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Go back in time with us and experience the Swedish Nationals in XCC and XCO in Gothenburg!
After a 2020 and 2021 with limited access to competitions, it is noticeable that Sweden vibrates with energy before a Swedish championship! In four days, everyone from youth to veterans will end up in Skatås, Gothenburg and Swedish champions will be crowned in each class. Not only will we be able to compete again, the area is also open to an audience of 600 people – we have been longing for that!
As usual CK Master offers a first-class event and the atmosphere is top notch. The track is known for its roots and stones as well as the famous Brudarebacken which really puts the cyclists to the test as it should be climbed not once but twice each lap. A course with minimal rest that requires concentration from start to finish.
Thursday 08:00 and it is time for youth and veterans to ride the XCT (Cross Country Time Trial) and we can state that the future looks bright with all the stars out on the track! Fantastic to see you all put on a real fight-show out there!
The competitions continue on Friday with XCC (Short track) for women and men junior and women and men senior. 7 laps for the ladies and 8 for the men will be completed on a shortened version of Sunday’s XCO course and the ride time is estimated at 20 minutes. In addition to becoming Swedish champion in XCC, Friday’s placement also determines Sunday’s starting order.
12:00 and the start goes of for the women elite and in the field we have Emma Belforth. From the first pedaling a high tempo is set up with Jenny Rissveds in the lead. With a few laps to go Rissveds and Linn Gustafzzon gets a small gap down to the chasing duo Belforth and Hanna Millved. It is an even battle for the bronze but with just over a lap left Emma showed that she had some extra power left in her and secures the medal.
12:50 and it is time for men elite to line up. Start goes of and the battle begins immediately. You can tell that several cyclist are very interested in dressing up in the blue and yellow colors and the pace they put up is hard to describe in text.
After a couple of laps, Emil Lindgren, Mattias Wengelin and Vilgot Lindh have created a gap in a few seconds down to the chasing group of cyclists and pretty soon it seems that they are the ones who will fight for the gold.
After just under 20 minutes of riding, the trio enters the finish line and it is up to a sprint settlement. The victory goes to Lindh and Lindgren pinches the silver medal barely a second behind.
Michael Olsson, who had some problems in the first lap, has found his pace for sure and climbed trough the field before crossing the finish line in P5. Oscar Lind P10.
We are heading over to Sunday and the start for women elite. Out on the track goes, among others, Emma Belforth. Aiming to defend her silver medal from last year. Seven laps on the 4 km long tracks, which mostly consist of stones and roots. Brudarebacken will be climbed not less than 14 times, but no one is happier than Emma who is known to be a strong climber!
A couple of laps into the race, Rissveds has created a gap down to the chasing group which consists of Gustafzzon, Belforth and Millved who are fighting for place 2-4. Gustafzzon and Belforth eventually manage to shake Millved off and a fierce battle for the silver medal begins.
With one lap left, however, Belforth has to let go of Gustafzzon, the cramp has crept in and the focus is now on completing the last lap and staying in the bronze position. She succeeds with this and a tired but happy Emma crosses the finish line and waves to the audience before she throws herself on the hill, where she lies for a while with cramps while the audience applauds. A grin of pain along with a smile of joy takes over Emma’s face as her son comes to the rescue.
15:15 it is time again for the line-up, men elite is coming up!
On the line we have, among others, the reigning champion Emil Lindgren, last year’s bronze medalist Michael Olsson and first year’s U23 Oscar Lind.
The start goes of and the cyclists leave a cloud of dust behind them on the gravel road when they turn onto the first single track . A few minutes into the race, they master (for the first time out of 16) Brudarebacken and you can already see that there are many cyclists who are eager to go fast today.
After a while, a trio is formed consisting of Emil Lindgren, Mattias Wengelin and Axel Lindh. We also find Michael Olsson chasing close behind. Around place 7-10 we find Oscar Lind. After five laps Lindgren chooses to discontinue the competition, Olsson continues to chase at a high pace and at the same time Lind has found an extra gear and starts picking places with a clear goal in sight – U23 gold.
After 8 laps on the track, Olsson crosses the finish line in P3 and after him Lind in P4 in the men’s elite which also means that he pinches the U23 champion jersey!
Next up – Cykelvasan. See you there!