With practice finished, it was now time to put the clock on the four stages, riders faced 3000m of descending and over 37km of riding. A seriously tough day on the bike, from rough fast alpine singletrack, steep rooty sections, and tight technical corners, all sprinkled with a few inches of dust. Most people's answer after being asked about their day, ’Dusty.’
Nicola Casadei took home the win of 34 minutes and 10 seconds. Trailing by just 13 seconds was Vittorio Gambirasio, closely followed by Nico Lau. Marco Milivinti landed in 4th and Greg Callaghan took 5th. In the women's race, Tracy Moseley took the win, just five minutes behind the fastest time of the day. Laura Rossin took second place, and Caro Gehrig took the third spot.
A closely fought race, with honesty, mechanical issues, and truly exciting racing. Enrico Guala (race organiser) tells me that this was the best Superenduro ever.
Mont Blanc looking tall and proud nestled in clouds.
Tomaso Ancillotti was here racing his bike alongside his team of riders.
Greg Callaghan, 'this is the worst job ever'. Talking about pinning a number to the back of a jersey.
The series leader before La Thuile, Matteo Raimondi pinning his number one to the back of his jersey.
As with all Superenduro races, riders are set off from the paddock, which is where they get their start times. Riders must stick to these times are they will be awarded a penalty. Enrico Guala sets all the riders off, giving them a mini interview and a bit of support.
Riders use the chairlift to access three of the stages and pedal to the top of one stage.
There's a short liaison to the start of stage one.
Unfortunately the first liaison caught this guy out, one puncture already out of the way.
Riders congregate at the start of stage one, just waiting to drop in.
Fred Leth dropping into stage one with quite the backdrop.
Vittorio Gambirasio, charging on the way to a 2nd place. Vittorio told me that he had a problem with his rim and was losing air, he'd put an air canister in his tyre before setting off and just had enough air left in at the bottom of the stage.
The trails may look smooth and dreamy from here, but they're tough, rough and rocky.
Simone Martinelli had a nightmare, he flatted on three of the four stages.
Davide Sottocornola, powering past Monte Bianco.
3rd position today for Nico Lau.
Anita Gehrig kicking up dust into 4th place.
Laura Rossin was super fast and consistent all day, she finished in 2nd place.
Nico Lau during the time check at lunchtime.
You might have wondered why I mentioned honesty earlier on in this post. That's because of this man, in ten years the Superenduro have never had anyone admitting to breaking the rules. Matteo Raimondi had a puncture on stage one, and he fell off the course and joined slightly lower down. With a broken tyre, he replaced it. He then went to the organisers and admitted to two disqualifiable offenses, changing his tyre outside of the time check and cutting the course. He was ultimately DSQ'd for the course cutting, but due to the wording of the rules he didn't break any changing his tyre, the organisers have told me they're going to update the rules. The most important thing to learn from this though, Matteo was the current overall leader and admitted to two offenses that he was fully aware he’d be DSQ'd for.
Back to the top, racing gets underway after the time check.
One of the more technical rock sections at the top of stage three. This caught out quite a few riders.
5th place today for Greg Callaghan.
Killian Callaghan would've been in 7th place but turned up a little late to his time check and suffered a one-minute penalty.
Dust shafting through the trees.
This guy just walked around the corner missing half his handlebars.
4th place for Marco Milivinti.
Caro Gehrig powering into 3rd position.
Nicola Casadei took home the win today, with a lead of 13 seconds.
Fastest for Tracy Moseley as well today, she'd be sat in 45th position in the overall category. She took the win in the women's category by over a minute.
2nd placed, Vittorio Gambirasio.
Number one, Nicola Casadei.
3rd, Nico Lau.
4th placed Marco Milivinti.
Tracy Moseley, champ.
Laura Rossin, 2nd position.
1st: Nicola Casadei
2nd: Vittorio Gambirasio
3rd: Nico Lau.
1st: Tracy Moseley
2nd: Laura Rossin
3rd Caro Gehrig
That's all from La Thuile, see you next time.