UCI MTB World Championships | Nové Město na Moravě, Cross Country season opener – preview

The XCO race begins and ends at the stadium where the winter biathlon competitions are held. The course at Nové Město meets all the requirements of the modern mountain bike enthusiast. Technical descents, steep climbs, big drops, sharp turns, and more tree roots than you can count.


The circuit consists of three ascents and three descents. The start is on the asphalt, in front of the stands of the biathlon stadium, and then you quickly head towards the technical area, where you can work on a broken bike.

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The first singletrack, which is a stretch of track that only one rider can go through at a time, is full of rocks and the descent doesn’t get any easier either. After the second climb, the riders prepare for the big drop. Along the way, riders will also encounter a pump track, a number of jumps and more than enough corners before hitting the runway again, through the stadium. Preparing for the next round.


As with cyclo-cross, the number of laps is only decided when the first times are recorded. The XCO race is usually about an hour and a half long and the short course is 20-25 minutes long.

The Short Course is a simplified and shortened version of the XCO Course. A little technical Featuresno highs and above all a huge explosion of action-packed power.

Who should you watch out for?

Cross Country’s depth of field is enormous. Add to that the fact that this is the first game of the year and the list of favorites is almost endless.

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Of the women, Rebecca Henderson, last year’s McConnell, is someone to watch. The 10-time Australian champion won in Nove Mesto last year during a period when she dominated the sport.

Four rainbows

Mountain biking has also been regularly dominated by the French. Multi-discipline world champion Pauline Ferrand-Privot in four disciplines (XCO, XCC, XCM and Gravel) will start with her brand new Pinarello and youngster Loana Lecomte has had a class of her own in 2021. 2022 hasn’t been her year, but because of that she’ll be sure to come back. .
Evie Richards is the hope of the British mountain bike. The 2021 World Champion regularly performs well on the short track. Her teammate Yolanda Neff is one of the Swiss women to be at the top of the world in fat tyres, and compatriot Alessandra Keller won the World Cup classification last year.

in the Alps

Austria, the other Alpine country, has a young talent (21) in Mona Metrowollner for the coming years, and Laura Steiger is also in the prime of her career at just 22 years old. From Sweden, the 2016 Rio Olympic champion should definitely not be forgotten. Her name is Jenny Risvids.

From the birth country of mountain biking, the United States, Kate Courtney is back at the highest level. After the world title in 2018 and the general classification in 2019, results since the pandemic have been somewhat disappointing, but in the run-up to Nove Mesto teammate Nino Schurter has won several matches. Haley Batten has been on the World Cup circuit for a long time and surprised Gwendalyn Gibson last year with a win on the short track in Snowshoe.


But the Netherlands also participates in the awards. Anne Terpstra has already had two World Cups to her credit and last year she finished third in the World Cup standings. Namesake Anne Tauber has also been a reliable mountain biking force for years.

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With the guys, all eyes will be on Tom Pidcock. The Olympic and European mountain biking champion returns to mountain biking in Nove Mesto after a classic season on the road.


For Nino Schurter, the 2023 season is all about the records. The Swiss is currently tied with Julien Absalon, with 33 victories in the World Cup. With just one win, the ten-time world champion can really emerge as the goat.

The Swiss has a long-running rivalry with compatriot Matthias Fluckiger. Last year, things went wrong for the home crowd in Lenzerheide between the two after they crashed together, until France’s Victor Koretzky came back to win. Countryman Tituan Carrod showed his potential in the second half of last year’s season with wins at Mont Sainte-Anne and Val di Soleil.


Australian Samuel Gaese won his first World Cup in 2018, but he’s been through a rough patch since then. The short track world champion signed with Alpecin-Deceunick in 2020 and thus joined Mathieu van der Poel’s team. The Dutchman is not a starter at Nove Mesto.

The Dutchman who is at the beginning of the season is Milan Federer. The Jumbo-Visma rider is back, on a brand new Cervelo mountain bike, since his tough crash at the Tour of the Basque Country.

Where are you looking?

The 2023 UCI Mountain Bike World Championships Cross Country season kicks off in Nové Město na Moravě. The short course starts on Friday at 5:45 PM and on Sunday at 2:45 PM for women and 4:45 PM for men. Extreme climbs, violent descents, high jumps, sharp turns. It all ends during the XCC and XCO races in Nové Město. to Discover + Don’t miss a moment of the UCI MTB World Series!

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