Archive for the ‘Topeak-Ergon Racing’ Category

Sally Bigham Takes Second Leadville 100 Victory

Tuesday, August 12th, 2014

Topeak Ergon Racing Team struck again at the weekend after Sally Bigham rode to a commanding first place to take her second Leadville 100 title in Colorado. Kristian Hynek put in a strong showing in the men’s race to take third, while 2013 winner, Alban Lakata, managed fourth.

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Leadville 100 is rightly considered to be the toughest marathon race in the USA, with 103 miles off-road and 4000 metres of climbing, all taking place between 3000 and 4000 metres above sea-level, making altitude a major factor to overcome. Nevertheless, Bigham crossed the line on her Grand Canyon CF SLX 29 over 42 minutes ahead of her nearest rival having lead from the gun.

With a winning time of 7:23:58, although she made it look easy, Bigham claimed that was certainly not the case: “It was such a relief finally crossing the line because I had no idea how far the others were behind me. In these races you can never be certain that something might go wrong until the last few metres.”

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Hynek on the Podium

Czech rider Kristian Hynek lead for a proportion of the race on the Lux CF before cracking towards the end.

“About 30 km from the end I really thought I wouldn’t be able to make it to the finish. The fact I still managed to hang on for 3rd is great, I now know what to do better next year!”

No Luck for Lakata

Two-time winner and course record holder, Alban Lakata, was also in the lead with Kristian until an ill-timed puncture took him out of contention.

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The Albanator was philosophical about the race: “It’s too bad as I came here to win and wanted to set a new record under six hours, but never mind, I’ll just have to try again next year!”

Check out the Leaville winning Grand Canyon CF SLX

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Topeak-Ergon Racing Team and Canyon win the Cape Epic

Monday, March 31st, 2014

The Absa Cape Epic in South Africa could hardly have gone any better for Canyon and the Topeak-Racing Team. Considered the hardest mountain bike stage race in the world, Robert Mennen and Kristian Hynek won the men’s overall while the women Sally Bigham and Esther Süss rode to a fine second place, all adding to the success of the Lux CF.

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With 8 stages totalling 718 KM and over 14850 metres of climbing through the heat, dust, rain and mud of the South African back country, the Cape Epic sits at the pinnacle of international marathon mountain bike racing. To win it once is enough to define a rider’s entire career.

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In order to take on such an extreme race, having the right equipment is paramount. It’s all about the bike. With the Cape Epic now in the bag, the moniker of the Lux CF holds as true as ever – 100% Luxury Racing!

Topeak-Ergon Racing Team moves focus to endurance

Tuesday, January 7th, 2014

European Champion, two Silver Medals at the World Championships, one silver medal at the European Championships, not to mention the National Titles – just a few of the results which the Topeak-Ergon Racing Team banked this year on Canyon Bikes. The totals which the team may boast of are 38 podiums – made up of 20 wins, 15 second places, and 3 third places. There were also one World Cup win and two course records.

2014: new Priorities for Topeak-Ergon

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Topeak-Ergon Racing Team moves their focus to endurance with the signing of the Czech rider Kristian Hynek for the 2014 season. The rider, who in 2012 was the European Marathon Champion and 3rd at the World Championships joins the current European Marathon Champ, Alban Lakata and the German National XCO Champion Robert Mennen. The idea being to assemble undoubtedly the strongest endurance team in professional mountain biking. On the women’s side of racing, with Sally Bigham at the helm, things have been looking that way for a while, she is without doubt the most successful female mountain biker in these categories over the past couple of years.

“Iron Sally” Sally Bigham

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“He was my favourite choice from all the applicants”

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Hynek joining the team is something which Alban Lakata himself argued for. ”Kristian is one of the best Marathon racers in the world,” the clearly delighted Austrian explained,”I think that his abilities and his personality fit perfectly within our team. He was my favourite choice from all the applicants.” It wasn’t only Team Topeak-Ergon who were interested in signing Hynek, but the German team was also Hynek’s first choice.”I am positive that I have made the right move,” the 33 year old endurance rider said,”it is certainly a big step forward into the premiere league of my sport. I am extremely proud to say that I am a part of this team.”

As a result of the change of focus to Marathon/Endurance, the Cross Country side of the team will be downplayed, specifically with the departure of Irina Kalentieva. She leaves the team after an amazing seven years. This splitting of paths was not something done lightly, particularly on the back of such a long partnership and the numerous challenges and victories which Ira and Topeak-Ergon have faced together. Ergon will continue to work with Kalentieva and remain committed and grateful to her, however with the results in the Marathon/Endurance category from this last year a change of direction is logical.
”Up until now we have been fighting a battle on two fronts, at the top level of Cross Country, as well as Marathon”, explained RTI’s founder and CEO Franc Arnold,”however in the future we plan to continue to invest in the sport, but it is clear that marathon and endurance is a better fit to our brand.” It isn’t completely the end for Topeak-Ergon in Cross Country, as Wolfram Kurschat will continue to race, however he will be moving to a more ’ambassador’ based role for Ergon as well as other responsibilities.

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Other changes are that Nadine Rieder (24) and Milena Landtwing (32) will leave the team at the end of the year.
We wish everyone all the best for the 2014 season.

Canyon Year Review 2013 – Part 3

Friday, December 20th, 2013

Countdown to Christmas – 24 of the Best Canyon Moments From 2013

Christmas is drawing closer, can you feel it? Before you’re off on holiday, we present you with Days 14 to 20 of the Canyon Year Review.

Day 14

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The Inflite AL makes winter a thing of the past! Its brother’s frame, the Ultimate AL’s, is a lesson to all others showing what can be achieved using aluminium and in numerous grouptests it has left several of its carbon-framed competitors in its wake (“Winner” TOUR 05/13). As a new addition to the Canyon range the Inflite AL has benefited from the success of our other models to help create an outstanding cyclocross bike. With the Inflite AL, there’s simply no excuse not to get out and ride every day of the year!

Canyon goes Cross

Day 15

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After the huge disappointment of just missing out on being crowned World Champion at the end of September in Florence, Katusha’s Joaquim “Purito” Rodriguez bounced straight back with a commanding victory at Italy’s autumn classic, “Il Lombardia” for the second year in succession. For Canyon this marked yet another milestone taking our win tally to four in the “Race of the Falling Leaves”, one of cycling’s Monuments. With this victory Purito was also reinstated as number one rider in the UCI WorldTour Rankings. Follow his journey “Back to No. 1” in our 11 part fly-on-the-wall documentary.

Purito’s journey “Back to No. 1″

Day 16

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What a start to 2013! In February, 15 year-old Belgian Eva Maria Palm cleaned up at the Amateur National Championships in Ghent, winning three medals in her age category aboard her Canyon V-Drome. Eva Maria rode for the Canyon Young Heroes Team in both 2012 and 2013, an initiative that was born in 2008 to encourage up-and-coming riders. Applications are now open for places on the 2014 team.

Young Heroes 2014, apply now!

Day 17

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Every year for the past 6 years, Dirt Magazine meticulously review the very best Mountain Bike products on the market to compile the annual Dirt 100. Quite simply the 100 top downhill / enduro products on the market. To make it into the list with one bike is an honour so to have 2 make the grade this year with the Torque DHX Flashzone and Spectral AL 9.0 EX is pretty special! Find out more about both Canyon models elcted, click here:

Torque DHX Flashzone
Spectral AL 9.0 EX

Day 18

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2013 World Champions, European Champions and Transalp Champions. Topeak-Ergon Racing Team riders Alban Lakata and Sally Bigham have had more than their fair share of success over the past season. They weren’t alone, however, with 24 year-old German Nadine Rieder taking a well-deserved third place in the Eliminator Sprint at the Cross Country World Cup in Albstadt. We look forward to more of the same in 2014!

Grand Canyon CF – the Transalp Winner 2013

Day 19

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In 2013 we got itchy feet. So we decided to go on tour! Between March and June we visited Freiburg, Koblenz, Munich, Hamburg and Berlin with our latest models for the public to try out as well as workshops to take part in. Thanks to everyone who showed up, we had a great time and hope you did too!

Day 20

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Yesterday in Madrid Joaquim “Purito” Rodríguez picked up the coveted UCI WorldTour Trophy 2013 by Brian Cookson. This is the third time Purito has won the award following his achievements in 2010 and 2012 and he can now take joy in the successful completion of his mission from the start of the year, “Back to No. 1”. Congratulations, Purito!

Purito’s journey “Back to No. 1″

Look forward to part 4!

Part 1 of the Canyon Year Review

Part 2 of the Canyon Year Review

Canyon Year Review 2013 – Part 1

Friday, December 6th, 2013

Countdown to Christmas – 24 of the Best Canyon Moments From 2013

Thanks to you, our heroes, our partners and the riding community as a whole, 2013 has been one of our most successful years ever. Before Christmas we want to take a look back and share 24 of the biggest moments with you in our Canyon Year Review. We’ve already got the ball rolling on our website and Facebook page, go and take a look!

From everyone at Canyon, we hope you have a great festive period and look forward to another fantastic year with you in 2014!

Day 1

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Canyon Goes Enduro! – The start of 2013 saw the launch of the Canyon Factory Enduro Team, our first ever works team. Seasoned campaigner Fabien Barel joined us for the ride and got the season off to the perfect start at the inaugural round of the Enduro World Series at Punta Ala. First race, first victory for the new guys! Fabien and his teammates, Joe Barnes, Ines Thoma, Maxi Dickerhoff and Marco Bühler, have been making waves in the Enduro scene all season long in 2013.

Strive for the podium

Day 2

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Flèche Wallonne – They say all good things come in threes… After commanding victories by Philippe Gilbert and Joaquim “Purito” Rodriguez, it was Dani Moreno’s turn, completing a perfect hat-trick for the Aeroad CF. The Spaniard buried himself on the Muur de Huy to take the revered Flèche Wallonne, saving his best legs till the end to break away on the feared 26% drag to the line and take the title of “Conqueror of the Muur”.

Aeroad CF gets Hat-trick

Day 3

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Rent a bike from Canyon.Base at Robinson Club Cala Serena and explore Mallorca’s beautiful countryside either from the road or out on the trail. Experience the most stunning routes and the finest scenery with our guides at your side, or discover the island for yourself.

Canyon.Base Mallorca

Day 4

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Double Victory at the Leadville 100 – Alban Lakata and Sally Bigham seal the double win at Colorado′s Leadville 100 Trail Race. The two racers also both set new course records for the 100 mile distance at the legendary and hardest Mountain Bike Race in the USA.

Lux CF – The perfect Long-Distance Race-Bike

Day 5

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Modern urban mobility Canyon style – At this year’s Eurobike Show we presented our Urban Concept Bike. This bike certainly attracted a lot of attention with its fusion of great design and functionality. The cockpit is fully integrated into a single unit and the front and rear lights are also embedded into the frame, giving our Urban Concept Bike a highly distinctive, yet elegant appearance.

Canyon Urban Concept Bike

Day 6

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Speedmax CF – Winner of the “Designpreis der Bundesrepublik Deutschland” in their Product Design Category.
Our Head of Research and Development, Michael Kaiser PhD. Eng. had the following to say: “Good design is really important to us. With this award, our team gets the recognition they deserve and this will motivate us for future projects. A distinct design language allows us to express and define ourselves more clearly, which is something our customers really value.”

The new 2014 Speedmax CF models are now available to order. So it’s time to Beat the Street.

Look forward to part 2!

Canyon strikes gold: female riders secure golden hat trick

Wednesday, September 18th, 2013

Last weekend was nothing short of a Gold rush for the German bicycle manufacturer Canyon. Celebrations were all around for the Canyon ladies as they rode their bikes to victory in both Enduro and Cross Country races. At the first Ischgl Overmountain Challenge 2013 (AUT), Ines Thomas from the Canyon Factory Enduro Team pedaled her way to success and became the (unofficial) Enduro European Champion. Irina Kalentieva from the Topeak-Ergon Racing Team celebrated her eighth World Cup triumph (Elite Women) this season at the last UCI MTB World Cup Cross Country race Hafjell (NOR). Her younger talented Cross Country colleague Malene Degn also won gold in the Women Juniors category. Making last weekend a ‘golden hat trick’!

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The first Ischgl Overmountain Challenge in the famous Tyrolean ski resort Ischgl was held as the “European Enduro Open” – and it was a test race for the Enduro European Championship next year. In almost daring winter conditions around 250 riders, among them 17 women, set off to find Europe’s fastest Enduro riders. Straight from the line, Ines Thomas was not impressed as fresh snow fall resulted in the course being shortened. But not bothered by the harsh conditions she quickly drew out a three second gap ahead of her rivals. Ines remained in the lead for the majority of the race, winning four out of five stages. Even during the heavy pedal stages, Ines powered through, proving her physical condition and earning her victory. The final clock showed that she had crossed the line in 25:38,59 min, fabulous 2:22 minutes ahead of French rival Pauline Dieffenthaler (28:01,16 min). Fellow Canyon teammates Marco Bühler (9th place) and Maxi Dickerhoff (11th place) also showed great determination and strength on this difficult course.

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In Hafjell (NOR), athletes were not exposed to such frosty conditions for the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup Cross Country race. Irina Kalentieva saddled up on her Canyon bike focused and fully prepared. In this last World Cup stop of the season, the 35-year-old Topeak-Ergon Racing Team rider achieved her eighth World Cup career win and sent a clear message that she can still compete with the younger guns. The Russian has been training tirelessly for three long years to be where she is today – but it was worth it. The two-time World Champion steam-trained her way up through the field to the fastest three athletes from 17th place. After spending energy moving up the field she then found herself in a tight battle with Julie Bresset (FRA) and Eva Lechner (ITA). Finally, after a grueling 1:25:34 hour race, Irina finished first. Once the wheels had stopped turning and the reality of what just happened sunk in, with tears in her eyes, Irina said: “That feels so good, especially after all the bad luck over recent years. After coming fourth at the championships I was very focused on this race. Even in South Africa, I felt really strong but now it worked out.”

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Likewise, Irina’s teammate Nadine Rieder could be more than satisfied with her performance. After the 24-year-old German rider placed sixth at the Sprint Eliminator last Thursday, she ended up 23rd – the best World Cup result of her young career.

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Danish Malene Degn demonstrated an equally impressive performance in Norway: at the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup in Hafjell she rode onto the podium in the Cross Country Women Juniors category. With a time of 1:04:54 and a 20-second lead ahead of Meda Petrusaukaite (LTU) she grabbed the gold medal. A great comeback for the upcoming athlete after her unfortunate race in Pietermaritzburg, where she was hit by a competitor only 100m after the start, and was forced to retire.

If the Canyon athletes have inspired you then, why not join them? You can already order a 2014 Canyon Bike and get prepared for the next season. For example, this week from 19 to 22 September, the BIKE Women Camp in Caldaro (ITA) will take place. For further information just click here.

Bold ride by Alban Lakata to scoop Leadville 100

Monday, August 13th, 2012

This event had never previously been won by a non-American rider… until now!

Alban Lakata, alias “Albanator” completely lived up to his role as pre-race favourite and brilliantly won the legendary “race of races”; the Leadville 100.

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Inspired and in superb form following their victory in the Transalp event, the pro duo from the Topeak-Ergon Racing Team Alban and teammate Robert Mennen lined-up together on their Grand Canyon CF SLX 29 team bikes.

The riders had to overcome 100 miles in the Rocky Mountains. A particular challenge in this event is the altitude. From Leadville at an altitude of 3094 meters, the race climbs to the so-called “Columbine Mine”, which lies at an altitude of almost 3800 meters.

We are celebrating Alban’s victory big time and have great mountain bikes for you at knock-down prices.

The pro bikes at a glance:

Grand Canyon CF 9.0 Team: Was 3699 € – Now 3199 € – You save: 500 €

Grand Canyon CF 8.0: Was 2499 € – Now 2199 € – You save 300 €

Well done also to our ladies! Sally Bigham, who already dominated the Transalp a few weeks ago, scooped second place. Sonya Looney finished a very creditable 5th after 50 miles of racing. A first-rate performance!

Well done to the entire team!

Going for Gold: Irina Kalentieva in London 2012

Wednesday, August 8th, 2012

The excitement is really hotting up. On Saturday 11th August the mountain bike section of the Olympic Games in London gets underway.
Among the starters is double world champion Irina Kalentieva from the Topeak-Ergon Racing team, who will be lining up for her native Russia on her Canyon mountain bike.

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“You can’t afford to be afraid of the course and have to be prepared to really let yourself go and give it everything you’ve got.”
This guiding principle is what has fired Irina Kalentieva to the top of her sport and she has remained one of the fastest women in the world in the Cross-Country-World Cup for several years now.
Irina always gives absolutely everything in the pursuit of her aims. Mountain biking is her number one passion and this is something she is aiming to prove at the Olympic Games in London.

In Irina’s Blog she talks extensively about her preparations and experiences. Accompany Irina in the final hours before her big event.

So get stuck in there Irina and go for gold!

Transalp 2012: 10 wins in 6 stages – The Topeak-Ergon Racing Team battles its way to the top

Friday, July 20th, 2012

The most prestigious MTB race, the Transalp, is currently taking place in the Alps. The 3 Topeak-Ergon athletes Alban Lakata, Robert Mennen and Sally Bigham are all fighting for overall victory on Canyon bikes.

The 15th instalment of the Craft Bike Transalp, one of the toughest mountain bike stage races, has been up and running since 14th July. The 8-stage race runs right across the Alps from Oberammergau in Bavaria to Riva on Lake Garda in Italy over 618 km and 21166 meters of elevation. Alban Lakata, Robert Mennen and Sally Bigham from the Topeak-Ergon Racing Team and of course Canyon are all in on the action.

At the start of the event the favourites from Topeak-Ergon Racing Team Lakata and Mennen didn’t have luck on their side on the opening 96 km stage from Oberammergau to Imst, losing over 13 minutes due to a technical defect. At the end of the stage the pair was back in 8th overall some 10 minutes down on the leaders.

On stage 2, however, the duo let their rivals know that they hadn’t given up on the overall victory. On the stage from Imst to Ischgl the duo from the Koblenz-based racing team finished two minutes up on the leading duo.

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Stage 3 from Ischgl to Nauders also went to the Topeak-Ergon Racing Team. Thus, Robert and Alban were able to celebrate their second stage win on the bounce on their Grand Canyon CF SLX 29 and eat up a further 50 seconds from the advantage of the leading duo.
The 53 km stage from Nauders to Scuol was again a stage where the two riders were able to impress. They won their 3rd stage in a row in a time of 2:15:17.2. Lakata and Mennen were now only around 3 minutes down on leaders Kaufmann/Stoll. On the second climb up the Reschner Alm Lakata and Mennen forced the pace. “We saw that the others were having problems and decided to have a go at them”, said Mennen at the finish. Lakata was also pleased. “Nobody expected that we could claw back so much time on today’s stage. Everything is going well right now and if it stays that way, we can still pick up first place”.

On stage 5 a 4th victory in succession for the Topeak-Ergon Racing Team put even more pressure on the Transalp leaders. Lakata and Mennen won the 69km stage from Scuol in Switzerland to Livigno in Italy in a time of 3:11:15.7. The deficit to the yellow jersey team of Markus Kaufmann and Thomas Stoll was reduced by a further 2 minutes.

The Queen’s stage on Thursday brought the crucial turn in the race and gave Robert and Alban the yellow jersey following a splendid performance. The 106 km stage with 3400 meters of elevation and temperatures of over 30 degrees was the toughest in this year’s Transalp. The top duo from Topeak-Ergon Racing Team had to apply maximum concentration to recover their deficit to the leaders and also to avoid crashing on the downhill stretches. Lakata said after capturing the yellow jersey, “At the moment everything is going great. Now we have a lead of some 28 seconds and we have a couple of shorter stages ahead of us so it’s looking quite good for the overall win”.

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In the ladies event Sally Bigham and teammate Milena Landtwing from Team Vaude Centurion won their 6th stage on the trot and are heading for a comfortable victory. The British born rider Bigham and her Swiss side-kick just keep on winning like clockwork! In the general classification Sally and Milena now have a lead of more than 3 hours and can therefore simply potter along and enjoy the views on the remaining 2 stages.

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Stage 7 is now underway over 73 km and 3248 meters of elevation from Ponte di Legno to Madonna die Campiglio. We’ll be keeping our fingers crossed for Alban, Robert, Sally and Milena that they can defend their positions as race leaders and arrive in yellow and pink tomorrow in Riva on Lake Garda.

The seventh stage from the Ponte di Legno to Madonna di Campiglio, the defending champions from Team Stöckli were able to decide for themselves. Alban and Robert came in about 2 minutes later to finish in second place and thus increased their lead to 4:18 minutes to their nearest pursuers.

Milena Landtwing and Sally Bigham continued to ride in a league of their own and also finished the seventh stage on top of the podium.

On stage eight Robert and Alban came in second again and won the general classification of the Transalp 2012. The guys needed a total of 27:35:17:5 hours from Oberammergau/Germany to Lake Garda/Italy on their new Grand Canyon CF SLX 29.

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“A win at the Transalp belongs in the Palmares of any good marathon rider. Now it is on mine as well. I am on cloud nine that we were able to achieve this”, said Alban Lakata, who currently is in the form of his life.

Team-mate Robert Mennen was very excited, especially since this has been the German Vice-Champion’s first participation in the Transalp: “I would not have dreamed of this before the start of this eason. The fact that it worked out now is just amazing!”

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In the Women classification nobody was able to get the better of Sally Bigham and Milena Landtwing. With a time of 33:18:54.2 hours and 8 stage wins in a row the two ladies rushed to Riva in an impressive manner as the undisputed winners of the general classification.

Topeak-Ergon – Alban Lakata scoops two Austrian championship titles

Thursday, August 4th, 2011

Alban Lakata has once again demonstrated to everyone what he’s capable of and scooped gold twice and silver once at the Austrian championships.
This shows just how versatile and strong the marathon pro is also in the disciplines of hill climb and cross country.

The weather in Lurnfeld on this weekend in July wasn’t particularly kind to the participants in the marathon. The riders were confronted with single-figure temperatures and rain in the mountains.

Right from the start of the race Alban and Jakob Nimpf were able to open up a gap on the chasing group and consistently build on this. From feed station 4 onwards the marathon world champion of 2010 went into a lone lead and became Austrian champion for the fifth time with a lead of almost seven minutes. Alban was tickle pink about the double victory saying, “The weather on the marathon was very bad. My years of experience probably gave me the decisive edge in the damp conditions and prevented me from getting the hunger knock in the cold. In conditions like that both rider and machine can easily do a wobbler. Fortunately everything went really smoothly in my case”.