Cyprus Sunshine Cup 2011: Afxentia, 1st stage
Langvad repeats, Skarnitzl “unbelievable”
In the second round of the Cyprus Sunshine Cup 2011 Annika Langvad (Den) and Jan Skarnitzl (Cze) took the lead in Afxentia stage race by winning the 5,5 kilometer time trial in the Macheras Mountains.
“Unbelievable”, Jan Skarnitzl said after recognizing that he has ridden the fastest time in Friday’s time trial. “Impossible” said Henk-Jaap Moorlag (Ned), when he was told that he got into second place, beaten only by 0,42 seconds.
“It felt not like being fast”, the Rabobank-Giant rider said after finishing the lap on the partially new and shortened cross country course. But nearly every rider was telling the same, because the cross country pros at this point of the season are still not used to this demands of high intensity effort.
Skarnitzl, who changed the team from Giant to Rubena Birell Specialized, didn’t expect the success anway. “I got the bike one day before Voroklini race and I’m still not used to it. And I changed my coach and my training program”, the winner of Cyprus Sunshine Cup 2010 explained.
The talented u23 rider Henk-Jaap Moorlag told that after a bad day at the Sunshine Cup opener in Voroklini every day he felt stronger.
Karl Markt (Aut), the winner of Sunshine Cups opener, again showed a pretty good shape. As third place his difference to Skarnitzl was only 1,41 seconds. On Saturdays second stage, the point to point race, he will be again in the fight for the podium. The same should be with Emil Lindgren (Swe), who lost only 1,54 seconds. “I wanted to win but it was not too bad, I think”, the Rabobank-Giant rider said.
Annika Langvad (Easton Rockets) continued what she started at Voroklini. She won the time trial by 46 seconds to Slovenian Blaza Klemencic (Felt Ötztal X-Bionic) and 1:14 minutes to Lene Byberg (Specialized).
“I really like the course. With my new Fuji bike races becoming like playing and having fun”, Langvad said.
Blaza Klemencic was okay with her second place. “Time trial is not my discipline and I felt better than five days ago”, she commented.
For Lene Byberg the time trial was the first race since seven months when she finished her season due to physical problems. “I’d rather like to do five laps than one but I felt the power in my legs and I had the fire I missed last year”, said the Norwegian looking forward to the next two stages.
The appearance of three times Four Cross overall world cup winner Anneke Beerten (Ned) ended up on a respectable 24th place (+4:06). “Unbelievable hard, my legs were exploding. The intensity is so crazy. I was so nervous before the start, even after all the years of racing”, Beerten commented her debut in an international cross country race.
Results Top 5 5,5 kilometer time trial
1. Annika Langvad (Den) 19:21,6
2. Blaza Klemencic (Slo) 20:07,6
3. Lene Byberg (Nor) 20:36,0
4. Elisabeth Brandau (Ger) 20:42,2
5. Rie Katayama (Jpn) 21:01,2
1. Jan Skarnitzl (Cze) 16:32,8
2. Henk Jaap Moorlag (Ned) 16:33,2
3. Karl Markt (Aut) 16:34,2
4. Emil Lindgren (Swe) 16:34,3
5. Jukka Vastaranta (Fin) 16:46,7