Debut for Multivan-Merida – Olympic champ extends
Big honour for Cyprus Sunshine Cup: International top mountainbike team Multivan-Merida first time ever will stay on the island and compete. Legend Gunn-Rita Dahle-Flesjaa and former world champion José Hermida are leading the equipe. He will meet Cyprus experienced Olympic Gold medalist Jaroslav Kulhavy.
“These are really big news for all the mountainbikers on the island, but also a honor for the organizers”, Mike Hadjioannou from Bikin’Cyprus Event Management comments on the registration of the whole team, which is one of the highest profiled teams in the scene.
Since more than ten years the Multivan-Merida Biking Team is a constant factor in the world of cross country racing. Gunn-Rita Dahle-Flesjaa from Norway and José Hermida from Spain are one of the most important ambassadors of the sport for this long time, wearing the same Multivan-Merida jersey since the early days of this century.
Dahle-Flesjaa is the most successful mountainbike athlete ever. In 2004 she took Gold at the Olympic Games in Athens, between 2002 and 2013 she collected nine world titles and the record of 28 world cup victories. Currently she is the reigning marathon world champion.
José Antonio Hermida Ramos for more than ten years in a row was in the top five in the world cup overall ranking and he took six victories. 2010 he crowned himself to the world champion and in 2004 he won Olympic Silver in Athens.
Besides these two legends, Multivan-Merida delivers four more hopeful young guns. Czech Ondrej Cink and Swiss Thomas Litscher, u23 world champion in 2012 and 2011 already grew up to world class riders. The 21 years old German Julian Schelb, u23 vice world champion 2013, will follow them.
The Dutch Rudi van Houts also closed the gap to the top ten of the world. These four already have got some experience with training and racing on Cyprus.
This counts even more for Jaroslav Kulhavy (Specialized Racing). He will stay on the island for the eight time, preparing the upcoming world cup season with the Cyprus Sunshine Cup. Despite some healthy problems he added in 2013 one more world cup (no 7) win into his palmares.
The Czech is accompanied by country mates Jan Skarnitzl (SRAM Rubena Trek), the world ranked 12 rider and by Tereza Hurikova (Specialized Racing), who several times topped the podium at Cyprus Sunshine Cup.
The races are organized by Cyprus Cycling Federation and the Cyprus Tourism Organization.
Dates Cyprus Sunshine Cup 2014
- Afxentia stage race (SHC) - February 27 to March 2
- Voroklini (C1) - March 9