Pauline Ferrand-Prévot and Sam Gaze add to collection of rainbow stripes at marathon MTB world champs

·2 min read

This article originally appeared on Velo News

Frenchwoman Pauline Ferrand-Prevot and New Zealander Sam Gaze are the 2022 UCI marathon mountain bike world champions.

Both athletes are less than a month out from celebrating short track world championship titles, with Ferrand-Prevot also claiming the cross-country set of rainbow stripes.

The Frenchwoman similarly claimed XCO and XCM titles in 2019.

On Saturday, September 17 riders raced a fast and non-technical course in Haderslev, Denmark. The circuit course featured 40 kilometers of mostly doubletrack and gravel roads, with two main climbs totaling an ascent of 500 meters.

Men raced three laps for a total of 120km, while the women completed two full laps plus an additional 7.5km loop at the 24km mar for a total 87.5km race distance.

Related: Is there such thing as a triple rainbow? Lauren Stephens is about to find out

Ferrand-Prevot bested Great Britain’s Annie Last in a sprint, with Switzerland’s Jolanda Neff crossing the line two seconds later. Two Danish riders, Sofie Heby Pederson and Caroline Bohe, finished fourth and fifth to celebratory hometown crowds.

Lea Davison, who retired from the XC World Cup circuit last year, was the best-placed of the three women on Team USA. The 39-year-old raced her way from a 57th starting position to 14th overall. Lauren Stephens and Kelly Catale finished 29th and 36th, respectively.

Gaze’s second world championship title in less than a month was particularly poignant. After winning the XCC world title in Les Gets, the 26-year-old fractured his clavicle during the XCO race.

“It wasn’t the most ideal preparation with broken collarbone and ribs,” Gaze said after the race. “I just wanted to come and right some wrongs from the world champs.”

The kiwi crossed the line 16 seconds ahead of Germany’s Andreas Seewald in second, whlie Dane Simon Andreassen finished third in front of hometown crowds. In the men’s race, Germans had a particularly good showing, with fourth and fifth going to Martin Frey and Sascha Weber, respectively.

Full women’s and men’s results.

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