Nino Schurter punctures twice and complicates his Cape Epic on the Prologue stage: Beers-Blevins and Ferrand Prevot-De Groot win to take the lead

Mountain bike 20/03/22 14:34 Migue A.

The countdown is over and Absa Cape Epic 2022 has kicked off with its now classic time trial stage as the Prologue of the race. A hot stage of 24 kilometres with 700 metres of elevation gain that has already left some big surprises. Pauline Ferrand Prevot and Robyn de Groot flew through the field in their debut to take the women's victory, while the men's race was marked by mechanical problems for SCOTT SRAM and victory for Blevins and Beers.

SCOTT SRAM punctures on day one and complicates their Cape Epic, Blevins-Beers win

All eyes had been on the pair for months and they were the favourites to win, but as bad luck would have it, Nino Schurter and Lars Forster got off to the worst possible start.

First flat tyre of the day for Nino


In the first kilometres of the day, Swiss rider Nino Schurter suffered a flat tyre that sent them to 44th place before kilometre 7 and when they were recovering positions and lost time, the XCO World Champion had to stop again to receive assistance and repair his rear wheel.

Nino Schurter repairing his rear wheel for the second time today.

At the front, the best time was being set by the German Speed Company Racing team until the Specialized pair of Christopher Blevins and Matt Beers took the win by 40 seconds. Canyon Northwave of Seewald and Stosek closed the day's podium, 1:06 minutes behind, while Schurter-Forster lost 4:30 minutes to the winners and first overall leaders.

Nick Muzik

Another surprise of the day came from Spaniards Sergio Mantecón and Francesc Guerra of SCOTT Cala Bandida, who finished sixth and held the best time of the day for several hours.

Prologue stage Cape Epic 2022 Results - Men

  1. Beers/Blevins - Toyota Ninety Specialized 58:06
  2. Egger/Baum - Speed Company Racing + 0:40´
  3. Seewald/Stosek - Canyon Northwave +1:06´
  4. Frischknecht/Ragnoli - SCOTT SRAM DUE +2:13´
  5. Marotte/Swenson - Santa Cruz +2:13´

Pauline Ferrand Prevot and Robyn de Groot surprise at their debut

In the women's race, the presence of Pauline Ferrand Prevot was one of the great novelties of the edition, the current European XCO champion had never participated in the Cape Epic and she was going to do it together with the former South African cyclist Robyn de Groot, four times podiumist in the Cape Epic. But the truth is that both arrived with a low profile as the South African seemed not to have trained as planned.

Dom Barnardt


That low profile has been detonated on the first day and Pauline Ferrand Prevot with Robyn de Groot have set the best time of the day with 1:09:05, 42 seconds less than the pair formed by Candice Lill and Mariske Strauss, and the third place on the podium has been for the Swiss Ariane Luthi and South African Amy Wakefield. The Luthi-Wakefield pair is one of the favourites for the podium and has so far lost almost a minute and a half to the current leaders of BMC MTB Racing.

Prologue stage Cape Epic 2022 Results - Women

  1. Ferrand Prévot/De Groot - BMC MTB Racing  01:09:05
  2. Lill/Strauss - Faces Rola  + 42"
  3. Luthi/Wakfield - Symbtech ZA +1:27´
  4. Batten/Gomez Villafane - Songo Specialized +1:31´
  5. Rabie/Preen - Private Client Holding +6:45´
  6. Schneider/Tazreiter - bicyclegarage +7:09´ 

For the second day, the stage with the steepest gradient of the race awaits them on a route of 92 km with 2850 positive metres. A typical stage of the hardest editions and where the differences of today can begin to be cut or widen in a more relevant way.    



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Nino Schurter pincha y se complica la Cape Epic en la etapa Prólogo: Beers-Blevins y Ferrand Prevot-De Groot ganan y se ponen líderes


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Nino Schurter fura e se complica no Cape Epic na etapa do prólogo: Beers-Blevins e Ferrand Prevot-De Groot vencem e assumem a liderança