Alexandra Engen (Ghost Factory Racing Team) wins the women’s Eliminator in Nove Mesto (Rob Jones/

Men: Attacking raid nets Freiburghaus the victory

This article was originally published on

The UCI Mountain Bike World Cup saw a new face on the top step of the
podium of the Eliminator at Nove Mesto na Morave in the Czech Republic. A
brillant mid-race attack by Sepp Freiburghaus (Thoemus Racing caught all of his rivals off guard, allowing the Swiss rider to take the win.

Australian Paul van der Ploeg (Felt Oetztal X-Bionic) was considered
the favourite for the men, after qualifying first and finishing second
here last year. His powerful sprint afforded him the ability to come
from behind on the long finishing straight.

In the final, Freiburghaus and van der Ploeg were joined by Mirco
Widmer (Giant Swiss SR Suntour), Germany’s Martin Gluth, Marcel
Wildhaber (Scott-Swisspower) and Marek Konwa (Milka-Superior).
Significantly, round one winner Brian Lopes and cross-country stars Jose
Hermida (Multivan Merida), Manuel Fumic (Cannondale) and Marco Fontana
(Cannondale) did not make the final.

Paul Van Der Ploeg (Felt Oetztal X – Bionic Team) out of the start house

In the final, at the far side of the course on the only climb,
Freiburghaus attacked, immediately gaining ten metres on his rivals, who
all looked at each other, with none willing to take the initiative and
lead the chase. Coming into the final straightaway, Freiburghaus was
still well in front and cruised across the line while van der Ploeg led
the rest of the group in, shaking his head. Widmer took third.

“It was pretty tactical in the climb,” explained Freiburghaus, “and
so I changed my tactic for the final. I tried with an attack on the
climb, and then got a gap. On this Eliminator it was very important to
have a good tactic. If you are in the lead for the whole round you have a
problem, when you come with four or five guys on this straight finish. I
am very happy to bring it to the line.”

“It was a brilliant move by Sepp [Freiburghaus],” commented van der
Ploeg. “I was thinking ‘oh damn’ when he attacked, but that was it, that
was the move. I would have liked to have won, of course, but I’m happy
to be on the podium again.”

Women: Engen too good in Nove Mesto

This article was originally published on

Alexandra Engen (Ghost Factory) dominated the women’s competition at
round two of the UCI Eliminator World Cup. The second round of the
Eliminator was completely different from round one in Houffalize,
Belgium. Where the Belgian race had short, steep climbs, technical
descents and narrow singletrack, Nove Mesto was wide open, with pavement
and dirt forest roads. This led to multiple sprints and some photo
finish results in the heats.

Engen qualified first for the women and won both of her preliminary
heats to move into the final. She was joined there by 2011 cross-country
World Cup champion Julie Bresset (BH-SR Suntour-Peisey Vallandry), Eva
Lechner (Colnago Sudtirol), Australia’s Rowena Fry, Laura Turpijn (MPL
Specialized) and Cecile Ravanel (GT Skoda Chamonix). Missing from the
final were former world champions Tracy Moseley and Anneke Beerten

Turpijn took the early lead, but the group stayed together for the
entire 1100 metre circuit, with Engen hitting the front 150 metres from
the line and easily outdistancing her rivals. Engen had enough of a lead
to coast across the line with her arms in the air, while Bresset nipped
countrywoman Ravanel at the line for second.

After and early season filled with injury and illness, this is the
first time Engen has felt fully healthy. “This is a really positive
result for me, after the spring. In the quarter finals I realized that I
had my full fitness, and that I was able to do well. I like this kind
of wide courses where it is possible to pass and use my sprint.”




Big final


1 Sepp Freiburghaus (Sui) Thoemus Racing Team

2 Paul Van Der Ploeg (Aus) Felt Oetztal X – Bionic Team

3 Mirco Widmer (Sui) Giant Swiss Sr – Suntour

4 Marcel Wildhaber (Sui) Scott – Swisspower Mtb Racing Team

5 Marek Konwa (Pol) Milka-Superior MTB Racing Team

6 Martin Gluth (Ger)


Small final


7 Kevin Van Hoovels (Bel) Versluys Team

8 Simon Gegenheimer (Ger) Multivan Merida Biking Team

9 Jochen Kass (Ger) SH Superior MTB Team

10 Milan Spesny (Cze) Cannondale Factory Racing

11 Martin Gujan (Sui) Notebooksbilliger.De Team

12 Daniel Federspiel (Aut)


Round 1


13 Jan Fojtik (Cze)

14 Lukas Loretz (Sui) Giant Swiss Sr – Suntour

15 Philip Buys (RSA)

16 Simon Stiebjahn (Ger)

17 Lukas Kaufmann (Sui) Team Fujibikes Rockets

18 Marco Schätzing (Ger)

19 Thomas Litscher (Sui) Felt Oetztal X – Bionic Team

20 Simon Scheiber (Aut) Felt Oetztal X – Bionic Team

21 Kenta Gallagher (GBr)

22 Moritz Milatz (Ger) BMC Mountainbike Racing Team

23 Fabrice Mels (Bel) Salcano Factory Team

24 Matthias Wengelin (Swe) Team Herbalife 24 Raumerrittet

25 Manuel Fumic (Ger) Cannondale Factory Racing

26 Rudi Van Houts (Ned) Multivan Merida Biking Team

27 Jérémy Huguenin (Sui) Giant Swiss Sr – Suntour

28 Miha Halzer (Slo) Energijateam.Com

29 Brian Lopes (USA)

30 Michal Lami (Svk)

31 Markus Bauer (Ger)

32 Ola Kjören (Nor) Team Herbalife 24 Raumerrittet

33 Jan Nesvadba (Cze)

34 Marek Rauchfuss (Cze) SH Superior MTB Team

35 Marco Aurelio Fontana (Ita) Cannondale Factory Racing

36 Davy Huygens (Bel)




Big final


1 Alexandra Engen (Swe) Ghost Factory Racing Team

2 Julie Bresset (Fra) Bh – Sr Suntour – Peisey Vallandry

3 Cécile Ravanel (Fra) Gt Skoda Chamonix

4 Eva Lechner (Ita) Colnago Sudtirol

5 Laura Turpijn (Ned) MPL Specialized MTB Team

6 Rowena Fry (Aus)


Small final


7 Anne Terpstra (Ned) MPL Specialized MTB Team

8 Pavla Havlikova (Cze)

9 Pavlina Sulcova (Cze) Merida Biking Team

10 Chloe Woodruff (USA)

11 Ramona Forchini (Sui) MTB Kader Zentralschweiz

12 Kajsa Snihs (Swe)


Round 1


13 Jenny Rissveds (Swe) Sweden

14 Ana Zupan (Slo)

15 Tracy Moseley (GBr)

16 Angelica Edvardsson (Swe)

17 Heidi Sandsto Rosaasen (Nor) Team United Bakeries

18 Anneke Beerten (Ned) Milka-Superior MTB Racing Team

19 Paula Gorycka (Pol) 4F E-Vive Racing Team

20 Caroline Mani (Fra)

21 Nicoletta De Jager (Ned) MPL Specialized MTB Team

22 Joanna Petterson (USA)

23 Lucie Vesela (Cze) GT Bicycles Opportunity

24 Tina Perse (Slo) Slovenia

25 Katherine O’shea (Aus)

26 Erica Zaveta (USA) Moda-Bikemagic Racing Team

27 Weronika Rybarczyk (Pol) Superior MTB Energy Team

28 Imogen Buick (GBr) Moda-Bikemagic Racing Team

29 Rita Malinkiewicz (Pol) Poland

You can follow BikeRadar on Twitter at and on Facebook at