Today we have a race that gets far less attention than it deserves, the UCI Mountain Bike Marathon World Cup. Last year’s event was held in Italy and clocked in just under four and a half hours for the men, roughly three times longer than a normal World Cup race. Switzerland’s Christophe Sauser and Denmark’s Annika Langvad took the victories, with Sauser beating the Czech Republic’s Jaroslav Kulhavy over a 115km course, roughly 71 miles. The women raced 98km, or about 60 miles. The Swiss rider already held the title in 2007 and won the Olympic event in 2008. It was one of the few times anyone finished a bike race ahead of Kulhavy in 2011, though not a bad day for Specialized, which sponsors both Sauser and Kulhavy.
Langvald finished third in 2010 and surprised with her win last season. She completed the sixty mile course in four hours and twenty-one minutes, the equivalent of two laps of the Lumberjack 100, which took Yours Truly almost six hours. To put it in perspective, she could have completed an entire World Cup race in the hour and a half she beat me by over 60 miles. That’s ‘whooping’, as my schoolyard chums would say.