Gunn-Rita Dahle Flesjå wins in South Tyrol

The athletes of the MULTIVAN MERIDA BIKING TEAM competed at two different races last weekend: Ondrej Cink, José Hermida, Thomas Litscher and Julian Schelb all competed at Bad Säckingen’s MTB Bundesliga race, whereas Gunn-Rita Dahle Flesjå had opted to race the third round of the Italian crosscountry series in Nalles, winning the race in superior fashion.

 

 

Early on in the season Norwegian Gunn-Rita Dahle Flesjå boosted her self-confidence with wins in Cyprus. Her rivals got to experience this first hand at the third round of the Internazionali d’Italia crosscountry series held in Nalles. From the very start, the MULTIVAN MERIDA BIKING TEAM rider dominated the race almost at will, extending her lead throughout the race and finally winning with a margin of more than five an a half minutes on her closest competitor, Austria’s Elisabeth Osl. Gunn-Rita Dahle Flesjå commented on her performance as follows: „I had decided to go full-out from the very start today as a fast start is also a must at Worldcup races and big championship races in order to compete for the podium. I could even take it a little bit easier on the last laps in order to save some energies.“

 

At Bad Säckingen’s MTB Bundesliga race the men of the MULTIVAN MERIDA BIKING TEAM were not as successful. The startlist of that race resembled the one of a Worldcup race. And for some of the riders the circumstances were unfavourable: Just as in the year before Julian Schelb was struggling from pollen allergy. He decided to start nevertheless, and for a while he managed to ride at a decent pace before he had to slow down significantly in the last third of the race. Thomas Litscher’s race was ruined after just a few seconds, as he got blocked by a crash in front of him, forcing him to chase back. At first he managed to move up in the standings quickly, but when the pace went up in the fight for the top10 positions, Litscher had to pay for his effort. After a brave fight he crossed the finish line in 18th place.

 

José Hermida complained about respiratory problems, keeping him from riding at the level that had already earned him a podium finish this season. „The start of the Worldcup season is close and all riders are in top shape already. I have been suffering and giving my best, but today that was not enough for a top10 finish by far“, Hermida commented after the race that he finished in 17th. The only rider of the MULTIVAN MERIDA BIKING TEAM to temporarily ride in the top10 positions in Bad Säckingen was Ondrej Cink. This was due to two very fast laps halfway into the race. „But I had to pay dearly for these two laps and suffered from cramps just like a week earlier in Rivera. I guess I need some more time to get back to a level where I can ride an entire race at the highest pace“, Cink explained after a race where he dropped from 9th to 14th in the finale.

 

Internazionali d’Italia, round 3 in Nalles/Southern Tyrol

Women:

1. Gunn-Rita Dahle Flesja, NOR/MULTIVAN MERIDA BIKING TEAM, in 1:44.57 hours

2. Elisabeth Osl, AUT, + 5.41

3. Tanja Zakelj, SLO, + 6.50