The second round of the UCI Marathon World Cup saw new winners crowned amongst the iconic surroundings of Finale Outdoor Region.
Competitors set out from the ancient village of Finalborgo to take on a huge 100km course that featured nearly 4000 metres of climbing. Taking in every type of terrain imaginable, the race played out beneath a blazing Italian sun that pushed riders to the limit.
The men were the first to cross the line, with Colombia’s Diego Alfonso Arias Cuervo securing the win with an impressive 1:12m lead ahead of Martin Stosek (Canyon Northwave MTB Team) in second and Italy’s Fabian Rabensteiner (Wilier-Pirelli Factory Team MX) in third.
Speaking after the race, Cuervo said:
The race was really hard. I had a tough time because there were a lot of climbs and they were really rough. Around the 60km mark I started upping the pace, I was tied with the second placed rider but during that climb I was able to pick up some space and distance between us and that’s when I managed to make a bigger gap and win the race.
It’s the second most important win of my career after the 2021 World Championships in Elba.
In the women’s competition it was Adelheid Morath from Germany who claimed victory, after a strong start to the race saw her lead quickly become unassailable. Round one winner Lejla Njemcevic was forced to settle for second, whilst Vera Looser rounded out the podium in third.
I think it was the hardest race in my whole career, it was super tough. The course was like 3700m of climbing but in a very technical terrain, so steep and loose, but beautiful. The first part was rooty and a little bit wet and then the last part was so dry, steep and hot. It was brutal with the sun, so there was some suffering.
I tried on the first climb to make a gap and I felt good, so about 10km in I got the gap and I kept it to the finish, it was incredible.
It means a lot to me that now we have world cup racing in marathon, it’s a big step and also for women’s racing, so it really meant a lot to me, I'm very emotional. Today was a day that I will keep in my mind for a lifetime.
Full results from today’s race as well as updated series rankings can be found here.
The UCI Marathon World Cup returns on September 16 for round three at the UCI Mountain Bike World Series Festival Haute-Savoie, taking place in Chatel, Les Gets and Morzine.
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