuel Gaze (NZl)
7Louis Wolf (Ger)
8Martin Frey (Ger)
9Sean Christopher Feldhaus (Ger)
10Florian Kortüm (Ger)
11Daniel Mcconnell (Aus)
12Alexander Gläser (Ger)
13Hendrik Grobert (Ger)
14Timo Häfner (Ger)
15Vitus Wagenbauer (Ger)
16Luis Neff (Ger)
17Gerrit Rosenkranz (Ger)
18David Bertram (Ger)
19Evgenii Pechenin (Rus)
20Sam Weber (Ger)
21Simon Gutmann (Ger)
22Benjamin Oesterle (Ger)
23Jeffrey Andris (Ger)
24Gabriel Sindlinger (Ger)
25Jannik Stegmaier (Ger)
26Marco Thalhofer (Ger)
27David Lenz (Ger)
28Kevin Waibel (Ger)
29Tobias Wagner (Ger)
30Yves Ketterer (Ger)
Swipe to scroll horizontally
Elite women eliminator
#Rider Name (Country) Team
1Alexandra Engen (Swe)
2Veronika Brüchle (Ger)
3Rebecca Henderson (Aus)
4Nadine Rieder (Ger)
5Majlen Müller (Ger)
6Theresia Schwenk (Ger)
7Tina Kindlhofer (Aut)
8Vanessa Kleih (Ger)
9Chiara Eberle (Ger)
10Hannah Traupe (Ger)
11Anna Konovalova (Rus)
12Daniela Storch (Ger)
13Nina Krauss (Ger)
14Amelie Etzel (Ger)

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