PERSKINDOL SWISS EPIC 2018 - Best of Stage 3

PERSKINDOL SWISS EPIC 2018 - Best of Stage 3

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Published 24 October 2018


Wednesday’s stage saw the leaders’ jerseys change shoulders in the men’s and women’s categories after a hard 77km with 2700m of climbing. Bad luck struck overall leaders BMC Fischer Price with mechanicals costing them over 46 minutes. The leaders’ jerseys went to Scott-SRAM’s Frischknecht and Stirnemann. In the women’s, Team Canada’s high tempo on the final climb put Thömus RN on the back foot, gaining Pendrel and Smith valuable time and also a significant psychological advantage over Keller and Stirnemann. The scene was set for the queen stage of the 2018 race. Host to the XCM UCI World Championships in 2019, Grächen’s surrounding trails pose the ultimate test of any mountain biker, showing the highest ratio of climbing of all five stages, with the panoramic views of Moosalp as the perfect antidote. Correct pacing was to be crucial after Kalpetran, with a final sting in the tail. Team USA Red timed their efforts perfectly, with Christopher Blevins and Keegan Swenson ramping up the power, distancing Andri Frischknecht and Matthias Stirnemann on the final slopes approaching the race village in Grächen. Even though Scott-SRAM regained contact, they had nothing left for the sprint finish, leaving the young Americans to soak up the glory. Like in the men’s, the women’s field turned out another new stage winner. After a low-key start to the week, due to Barbara Benko’s illness and Anne Terpstra still on the recovery curve from complications of her ankle injury, Ghost Factory Racing crossed the line jubilant after some masterful teamwork in navigating the queen stage of the 2018 Perskindol Swiss Epic.

Results Stage 3

1. Christopher Blevins / Keegan Swenson (USA - Team USA Red) - 3:28.43,7
2. Matthias Stirnemann / Andri Frischknecht (SUI - SCOTT-SRAM MTB RACING) - 3:28.46,8 +3,1
3. Francesc Guerra / Enrique Morcillo (SPA - BUFF SCOTT MTB TEAM) - 3:39.22,3 +10.38,6

1. Barbara Benko / Anne Terpstra (HUN / NED - GHOST FACTORY RACING) - 4:26.45,7
2. Haley Smith / Catharine Pendrel (CAN - Team Canada) - 4:28.32,9 +1.47,2
3. Kathrin Stirnemann / Alessandra Keller (SUI - Thömus / RN Racing Team) - 4:37.08,7 +10.23,0