Just one week after the World Cup in Leogang, Europe's top four cross riders once again met at Leogang, Austria, for Round 4 of the Schwalbe Euro Four Cross Series.
The Leogang four cross track is regarded by the riders as one of the best in the World with technical jumps and a split section of track that really makes riders think.
In the week between the World Cup and the Euro Series, some riders had stayed to ride the track and practice whilst others went home, but one thing that did stick around was the wind and rain from the World Cup. The weather conditions were unpredictable, but rain was forecast for the race.
The RSP four cross team sent their two big guns - World Champion Tomas Slavik and European Champion Joost Wichman. Track builder Guido Tschugg (Ghost) knew the track better than anyone, local rider Hannes Slavik wanted a home win and the British riders Scott Roberts and Scott 'Boom Boom' Beaumont were looking to continue their great Euro Series form.
Onto qualifying and incredibly the sun came out! Under blue skies the safe money may have been on World Champ Slavik after seeing him ride in practice, however it was Wichman who took the fastest time ahead of Slavik - just an incredibly close 0.002 seconds between them.
Third place went to Scott Roberts from the United Kingdom who rides for Identiti. He had one of his best ever rides, finishing just 0.018 of Wichman.
British rider, Scott 'Boom Boom' Beaumont (Rocky Mountain) was fourth and he finished just 0.3 seconds behind Wichman. Local rider Hannes Slavik (RC Alpine Commencal) rounded out the top five with a brilliant ride in front of his home crowd. The times were close and had set up what looked to be a fantastic night of racing.
In elite women's race, Helene Fruhwirth took the fastest time ahead of Diana Margraff and in the rookies' category, Louis Blumlein was fastest ahead of Patryk Zowadzki.
The weather, unfortunately took another huge turn for the worse come Saturday evening's race time. Not only torrential rain but strong winds arrived in Leogang. After a track inspection, the organisers, UCI commissaries and rider representative Scott Beaumont had a long meeting about the race and if it was possible to host the event in such awful conditions. A rider vote was also taken and after all of the information was pulled together it was decided that the best thing to do was to cancel the race and award the results on qualification rankings - as per the rules of four cross.
It was a tough decision, but the right one.
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team|
|1||Joost Wichman (Ned)|
|2||Tomas Slavik (Cze)|
|3||Scott Roberts (GBr)|
|4||Scott Beaumont (GBr)|
|5||Hannes Slavik (Aut)|
|6||Marek Pesko (Svk)|
|7||Piotr Paradowski (Pol)|
|8||Adam Stasek (Cze)|
|9||Jakub Hnidak (Cze)|
|10||Johnny Magis (Bel)|
|11||Adrian Weiss (Swi)|
|12||Jakub Riha (Cze)|
|13||Petr Muhlhans (Cze)|
|14||Benjamin Kistner (Swi)|
|15||Benedikt Last (Ger)|
|16||Andreas Dotzauer (Ger)|
|17||Matej Stapic (Slo)|
|18||Andrej Bratina (Slo)|
|19||Christoph Eder (Aut)|
|20||Ashley Gray (Aus)|
|21||Mirco Weiss (Swi)|
|22||Guido Tschugg (Ger)|
|23||Tamas Tarr (Hun)|
|24||Matija Stupar (Slo)|
|25||Rudolf Thurner (Aut)|
|26||Roland Bagoly (Hun)|
|27||Norbert Papp (Hun)|
|28||Jakob Malik (Slo)|
|29||Gustav Koutnik (Cze)|
|30||Tim Zupanc (Slo)|
|31||Stefan Mauser (Aut)|
|32||Mark Van Lankveld (Ned)|
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