Rio 2016 - XCO Women's Race

Aug 21, 2016
by Pinkbike Staff  




When these rings show up, everybody knows something big and special is coming. It's the motive, why athletes train so hard and prepare themselves four years to make their dreams come true. On the world cup circuit this year we've seen the women's field peak and valley through training regimens and podium wins and misses all with the ultimate goal at stake, to make it to the big show -the Olympics. Annika Langvad has had a phenomenal year and would come in as a hot favourite. Another medal contender would be Switzerland's Jolanda Neff. Previous World Champion Pauline Ferrand-Prevot came out of a bad poll position to fight tooth and nail to get to the front of the race but in the end, it would be the young Swedish Jenny Rissveds who would prove her engine more powerful than the others to take Olympic Gold. In second place would be Poland's Maja Wloszczowska and rounding out the bronze medal was 2015 World Champion, Catharine Pendrel. With 70% of the world's population tuning in to watch the Olympics, these women certainly put on a big show for the world to watch and enjoy.


Mountain bike olympic course was build in Deodoro. It s 4 85 km s long complete man-made has two climbs and lot of technical stuff like rockgardens.
Mountain bike Olympic course was built in Deodoro. It's 4,85 km long, completely man-made with two climbs and a lot of technical stuff like gnarly (for XC) rock gardens.

This is the biggest rockgarden on the course and even it is a bit easyier then It was originaly made last year for some riders it was difficult to get through.
This is the biggest rock garden on the course and even it is a bit easier then It was originally made last year, for some riders it was difficult to get through.

... but not for one of the top favorites Jolanda Neff. The Swiss-girls with brilliant technical skills checking the fastest lines before the race.
...but not for one of the top favorites Jolanda Neff. The Swiss girl's with brilliant technical skills checking the fastest lines before the race.

Nino Schurter was seen training with new Oakley Radar Pace sunglasses which Oakley made in cooperation with Intel.
Nino Schurter was seen training with new Oakley Radar Pace sunglasses which Oakley made in cooperation with Intel.

Olympic pits are a bit different then most of the riders are used for.
Olympic pits are a bit different then most of the riders are used for.

American Lea Davison heading to the crowded warm-up zone just before the start.
American Lea Davison heading to the crowded warm-up zone just before the start.

The moment for which some people have waited for four years. The olympic Women s race is on
The moment for which some people have waited for four years. The Olympic Women's race is on!

First lap and fight for positions before rock dowhnills.
First lap and fight for positions before rock downhills.

The Mobile photography will be a special discipline at next Olympics in Tokyo. That s probably why everybody practiced today.
The mobile photography will be a special discipline at next Olympics in Tokyo. That's probably why everybody practiced today.

Canadian Catherine Pendrel didn t have a good start and than she had some troubles in the rockgarden as well. She was around 20th place in first lap one minute down.
Canadian Catherine Pendrel didn't have a good start and then she had some troubles in the rock garden as well. She was around 20th place in first lap, one minute down.

Brazilian hero Raiza Henrique Goulao
Brazilian hero Raiza Henrique Goulao

The biggest rockgarden on the course with solid crowds around.
The biggest rock garden on the course with solid crowds around.

Jenny Rissveds from Sweden rode smoothly and fast through the Rockgarden. Even she had a crash eariler in the week and has 4 stitches on the elbon and 6 on her knee.
Jenny Rissveds from Sweden rode smoothly and fast through the rockgarden, despite a crash earlier in the week that left her with four stitches on the elbow and six on her knee.

The canadian fire wather for Catherine Pendrel. Than she moved every lap more and more to the front and at the end she oversprinted Emily Batty in the figth for bronze medal.
The Canadian fire weather for Catherine Pendrel. Then she moved every lap more and more to the front and at the end, she over sprinted Emily Battye in the fight for the bronze medal.

Jolanda Neff doesnt had her day. With a pain in her back she finished sixth.
Jolanda Neff didn't have a good day. She started strongly for the first three laps, but with pain in her back she dramtically ran out of gas on the fourth lap and she finished back in sixth.

Maja Wloszczowska from Poland is leading the olympic race with Jenny Rissveds on her backwhell.
Maja Wloszczowska from Poland leads the way with Jenny Rissveds on her back wheel, the two swapped the lead a few times on laps four and five, until Rissveds found another gear on the last lap and pulled nearly 30 seconds on her.

Jenny Rissveds celebrates her Olympic champion title in the finish line of the race. She is the youngest MTB Olympic champion.
Jenny Rissveds celebrates her Olympic champion title at the finish line of the race. She is the youngest MTB Olympic XC champion ever.

A great story of Czech Katerina Nash. Those were her fifth Olympic games. She started already in Atlanta 1996 as a mountain biker and also did winter Olympic games with national Ski team. Katerina finished 5th.
A great story for Czech Katerina Nash. These were her fifth Olympic games. She started in Atlanta 1996 as a mountain biker and also did winter Olympic games with national Ski team. Katerina finished 5th.

Proud teammanager Thomas Frischknecht. Guess what he is looking for
Jenny Rissved's proud team manager, Thomas Frischknecht. Guess what he is looking for!

1. Jenny Rissveds SWE 2. Maja Wloszczowska POL 3. Catherine Pendrel CAN .
1. Jenny Rissveds (SWE), 2. Maja Wloszczowska (POL), 3. Catherine Pendrel (CAN).

Jenny Rissveds and her gold cca 500 grams of hapiness which will make her shine for next 4 years. Next olympic games will host Tokyo in 2020
Jenny Rissveds and her gold cca 500 grams of happiness which will make her shine for next 4 years. Next Olympic games will host Tokyo in 2020!



37 Comments

  • + 57
 Well, I guess a Polish guy living in Sweden couldn't be more happy with that result Big Grin
  • + 141
 You mean like a Polish guy living in Sweden that frequents a Canadian website ????
  • + 18
 Will polish that medal a lot... I'll walk myself out...
  • + 29
 The womans race was very nice. Jenny was stronger in most of the climbs she deserves the win. The track is controversial but most of the riders like it. Rio de Janeiro has tons of amazing natural trails that could held this race but money talks and they prefer to spend tons of money building an artificial track so more money to corruption. The sad part is that this track will be destroyed after the Olympics because its an Army land so will be no legacy. Also the BMX track and even the hole Velodrome will be destroyed after the Olympics so there is no legacy for cycling after the games... mens race today will be epic
  • + 3
 I thought fabricated courses were pretty standard for Olympic events so I'm surprised to hear it was controversial. I think the number one consideration for Olympic venues is spectators and media coverage, so a lot of concessions are made to increase viewership. I admit that it looks sorta strange, but I think I even remember artificial rivers being constructed for whitewater canoe/kayak events and even the "natural" rapids usually undergo heavy alterations...anyway...I bet it's pretty fun to ride so too bad it will all be destroyed.

Contgrats on football!
  • + 9
 Jenny's trainer said this olympics was too learn for the next one. Well, that's one way to learn????Congrats to all medalists.
  • + 0
 Or maybe it was not the trainer, someone said it atleast.
  • + 12
 Congratulations Maja!
  • + 5
 did not expect to scroll through all of jenny rissveds face filling my screen
  • + 18
 It's not a bad face to scroll through
  • + 9
 You know who's face I didn't expect to be filling my screen? Nino Schurter. I had to double check the article title after I saw that. Cant tell if PB made a mistake??
  • + 4
 The guts and grit from Pendrel was worth the whole race for me, watching it with no particular favourite.
  • + 4
 I watched Thomas race in Atlanta in '96! Dude is a BEAST I bet he can still hang!
  • + 2
 "The mobile photography will be a special discipline at next Olympics in Tokyo. That's probably why everybody practiced today."


Thats a realy good capture. Thanks for that.
  • + 1
 One more lap and Batty would have caught up to Pendrel or maybe both would have gained on second place. Great race and they course looked pretty tough, no cruising sections for sure.
  • + 4
 Thanks Pinkbike for the great coverage
  • + 2
 Watching the mens race now and the course looks like a blast. Hard work though with not many cruisy sections! Id be nackered after 1 lap i reckon!!
  • + 1
 Typo in Emily Batty's name in photo caption.
"Then she moved every lap more and more to the front and at the end, she over sprinted Emily Battye in the fight for the bronze medal."
  • + 3
 Cross fit and mobile photography in the summer games 2020!!!!
  • + 6
 Look at em all holding their mobile cameras the wrong way!
  • + 2
 @jrocksdh: I had to laugh! Losers.
  • + 2
 Any good video feeds for the mens race today?
  • + 2
 I think NBC will have it in the US. I'll be watching on BBC.
  • + 4
 @mattwragg: I hope you are going to do a Olympic XC tech article?
  • + 1
 Great course! That rock garden looked awesome. Those logs though, would have been fatal if rain...
  • + 1
 I,m proud of Maja !!! She,s so good ...
  • + 1
 Whats the deal with biting the medals? Taste of glory?
  • + 5
 It's an old test to see if an unknown metal is real gold. Knowing that, it's kind of weird to see silver and bronze medallists biting into theirs. Anyway, biting a medal has evolved into its own tradition.
  • - 2
 @CapedBaldy: Actually its the maggot photographers that ask them to pose like that; time for it to end.
  • + 1
 @SteveDekker: proly the same ones that tell em to raise 2 hands up like superman(lawwill)
  • + 1
 Did i miss something, or has the mens race not happened???
  • + 5
 It's today, 17.30 CET.
  • - 17
flag scottay2hottay (Aug 21, 2016 at 6:55) (Below Threshold)
 @mattwragg: culd u pls put this in murican time thnks
  • - 1
 Not a badly written article considering the reporters first language is obviously not English.
  • - 1
 OLYMPICS ON PB?? what is this sorcery
  • + 8
 As Maja said after the race, she doesn't put her full intension in gaining medals, she just loves to ride her bike. So if sorcery on pb means connecting people who love to ride there bikes, especially hard track/mountain racing ridden by also nice girls with great bikes then i don't know what pb is for.

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