Posted on | May 2, 2012 | Category: News
The world’s elite mountain bike orienteers meet up for IOF competition for the first time this year at the weekend, when the first round of the World Cup will be held in the Prague region of the Czech Republic.
Many of the riders have met up already – an international MTBO Camp was held in Denmark at the beginning of April, and there was a good international entry too for the Slovak and Czech Cup this last weekend. Here, Finland’s Marika Hara showed her form in winning both races – middle and long distance. The men’s long distance race was won by Russia’s Ruslan Gritsan, and the middle distance by the Czech rider Martin Ševčik. Not all the best riders have joined the full international circuit so early, though, and two very well-known names in MTBO circles, Ingrid Stengård and Samuli Saarela, both from Finland, currently head the IOF World Rankings.
This World Cup round consists of 3 events: long distance on Saturday, middle distance on Sunday and a mixed relay (teams of 3 riders including at least one woman) on Monday. There will be at least 20 nations represented; each nation may enter up to 6 men and 6 women for the individual races, and 4 relay teams.
Long means long in MTBO races! The men’s course on Saturday is 38 km long by the course planner’s ‘ideal route’, with 760 m climb, whilst the women’s is 24 km with 440 m climb. The terrain overall is hilly, with many different forest types and a wealth of tracks and paths. Off-path riding is not allowed, but competitors may carry their bikes on forest rides or in the forest. The map scale on Saturday is 1:15,000.
The three other rounds this year are in Poland (31st May – 3rd June), the World Championships in Hungary (20th – 25th August) and in Estonia (21st – 23rd September).
Reports and leading results will appear on this website after each day of competition.
IOF World Ranking leaders, 30th April 2012
- Ingrid Stengård FIN 7028 points
- Rikke Kornvig DEN 6988
- Michaela Gigon AUT 6949
- Samuli Saarela FIN 7324
- Erik Skovgaard Knudsen DEN 7257
- Jiri Hradil CZE 7119
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