Långa Billingeracet

In some way this is my favorite XC Marathon race. It got great atmosphere, many friends, awesome climbs and some beautiful flowy trails. Went down to Skövde yesterday with my teammate John and Mattias to stay at my sister 🙂 1st class.

Not even 5min riding to the start this morning which was perfect but maybe not the warm-up you needed 😉

It all started with a asphaltclimb that went into the forest halfway and I tried to take it a bit easy. Here was also the first time I noticed my easiest gear 34-36 wasn’t working at all. 34-32 as easiest for the rest. Felt good in the beginning except I didn’t have to power on the flat gravelsections or the gearing. Tried to hang on some groups but dropped a bit, got back up when it was going uphill 😉

The trails in Öglunda was amazing and my bike felt really good. The Fox fork works like a dream and I really like the geometry of my bike (and weight). The gravelclimb up after Öglunda went really good with a good flow 🙂

Up on Billingen I got a new bottle from my sister and then it came a really long singletrack part, was a bit hard on my hardtail. Down on the other side on some gravelroads and some great green singletrack felt nice.

Then the longest part, the singletrack section including some crocodiletracks :p which takes a lot of energy without any rest. Started to feel my back and after 57km it started to hurt. Was riding slow (according to a friend I rode with for a while) and a lot of stretching so dropped from some groups.

Finally the end came, 2 climbs which went much better than I hoped for with my back. 8kg bike makes difference and on the first climb I rode with 34-28 gearing and it felt great passing a couple of riders too. A bit singletrack down and some asphalt before the last climb, Strupen. Knew how it was but didn’t remember it got steeper and steeper. 34-32 in the end and standing up trying to have grip and passed some more riders.

It all ended in a small spring with me and a guy riding in a different class so I let him win 😉

Finished 34th in my category and 127th overall. 3h31min so 19min better than my earlier record 😀 Really tired but satisfied.

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Here you can see who’s the fastest :p

And Mattias who never been riding so far rode 5min faster than me:

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Like Benny Andersson said, a hardtail wasn’t perfect for the course. But I couldn’t have asked for more fun on my Specialized Epic HT, really nice with a SWATbox too so I didn’t have to carry a spare tube and pump in my jersey:

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Always improvements to make but as this bike is what I want to have I have to make the improvements on my body instead 😉

Map and stats: Strava

Emil Lindgren and Jennie Stenerhag won!

Le Peloton #151 and a small race

It all started with a happy moment:

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My plan was to do the shortest loop on my mtb just as a spin and for the breakfast. Ruined in the first climb where my Epic felt pretty fast. Tried to hang on Christian when he passed me on the next flat section a short while. Changed plan to ride fast uphill and ”easy” downhill. After turning in Erstavik it felt pretty good so changed my mind once again and tried to ride as fast as I could and maybe even get the KOM. Was fun but hard and when reaching Sickla at 6.50 it felt great. I thought the KOM was around 48min and we started a bit after 6. The bad thing was that Christian had the KOM at 44min…

Celebrated my 2nd place with breakfast at Le Mond:

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After a productive day at work with both good and bad things it was time again. Got away a bit later than I hoped as it was a lot of customers in the end but rode to Årsta for a training race.

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29 cyclists on a short intense course. 5 or 8 laps depending on which class, I did 8. Was a real tight course without any rest and always had to have your mind focusing. Did a couple of mistakes but except that it went pretty ok even thou I wanted to be a bit faster 😉 Fun to race on my Epic and get the season going. Me and my faster clubmate Magnus after the race:

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And results:

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Happy people arrange these small events. 🙂 Well done!

Map and stats: Le Peloton and race in Årsta

UCIWWT Ronde van Vlaanderen

Last time I blogged about a World Tour race it ended the same way. Last year it was Boels-Dolmans who dominated the Women World Tour but not this year, seems like many more riders are up for the win and Team Sunweb is the team to beat:

  1. Coryn Rivera – Team Sunweb
  2. Gracie Elvin – Orica-Scott
  3. Chantal Blaak – Boels-Domans
  4. Annemiek Van Vleuten – Orica-Scott

 

Keps Cup Rönninge

The ultimate test for a new mtb have to be in a race. If it’s just as you hoped or if something doesn’t work properly.

So today I went with my teammate John to Rönninge and find out if my Epic was as awesome as planned.

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A bit cold in the beginning even for me. Testrode a lap which was really nice but with some mud and wet roots. Liked the small gravelsections between the nice singletracks and all in all it seemed great.

Down at the start talking shit with nice fast people. Got a little nervous and then the start went. Full speed with locked fork up the gravel. Got passed by some people and finally up the hole climb and onto the first real singletrack it felt hard:

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It just felt like I rode slower and slower but also passed rider after rider who punctured, a lot of punctures today. My bike felt really nice, even better than I imagined. Great stability downhill without any worries when I rode down steep things and super agile uphill which made me smile a bit 😉 Need some finetuning with the fork but worked great, open all the way except on the longer gravelsection where I put it in the middle position.

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Not my best shape after a hard week but was so funny being back in the XCO racing, this is the best. Me and my old friend Johan talked and missed the Västgötacup too, need more great races in this country and grow the sport, not just Enduro.

My teammate John won the hole cup (2 races) and got a cap:

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He also won the race today, a race which I thought I was last but ended 3rd 🙂 and also last as it was 7 DNF riders behind, people need to get better tires or riding skills…

Map and stats: Strava

all pictures except the last one by Åsa Larsson

Drentse 8 van Westerveld

While I felt like a pro this weekend you can watch the pro’s here 🙂 Been testing me today at Aktivitus and I was right about some things and wrong about some, really interesting and thankful for Skoda Cycling Team supporting me 🙂 More on that when I get the results I forgot.

Until then you have to watch the women race from earlier today. Great racing but still no win for Annemiek van Vleuten 😦