Absa Cape Epic


Axel Hangleck said:
Avancini was rather unhappy with Nino in the post stage interview; I'd always assumed Nino was popular with rivals.......
not much of a drama though, just usual different ideas of colaboration between teams/riders. could be nino was more vocal towards the cannon guys for not working together upfront...
EDIT: maybe a little drama after all...
From Nino's FB:
I’m very sad about where our disagreement went between Avancini and me in todays race.
I give him credit for coming to me to apologized. However, at no time I did give him “***” as he is saying and I never was rude to any of my competitors as he explains. I respect all my racing colleagues!
The way he explained things to public and his fans is a lie that I would not expect from a champion he is. Let’s keep it fun from now on.
Bad luck for ScottMTB as Lars punctured rear wheel and was unable to fix it initially so they had to wait for their backup team to catch them and give Lars their wheel... then they fought hard to limit the initial over 9 min gap to 6:45 losing the yellow jerseys by 2m41s. Looks like we have a battle in front of us till the end :D

1. Cannondale Factory Racing 3-1 Manuel Fumic (Germany) 3-2 Henrique Avancini (Brazil) 13:19.31,9
2. Scott-SRAM MTB-Racing 4-1 Nino Schurter (Switzerland) 4-2 Lars Forster (Switzerland) 13:22.13,4 +2.41,5
3. BULLS Heroes 6-1 Urs Huber (Switzerland) 6-2 Simon Stiebjahn (Germany) 13:27.17,0 +7.45,1
4. Trek Selle San Marco 10-1 Damiano Ferraro (Italy) 10-2 Samuele Porro (Italy) 13:27.28,0 +7.56,1

Business as usual as Annika and Anna extending their lead to rather comfy 23mins.
40-tish km "time-trial" today before the Queen Stage tomorrow
Nino/Lars tail-whipping their bikes through the trails to win the men race today, closing the gap in overall (to Fumic/Avancini) to 1m13s before tomorrow's epic stage.
Annika/Anna 5 out of the 5 further extending their lead...
- official timings will be on/at usual places later...
Queen stage done.

Buys/Beukes win with Nino/Lars right behind them. Cannondale guys lost 6 mins so Nino/Lars are back in yellow with a 5:00 lead.

Great victory for Candice Lill & Adelheid Morath from SummitFin. Annika/Anna with little bit strugle through the stage 2nd with 4 mins gap but still with comfy 22 mins lead in GC.
No surprises during the final stage today...

Anna/Annika take the final stage and the overal with Lill/Morath on 2nd. This is 5th overal win for Annika Langvad.
Nino/Lars take the men's GC with Manu/Henrique 2nd.
Maybe Nino has little too much fun on the trails whipping that rear wheel and jumping around... who knows. He said that one flat was during the climb even - something really sharp in the grass - at least one more rider had a flat in exact same place. I'm sure they have best tires available and almost certainly not opting for ultralight XC variants...
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Looking super strong, and a minute up the road/trail, and another puncture.....So they're still over 8 mins back on the leaders, despite winning the stage, albeit in a sprint.
Interesting race today.

I think they really need to look at tire choices. Nino is pretty skilled, so I don't think he is likely just riding "too rough", so this many flats, and big ones, makes me think they either have a defective/crap batch of tires, or the tires are just a poor choice for the conditions. Of course sponsorship stuff needs to be considered, but I think after three days in a row of bad luck, they might want to makes some tire changes if possible.