The scene was set perfectly with Saturday’s Pro Stage, when in the women’s race Isabeau Courdurier claimed the win, but second placed Melanie Pugin and Miranda Miller were within touching distance at just two and three seconds back respectively.
However it was Morgane Charre who made her intentions clear straight out the start gate on Sundays four stages. Charre would win stage two, but it was her 16 second win on stage three that changed the course of the race. From there she was in control of the race and that is where she remained. Charre finished the day an impressive 17 seconds clear of second placed Courdurier, with Bex Baraona back on the podium in third.
In the men’s race Martin Maes won the Pro Stage by a single second, with Jack Moir in second and Richie Rude claiming third. Maes’ reign at the top proved to be short lived, with Moir’s championship hopes on the line he proved to be unstoppable, winning three of Sunday’s four stages to secure the win.
Behind Moir the battle for second place was raging all day, with just half a second separating second placed Jesse Melamed and Kevin Miquel as they lined up for the final stage of the day. Melamed proved faster to take second place with Miquel rounding out the top three. Spare a thought for Maes who finished in fourth place, missing out on a podium spot by just four tenths of a second. Rude would finish the day just behind Maes in fifth.
The series attention now turns to the final race of the year in Scotland and with it the overall Championship standings. Tweed Valley will be the deciding race for both the men’s and women’s titles this year as the racing goes down to the wire. In the women’s competition Melanie Pugin has a sizable lead, but the title is not guaranteed as Charre is gaining and there’s now less than 500 points between them.