Cycling News

Tom Pidcock beats Nino Schurter at home in Chur

Tom Pidcock beats Nino Schurter at home in Chur

Tom Pidcock seems to be finding his footing on the mountain bike just in time this year. After struggling in France last week, the Olympic Champion flew to victory over the weekend in the OKK Bike Revolution XCO in Chur, Switzerland.

On the women’s side, Evie Richards showed she’s back on form by beating world champion Pauline Ferrand-Prévot by a solid margin.

Pidcock beats the Swiss on home turf

Chur is Nino Schurter’s hometown but Scott-SRAM’s reigning world champion could only manage third. Pidcock (INEOS) and Mathias Flückiger (Thomus Maxon) finished 1-2, after distancing themselves from the field on the climbing-heavy course.

Racing in the kit of the European Champion, Pidcock took the race to the two Swiss stars. Flückiger – who was provisionally suspended on the eve of European championships in 2022 – was the only rider who could stay close to Pidcock’s wheel. On the final lap, Pidcock put in a blistering attack up a steep cobbled climb to ride clear of Flückiger and take the win.

The victory over such a high-caliber field will surely boost Pidcock’s – and Pinarello’s – confidence going into the first World Cup of 2023 this weekend in Nove Mesto, Czech Republic. Pidcock was forced to withdraw from last week’s French Cup in Gueret due to mechanical misfortune. While the Brit’s skills on a mountain bike are undeniable, he’s had trouble adapting to new equipment in a race scenario in the past. Getting that out of the way before World Cup racing starts should put Pidcock on track to repeat his XCO wins in Nove Mesto from 2021 and in 2022, especially in the absence of Mathieu van der Poel.

Richards starts season strong

Evie Richards (Trek Factory Racing) put Brits on top in both races in Switzerland, winning the women’s XCO by a comfortable margin over world champion Pauline Ferrand-Prévot (INEOS). The result isn’t just a big for beating the reigning world champ the weekend before the first World Cup. It’s also a big comeback for the Richards who struggled with a back injury in 2022, to the point of sitting out some races.

Sina Frei (Specialized Factory Racing) pushed Ferrand-Prévot right to the line. The Tokyo Olympic silver medallist attacked on the final climb, dropping Alessandra Keller (Thomus Maxon), Laura Stigger (Specialized Factory Racing) and Anne Terpstra (Ghost Factory Racing). Ferrand-Prévot managed to get past and held off Frei in a short finish sprint to take second.

Emilly Johnston…

Click Here to Read the Full Original Article at Canadian Cycling Magazine…