Olympic champ Pidcock, Ferrand-Prevot win mountain bike World Cup races in Czech Republic

NOVE MESTO, Czech Republic (AP) — Olympic mountain bike champion Tom Pidcock won the World Cup event in the Czech Republic for the fourth straight year on Sunday, attacking alone on the fourth lap of the race to finish well ahead of Nino Schurter and Marcel Guerrini.

Pauline Ferrand-Prevot of France won the women’s race over the same course in Nove Mesto by more than a minute.

Pidcock, the reigning world champion, allowed Schurter and World Cup points leader Victor Koretzky to build an early lead, but the versatile British rider quickly pulled them back. He attacked on a short climb and established a lead, and Pidcock wound up crossing the finish line 32 seconds ahead of Schurter, the three-time Olympic medalist from Switzerland.

Guerrini finished 44 seconds back in third place to give the Swiss two riders on the podium.

“I can be quite pleased with that as my first (mountain bike) race of the year,” Pidcock said.

The 24-year-old Pidcock won Amstel Gold, one of the premier single-day road races, earlier this year. But he switched back to the mountain bike to prepare for the Paris Olympics, where he is favored to defend his gold medal from Tokyo.

Ferrand-Prevot also confirmed her favorite status for the Summer Games by dominating the women’s race, pulling away from Haley Batten of the U.S. to win by 1:02. Alessandra Keller was another 29 seconds back in third for Switzerland.

“I wanted to go at my own speed, and I knew I wanted to do the first lap at the front, so I pushed at the start,” Ferrand-Prevot said. “I can’t tell you I was feeling good, but I was just trying to ride my own race and push as much as possible.”

The 32-year-old Ferrand-Prevot has long been targeting her home Olympics. The five-time world champ has had disappointing showings in her previous appearances at the Summer Games, finishing 25th in 2012 in London, failing to finish four years later in Rio, and ended up 10th when among the favorites three years ago in Tokyo.


AP Olympics https://apnews.com/hub/2024-paris-olympic-games

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