XCO Nationals: Absalon Remains Undeafated, Flückiger takes Bronze again18. July 2016 — Mélanie Leveau — MTB Team
Many of the world’s elite mountain bikers were battling against their countrymen in various XCO National Championships this weekend. BMC MTB Racing Team riders were battling in two countries: Julien Absalon in Montgenèvre, France and the four Swiss riders in Echallens in the French speaking part of Switzerland.
Julien Absalon 14 Times Consecutive Gold
Julien Absalon has raced in the French national champion colors since 2013. He’s gotten used to the blue, white and red kit and wasn’t ready to let it go this year. On the eve of the race, he made it very clear: “I want to remain French Champion until the end of my career.” His opponents were warned, but rather than giving up they tried to give him a very hard time. Stéphane Tempier was the last one to follow Absalon but had to control his pace and take it down a notch after the first half of the race. He eventually took bronze after Maxime Marotte caught him at the end of the race. Even though things seemed easy for Absalon, the National Championships are always a bit special to him. “Every year on the morning of the race I hope I can put on my national champion colors that evening again.” Mission accomplished. Absalon can wear the French Champion jersey for the 14th consecutive year of his career.
Lukas Flückiger takes Bronze
Just like one year ago, Lukas Flückiger took bronze at the Swiss National Championships. While Nino Schurter was leading the race with ease, the rest of the Swiss riders were fighting for the silver medal. Lukas Flückiger did really well all race long, lying in second place until Mathias Stirneman passed him on the last lap. Happy with his third place, Flückiger is steadily getting back to the level of racing he is known for - this augurs well for the second half of the season.
French National Championships:
- Julien Absalon
- Maxime Marotte
- Stéphane Tempier
Full results: Link
Swiss National Championships:
- Nino Schurter
- Mathias Stirneman
- Lukas Flückiger
6. Reto Indergand
DNF : Lars Forster and Martin Fanger
Full results: Link