Urs Huber (SUI) and Konny Looser (SUI) have achieved their yesterday postulated goal of winning a stage on today’s seventh and thus penultimate Craft Bike Transalp stage. The defending champions of Team Stöckli mastered the 72,25 km long distance from Ponte di Legno, Italy, to Madonna di Campiglio, Italy in 3:53:34.1 hours, cementing their third rank in the overall standings.
Alban Lakata (AUT) and Robert Mennen (GER) of Topeak Ergon Racing crossed the finish line two minutes later being ranked second in today’s classifier (3:55:33.3). However, the men in Yellow were able to extend their lead on Centurion-Vaude/BiXS iXS as Markus Kaufmann (GER) and Thomas Stoll (SUI) came in in third position (3:59:23.4) with a deficit of 3:50 on the overall leaders.
According to this, today’s result was equal to a first preliminary decision in the battle for the title. It’s pretty unlikely that the most impressive racers of this year’s Transalp will loose the lead again.
Especially as Topeak Ergon Racing was once again dominating today being the first team on top of Passo Tonale, todays first pass. In the end, Team Stöckli might have been able to catch up and take over the lead in the climb to Rifugio Orso Bruno, but Lakata and Mennen weren’t going full speed anymore.
“Our goal was to avoid any defects. So, we weren’t up to using the sledgehammer; especially as we had seen that Thomas (Stoll) had some serious troubles keeping up,” said Mennen, who is now close to a real big time result at his first ever Transalp participation.
With only the final stage to come Lakata and Mennen have now a lead of 4:18 minutes on their main pursuers.
“It should be enough to make it to Riva del Garda. But it’s mountain biking and there can always be flat tires or other defects. But to be honest, we have had enough bad luck already. However, a lot of things can still happen,” added Mennen.
Team Adamelloski still not to beat in Master category
Massimo De Bertolis (ITA) and Marzio Deho (ITA) of Team Adamelloski are a class of their own in the classifier organized for the teams with a total age of 80+. The men in the Blue Jerseys completed today’s distance of 72.25 km and 3,234 meters in elevation from Ponte di Legno to Madonna di Campiglio in 4:11:33.6 hours.
The second rank went to Viktor Paris (ITA) and Thomas Piazza (ITA) of Sunshineracers Nals (3:23:01.9) who came in some twelve minutes later.
Another seven minutes behind followed Andreas Laner (ITA) and Johann Grasegger (GER) of Team Scott finishing third (4:29:54.7).
Press Riva del Garda with second stage win
After their triumph yesterday, Lorenza Menapace (ITA) and Claudio Segata (ITA) were able to celebrate a back to back win. The second ranked duo of the mixed category crossed the finish line in the time of 4:47:51.2 hours.
Due to some major effort, Antonia Wipfli (SUI) and Patrick Jauch (SUI) of Team Gisler took the second spot on the stage podium (4:53:02.2) successfully dealing with a flat tire, continuous problems with the chain, a broken derailleur and thus an intermediate deficit of more than five minutes.
The third rank, with only one and a half minutes behind of the Orange Leader Jerseys, went to Daniela Storch (GER) and Torsten Mützlitz (GER) of Scott freaky fi’zi:k Friends (4:54:35.7).
Swiss Senior Masters on the road to their first title
Bringing home their fourth consecutive stage win (4:49:50.1), Renato Burch (SUI) and Bärti Bucher (SUI) of BiXS Suisse have done another major step on the road to Senior Master Transalp Title.
Thorsten Herrmann (GER) and Hartmann Stifter (ITA) of Team Sigma celebrated their so far best result by taking the second spot in 5:01:54.1 hours. Georg Niggl (GER) and Walter Perkmann (ITA) of CRAFT & Friends 7 rounded out the podium as third (5:07:19.6).
Landtwing/Bigham with no mercy
Nailing their seventh win in seven stages Milena Landtwing (SUI) and Sally Bigham (GBR) kept a clean sheet. Team Centurion-Vaude/Topeak Ergon made it to Madonna di Campiglio in 4:48:19.3 hours.
Catherine Williamson (GBR) and Louise Stopforth (RSA) of Bizhub-fcf finished in second position (5:40:49.6), Andrea Kuster (SUI) and Angelika Niklaus (SUI) of Team Metz-Kraftwerk in third (5:51:15.5).
The eighth and thus last stage of the 2012 Craft Bike Transalp leads over 75.10 kilometers and 1,178 meters in elevation from Madonna di Campiglio, Italy, to Riva del Garda, Italy, tomorrow.