Germany’s Nina Reichenbach and Great Britain’s Jack Carthy respectively won their third consecutive Women’s Elite and Men’s Elite 26’’ world titles on Saturday, while Thomas Pechhacker took the Men’s Elite 20’’ crown to claim Austria’s maiden UCI world title in the history of the discipline.
Nina Reichenbach continued her domination of the Women’s Elite event, retaining the title for a second time. A silver medallist in the trials team competition on Wednesday, the German rider claimed individual gold with a total of 240 points, 40 clear of France’s Manon Basseville in second, with Australia’s Janine Jungfels a further 20 points back in third. Having already beaten Basseville to this year’s World Cup title, Reichenbach was never in danger of relinquishing the rainbow jersey she won here in Chengdu last year. “I’m relieved because I didn’t have a great feeling this morning,” said the German. “I’ve just had a very good World Cup season and I needed to back that up today. There was a lot of pressure.” A world champion in Vermiglio (ITA) in 2016 and now twice in Chengdu, and a five-time medallist in the event since 2014, the German leaves China with her status as the Kaiserin of Women’s Trial intact.
In the Men’s Elite 20’’ Thomas Pechhacker scored a historic first gold for Austria in an exciting competition that went down to the wire. Pechhacker came out on top with a total of 230 points, ahead of Spain’s Ion Areitio on 210 and Germany’s Dominik Oswald on 200, with the Spaniard and the German swapping their positions from last year’s podium. “I prefer to be the hunter than the hunted but I raced my final and stayed focused on what I was doing,” said Pechhacker. “I felt at ease in the sections, where power and explosiveness are what count.”
In the Men’s 26’’ category, Great Britain’s Jack Carthy totalled 240 points to collect the rainbow jersey for the third year running, with Spain’s Sergi Llongueras and France’s Nicolas Vallée – this season’s UCI World Cup champion – finishing 20 points behind him. The Briton went clear of the field early on, going clean in sections 1, 2 and 4, and held on to his lead to land the title again. “I’m still young (22) but I feel like an old-timer on the circuit because I’ve spent a few seasons at the highest level. Like everyone else I work hard, with my father, who’s my coach, and I give my all for my sport, night and day. I’ll be aiming to win again at the World Championships.
Alejandro Montalvo swept all before him in the Junior 20’’. The Spanish prodigy, who won this season’s UCI Elite World Cup crown, totalled 270 points to retain his title from Great Britain’s Charlie Rolls (190 points) and his fellow Spaniard Marti Aran (180).
In the Junior 26’’ competition, Germany’s Oliver Widmann emerged victorious with a total of 190 points. Taking second place was fellow countryman Felix Keitel, who also amassed 190 points, and France’s Nathan Charra (120), last year’s winner.
Spain and Germany have now won two golds apiece at the 2018 UCI Urban Cycling World Championships, one more than Austria and Great Britain. Spain and Germany also share top spot in the medal table with five each, followed by France (4), Great Britain (2), and Austria and Australia (1).
The 2018 UCI Urban Cycling World Championships come to a close on Sunday with the Men’s and Women’s BMX Freestyle finals, both of which are qualifiers for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.