Third round of Superenduro PRO series was past weekend at Pogno. Following the fierce competition in previous rounds, one can imagine that the fact Nico Vouilloz joined the party at Pogno didn’t properly facilitate the job for the “Italian boys” (which were on dispute for the Italian Champion jersey!). At the end Nico won the event and Davide Sottocornola was the new Italian Champion. Have a look below for details (as reported by the Superenduro series organizers).
The Superenduro Powered by SRAM came to Pogno this weekend for two intense days. The third PRO race of 2012 crowned Italian champion Davide Sottocornola, downhill legend Nico Vouilloz took his first win and a big turnout of foreign riders came to race. Switzerland was confirmed as a strong enduro nation, as Lukas Anrig followed up his strong showing at round two with a seventh place finish. In the top ten there were five Italians, two Swiss, two Frenchmen and a Brit.
It was a difficult day on Saturday as torrential rain started right at the start of the PS1. It became a case of getting down the stage any way you could for many people. These extreme conditions played into the hands of Nico Vouilloz (Lapierre – Monaco UC), who beat his countryman, Karim Amour (Kona – Brooks Bike o’Clock), by 13.2 seconds, despite using dry tyres. Davide Sottocornola (Cicobikes Endura) was third, 19.2 seconds behind Vouilloz, but first among the Italians in the hunt for the tricolour jersey. The heavy rain continued through the night and the organisers decided to cancel Sunday’s stage two on safety grounds.
Davide Sottocornola came into Sunday determined – he knows these trails well and was keen to press home this advantage on stage three. He took the stage win, 9.4 seconds up on Nico Vouilloz and 13.1 seconds up on his rival for the tricolour, Alex Lupato (Lapierre – FRM). Fourth place went to Andrea Bruno (Transition – Ready 2 Ride) 16.5 seconds back, followed closely by Swiss rider Armin Beele (Trek) at 17.1 seconds and Vitorio Gambirasio (GT – 360 °) at 22.2 seconds. After taking second on stage one, Karim Amour could only manage seventh, 25.5 seconds behind Sottocornola. Following him were Carlo Gambirasio (Torpado – Surfing Shop) at 26.7 seconds and Manuel Ducci (Ibis – Life Cycle) at 28.9 seconds off the pace. Rounding out the top ten was Lukas Anrig (Santa Cruz – Drift Racing). Surprisingly, on a wet, muddy trail there were no Brits in the top ten.
The first was James McKnight in twelfth and Al Stock (Kona – Brooks Bike o’Clock) flatted at the start of the stage and finised 48.7 seconds away from the lead. With two thirds of the race gone Nico had a lead of 10.4 seconds, Sottocornola was in second and third placed rider Karim Amour was 29.3 seconds back. Vitorio Gambirasio was 34.7 seconds back and Alex Lupato 34.9 seconds, giving Sottocornola lead of 24 seconds in the fight for the championship.
Sottocornola was again fastest on stage four, 1.5 seconds up on Al Stock and 1.6 seconds on Nico Vouilloz. This wasn’t enough for Sottocornola to take back Nico’s huge lead from stage one, he was still 8.8 seconds short, but it did secure him the Italian title. It also gave him the red leaders’ plate for the series, which he held after round one in San Bartolomeo, but lost to Andrea Bruno at round two in Punta Ala. Lupato managed third overall, but was 39.9 seconds off the lead. Vitorio Gambirasio tool fourth and Karim Amour fifth.
Lupato declared on the podium, “I didn’t want to leave David alone on the podium with two Frenchmen, so I went hard!”
Davide Sottocornola said about his victory, “I wanted so much to win the Italian championship at my home race, this victory has a special flavor. I am delighted to have beaten Vouilloz on two stages, with these fans cheering me on I was lifted a thousand times.”
Nicolas Vouilloz said, “it has been a very difficult race, there were stretches with a lot of grip and slippery sections, and I crashed on the last stage. The level of Italians is getting higher and we will have to look out for them at the Enduro of Nations!
As at Golfo di Diano Marina, the womens rankings were dominated by the French team, Massilia Bike Lapierre. Isabeau Courdurier was first and Morgane Such second. Marianna Uttini (Ibis – Cicobikes) settled for third place ahead of the twins Anita and Gherig Caro (Team Specialized). Sixth and seventh went to Chiara Pastore (Ibis Cicobikes) and Valentina Macheda (Ibis – Life Cycle).
The most awaited moment of the day was the delivery of tricolour jerseys, ten in total. The winners are: Davide Sottocornola (Open Men), Danilo Pennines (Junior), Loris Revelli (Youth), Marianne Uttini (Open Women), Andrea Toniati (Elite MasterSport), Francis Fregona (Masters 1-2), Stefano Migliorini (Masters 3-4-5-6-7-8), Chiara Pastore (Master Women). All of the are first-time winners of the national title except, Marianna Uttini and Loris Revelli who have defended their titles from last year.
The Superenduro Powered by SRAM does not stop and is back next weekend with the Sprint race at Priero (CN), which will award the jerseys of the Piedmont Regional Championship and soon after is the first SuperMountain race at Limone Piemonte.
update [2012-06-15] – the video has arrived! check below.[vsw id=”44094066″ source=”vimeo” width=”750″ height=”422″ autoplay=”no”]
You can find the main MTB Enduro events on All Mountain Addict 2012 race calendar.